Legislative Life Sciences Caucus
Life Sciences Caucus Documents
The Life Sciences Caucus met Monday, Sept. 18, at 12 p.m. at the Plant Sciences Building on the North Carolina State University Centennial Campus.
Agriculture is a key economic driver in NC. So, too, is the life sciences industry, where agtech has been growing rapidly. When those two sectors align, it can be of real benefit to the state.
Members of the Agriculture and the Environment team at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization were on hand to give an overview of both federal issues and state issues affecting the agbio and environmental industries.
- Federal issues discussed included the U.S.-Mexico trade dispute over an upcoming import ban on genetically engineered corn, recent U.S. EPA plant incorporated protectants regulation and the Plant Biostimulants Act in the Farm Bill.
- Issues moving in states throughout the country include legislation banning or restricting vaccination of livestock, incentivizing sustainable aviation fuel production and use and bills banning or restricting foreign ownership of agricultural land, which can adversely impact R&D.
Pairwise, a small gene editing company based in Durham, NC, which has a new produce product on the market, talked about EPA impediments to their business. Representatives from BASF, Hoofprint Biome, Novozymes and Syngenta were also available.
Gene therapy and rare diseases topic of Life Sciences Caucus
The General Assembly's Life Sciences Caucus met Tuesday, June 28, to learn about the promise of gene therapies as potential treatments for rare diseases.
Nearly two dozen legislators and staff members heard from Priya Kishnani, M.D., and Vandana Shashi, M.D., of the Duke Undiagnosed Diseases Network and Marianne Hamilton Lopez, M.D., of the Duke Margolis Center for Health Policy along with Charlene Cowell, executive director of Bleeding Disorders of North Carolina. Caucus Co-Chairs Sen. Paul Newton, Sen. Mike Woodard and Rep. Donna White were in attendance.
Hamilton Lopez told legislators that gene therapies will often differ from traditional treatment in that the therapies may only be administered once as opposed to conventional treatments that are given as multiple or continual doses of medication. Gene therapies are currently much more expensive than conventional therapies, which makes them a challenge for our current system to pay. The upfront cost of these breakthrough therapies must be weighed against the impressive benefits they offer compared to conventional therapies.
NC Life Sciences Headlines