Business briefs

May. 22, 2013 @ 06:35 PM

Senate proposal halves biotech center funds

DURHAM – A Research Triangle Park-based nonprofit that works to promote biotechnology research and business in the state would receive more funding in the Senate’s state budget version than in the governor’s.

However, Robin Deacle, a spokeswoman for the N.C. Biotechnology Center, said in an email that the center is still proposed to receive a “significant” cut in the Senate proposal.

The Senate tentatively passed its $20.58 billion budget Wednesday. Another vote is expected today. 

Gov. Pat McCrory proposed cutting the center’s state appropriation by almost 60 percent in each of the upcoming two fiscal years. The Senate version proposed a cut of about half.

The center’s state appropriation in the current fiscal year is about $17.2 million, Deacle said. The governor proposed an allocation of $7.2 million in each of the upcoming two fiscal years, while the Senate version proposed an allocation of $8.6 million.

An emailed statement attributed to Norris Tolson, the center’s president and CEO, said a cut of that size would cause “long-term damage to the state’s leadership in this sector.”

GSK could get $200 million for antibiotic development

LONDON – British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline announced an agreement Wednesday that could yield $200 million for the company in U.S. federal dollars.

The company has an agreement with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, for development of antibiotics.

Under the agreement, the company will receive $40 million for 18 months and up to $200 million if the agreement is renewed across five years.

According to a news release, many companies have withdrawn from antibacterial research and development in recent years due to the scientific challenges and a lower return on investment.

The company said in a release that that is seen as affecting the nation’s ability to treat bacterial infections and compromises preparedness to respond to biothreat pathogens.

GlaxoSmithKline has one of two large administrative U.S. headquarters in the Research Triangle Park. The other is in one in Philadelphia.