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May 8, 2008

Biotech event swaps North America for Queensland

The 11th US Cell Culture Engineering Conference recently took place outside North America for the first time, at the Hyatt Regency in Coolum, Queensland, Australia.

The conference attracted some of the world’s leading companies and researchers involved in the development of animal cells to produce biopharmaceuticals. Attendance was by invitation only and limited to 350 delegates.

"To be chosen to host this event out of any other location in the world is a huge coup for the Sunshine Coast,” said the area’s tourism, regional development and industry minister Desley Boyle. “The conference puts Queensland's biotechnology sector, and especially our work in animal cell culture technology, under the global spotlight. Without the ground-breaking field of cell culture, we wouldn't see medical solutions such as vaccines for cervical cancer, polo and chickenpox and the production of artificial livers.”

Boyle explained that, since the 1980s, animal cell culture technology has become increasingly essential for the production of an ever-increasing number of human and veterinary biopharmaceuticals. Mammalian cell culture is used in livestock breeding, the manufacture of human therapeutic proteins and stem cell technology.

Boyle was keen to point out that the conference was globally recognised as the most important forum for mammalian cell culture technology, and was confident that hosting the event had strengthened Queensland's claims as the national centre for mammalian cell culture.

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