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BIOTech New Zealand

Queenstown staging major life sciences events tomorrow

Queenstown will tomorrow host one of the most significant life sciences conferences in New Zealand.

BiotechNZ executive director Dr Zahra Champion says much of the Bioshares summit will be about biotech health and how companies are focused on developing targeted treatments for cancer and other diseases.

It will also discuss next generation diagnostics, therapeutics for chronic diseases and look at challenges companies face with new product development in the healthcare sector.

New Zealand is ranked a leading country in the world for biotechnology and Kiwi companies are developing genetically engineered human cells that will help people live longer.

It has leading organisations such as the Malaghan Institute and cutting-edge companies such as Aroa Biosurgery and New Zealand Pharmaceuticals.

An influential group of biotechnology entrepreneurs, investors, analysts and service providers from both sides of the Tasman will discuss at trends and new developments at the conference.

Dr Champion says the summit will also learn about the use of medicinal cannabis and how healthcare groups around the world are advancing the use of medicinal cannabis.

Gene-editing tools in the healthcare sector will enable people live longer and Kiwi biotech companies play a significant role in these development of new drug candidates.

“We have great early stage technology in New Zealand, however we lack the ability to scale, which is compounded through the lack of investment funds for biotechnology companies. New Zealand can’t scale on its own and needs Australia and the rest of the world to help and the Bioshares summit will help in this regard.

“This is a major investment meeting tomorrow and New Zealand companies have the opportunity to pitch to experts in biotech, therefore smart investors with smart money, which accelerates ideas from bench to the bedside.

“Due to the Pharmac model, the consensus is New Zealand has made the decision not to invest in drug discovery but let the world innovate and then NZ will get the cheapest drug on the market.

“We have great early stage technology in New Zealand. However we lack the ability to scale, which is compounded through the lack of investment funds for biotechnology companies. New Zealand can’t scale on its own and needs Australia and the rest of the world to help and the Bioshares summit will help in this regard.

“Our Kiwi biotech companies want to make a difference to help patients, surgeons and clinicians so we can have significantly improved outcomes,” Dr Champion says.

For further information contact Dr Champion on 021 899732 or Make Lemonade editor-in-chief Kip Brook on 0275 030188

Photo: Dr Zahra Champion

BIOTech New Zealand Our aim is to raise awareness and increase the understanding to enable our nation to embrace the best opportunities biotech offers to us daily, helping us live better, healthier and more productive lives