Art Pappas and Mike Luther at 2010 Biotechnology Conference. Photo/Julie Fulton

The Charlotte Biotechnology Conference returns to UNC Charlotte for the tenth year. The conference, which will begin at 8 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, 2011, will be at the Barnhardt Student Activity Center (SAC).

The conference, hosted in conjunction with UNC Charlotte and the Charlotte Research Institute, allows people from all over the university area to learn about advancements and developments within biotechnology.

Clare Faggart, life sciences program manager for the Charlotte Research Institute, is the project manager for the Charlotte Biotechnology Conference. “I’ve been with Charlotte Research Institute for four years, and before that I worked with the biotech conference, so [I have been involved] for really six years,” said Faggart. “This is a conference that started at UNC Charlotte years ago. It actually matriculated out of the Office of Technology Transfer.”

There are no other events such as this readily available for UNC Charlotte students and faculty to attend, says Faggart. “Not in the Charlotte region.” Not only is the event unique to the area, the specific event changes each year, and the agenda is already available online. “It’s ever constantly changing, you know, we always want to make it bigger and better and more interesting for our participants and our attendees. So it is always changing, hopefully all for the better,” said Faggart. “There’s lots going on.”

This year, numerous panel discussions will be available for attendees of the conference to listen in on. These discussions include Biotechnology in the Charlotte Region – Past, Present and Future; Biotechnology Start-up Funding – Where to Find and How to Get It and A New Biology for the 21st Century. “We do several panel sessions for biotech start-ups, anything that might be of interest to life science students, faculty, business partners of the university, community life science organizations and businesses and, of course, any other service provider in that area,” said Faggart.

Speakers in these discussions come from the Hanmer Institute, the David H. Murdock Research Institute, the North Carolina Biotechnology Center, Silicon Valley Bank and numerous faculty members from UNC Charlotte, among other locations. “The list goes on and on of incredible speakers we have,” said Faggart.

The speaker delivering the keynote speech this year will be Leroy Hood. Hood’s speech, titled “Proactive P4 Medicine (Predictive, Preventive, Personalized and Participatory): The Science behind P4 Medicine and What It Can Do for You and for Society,” will begin directly following the first break in the conference.

Faggart encourages those interested in biotechnology and life sciences attend the event. Everyone is invited to attend, she says, from UNC Charlotte faculty and students to local life science businesses. “It’s a pretty extraordinary opportunity for our UNC Charlotte students and faculty,” said Faggart. “Just simply for them to come and take an opportunity to hear world renowned speakers such as Dr. Hood.”

Leroy Hood focuses his research on molecular immunology, biotechnology,and genomics. He assisted in founding the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle in 2000. He has co-written numerous textbooks on the subjects he specializes inand has won several awards.

Registration for the event is required and price is dependant upon when attendees register. Registration will be accepted at the door the day of the conference.

For more information on registration and the conference, visit www.charlottebiotechnology.com.

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Eden Creamer was the Editor-in-Chief for the Niner Times from May 2013 through April 2015. She graduated from UNC Charlotte in May 2015, receiving her degree in Communication Studies with minors in English, Journalism and Women's Studies. She now does freelance proofing, copywriting and design in the Charlotte area, and can be reached at edencreamer@gmail.com

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