Shire Pharmaceutical\\$quot;s Cambridge, MA-based human genetic therapies business unit has honoured Airgas East with a Supplier Excellence Award for its performance in supplying specialty gases and related products during 2005.

The biotechnology research facility, known as Shire Human Genetic Therapies, was acquired by Shire in July 2005 from Transkaryotic Therapies, Inc. and has been served by Airgas\\$quot; Hingham, MA location for several years. Airgas acquired the Hingham location as part of its acquisition of the BOC U.S. packaged gas business in 2004.

Shire\\$quot;s team rates its suppliers on a 100-point scale based on various factors. Airgas received scores of 97 or greater out of a possible 100 points in each quarter of 2005.

'As we both have undergone changes in our respective teams, the Airgas service has become a constant that has allowed Shire to stay focused on developing and commercializing treatments for rare genetic diseases,' said Adi Mohanty, vice president of manufacturing for Shire Human Genetic Therapies.

'We are excited about winning this honor from Shire\\$quot;s team in Cambridge,' said Airgas East President Jim Muller. 'Shire and other members of the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council are an exciting, vibrant part of the region\\$quot;s economy that we are pleased to serve. Congratulations go to the entire Airgas team in Hingham and throughout the region who helped deliver this great consistent service.'