House Hearing on Role of Venture Capital and SBIRs in Biotech Innovation

WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 26, 2005) – Douglas A. Doerfler, president and CEO of MaxCyte Inc., of Gaithersburg, Md., will testify on behalf of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Wednesday at a House hearing entitled, “The Importance of the Biotechnology Industry and Venture Capital Support in Innovation.”

The Rural Enterprises, Agriculture and Technology Subcommittee of the House Small Business Committee is holding the hearing at 2 p.m. Wednesday, July 27 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

Doerfler will urge subcommittee members to support H.R.2943, the “Save America’s Biotechnology Innovation Research Act,” introduced earlier this session by Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.). H.R.2943, similar to S.1263, introduced in the Senate by Kit Bond (R-Mo.), corrects the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) new interpretation of eligibility standards related to Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grants. Under the new interpretation, companies that are 51 percent owned by a group of venture capital firms are ineligible for SBIR grants.

Many small biotechnology companies, which do not own revenue-producing products, are more than 51 percent owned by venture capital firms.

Other biotechnology executives scheduled to testify at the hearing are Anthony P. Cruz, senior vice president, finance and administration, of Athens, Ga.-based AviGenics Inc.; and Dr. David Duncan, president and CEO, of St. Louis-based Chlorogen Inc.

Doerfler and Morrie Ruffin, BIO’s executive vice president of capital formation and business development, discuss the impact of SBIRs on the biotechnology industry during a BioLive Webcast for members of BIO. An excerpt can be viewed at

BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and 33 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.