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Victoria's biotechnology sector will showcase its strengths when Premier Steve Bracks and Innovation Minister John Brumby lead a delegation of over 150 businesses to BIO 2007 in Boston next month. Mr Bracks said this was the seventh year that he and Mr Brumby travelled to Bio and would again lead one of the biggest Australian groups to the world's most influential biotechnology business conference.
Victoria's biotechnology sector will showcase its strengths when Premier Steve Bracks and Innovation Minister John Brumby lead a delegation of over 150 businesses to BIO 2007 in Boston next month.
Mr Bracks said this was the seventh year that he and Mr Brumby travelled to Bio and would again lead one of the biggest Australian groups to the world's most influential biotechnology business conference.
"Victoria will focus on promoting the State as an ideal investment location by highlighting our work in stem cells, cancer and infectious diseases and agricultural biotechnology," Mr Bracks said.
"This will be a particularly important BIO for us as Boston and Melbourne are sister cities, with collaborations underway in many fields including the Melbourne Boston Research Exchange for medical researchers."
Mr Bracks said the delegation would capitalise on recent independent confirmation that the Victorian life sciences industry was at an all-time high and had grown by 20 per cent over the past year.
The Victorian Life Sciences Industry Update, prepared by Blake Industry and Market Analysis, showed Victoria's publicly listed life sciences sector was now valued at $19.7 billion.
Mr Brumby said Victoria was the science, technology and innovation hub of Australia
"Last year our biotech and pharmaceutical companies generated sales of $5.7 billion and the 41 listed life science companies recorded a net profit of $246 million while annual R&D expenditure rose by eight per cent to $457 million," Mr Brumby said.
"In February, there were 55 clinical trials either underway or planned by Victorian biotech companies, representing a 45 per cent increase over the last 12 months.
"Victoria now leads Australia in medical research, providing work for 6300 people in this industry and is the home base for 140 life science companies."
The Victorian delegation to Boston includes the Australian Tissue Engineering Centre, Australian Stem Cell Centre, Box Hill Institute's BioSkills and Paleotechnology Australia, Nanotechnology Victoria, RMIT Drug Discovery Technology, Diabetes Vaccine Development Centre, Nucleus Networks, Invetech, INVISION IT Systems and MiniFAB ( Aust ).
Biotech companies Clinuvel, Starpharma and Cytopia have been selected to take part in the Bio Business Forum.
Mr Brumby said the delegation was anticipating success similar to last year's BIO conference in Boston.
"Last year, the Box Hill Institute secured a US$6.1m deal for biotechnology research associated with the petro-chemical industry and over 100 high quality leads worth nearly $20 million were generated through networking and deal creation," he said.
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