Local pharmaceutical company that treats rare diseases opening huge New Haven facility

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NEW HAVEN--While some companies headquartered in Connecticut are moving out, others are staying put.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals, an international company, is moving its headquarters back to the Elm City 16 years after moving to Cheshire for a bigger location. The company, which began in Science Park 24 years ago, had grown too big for its initial headquarters, which is why it initially moved.

The new headquarters, which was dedicated on Monday, will house 1,000 employees, and it will connect the gap between the two sides of Route 34 in the city's downtown district.

"This building, as you've heard, is knitting the city back together, connecting the medical center and its surrounding neighborhoods with downtown," said New Haven Mayor Toni Harp.

One person very excited to be on hand for the dedication was Cannon Settig, a 10-year-old who has received the gift of life from Alexion. When he was 3, Cannon couldn't walk because he had hypophosphatasia, which means he has soft bones. On Monday, he made the trip from his native New Jersey to celebrate the fact that he can now walk--a medical breakthrough attributable to Alexion.

"And now I'm playing lacrosse, basketball, and all contact sports and everything," Cannon said.

Alexion found a breakthrough treatment that replaces an enzyme in his little body that doesn't get naturally produced because of a mutation.

And the day of the dedication held its own special meaning for the company, which researches diseases so rare that they only impact 200,000 Americans.

"Today at Alexion we fittingly dedicate our new global headquarters on global rare disease day," said David Hallal.=