Indiana Life Science Sector Set to Reach New Heights

Indiana Life Science Sector Set to Reach New Heights

Indiana’s life science sector, already a standout on the global stage, is poised for significant growth in the next few months. A recent important designation from the federal government and several strong investments at the state level have us positioned for a major step forward. Areas such as medical device manufacturing, pharmaceutical production, and other significant life science innovations are all about to grow in new ways.

BioCrossroads Board Chair Dan Peterson added, “We are seeing huge advances coming from our enterprise life sciences companies in medical breakthroughs in multiple areas.”

“It’s an exciting time to be involved in Indiana’s life sciences sector at every level – now and in the coming months and years,” said Melina Kennedy, CEO of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP).


Key Tech Hub Designation

The biggest news for the industry lately has been a key designation of Heartland Bioworks as a Regional Technology and Innovation Hub from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration.

Led by the Applied Research Institute, Heartland BioWorks is a consortium of Indiana stakeholders driven by strong collaborative innovation practices to ensure that bioproducts invented in America are also produced domestically. Heartland BioWorks will now compete against other designated hubs for implementation grants of up to $75 million each later this year.

The work that will be conducted in this hub is broad and has huge implications for business growth. Some of the activities that will be taking place include training and industry work experiences, onshoring of small startup production among the central Indiana region’s contract manufacturers and distributors, and the testing and demonstrating of next generation biomanufacturing technologies. It’s going to be an extremely exciting place with involvement from numerous industry partners.

“This designation could lead to millions in federal investment and will open the floodgates for more private capital in biotech R&D across the state,” said Indiana Senator Todd Young.

Indiana Secretary of Commerce David Rosenberg said, “Heartland BioWorks’s multifaceted approach to advancing biotechnology and biomanufacturing will nurture industry-specific startups, investments and R&D, driving life-changing products and life-saving solutions leveraged across the world. This will also create profound opportunities for our state’s brightest minds to innovate and collaborate.”


Other Opportunities Ahead

Recent reports from TechPoint illustrate some of the other positive characteristics about the Hoosier life science industries that have us well-positioned for growth in 2024.

  • On the state level, Indiana has been investing strongly in biotechnology and manufacturing advancements under a $540 million grant program that will run from 2023 to 2025. This funding is intended to support talent and economic growth, quality of life improvements, and smart manufacturing. Additionally, there are plans to invest more than $182 million to develop an Innovation District in Lebanon, comprising 10,000 acres of shovel-ready sites near Indianapolis. The goal of this project is to attract megaprojects to the region.
  • In 2022 (most recent data available), Indiana experienced strong capital investment of more than $6.8 billion. From 2019 to 2022, venture capital investment in life science firms tripled with nearly $620 million committed to 37 companies. There was also $2.8 billion in investments made to expand or upgrade facilities for 25 different companies, which is expected to directly result in the creation of 3,000 new jobs.
  • Indiana also has several existing factors that development officials plan to leverage. For example, our state leads the nation in pharmaceutical exports and has the second highest concentration of life sciences jobs. Our strong manufacturing and logistics sectors are also more than capable of handling further growth, and our three key research institutions (IU, Purdue, and Notre Dame) all have concentrations in biotechnology and manufacturing innovation.


Talent is the Priority

The CICP, and BioCrossroads are going to be working together to make talent development a major priority so our life science industries can reach their full potential. The goal will be to build a reliable pipeline of available workers for all the companies that might expand or open new operations.

For the past six months, the two organizations have been working to lead the development of a life sciences sector strategy that includes a focus on life sciences manufacturing and training Hoosiers to be prepared for the expected new jobs, among other key opportunities.


Going to be a Big Year

It’s going to be a very interesting year to witness all the ways in which the Hoosier life science industry will continue to advance and innovate. We could be seeing just the start of even bigger things to come, especially as the activities surrounding the new tech hub begin to take off. The potential is enormous, and our state is clearly ready to get to work reshaping the future of the industry in all kinds of exiting new ways.

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Category Features, Health