New collaboration with Johnson & Johnson Innovation announced with the aim to accelerate life science sector growth in the New River and Roanoke Valleys by providing access to expert mentors, programming, and commercialization resources for startup companies
BLACKSBURG, Va. (Dec. 15, 2021) — The GO Virginia Coalition today approved a grant award to the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center (VTCRC) to fund the expansion of laboratory space and facilities aimed at supporting the region’s growing life science industry. In addition to the construction of shared lab space by the VTCRC, this project will support the creation of 125 new biotech jobs over the next five years.
“Through collaborations, we aim to fill the demand from biotechnology companies and provide full access needed to support research to commercialization aspirations,” said Brett Malone, President & CEO of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center. “Our sophisticated infrastructure makes us a research destination across industries and for everyone from startups to enterprise companies.”
The VTCRC – with funding from GO Virginia – will lead a coalition, including Montgomery County, City of Roanoke and Carilion Clinic, to support the development of a shared lab facility in Blacksburg and site design for a larger facility in Roanoke.
In addition, a new collaboration established between Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center and Johnson & Johnson LLC, will provide early-stage innovators in the region with access to their virtual residency program which includes expert mentoring, programming and resources offered through Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS (JLABS). JLABS was established in 2012 with an aim to provide startups with access to the critical resources, expertise, networks, and collaborations needed to progress innovative healthcare solutions for patients and consumers.
The collaboration aims to meet the needs of emerging startups and existing biotech companies in the region. In the first year of the collaboration, JLABS and the VTCRC will select up to five companies for participation in the JLABS virtual residency program. The application period will open early 2022. This program includes access privileges to the JLABS @ Washington, DC, led by JLABS Regional Head Sally Allain.*
Bringing the deep science and technology expertise from experts across the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies (Johnson & Johnson), can help strengthen the region’s biotechnology talent pipeline and propel startups from regional accelerators, such as RAMP.