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Governor Perdue Launches Life Sciences Innovation Center

Tuesday, February 15, 2005  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


Augusta Center Brings Resources Together to Expand Life Sciences Industry

ATLANTA, GA - Governor Sonny Perdue announced today the creation of the state’s fourth center of innovation, the Life Sciences Innovation Center (LSIC) in Augusta. This joint program between the state and the Life Sciences Business Development Center of the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) will help Georgia life sciences companies succeed by offering unique and valuable resources.

“Bringing together the resources of the Medical College of Georgia with private industry partners will help make Georgia an innovative leader in the life sciences industry,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “The continued success of this industry in Georgia depends on strong public-private partnerships and we are committed to cultivating those relationships.”

The Center will promote and facilitate interactions between MCG and Georgia-based companies to drive research and development, commercialization and job creation. It will also assist with business incubation and securing matching grants through the Georgia Research Alliance (GRA) for applied research and development with industry partners.

“The center encourages interaction between life science companies from around the state, and offers these companies access to MCG’s unique resources to expand and enhance their life sciences products,” said LSIC Director Dr. Michael Gabridge. “The new opportunities created by the center will continue Georgia’s successful growth in this industry.”

Along with MCG’s two hospitals, this region of Georgia is uniquely rich in life science resources, including eight other hospitals in close proximity, Augusta State University, Augusta Technical College, Fort Gordon, the Savannah River National Laboratory and a large U.S. Department of Energy laboratory.

In addition to the center’s research function, a dedicated entrepreneur outreach specialist with expertise in small business and life sciences will work throughout the region to provide technical expertise and access to state resources to foster the growth of local innovation.

The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) is working to recruit member companies to the center and create the collaborative environment that will drive research and development.

Georgia’s centers of innovation program, launched by Governor Sonny Perdue in 2003, has developed centers of excellence in the areas of aerospace, agriculture, information technology, life sciences and maritime logistics. By leveraging Georgia’s homegrown industries, the state is creating new jobs, increasing investment and ensuring long-term economic opportunity.

“By bringing our state’s intellectual capital together with our most promising industries, we are creating great value throughout the state,” said GDEcD Commissioner Craig Lesser. “As these centers grow, we will not only become known as a leader in these industries but as an innovative, forward-thinking state.”

Georgia has established three other innovation centers - the Maritime Logistics Innovation Center in Savannah, the Aerospace Innovation Center in Warner Robins and the Agriculture Innovation Center in Tifton.