USA: 137-Million-Dollar Contract Merck to Develop New Lateral Flow Membrane Production Facility for US Government
Germany-based company Merck has secured a 137-million-dollar contract from the US Government for developing a new lateral flow membrane production facility in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, USA. The new plant will produce Merck’s hi-flow plus lateral flow membrane which is used in rapid diagnostic test kit manufacturing for infectious disease testing such as Covid-19.
Darmstadt/Germany – Merck’s Life Science business sector has been awarded a 137-million-dollar contract for the construction of a lateral flow membrane production facility over a three-year period at the company’s U.S. site in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The contract award from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), on behalf of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is part of an effort to ensure secure local supply and production capacity for critical products for pandemic preparedness.
“With this agreement, Merck will construct a state-of-the-art lateral flow membrane production facility that will give our global in-vitro diagnostic (IVD) manufacturing customers greater flexibility and security of supply of our Hi-Flow Plus lateral flow membranes,” said Matthias Heinzel, Member of the Executive Board of Merck and CEO Life Science.
Hi-Flow Plus Lateral flow membrane is used in rapid diagnostic test kit manufacturing by Merck’s customers, enabling reproducible results due to its consistent quality and optimized properties. The rapid test kits are used for a variety of applications, including Infectious Disease testing (Covid-19, HIV, Influenza, Malaria, etc.), as well as in women’s health, biomarker detection, drug testing, food safety and animal health. Due to continuously increasing demand for lateral flow membrane, Merck had already invested in a second membrane casting line in Cork, Ireland, which was recently completed, and expanded the range of other critical reagents (antibodies, beads, blockers, buffers) utilized to develop lateral flow rapid test kits.