The science of living things — human, animal and plant — has long been a field in which Kansas has strengths. The state has a strong foundation in some areas of the biosciences and is well situated to take advantage of emerging opportunities in others. From the nationally recognized drug discovery and development enterprise at University of Kansas and Kansas companies, to the state’s historical agricultural leadership, to the selection of Kansas as home to the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, Kansas is ripe for bioscience growth.
With over 16,000 people employed in the biosciences and industry leaders calling our state home, we are working with our partners statewide to offer comprehensive support for world-class research, commercialization, and business expansion in the bioscience industry. The Kansas Bioscience Authority, created by the Kansas Economic Growth Act of 2004, can provide financial resources and customized support services to help address strategic issues critical to the success of emerging Kansas bioscience enterprises. KansasBio, a not-for-profit organization serving as the voice of the biosciences in Kansas, enhances the business and research climate, and works with state leaders to attract and retain bioscience talent, companies and funding.
Kansas invests in companies and universities working in bioscience sectors where Kansas has established leadership and expertise and the resources needed to benefit from new opportunities. Those include the following areas:
The animal health sector involves the production, marketing and use of domestic animals in agriculture, entertainment and companionship. Kansas is part of the renowned Kansas City Animal Health Corridor, home to one-third of the world’s animal health industry. Kansas seeks to leverage these strengths by attracting new animal health companies and expanding existing ones, encouraging research collaborations that will lead to novel products, and build the foreign animal disease expertise that led to Kansas’ selection as the site of the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility to protect our nation’s food supply.
This sector encompasses work to safeguard and improve health with new drugs, therapies and medical devices. Kansas’ robust human health sector, from basic research to drug and device innovation to outstanding clinical care, provides benefits to Kansans and others worldwide. Clinical research for human health is a major emphasis for our state as Kansas is part of a bi-state region that ranks in the top five nationally for its concentration of clinical research firms. Kansas looks to work with companies who can bring drugs and devices to market faster and less expensively than traditional methods, provide new ways to diagnose disease and attract a growing share of the federal government’s research investment.
Work in this sector focuses on creating fuel and chemicals out of biological material, often plant matter such as corn or switchgrass. Bioenergy products are easier on the environment and can help wean our nation from oil dependency. In this sector, Kansas hopes to develop the supply chain of feedstocks for bioenergy production, and drive collaborations that will lead to new businesses and products.
AG & BIO-BASED PRODUCTS
Kansas is known for its strong agricultural sector. Agriculture and products derived from crops will continue to play a key role in the state’s economy, particularly in rural communities. These industries have a global reach, too — Kansas’ agricultural roots prime the state for advances in plant biology to help feed and clothe the world. Our state seeks advance new technologies, support innovative research, create new jobs and further advance Kansas’ leadership in these sectors.