Why Are Life Science Companies Locating in Greater Fort Lauderdale?

From startups to leading global companies, Greater Fort Lauderdale provides a stimulating and supportive business environment for success in the life sciences. Allergan, Stryker and Teva are among the major medical device, biomedical, pharmaceutical and clinical research companies with R&D, manufacturing and distribution facilities in Greater Fort Lauderdale.

As a region, South Florida is home to one of the nation's most dynamic industry clusters with convenient access to leading research institutes and academic institutions. To the north are Scripps Florida, Max Planck Florida Institute, and Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies. In Greater Fort Lauderdale – a longtime home for many biomedical companies – Nova Southeastern University is expanding its life science research facilities, and to the south, the University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine is investing in its biomedical research and commercialization programs. The region's academic institutions, research parks and economic development organizations have joined together to form Life Sciences South Florida (LifeSciencesSF.org). 

On a statewide level, BioFlorida is the voice of Florida's life sciences industry with regional chapters that represent nearly 5,500 establishments and research organizations in the biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices/diagnostics and bioagriculture sectors. BioFlorida's initiatives provide a strong business climate for the advancement of innovative products that improve lives and promote economic benefits to the state.

Another collaborative asset is the Florida Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research, which facilitates the creation of spin-off companies from technology developed at Florida's publicly funded research institutions. The institute provides support services, including building relationships with seasoned entrepreneurs, in order to hasten the growth of commercially viable discoveries.

South Florida is home to approximately 1,500 bioscience businesses and institutions that employ more than 26,000 people and generate over $4 billion in sales, according to recent surveys. 

More than 200 research projects are currently underway at Nova Southeastern University (NSU), including studies on cardiovascular disease, anti-cancer therapies, chronic fatigue syndrome, autism, coral reef restoration, stem cells and wildlife DNA forensics, among other subjects.

Currently, NSU is developing a new 215,000-square-foot Center for Collaborative Research (CCR) for medical, pharmaceutical, dental, and oceanographic research with construction expected to be completed in 2016.

The 215,000 square-foot CCR will provide wet labs for many of NSU's innovative researchers, as well as a General Clinical Research Center, which is an outpatient facility with a centralized clinical research infrastructure for investigators in multiple disciplines.

The center will also house NSU's Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine; Rumbaugh-Goodwin Institute for Cancer Research; the Emil Buehler Research Center for Engineering, Science and Mathematics; and Broward County's only private incubator for information security businesses. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is expected to occupy the entire first floor of the CCR. The USGS and NSU will partner on collaborative inter-disciplinary research involving greater Everglades restoration efforts, hydrology and water resources, and more.

Florida Atlantic University's Institute for Ocean and Systems Engineering (SeaTech) – is located in Dania Beach.  Established in 1997 as a state-funded Type II research center, the institute is part of FAU's Department of Ocean Engineering.  Its team of world-class faculty members, engineers, technicians and students are engaged in federally and industry-sponsored ocean engineering research and technology development in the areas of acoustics, marine vehicles, hydrodynamics and physical oceanography, marine materials and nanocomposites.

For more information on life sciences companies, see www.gflalliance.org

Greater Fort Lauderdale

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