Academic, government and industry leaders partner to advance Indiana’s economic strengths
Indianapolis, Oct. 25, 2007 – Recognizing an opportunity to advance Indiana’s drug development and manufacturing strengths, BioCrossroads, Indiana’s initiative to grow the life sciences, and leaders from Cook Medical, Indiana’s Department of Workforce Development, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, Ivy Tech Community College, and Purdue University, today announced the launch of BioCrossroadsLINX, a non-profit organization building educational and workforce development programs and regional collaborations that will help Indiana’s biopharma assets – our companies, our people, and our institutions connect with biotech discovery centers such as San Diego, San Francisco and Boston.
Outsourcing specific drug discovery and development services is a growing trend in both the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. As a result, there are opportunities for Indiana companies to capitalize on rising demand and to build upon existing strengths. Indiana is one of only a few areas in the United States with a concentration of companies that excel in specialized and sophisticated drug development services such as contract research, contract manufacturing, and logistics. Through these 40+ companies and nearly 7,500 employees, Indiana is uniquely positioned to support both large pharma organizations and smaller biotech companies.
“Indiana is home to a fast-growing sector within the life sciences industry, and we’re going to leverage our strengths to link our assets to complementary groups in other areas. Regional collaboration is a differentiating factor for us. We’ve been making the connections with important discovery centers like San Diego, and they’re keenly interested in Indiana’s drug development companies in order to move their discoveries from the laboratory to the marketplace,” said David Johnson, President and CEO, BioCrossroads.
“We see this as an opportunity that will lead to growth in the development sector by encouraging academic and workforce development collaboration, as well as a way to identify gaps that can be filled by existing, local companies who can develop marketing strategies to promote their capabilities. Indiana has the technology, resources and spirit to be a premier drug development and manufacturing center in the U.S.,” Johnson continued.
“There are several complementary opportunities between BioCrossroadsLINX and Purdue,” said Dr. Charles Rutledge, Vice President for Research at Purdue University, and the chairman of BioCrossroadsLINX. “Purdue’s pharmacy, advanced manufacturing and engineering disciplines all have roles within drug development. In addition, the initiative goes hand in hand with some of our research and education efforts such as the Chao Center for Contract and Industrial Manufacturing and the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Technology and Education.”
BioCrossroads will be hiring a consultant in San Diego to serve as a liaison between the West Coast discovery companies and this Indiana biopharma development sector, and will identify new collaborative opportunities for Indiana research institutions and companies.
A BioCrossroadsLINX Web site is also in development. Through a robust search function, it will house information about Indiana’s drug development capabilities, serving as a public resource and database.
The BioCrossroadsLINX Board includes key members of Indiana’s academic, government and industry life sciences partners. Dr. Rutledge will serve as Chairman of the Board. Joining him are: Dr. Kenneth Cornetta, Chair and Professor of the Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics, Indiana University School of Medicine; Nathan Feltman, Secretary of Commerce for the State of Indiana and CEO, Indiana Economic Development Corporation; David Johnson, President & CEO, BioCrossroads; Dan Peterson, Vice President of Industry and Government Affairs, Cook Group; Tom Snyder, President, Ivy Tech Community College; and Teresa Voors, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.
“The drug development activity that’s going on here in Indiana is the real deal,” said Dan Peterson, Vice President of Industry and Government Affairs, Cook Medical. “We talk to pharmaceutical and biotech companies across the U.S. and around the world, and they’re turning to new partners and contract service providers out of a rising need to share risks, reduce costs and improve productivity. Much of what these companies need is already here in Indiana.”
BioCrossroadsLINX is a non-profit organization, established by BioCrossroads, Indiana’s initiative to grow the life sciences, which will advance Indiana’s strengths in drug development and manufacturing through educational and
workforce development programs and regional collaborations. In addition, BioCrossroadsLINX will analyze, organize and publicize Indiana’s research, industry and workforce strengths in biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing.