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Bay Area Innovators To Shake Up “Biotech’s Epicenter” Event 12/17

Xconomy San Francisco — 

We’re one month away from our annual biotech event in San Francisco. This year, it’s called Xconomy Forum: Innovation at Biotech’s Epicenter, and we’re gathering December 17 in the Mission Bay neighborhood to talk about the emerging science, great ideas, and risk-taking strategies that will spur the Bay Area’s biomedical innovation for the next 25 years.

UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood will kick things off and discuss his school’s central place in Bay Area biomedical research and innovation—not to mention its growing footprint in Mission Bay, where space is being filled faster than it can be built.

I’ll be on stage with Randy Mills, the new president of California’s stem cell agency, known by its acronym CIRM. The taxpayer-funded entity is at a critical juncture in its ten-year history, and Mills has a mandate to turn the research CIRM has funded into treatments. That’s the ultimate return CIRM’s founders promised to California taxpayers, and there’s pressure to deliver. It should be an enlightening interview.

We’ll also hear from Third Rock Ventures’ Mark Goldsmith on why Third Rock, which quickly became a force in early-stage biotech in its hometown of Boston, decided to expand out West. Amyris Biotechnologies, a UC Berkeley spinout, is a synthetic biology pioneer in the private sector. Amyris chief scientific officer Jack Newman will join us to talk about synbio’s history, and where the current explosion of tools and technologies will push the next generation of biological research.

In biotech and beyond, no Bay Area conversation seems complete if real estate isn’t involved. Will incubators—or, as they’re often known, accelerators—solve the space problem? And how are they changing the process of innovation and collaboration? We’ll convene a panel to discuss the growing influence of shared spaces, and the expanding choice for entrepreneurs, whether in academia, industry, or focused on digital health, synthetic biology, or biopharma.

Here are our confirmed speakers so far, in alphabetical order:

Lindy Fishburne, Executive Director, Breakout Labs and VP Investments, Thiel Foundation
Mark Goldsmith, Partner, Third Rock Ventures
Arvind Gupta, Investment Partner, SOSventures; Co-founder, IndieBio Accelerator
Chris Haskell, Head of U.S. Science Hub, Bayer HealthCare
Sam Hawgood, Chancellor, University of California, San Francisco
Stephanie Marrus, Director of the Entrepreneurship Center, UCSF
C. Randal “Randy” Mills, President and CEO, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Rick Morrison, CEO, Comprehend Systems
Jack Newman, Co-founder and CSO, Amyris
Gajus Worthington, CEO, Fluidigm

Stay tuned for more additions to the lineup. In the meantime, for more information and to reserve your spot please visit our registration page. I hope to see you in December for what’s shaping up to be a great day.