Precision Medicine and Diagnostics

The cost of sequencing genomes has now dropped to $1k - $2k. With the discovery of DNA’s structure and the knowledge that DNA contains our genetic code, the rate of progress in our ability to manipulate and interact with our biology has increased exponentially. This gap will discuss the next step in the evolution of genomic medicine, which includes pharmacogenomics, standardization of clinical practice, next decade sequencing, personalized healthcare, and much more. One of the most pressing concerns includes how to facilitate the analysis and processing of genomic information at the provider level.  Many believe the cure for cancer will be found in the field of genetics. Perhaps it will be one of you. Another key gap in personalized and precision healthcare involves how regulatory oversight will be managed.  Advances in modifying autologous patient tissue, cells and genomic content are unprecedented, and the regulation for these products are being written in real-time.  As a Leader of Tomorrow, how will you influence the precedent set today?  


Funding. People. Environment. Sustainability is a term that can mean so much to the life sciences. From sustaining a vibrant workforce to reducing the impact of antibiotics and pharmaceuticals in the water supply, sustainability is a key factor in a forward-thinking, progressive, future-proof plan to success in the life science industry. This gap will discuss the world’s most pressing concerns in providing a sustainable bioeconomy for years to come.




Beyond Education: Success in the 21st century Life Science Industry

Students of science are now choosing careers outside of academia at higher rates than ever before. It is time for the Ph.D. level scientist to leave graduate school with a remarkable set of transferrable skills and experiences that are valid for today’s bioeconomy. For many, motivations to pursue the advanced degree change as they progress through years of biomedical research. Some institutions allow for exploration while others do not, and for many, the experience varies widely from lab to mentor. The life science industry has aspects that require business education to achieve one’s full potential as a contributor to progress. At the same time, business and legal sectors must recognize the unique hurdles in the life sciences as compared to other industries.  It is critical that we expose business and law students to the distinct challenges in the life sciences in order to develop realistic expectations for groundbreaking discoveries, and recognize the hurdles of existing healthcare systems as well as the limits and assumptions of cutting-edge technologies.  This gap will discuss specific strategies and skills one can utilize survive and thrive in the shifting scientific landscape. Flexibility is key, learn to adapt to the gap.

Research and Innovation

Drug companies spend 10 years and millions of dollars to develop therapeutics and optimize drug pipelines. It is time to fill the research and innovation gap to develop drugs faster for less money.  One of the keys to success in R&D is the adoption of new technologies that delivers an edge up on the competition. At the same time, research-grade developments can move quicker than qualified and FDA-approved therapies.  How do we support the need for innovative and ground breaking R&D activities and also satisfy stakeholders by delivering on commercial products?  Cooperation in the global biotech sector should involve government, academic, and industry representatives in a collaboration similar to that seen in the space enterprises around the world. Let’s put our heads together to build on our current progress and bridge the R&D gaps for a healthier tomorrow.


Science Policy and Regulation

Never before has science literacy been as important as it is today. For sustained growth in the life sciences and continued funding for basic research, we need support from the public. People gather behind causes that affect them the most, such as Alzheimer’s and cancer. Advocacy groups support students and postdoctoral fellows to conduct research on behalf of the patients affected by a particular disease. When the public rallies, the government can allocate funds to the focus of the people’s voice. Communication and policy are heavily intertwined, and while scientific publishing can make or break careers, we must balance personal interests with the larger issues at hand: Will science be as important tomorrow as it is today? We implore you to hear each other and learn with us about global science policies and issues in science communication.  How do we streamline communication?  How do we learn together?  How do we inform the public to sustain trust in scientific advancements while also sharing realistic expectations?


Liquid handlers revolutionized the pharmaceutical industry by increasing the throughput of drug discovery to handle drug libraries of millions of compounds. Soon, the advent of in silico screening will provide the next great leap in healing our sick. Tabletop sequencers in your doctor’s office may soon be a reality. It is this audacious science fiction that leads us to the next generation of innovation. Today we can see through tissues; we can image cellular and subcellular compounds in live tissue; nanotechnology is more than a buzzword and is on the cusp of revolutionizing healthcare.  From mobile health to real-time diagnostics, technology is a cornerstone of bioeconomies everywhere, and it permeates all sectors of biotechnology. Let’s close the technology gap together at GapSummit 2017 USA and continue making science fiction a reality!