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South Korean pharmaceutical company UNDBIO is set to build an insulin manufacturing facility in Morgantown.
The plant will manufacture insulin shots that those with diabetes would inject once a week to control their blood glucose levels, as opposed to multiple times a day.
UNDBIO Chairman Caleb Jun said during the announcement of the deal’s completion Wednesday morning that bringing a plant to West Virginia is part of his personal goal to make his company global.
“The products of UNDBIO will both save human life and improve the quality of life of those afflicted with diabetes,” Jun said. “And if all goes according to plan, UNDBIO will become one of the top global pharmaceutical companies while bringing price-competitive insulin to the U.S. market.”
The company estimates the facility will add 200 manufacturing jobs to the region during the project’s first three-year phase. That number is expected to grow to 600 after the company secures FDA approval for the insulin product, according to West Virginia Secretary of Commerce Mitch Carmichael.
Gov. Jim Justice contrasted it to the closure of the area’s Mylan plant in 2020.
“[After] the blow that we took with the closure of an incredibly large plant, with a lot, a lot, a lot of folks, this absolutely is tremendous news for that area and for our state,” Justice said.
West Virginia University will work with UNDBIO on research and development, clinical trials and post-market studies, with the company also sponsoring research and internships for students and faculty.
The facility is being built on land leased by WVU. Construction is expected to begin this fall.