GE Healthcare moves to expand contrast media production capacity with new $80 million investment

Kevin O’Neill, President & Chief Executive Officer of GE Healthcare Pharmaceutical Diagnostics

GE Healthcare’s Pharmaceutical Diagnostics business announced an $80m investment to increase manufacturing capacity by 30% at its Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) site in Lindesnes, Norway. The investment is part of the firm’s broader commitment to address future demand for iodinated contrast media, used in Xray and Computed Tomography (CT) to enhance visualization of organs, blood vessels and tissues across disease pathways.

Iohexol and iodixanol API are used in over 100 million patient doses of GE iodinated contrast media annually, equivalent to three patient procedures every second. This investment, coupled with the opening of a production line at GE Healthcare’s Cork, Ireland, fill and finish facility, aims to enable the production of 30 million more patient doses per year by 2025.

What is the market reach of GE Healthcare?

The 100-acre Lindesnes site, has been operating since 1974 and employs 450 people, who use multiple chemical pharmaceutical processes to convert iodine into finished API. Recently, GE Healthcare announced a multi-year agreement with SQM, a Chile-based mining company, to secure increasing supply of iodine, the key ingredient in iodinated contrast media.

GE Healthcare is the world’s leading supplier of contrast media, used to support patient imaging procedures in 130+ countries globally. All stages of its contrast media manufacturing, from development of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) to finished product, are managed entirely by GE Healthcare, adhering to current Good Manufacturing Practices.

With over 4000 employees and seven manufacturing sites, the Pharmaceutical Diagnostics business also supplies radiopharmaceuticals used to support diagnosis, monitoring and treatment selection across Neurology, Cardiology and Oncology clinical pathways.

What were the executive’s thoughts on the investment?

President & Chief Executive Officer of GE Healthcare Pharmaceutical Diagnostics, Kevin O’Neill, said, “We expect global demand for iodinated contrast media to double in the next 10 years, driven by global prevalence of chronic disorders and significant growth in CT procedures.”

“This investment in capacity expansion at our Lindesnes facility is another example of how we, as an industry leader, are addressing this growing demand to meet the needs of our customers and their patients across the globe,” Kevin O’Neill further commented.