The Pennsylvania Biotechnology Center of Pennsylvania in Doylestown is expanding its space and its capacity to support more startups thanks to a new $4.2 million federal grant.
The Center, which opened in 2006 in an abandoned warehouse as a partnership between the Hepatitis B Foundation and Delaware Valley College, will add 15 laboratories, office space, increased emergency power capacity and new, high-tech freezer capacity.
Five companies have already committed to locating in the expanded incubator space, and even more life sciences companies can be accommodated, says Operating Officer Lou Kassa.
Those new tenants include Flow Metric, a provider of state-of-the-art flow cytometry and cell sorting services; Novira Therapeutics, a company working on a cure for Hepatitis B; Fox Chase Chemical Diversity Center, an organization that works to translate biomedical research into commercial opportunities; Synergy Pharmaceuticals, an enterprise developing treatment for gastrointestinal disease; and Cross Current Corp., a software developer that serves the healthcare market.
“We are extremely excited about the project and the growth is very beneficial for life sciences companies and the surrounding community,” says Kassa.
The grant comes from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and is expected to generate 90 jobs and more than $450,000 in private investment.
“Recent changes and downsizing in the sciences and pharmaceutical industries in the Bucks County area, coupled with industry mergers and consolidation, have resulted in mid- and late-career separations for highly educated professionals and have created a nexus for entrepreneurship to flourish,” explained the EDA in a statement announcing the grant. “The Center is recognized as a significant regional resource for biotechnology incubation and has reached capacity. It needs to expand in order to continue supporting entrepreneurs emerging from the life sciences and academic environments that are advancing innovations in pharmaceutical discovery and green sectors.”
Source: US EDA and Lou Kassa, Bucks County Biotechnology Center
Writer: Elise Vider