Bio-Technology, Pharmaceuticals and Regions


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Locke's biotech vision: $250 million to foster biotechnology in the state Seattle Times, January 11, 2004; By Luke Timmerman

Over several months, Locke has gathered the state's top research institutions and corporations to put together a biotechnology initiative that is turning into one of the most ambitious industry-fostering plans the state has attempted.

Biotech has been good to Washington; now state needs to be good to it Seattle Times, Sunday, September 29, 2002 By Lura Powell, Guest columnist

"As state leaders search for ways to reinvigorate a sagging economy while plugging a $2-billion budget hole, a few stars shine in the gloom. One of them is Washington's rising prominence in biotechnology and life sciences, which has helped propel the state's economy for years. But this star could dim without the proper attention, taking other pieces of the economy down with it."

Northwest not yet a biotech hot spot: But there are some encouraging signs, report says SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, Monday, June 10, 2002 By JOHN COOK

The Pacific Northwest is home to 50 public and private biotechnology companies. But even with home-grown superstars such as Immunex Corp., Icos Corp. and ZymoGenetics, the region ranked 12 out of 16 in terms of number of companies, according to a report released today.

The Brazilian government, increasingly fearful of what it regards as "biopiracy" by foreign pharmaceutical companies, universities and laboratories, is moving to impose stricter controls on medicinal plants in the Amazon region.

Biotechs attractive as takeover targets: Amgen's purchase of Immunex signals scaling-up of industry Seattle Times, December 23, 2001; By Luke Timmerman Seattle Times business reporter

Washington state has about 170 companies with sights set on treating disease in some form, and many analysts expect more may be created by people leaving Immunex. Some of its most potent trailers, like Icos, Corixa, Dendreon and Cell Therapeutics, may appear appetizing for big pharmaceutical and big biotech companies on the prowl for promising new drugs.

Big biotech deal being closely watched But president of Immunex sees acquisition by Amgen as 'enormous opportunity' Seattle PI, Tuesday, December 18, 2001 By MARNI LEFF SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER

"Immunex is a jewel in our crown here," said Dr. Alvin Kwiram, vice provost for research at the University of Washington. "It's (a) research enterprise and it has a very important and symbiotic relationship with the university. ... There is an intellectual fermentation and the creation of an environment that is beneficial to both communities." Kwiram said that while there's been no indication that Immunex will disappear from the region, more generally he is worried about the health of the local biotechnology community as the result of recent acquisitions.

It's a $16 billion deal -- Amgen agrees to buy Immunex Seattle PI, Tuesday, December 18, 2001; By MARNI LEFF SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER

Amgen Inc. has agreed to buy Seattle's largest biotech, Immunex Corp., for $16 billion in stock and cash, the companies said yesterday, after days of speculation about a possible deal. ...
But Christopher Henney, who founded Immunex with Steven Gillis and Stephen Duzan in 1981, said he has reservations about that trend. "My hope is that (Amgen and Immunex) maintain that entrepreneurial spirit," said Henney, who is now chairman and CEO of Seattle's Dendreon Corp. "Sometimes one worries that when companies become very big, they become less pioneering, less cutting edge. If that were to happen, it would be a grave disappointment."

Bothell biotech company raises $20 million Seattle PI, Saturday, December 15, 2001 By JOHN COOK, SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER

Northwest Biotherapeutics Inc. yesterday raised $20 million through an initial public offering, becoming just the third Washington state company to sell shares to the public this year.... Northwest Biotherapeutics is developing immunotherapy products used in the treatment of cancer. Its lead product candidate, DCVax-prostate, is a prostate cancer treatment now entering Phase 3 clinical trials. The company also is working on products for the treatment of brain, lung, breast and colon cancers...

Biotechnology and Regional Concentration in Seattle Area:

  • Drug makers fight profit limits Seattle Times, August 08, 2000; by Tyrone Beason
    For people who cling to the idea that the United States should adopt Canadian-style cost guidelines for prescription medicines, Seattle biotechnology executive Tom Ranken has 500 million reasons to change their minds. That's how many dollars it costs biotechnology companies, including about 160 in the Pacific Northwest, to develop one prescription drug...

    BIOTECH BODIES. Business Week, July 27, 1998 (cover story)

    Decades of research into tissue engineering are about to pay off as dozens of startups perfect living organs grown in the lab, not the body.


    Audretsch, David B. and Paula E. Stephan, "Company-Scientist Locational Links: The Case of Biotechnology," American Economic Review 86(3), June 1996, pp.641ff.

    Delaney, Edward J., "Technology Search and Firm Bounds in Biotechnology: New Firms as Agents of Change," Growth and Change 24, Spring 1993, 206-228.

    Gray, M. and Parker, E., Industrial Change and Regional Development: The Case of the U.S. Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Industries, Environment & Planning A, October 1998, 30(10), pp.1757-74.

    Haug, P., "Formation of Biotechnology Firms in Greater Seattle Region: An Empirical Investigation of Entrepreneurial, Financial, and Educational Perspectives," Environment and Planning A, 27(2), February 1995, pp.249-67.

    Hill, Charles and D. Deeds, "An Examination of Opportunistic Action Within Research Alliances: Evidence from the Biotechnology Industry," Journal of Business Venturing (Vol. 14, No. 2, 1998, pp. 141-163).


    This paper provides an analysis of the implications of 1992 on the European pharmaceutical industry and sets it within the wider restructuring of the industry. The creation of a single European pharmaceutical market will, however, be gradual and will often present conflicting tendencies. The response of the major drug companies to the period of rapid technological change associated with the development of biotechnology is assessed.

    Rifkin, Jeremy. The Biotech Century: Harnessing the Gene and Remaking the World (1998).

    Russel A. and J. Vogler, The International Politics of Biotechnology: Investigating Global Futures, Manchester University Press, 2000.

    Swann, G.M. Peter, Martha Prevezer, and David Stout, The dynamics of industrial clustering : international comparisons in computing and biotechnology Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1998 [Foster General Stacks: HC260.H53 D96 1998 viii, 347 p. : ill., map ; 23 cm; Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (p. [309]-327) and index]

    Walcott-S.M. High tech in the Deep South: Biomedical firm clusters in Metropolitan Atlanta. Growth-and-Change. 1999; 30(1): 48-74

    The relation between biomedical firms and their metropolitan location is examined as an empirical test of both innovative milieu agglomeration theory and place specific strategies for life science companies. Questionnaires and targeted interviews were used to highlight the economic development role of real estate in suburban employment and residence sites and the intra-metropolitan directional migration of firms. Clustering of related industries is fostered by a shortage of laboratory and office space, encouraging information sharing and cooperative behavior via proximity.

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