Life scientists earning more as industry surges

The Scientist is reporting that wages for U.S. life scientists surged 7.2 percent this year, with researchers who specialize in molecular and cell biology and drug discovery work doing the best. A typical life scientist with 10 to 14 years of professional experience can expect to earn $73,751. And the better earning capacity wasn't limited to biotech companies. Academic salaries for life scientists, which traditionally have lagged behind private industry, nevertheless jumped 12.6 percent this year. Entry level wages, meanwhile, jumped 8.3 percent to $39,000.

"From my perspective and the people we recruit, what's really driving salaries up is the competition for the very best people," Alan Lambowitz, director of the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology at the University of Texas at Austin told The Scientist. "Everybody wants the same 10 or 15 people, and those are the people who are driving the salaries up."

- read this report on salaries from The Scientist