A new roadmap for the future of biosciences was released Wednesday, and two industry researchers say it paves they way for the industry to develop into an important part of the state's economy.
A previous roadmap was created for 2001 through 2012, and this new document was created to plot the goals for the industry development through 2025.
The original roadmap "was based on a sense of our strengths and weaknesses," said Leslie Tolbert, a University of Arizona Regents' professor in neuroscience.
During that decade, she said, the bioscience industry added 30,000 jobs, and 30 percent more firms.
The past plan focused on cancer and biology innovation, and the new plan is poised to continue a focus on some of the same goals "to take advantage of biosciences as a fantastic economic driver, Tolbert said.
"The emphasis for the next period is going to be taking the great work we've done and translating that to products and services," including new segments of the bioscience industry that were not around in 2002, said Jennifer Barton, the interim vice president for research at the UA.
The plan lists five goals, including turning research into products and practice, she said.
"How are we going to take what we've done and turn it into tangible products and services," Barton said. On example is using a patient's medical history to help determine treatment plans for some diseases.
Another goal is turning Arizona into a hub for new biosciences industries by fostering entrepreneurs, she said.
In the next decade, the state is poised to have one new bioscience company starting every other month, Barton said, which would double the number of bioscience startups from the previous decade, for more than 120 in the next decade, she added.
At the UA, the new senior vice president for health services is focused on some of the same goals for strategic growth in the industry, which Tolbert said matches the plan for the next decade.
That will make it easier for researchers and businesses to share goals and work together, Tolbert said.