MONTREAL, March 30 /CNW Telbec/ - BIOMEDEX, the pre-eminent annual
meeting of Canada's life science industry took place this year in Laval, at
the Sheraton Hotel, on Thursday, March 29 2007. BIOMedex, which is
simultaneously a conference, a business meeting and a trade fair, attracted
more than 500 participants this year, who came from across Canada, the United
States and Europe. The event is organized by BIOQuebec, Quebec's network of
On Wednesday, March 28, a cocktail was held to open the conference at the
InterContinental Montréal Hotel. For the occasion, BIOQuebec invited Mr. Larry
Smith, President and CEO of the Montreal Alouettes football team, who came to
deliver a rousing motivational talk, a real coach's pep talk, to the assembled
Without a doubt, the highlight of this year's event was the presence of
Dr. Kary Mullis, winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Chemistry and inventor of
the PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction), who spoke to the audience about
innovation in life science companies, taking as an example the PCR story. PCR
is a process that is recognized today as one of the major scientific
techniques developed in the Twentieth Century. It provides a way to multiply
one single microscopic fragment of genetic material millions of times, in only
a few hours.
Dr. Mullis' presentation evoked the aura of young biotechnology
companies, challenges as a spur to innovation and the need to preserve and
A Three-Part Program
The BIOMatch segment, which deals with financing and managing life
science companies, was an unparalleled opportunity for biotechnology and
medical technology companies to present their products to investors and
Distinguished speakers, such as Jean-Marc Séquier, Global Business
Development & Licensing, Head Mature Products, Partnering and Project
Management, Novartis Pharma AG of Switzerland, and Simon Gill, Managing
Director and Co-Head of Healthcare Investment Banking at RBC Capital Markets,
in the United States, also spoke during this segment.
Challenges and Issues
The session: Challenges and issues related to the image of big pharma
enabled the participants to better grasp the strategies and new means of
communications that can be put into place to better respond to the public's
concerns. PricewaterhouseCoopers disclosed the findings of a survey on this
very subject. Amongst the speakers: Geoff Collett, Director of Business
Development at AstraZeneca Canada, and Jacques Lefebvre, Vice-President of
Strategic Affairs and Communications at Rx&D Canada.
Marketing on-line was also discussed, that is to say, how new technology
can be integrated into a pharmaceutical company's marketing strategy. Amongst
the speakers, we might mention: Ray Chepesiuk, Commissioner, Pharmaceutical
Advertising Advisory Board, (PAAB), Canada, Paul Bergeron, Executive
Vice-President and Managing Director at LXB Communication-Marketing, and Dean
Michelin, Director of Client Services at Boom Works Enterprises, Canada.
The last segment dealt with the whole question of technology transfer
with a presentation of new technologies that have emerged from Quebec and
French universities, as well as a conference dealing with the methods used in
this kind of transfer in the industry. The speakers included notably Erik
Kuja, Senior Principal, Strategic Alliances Group at the Research Technology
Centre at Pfizer in the United States; Pierre Lemieux, President and CEO of
BIOLactis Canada, Claudia Chagneau, biotechnology chargée de mission at the
Agence Rhône-Alpes Technologies Médicales et Biotechnologies (ARTEB), in
France, and Antoine Agathon, Ph.D., Project Manager, Alsace BioValley, France.
The pharmaceutical information company IMS Health Canada disclosed long
awaited data on the drug product market in Canada and around the world.
Genesis Awards Gala
At the Genesis Awards Gala, which always takes place during BIOMedex, the
jury honoured several companies and key actors in the life science milieu.
Genesis Awards were presented to Paladin Laboratories (Entrepreneurship -
Biotechnology - Biopharmaceutical); ART Advanced Research Technologies Inc.
(Entrepreneurship - Health Technology); Victhom Human Bionics (Innovation);
Bioniche Life Sciences (Transfer - Emergence); and to the Infectious Disease
Research Centre at Université Laval (Biotechnology for Tomorrow). The Genesis
Brio Award was given to Mr. Jonathan Goodman, founding President and CEO of
Paladin Laboratories. Finally, Dr. Michel Saucier, an entrepreneur and
philanthropist, was inducted into the prestigious Excelcia Club.
BIOQuebec is pleased to be able to count upon the participation of key
partners who help put on BIOMedex: CHOATE, HALL & STEWART, PFIZER Canada and
The complete program can be found at: www.biomedex.ca
For further information:
For further information: Tammy Peddle, Press Relations, (514) 733-8411,
ext. 203, firstname.lastname@example.org; Information & media certification:
www.bioquebec.com, www.biomedex.ca; Source: BIOQuebec