Stem Cell Research, Policy Implications Showcased at BIO 2005

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 27, 2005) -- A series of thought-provoking, educational panel sessions on varying aspects of stem cell research will be showcased at the BIO 2005 Annual International Convention, June 19-22, 2005, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.

Indeed, stem cell research and its potential therapeutic applications are no longer limited to discussions among scientists, researchers and ethicists. During the last few years, debates concerning embryonic and adult stem cell research have found their way into the halls of Congress and other regulatory agencies.

Jim Greenwood, president of BIO, said, “The issues surrounding stem cell research continue to dominate the agenda in Congress, state legislatures, and around the world. This has intensified as research advances and governments compete to attract the best scientists.

“Although stem cell research is still at a very early stage, someday this technology may provide treatments for diabetes, heart disease, spinal cord injuries and a host of other disabling and deadly conditions. We should do everything we can to accelerate the research and ensure that the myriad therapeutic possibilities are explored to their fullest. We can do nothing less for the patients and families who are waiting and hoping,” Greenwood concluded.

The following sessions on stem cell technology will takeplace over the course of the conference:

Monday, June 20, 2005

· Responsible Development of Stem Cells in Medicine—The UK Approach - 2:15-3:45 PM

This panel will provide an insight into the considerable progress being made not only in research, but also toward clinical development and commercialization. Simon Best, chairman, Ardana Bioscience, will chair the session. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=2

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

· Patenting Stem Cell Technology - 9:30 - 10:45 AM

This session includes speakers from the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan and Europe who will explore the patentability issues relating to stem cells in their respective jurisdictions, and whether adequate intellectual property protection is available for this technology. Recent case law in the area will be discussed. The session will be chaired by Claire Baldock, partner, Boult Wade Tennant. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=16

· Stem Cell Research in California: The New Gold Rush? - 2:15 - 3:45 PM

This panel will include a leading stem cell scientist, a member of California's Independent Citizens’ Oversight Committee (ICOC,) a representative of a leading biopharmaceutical company and a representative of a research institute. They will discuss what state funding will mean to promoting the promise of stem cell therapies. Alan Lewis, President, Celgene, and Joe Panetta, President and CEO, BIOCOM, will serve as co-chairs. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=14

· Policy Implications of Recent Advances in Stem Cell Research – 4 - 5:30 PM

Prominent stem cell scientists and an ethicist will discuss recent advances in stem cell research and potential policy implications. Wise Young, Professor and Chair, Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Rutgers, will chair the session. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=19

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

· Bringing Regenerative Medicine to the Clinic: Cardiovascular Disease as a Case Study - 9:30 - 10:45 AM

This forum will focus on the development of regenerative therapies using cardiovascular disease as a case study, and the latest advances in cellular- and molecular-based approaches, including mechanisms of action and preclinical and clinical studies. Panelists will discuss regulatory and reimbursement considerations, historical perspectives and experience from tissue transplantation, and relevant business and commercialization opportunities and considerations. Kiki Hellman, President and Founder, The Hellman Group, will chair. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=22

· Stem Cells for Treatment of Neurological Diseases – 11 AM - 12:15 PM

This session will provide an overview of the current understanding of the brain’s ability to regenerate itself and the role of stem cells in brain repair, and a road map encompassing the technical, regulatory and commercial strategies for development of safe and effective stem cell products for treating neurological diseases. This session will be chaired by Doros Platika, CEO, Pittsburgh Life Science Greenhouse. For more information, visit http://www.bio.org/events/2005/speaker/sessionlist.asp?id=22

Advance media registration for BIO 2005 is now available online. Registration is complimentary for credentialed members of the news media. To register, visit www.bio.org/events/2005/ . Only reporters and editors working full-time for print or broadcast news organizations may register onsite with valid media credentials. All freelancers and online publications must register in advance by June 10, 2005.

BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and 31 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

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About BIO
BIO is the world's largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIOtechNOW is BIO's blog chronicling “innovations transforming our world” and the BIO Newsletter is the organization’s bi-weekly email newsletter. Subscribe to the BIO Newsletter.