In The News
Genesis Receives ENR Best Manufacturing Award for Cell Processing Modular Facility Project
“Best of the Best: National Institute of Health NCI Building T30 Cell Processing Modular Facility” by Justin Rice
The construction and medical sectors frequently boast innovative projects, but few intertwine the two as intricately as the construction of the National Institute of Health NCI Building T30 Cell Processing Modular Facility. This article features this impressive award-winning Genesis AEC project, deemed the “Best of the Best,” highlighting its complexities and innovative solutions.
The facility is the first of its kind. It’s a large-scale prefabricated and multimodular cGMP manufacturing facility. In simpler terms, the facility is made up of multiple pre-built modules brought together and assembled on site, all while ensuring they meet the stringent manufacturing standards set by the FDA.
Why is this a big deal? Traditional construction might require materials to be brought to a site and constructed there, extending the project’s timeline and potentially its cost. Prefabrication, on the other hand, means the modules are constructed off-site, ensuring a controlled environment, potentially higher quality, and quicker assembly on site.
Ignacio Diaz’s quote encapsulates the heart and soul of the project. Recognizing that the facility would potentially provide a “last hope” for many patients. This is not just a construction project; it’s a potential lifeline for many, helping to treat cancer using special cells called Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes (TILs).
At a cost of $28 million, the facility covers 14,200 gross square feet. This sprawling space includes prefabricated clean room modules, each weighing a hefty 40,000 to 50,000 lb. These rooms serve multiple purposes, from cell manufacturing and processing suites to lab spaces and cold storage.
But construction wasn’t smooth sailing. Proximity to active NIH facilities meant vibrations had to be monitored carefully. Additionally, the construction process experienced unforeseen challenges, such as the discovery of massive tree stumps or the complications brought by the rainiest year in the D.C. area.
The facility stands as a testament to innovation, collaboration, and the sheer will to overcome challenges. The blend of modular construction techniques, stringent cGMP practices, and the drive to contribute to the cutting-edge medical field make this project a noteworthy benchmark for future endeavors.
- National Institute of Health (NIH): The primary agency of the United States government responsible for biomedical and public health research.
- Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes (TILs): A type of white blood cell that infiltrates tumors. These cells are part of the immune response against cancer and are processed at the facility for experimental treatment.
- Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP): The FDA-enforced regulations which ensure the design, monitoring, and control of manufacturing processes and facilities meet standards for product safety and effectiveness.
- Prefabricated and Multimodular Facility: A facility made up of pre-built modules that are assembled on site, maintaining high standards of construction and safety.
- Clean Room Modules: Prefabricated rooms specifically designed to maintain extremely low levels of particulates, such as dust, airborne organisms, or vaporized particles, used for sensitive processes like cell manufacturing.