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China's big data draws Big Pharma

Country emerges as global research hub for advanced drugs

China's pharmaceutical market ranks as the second largest in the world at $137 billion.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Pharmaceutical companies from around the world are setting up research and development hubs in China to take advantage of the reams of data generated by a nation of 1.3 billion people.

France's Sanofi has opened its first Asian R&D center in Chengdu. The company will spend 66 million euros ($73.6 million) in the southwestern Chinese city, conducting research on a host of ailments such as diabetes and immunological diseases.

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