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University of Maryland BioPark Announces Expansion Plans

by Zemen A. Habtemariam | Corridor Inc.

The University of Maryland BioPark announced recently its plans to increase space for their BioInnovation Center (BIC).

Jane Shaab, senior vice president and executive director of the BioPark, said the BioPark will expand to 18,000 square feet and establish ten new lab facilities by 2011.
The BioPark, a research park which contains properties on the campus of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, offers pre-established wet lab and office space for new, growing life science companies.

Shaab said the BioPark is reaching capacity, so expanding would allow other businesses to take root in this collaborative business venture.

“The pipeline of companies interested in establishing operations in the BioInnovation Center continues to grow,” Shaab said. “The University of Maryland and the BioPark want to connect with and collaborate with life science companies at this accelerator stage.”

Gliknik, a Baltimore-based company in the BioPark since 2008 that specializes in drug therapies to modulate the immune system, will double its space by adding a fourth lab facility.

“We’ve been able to expand based on the great progress that we’ve made in developing drug candidates and the confidence that our investors have shown in us,” Gliknik CEO David Block said in a statement. “The additional space will allow us to do more collaborative work with pharmaceutical partners.”

Fyodor Biotechnologies, an affiliate of Johns Hopkins University that came into the BioPark early this year, is adding their second lab facility.

Although figures are not defninitve, Shaab said the expansion has a strong possibility of promoting job creation for research and development.

“Based on the current tenant profile, the BioInnovation Center expansion could produce anywhere from 20 to 50 jobs,” Shaab said.

Both the BioPark and Wexford Science and Technology established the BIC in 2007 to address a need for laboratory space for Baltimore’s early-stage companies in the life science sector.

Shaab said such efforts to expand the BioPark helps to provide lab and office space of Baltimore life science companies and strengthens the City’s life science sector.

“Offering quality lab space with flexible terms to these companies assures the retention of the entrepreneurial talent that will mark Baltimore as one of the world's best markets for growing a life science company,” Shaab said.