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Mass. Tags $1B for Biotech
May 2007
BOSTON, May 9, 2007 -- Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick announced yesterday a plan to make Massachusetts the "global leader in life sciences," unveiling a collaborative Massachusetts Life Science Strategy during a speech at the 2007 BIO International Convention, sponsored by the Biotechnology Industry Organization, being held this week in Boston.

The plan, which includes a 10-year, $1 billion investment package to "support life science progress" -- including controversial stem-cell research -- attempts to bring together industry, academic research hospitals and public and private colleges and universities to coordinate these efforts, spur research, strengthen investments, create jobs and produce new therapies.

The governer has introduced legislation to establish the Massachusetts Life Science for science and economic development, for strategic investments at "critical stages of the development cycle" and for collaboration with the private sector.

The investment package will go toward a competitive grant program to compensate for decreased federal support to programs in Massachusetts and creation of the Massachusetts Stem Cell Bank, a centralized repository of new stem cell lines available to all sectors of research enterprise. Boston University, Brigham & Women’s, Children’s Hospital, Harvard University, Massachusetts General Hospital, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Partners HealthCare and the University of Massachusetts have already agreed to participate when it is completed.

It will also establish Massachusetts Life Science Fellowship Grants -- packages for research institutions in Massachusetts to attract and retain life-science researchers; and Massachusetts Life Science Innovation Centers, research facilities to streamline technology transfer, development time and funding.

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