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W.Va. bioscience industry grows 6.9 percent since 2007

Bioscience industry grows 6.9 percent

West Virginia’s bioscience industry has grown 6.9 percent since 2007, according to a new study released by Battelle and the Biotechnology Industry Organization.

The report “Battelle/BIO State Bioscience Jobs, Investments and Innovation 2014” found the state’s bioscience industry employed nearly 6,400 people at 343 different businesses in 2012, an increase of 6.9 percent since 2007.

“This is great news that reflects the growing culture of innovation and entrepreneurism in our state, as well as the increased focus on bio-related research and development by our research universities, like West Virginia University and Marshall University, among others,” said Bryan Brown, executive director of the West Virginia Bioscience Association.

Drugs and pharmaceuticals, the state’s largest and most specialized industry sub-sector, led the gains with 73-percent job growth over that time.

Average annual wages for state bioscience workers are nearly $70,000 and are 78 percent more than the overall private sector average. State firms have been issued 143 patents from 2009 through 2013, with a focus in surgical and medical instruments and in drugs and pharmaceuticals, the report found.

West Virginia’s bioscience industry is being showcased this week at the 2014 BIO International Convention, taking place at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, Calif. The BIO International Convention is the largest annual event for the industry, attracting an audience of more than 15,000 biotech business leaders, scientists, executives and investors from around the world.

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