Pharmacogenomics, Nanotechnology, Biohydrogen Among the Scientific Highlights at BIO 2003

WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 9, 2003)—For science reporters interested in the future of food, health or the environment, BIO 2003 in Washington, D.C., is the place to be June 22-25. Register online by Friday, June 13, to cover the strongest science program in the 10-year history of the Biotechnology Industry Organization's annual convention – with more than twice the number of science events and sessions as last year's event.

Pharmacogenomics – matching genes to medicines – is among the emerging technologies that will be highlighted.

"This technology will change how we practice medicine," said Gillian Woollett, BIO's vice president for science and regulatory affairs. "If we know which people are likely to get which diseases, we can treat them before symptoms even appear and so prevent diseases that currently debilitate and devastate the lives of millions of people. The potential to alleviate suffering from the neurodegenerative diseases of old age, such as Alzheimer's, are enormous. The increase in quality of life will be worth the development costs, especially given the economic savings overall through reduced hospitalization and nursing-home needs."

BIO 2003 also features scientific sessions on nanotechnology, functional foods, biodiversity, biodefense, biological methods of generating hydrogen, systems biology, RNA interference, and the role of genetics in mental illness. Altogether, more than 21 events and session tracks will cover science and science policy issues such as intellectual property, government funding and regulations.

"This is the one place you get every aspect of the science and technology, where every important player is represented," said Woollett.

For detailed information about the BIO 2003 program, visit Reporters may register online until June 13 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.