Posts Tagged ‘bench scientist’

The changing role of the bench scientist

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 09-24-2010

SciveeTV is a leading provider of internet video and rich media solutions for the scientific, technical and medical market and contains many interesting scientific videos and food for deeper thought. One of my favorite videos is a talk by Dr. Steve Jones, head of bioinformatics in the Genome Sciences Centre at the BC Cancer Agency. In his talk, Dr. Jones describes how biology has changed over the years and proposes that traditional bench scientist will end up spending more time on computational analysis than on the bench itself.

Life Science Funding Continues to Rise

 :: Posted by American Biotechnologist on 08-05-2010

It looks like the life science sector continued to attract the attention of investors throughout the second quarter of 2010.

According to a recently released report by PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PWC), the 3 month period ending in June 2010 saw a 52% increase in dollars and 36% increase in the number of venture capital deals within the life sciences/biotechnology community compared to Q1-2010. The VC cash flow included $2.1 billion invested in 234 deals within the life sciences sector in Q2-2010. This represents a 24% increase in deal volume from the second quarter of 2009. Furthermore, the growth rate of investment in early stage companies significantly outpaced that of late-stage companies by 29% on a quarter-over-quarter basis.

PWC’s data should be well received by the life sciences industry as it points towards continued growth in a sector that has been on the rise since 2001 (as reported in the Battelle report published earlier this year).

Several months ago, Genomeweb extolled the virtues of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRC), pointing out that it injected billions of dollars into the biosciences sector with over $1 billion dollars of invested into Genomics research alone. However, the authors supposed that since the heavy investment of funds needed to be spent over a short period of time, it may have created a bubble effect which is in danger of bursting over the next couple of years. Certainly, the PWC report does not seem to support that supposition.

So what does all of this mean for your average bench scientist? Well, as my industrial twitter friend @jadedbybiotech mentioned several weeks back, (and I will paraphrase quite liberally), if you’re into research for the money you’re better off in industry than academia. Moreover, since early-stage companies are more likely to hire academic scientists than their late-stage counterparts, the VCs favorable outlook towards early-stage biotech companies should certainly be encouraging.

So if you answered “yes” to the question “should I become an industrial biotechnologist,” perhaps now is the time to start sending out your resume.