BY MARK KELLY
May 24, 2018 |
As the 21st century progresses, biotechnology - the use of biological processes for scientific and industrial purposes - is one of the most dynamic and competitive fields for economic development and business growth. While the established tech centers on America's west and east coasts continue to set the tone for that growth, communities and states across the nation are vying to emerge as biotech hubs, working to attract capital investment and create the jobs of the future.
Alabama is among the states with the highest potential to succeed. Driven by the presence of major research facilities in Birmingham and Huntsville, Alabama ranks among the top 10 states in America in the growth of funding for biotech research. Meanwhile Alabama's biotech startups have drawn well over $100 million in venture capital over the past five years alone.
With all of the current success, it's important to recall that Alabama's biotech history began well over a century ago, with the groundbreaking work of Dr. George Washington Carver at what is now Tuskegee University. Carver arrived to head the Agriculture Department at Tuskegee in 1896 and taught there for 47 years, until his death in 1943.