The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

Biotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide

Tag Archives: BIO 2009

Scientific American and BIO worldVIEW Scorecard: A Global Biotechnology Ranking

world_map_2002Scientific American gathered and crunched a large amount of data to try to generate an objective, empirical ranking of 36 different countries’ biotechnology output and potential.

Here’s the special issue homepage, and here’s the scorecard page; but there are several interesting accompanying articles, particularly for those who have been following our Trends in 2009. See if either of these ring a bell:

I encourage you to check out the whole thing; but for all the Canadians out there who don’t want to read it for the articles, here’s the centerpiece:

Good news:

Canada ranks in the top 10 globally in IP Protection and ranks 5th globally in Intensity (a measure designed to give proper weight to “small countries with strong biotechnology activities”).

Bad news:

Canada misses the top 10 globally in Enterprise Support, Education/Workforce [really?], and Foundations.

Canada misses the overall top 10 by a hair as well, scoring an overall 2.9 versus a tie of 3.0 for Australia, Finland, New Zealand and Switzerland.

I am off to their presentation to “discuss” Canada’s failure to crack the top 10 ;-)

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BIO 2009: Wednesday Keynote Lunch Panel on Health Reform Live-ish Blog Part 2

BIO 2009More from panelists Tom Daschle, Bill Frist, Karl Rove and Howard Dean, and moderator health journalist Susan Dentzer (Editor-in-Chief, Health Affairs). Click here for part 1.

Next topic: process. Regular legislative process or reconciliation?

TD – No reconciliation needed as long as current process (esp. Senate Finance Committee) continues to work well in a bipartisan manner.

BF – shouldn’t need to resort to reconciliation.

TD – reconciliation/filibuster go together.

SD says Michael Steele spoke yesterday about taking on the President head on – does that apply?

KR throws Steele under the bus, saying something to the effect that Steele’s statement was about Steele as Chair of the party, not about this debate.

Next: Biosimilars. Will we see a 10-12 year period?

The panel is afraid of tomatoes (or shoes) because both HD (quite explicitly) and TD (less so) get universal nods of assent (and applause) for long exclusivity periods, everyone having temporarily forgotten about the last 45 minutes of universal nods of assent for cost containment. Yay innovation!

SD Wrapping up: looking forward, what can we expect?

BF – A big plan will pass, but not until next year. $1.5 trillion, universal coverage.

HD – This year, public plan.

KR – Congress will not pass a public plan with any Republican support. Totally supportive of a plan that costs no new money and relies entirely on private sector solutions. Can’t fight something with nothing, though, so look for substantive alternatives from Republican participants. Oh, and HD is an “ignorant twit”. Ha ha, he’s just kidding though. The end.

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BIO 2009: Wednesday Keynote Lunch Panel on Health Reform Live-ish Blog

BIO 2009The panelists today are Tom Daschle, Bill Frist, Karl Rove and Howard Dean, and the moderator is health journalist Susan Dentzer (Editor-in-Chief, Health Affairs).

First topic: Harry and Louise (Susan calls them The Two Horsepeople of the Healthcare Apocalypse). Where are they today?

TD – Want to get something done, concerned about costs of healthcare.

BF – Cost. Is a changed system going to be more expensive for them.

HD – Need a public option (not replacement).

KR – Cost, portability, relationship with doctor. 70% with insurance view their current healthcare as good or excellent.

Second topic: current plans on the legislative table.

BF – Responsibility to insure uninsured (a number he puts at 15-18 million). Mirrors a point KR made in response to HD – the risk of “crowd-out”, i.e., people being “dumped” from private plans and other market-distorting effects of having a public plan.

SD – Public plan in House bill, not clear in Senate. Outcome?

HD won’t prognosticate. Comes back to putting both options on the table.

KR – Don’t need public plan to provide choice, cf Medicare drug plan.

Panel drinking game: take a shot every time someone cites a poll with obviously biased question language. Seriously, people, room full of empiricists here.

Third topic: how to pay?

BF – wins for working “taxes” and “spending” into a single sentence.

HD – Gas tax at 10 cents a gallon would pay the whole thing.

TD – Will lose the debate if people believe the reforms won’t create savings overall.

HD and KR fight about whose deficit is bigger, and I’ll move the rest to a new post.

 Click here for Part 2…

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BIO 2009: Ontario Premier’s Breakfast

BIO 2009The speeches (s-peach-es?) just finished this morning at the Ontario Premier’s breakfast.

Minister of Research and Innovation John Wilkinson announced that Ontario has recently completed 2 new BIP investments:

Ontario’s Premier — Dalton McGuinty, winner of BIO’s second annual International Leadership Award — spoke next, highlighting the Ontario Innovation Agenda, including BIP, business tax reductions and recent funding in the Emerging Technologies Fund and the new $100 million for genomics research.

Dr. Nagy also spoke, emphasizing the $100 million of new funding and the value of a peer group of 95 P.I.’s in Ontario working on stem cells and regenerative medicine. Current work focuses on cell type switching without regression to pluripotency.

On to the omelet…

P.S.  First time here at the Cross-Border Biotech Blog?  Welcome! Check out who we are, check out our Trends in 2009 series, or hit the search and navigation tools on your right and see if you see anything interesting.

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BIO 2009: Monday Technology Transfer Breakfast

BIO 2009I was at breakfast yesterday morning with university and company members of the BIO Technology Transfer Committee.  Some interesting tidbits, colo(u)red by my preception and commentary and not to be attributed to any other attendees:

P.S. First time here at the Cross-Border Biotech Blog? Welcome! Check out who we are, check out our Trends in 2009 series, or hit the search and navigation tools on your right and see if you see anything interesting.

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The Cross-Border Biotech Blog at BIO 2009

BIO 2009I have arrived in Atlanta for BIO 2009! Stay tuned for updates on Ontario, Canadian and international developments.

Tonight’s developments: the Canada reception was at Dailey’s, in the cigar bar, and was very smoky. Canada’s Minister of Industry, Tony Clement spoke, but no-one I met heard a word he said (bad sound system). I’m sure we’ll hear more from him over the next couple of days, but if anyone in his office is reading this, I would love a transcript.

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TBI Breakfast: BIO and Biotech in the State of Georgia

I just came back from a very enjoyable TBI Breakfast with talks by Carol Henderson, the Director of the Georgia Department of Economic Development and Graeme McRae, the Chairman & CEO of Bioniche Life Sciences, Inc. which has an Animal Health division facility in Athens, Georgia.

Graeme’s talk, as usual, was very interesting and not very print-able.

Carol’s talk was also great.  Of course, Atlanta, Georgia is hosting BIO 2009, which is moving ahead full-steam.  Georgia also has some interesting capabilities and initiatives

Most interestingly, the State has a life sciences facilities fund that provides low interest loans secured by fixed assets to assist start-ups with finding appropriate space.   Carol mentioned that the program just funded a 15-year loan with deferred interest at 60% of Prime.

Here in Ontario, we have also identified access to facilities as a key area for government support, and the Georgia program is a model that I haven’t heard discussed here.

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