Basement Biotech

My column in the current Business 2.0 is on “basement biotech”: the idea that biotechnology is economically broken, the Moore’s Law paradigm is invading biotechnology, and the age of the biotech hacker (in the good sense of the word) is upon us.

Indirectly, a somewhat similar point is made in an editorial in the current issue of the Proceedings of the IEEE. Called “Engineering in the Age of Biology”, it rightly argues that major synthesis steps forward in science create new engineering disciplines, and bioengineering is the most recent example. And as we all well know, any time you put together a few engineers you pretty quickly get yourself a few hackers.


  1. Paul I presume that despite your glowing article, most biotech VCs won’t touch, much less fund, a startup unless the entrepreneur comes from a major research lab, academy, or business, with requiste qualifications like several published articles in Science and Gene.

  2. Lesa Mitchell says:

    Paul is right and there is plenty of academic data to support his theory. Relative to comment -the problem isn’t that you have to come from a premier institution the problem is that unless you come from a premier institution located close to funders and mentors you will have a hard time getting funding. The problem is access.