RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – Drug giant Merck is expanding its presence in North Carolina, a state official says.

The news means 425 jobs headed to Durham and Wilson.

The company Merck Sharp and Dohme will invest some $680 million in new manufacturing space and expanded packaging space to support its HPV vaccine Gardisil.

In return, Merck is eligible to receive millions in state and local tax rebates and incentives.

Average wages for the jobs will be more than $73,000.

Manufacturing jobs not requiring an advanced college degree will pay on average $61,000.

The expansion is being formally announced in RTP this morning at the NC Biotechnology Center.

(This story will be updated.)