Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited Overflow of Contaminated Water at Shonan Research Center
Osaka, Japan, December 1, 2011 --- Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited ("Takeda") announced today that an incidence of overflow of contaminated water containing genetically modified organisms* has occurred in one of the waste water sterilizing tanks in a P1 level facility** at Takeda’s Shonan Research Center (Kanagawa prefecture; Fujisawa city, Kamakura city). After discovering the spill, measures to prevent the spread of contamination were immediately taken, and there is no indication of leakage of the contaminated water to the outside of the facility or premises of the research center. The assessment of the contaminated water shows that it will have no effect on human health.
Takeda sincerely apologizes for the considerable concern that this incident has caused to local community, and to all persons concerned. Takeda will quickly take actions to implement and enforce preventive measures against the risk of such an accident like this ever occurring again.
Progression of events Between 1am and 7am on November 30th, an overflow of contaminated water containing genetically modified organisms occurred in a waste water sterilizing tank within the Shonan Research Center. The accident was caused by a faucet in the sink in the P1 level facility not being properly turned off. The water mostly remained inside the sterilizing room, but some extended less than 50cm into the corridor and also into a separate room where it covered an area of less than 1m x 2m. After discovering the spill, access to the area was tightly controlled, the contaminated water was removed, and appropriate measures to prevent the spread of contamination were carried out by deactivating the areas that had come into contact with the water. In accordance with the relevant governmental regulations, Takeda contacted the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology, who visited the facility on December 1st to conduct an on-site investigation. Takeda has also reported the matter to both Fujisawa and Kamakura cities, based upon established agreements regarding environmental safety with them.
* Genetically modified E. coli bacteria, baculovirus and salmonella bacteria without pathogenicity to mammals
** A P1 level facility is an experimental facility that does not require the approval of the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology for operations. It requires the lowest hazard level of contamination containment measures.
Posted: December 2011
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