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OCR to participate in Midwest-Japan biotechnology summit

September 8, 2003 By Patrick Strickler

More than 35 organizations from 12 Midwestern states are gathering in Chicago on Wednesday, Sept. 10, for a summit meeting to showcase Midwestern biotechnology research and entrepreneurial opportunities for Japanese biotech leaders.

Executives from more than 10 Japanese biotech-related companies will be attending. The meeting is being organized by the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), a non-profit organization funded by the Japanese government.

The meeting will be held at the Chicago Hilton and Towers, 720 South Michigan Ave., from 1-6 p.m.

Charles Hoslet, managing director of UW–Madison’s Office of Corporate Relations, will take part in a panel discussion, “The Midwestern Biotechnology Community.” He will review UW–Madison’s history and status as one of the leading public research universities in the world, and discuss the scope of the biotech industry in Wisconsin. He also will describe the university’s internationally recognized models for helping university researchers take their discoveries to market through the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation and University Research Park.

Tom Still, executive director of the Wisconsin Technology Council, is also participating in the summit, moderating a panel discussion on “Japanese Pharmaceutical Companies – Opportunities for Midwest Biotechnology Partnership.”

Other Wisconsin groups taking part in the summit include WARF, Forward Wisconsin, Milwaukee Biotechnology Interest Group, the Wisconsin Department of Commerce and the Wisconsin Biotechnology Association.

“The Midwest, once considered a ‘fly-over’ country by biotech venture capital firms on the way to the coasts, is now coming to be known as home to some of the hidden gems of biotechnology innovation,” the conference organizers say. “Japanese companies, having begun to recognize this hidden opportunity, are seeking out the products for commercialization and investment in the Midwest. Now, for the first time in the history of the Midwestern and Japanese biotech communities, a sustained effort to catalyze co-investment and research collaboration is being made.”

Tags: biosciences