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BIO 2002 Backgrounder

BIO 2002 Backgrounder

BIO 2002, the world's largest biotechnology conference, is being held this year at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from June 9 to 12 in Toronto, Canada. The 16th annual International Biotechnology Convention and Exhibition will feature more than 100 workshops on such topics as drug development, food and agriculture, regulatory processes and bioethics. Representatives from across Canada were involved planning and producing the convention.

The conference has grown significantly since the last time it was in Canada. In 1994, the convention held in Toronto attracted 2,000 attendees. Last year at BIO 2001 in San Diego, the convention attracted a record-breaking 14,000 attendees, which included registrants from 44 nations worldwide. There were over 900 exhibition booths, and the event attracted over 600 media.

This year's theme is Life Advances, and the convention will focus on the new knowledge, new processes and new products that mark the beginning of this century and the promise of greater achievements to come. Achievements in 2001 were approvals for new biotechnology-based medications and vaccines, including breakthrough medications for leukaemia, congestive heart failure, HIV infection, pulmonary arterial hypertension and life-threatening sepsis.

Canada is second only to the United States in its number of biotechnology companies. With over 350 companies that employ 63,000 people across the country, the Canadian biotech industry had revenues of $1.9 billion (CDN) in 1999 — a 25 percent increase in just one year.

BIO represents nearly 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centres and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and 33 other countries. BIO members are involved in the research and development of healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.


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