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2007 Massachusetts Biotechnology Council MASS Opportunities Investment Conference Showcases Leading Growth Companies

Ninth Annual Biotechnology Investor Conference, November 8, Features

Private and Small to Mid-cap Public Growth Companies

Renowned Investment Banker and Biotechnology Company Start-up Leader

Stelios Papadopoulos, PhD Provides Keynote Address

BOSTON, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- The Massachusetts Biotechnology Council's ninth annual MASS Opportunities Investor Conference, New England's largest biotechnology investor forum, will explore investment trends and opportunities in life sciences, with a focus on public and venture-stage growth companies as well as those poised to join the growth "watch list" in 2008. To register for the event, go to

Noted former investment banker and biotechnology company builder Dr. Stelios Papadopoulos, whose career in the industry spans more than two decades, will provide the keynote address, titled The Declining Role of Innovation in Biotech.

In addition to a long career in investment banking, Dr. Papadopoulos co- founded Exelixis, Inc., Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Cellzome, Inc. He is also vice-chairman of the Board of Directors of BG Medicine, Inc. Dr. Papadopoulos holds a Ph.D. in biophysics and an M.B.A. in finance, both from New York University.

The November 8 event will include more than 30 local public and private companies to showcase their technologies and products. Held at the Hilton Boston Logan Airport hotel, the event brings together over 500 CEO's, portfolio managers, venture capitalists, healthcare analysts, and professionals from the academic, clinical, and technology transfer communities who support emerging and developing biotechnology companies.

Some of the participating companies include Acceleron, Alnylam, Alseres, Arqule, BioVex, Coley, CominatoRx, Critical Therapeutics, Dyax, Dynogen Pharmaceuticals, Epitome Biosystems Inc., Exact Sciences Corporation, Genstruct, Gwalthmey, Helicos Biosciences, Inotek Pharmaceuticals, Molecular, Biometrics, Molecular Insight Pharmaceuticals, Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Nitromed Inc., Oscient Pharmaceuticals, Primera Biosystems, Targanta Therapeutics, Transmolecular Inc, Transport Pharmaceuticals, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, and Ziopharm.

Last year was a banner year for venture capital financing in New England according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers 2006 Annual Report on Venture Capital Investment in the New England Industries. Biotechnology firms received $831.3 million in 68 deals, driven by a strong showing in companies developing therapeutics.

But financial challenges continue. Much of this financing does not take a company through drug trials. Further, investment in biotechnology is undergoing substantial challenges.

"Analysts are predicting fewer initial public offerings and tightening of belts by small cap companies," says Papadopoulos. "In the midst of this negativity one positive trend has been the increase in acquisitions of private biotech companies by large pharma companies at prices that are often much higher than those that could be attained through an IPO. The most attractive private companies in this acquisition cycle have been those with robust technology platforms with clear product definition. In an environment where innovation is playing an ever decreasing role in the IPO market, this is the kind of reassurance our industry needs to continue investing in cutting edge technologies.

"In this environment, companies need to break out of the pack, which makes investor conferences such as the MASS Opportunities Investor Conference so vital," says Papadopoulos. "If you aren't discussing the promise of your company with other executives, you are being left behind."

The program features individual public and private company presentations, an informative round-table, investor panels, industry presentations, a networking cocktail reception and a Pharma/Big Biotech Partnering Forum to allow presenting companies to participate in one-on-one meetings.

In conjunction with Investment Conference, the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council is sponsoring a CEO Boot Camp that will offer executive coaching sessions and provide participants with access to the region's leading venture capitalists, investor relations professionals, institutional analysts, portfolio managers, entrepreneurs and professional service providers.

Major organizing support is being provided by Deloitte & Touche Tech- Venture Center, Ernst & Young Global Biotechnology Center, Feinstein Kean Healthcare, Goodwin Procter LLP, and Mintz Levin

About Massachusetts Biotechnology Council

The Massachusetts Biotechnology Council (MBC) is the nation's oldest biotechnology trade association. Founded in 1985, the MBC is a not-for-profit organization that represents and provides services and support for the Massachusetts biotechnology industry. The MBC is committed to advancing the development of critical new science, technology and medicines that benefit people worldwide. Representing over 500 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, research hospitals, and service organizations involved in life sciences and health care, the MBC works to advance policy and promote education, while providing member programs and events, industry information, and services.

SOURCE Massachusetts Biotechnology Council
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