Research and development (R&D) is at the core of Texas’s biotechnology industry. In Texas, biomedical research, or research conducted to aid and support the development body of knowledge in the field of medicine, is bolstered in large part by the state’s vast network of public universities and medical institutions. These school and health-related facilities invest strongly in biomedical research and development. In 2013 alone, Texas universities spent nearly $3 billion on medical and life sciences research, which made up more than 65 percent of all higher education R&D expenditures in the state.
Public investment in biotech R&D is complemented by Texas’s significant concentration of private sector R&D activity. More than a thousand private R&D firms, employing nearly 20,000 workers, call Texas home. Many of the world’s largest private biotech R&D firms have operations in Texas, including PPD, Covance, Quintiles, and INC Research.
In addition to R&D centers, Texas has more than 1,600 medical and testing laboratories. These laboratories employ nearly 40,000. Major lab firms in the state include LabCorp’s Esoterix subsidiary, Spanish biological product firm Grifols, and Sonic Healthcare’s Clinical Pathology Laboratories subsidiary.
Over the past decade, the state’s Texas Emerging Technology Fund (TETF) has invested more than $142 million in some of the state’s major higher education institutes for biomedical research-related deals in areas ranging from genetic engineering to pharmaceutical manufacturing.
The Lone Star State is also among the leaders in cancer research. Major Texas institutions in cancer research include MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Scott & White Cancer Institute in Temple, and Texas Oncology and Mary Crowley Cancer Research Centers in Dallas. Furthermore, the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT), a $3 billion initiative based in Austin, has played a major role in expanding Texas cancer research.