Press Release

Press Release  Governor Healey Highlights Life Sciences Investments from Mass Leads Act in Worcester and Hopkinton

For immediate release:
  • Governor Maura Healey and Lt. Governor Kim Driscoll
  • Executive Office of Economic Development

Media Contact   for Governor Healey Highlights Life Sciences Investments from Mass Leads Act in Worcester and Hopkinton

Karissa Hand, Press Secretary

Hopkinton — Today, Governor Maura T. Healey launched her Mass Leads Road Show, during which she will travel to communities across the state to highlight the ways in which her Mass Leads Act will grow the Massachusetts economy, support businesses and attract talent to the state. 

She visited life sciences companies in Worcester and Hopkinton to focus on her proposed $1 billion, 10-year reauthorization of the Life Sciences Initiative, which will position Massachusetts to lengthen its lead as the global leader in this cutting-edge industry. 

“The Mass Leads Act will strengthen Massachusetts’ global leadership and expand opportunity in our state now and for a generation to come. One key way we’ll do this is by reauthorizing the Life Sciences Initiative for another decade,” said Governor Healey. “Mass Biomedical Initiatives and RoslinCT are excellent examples of what happens when we invest in the world-class talent and innovation happening right here in Massachusetts. We want to build on their success and welcome more companies to move, start and grow here in our state.” 

“Our visits to MBI and RoslinCT proved the transformative power of the Mass Life Sciences Initiative, particularly through the support that the Mass Life Sciences Center is able to provide to companies,” said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. “We are proud to propose another infusion of resources to enable to MLSC to continue to do this important work and support our current, incredible companies while also attracting new businesses and talent to our state.” 

“Our state is the global epicenter for the life sciences industry. With the Mass Leads Act, we are committed to strengthening our leadership by reauthorizing our Life Sciences Initiative,” said Secretary of Economic Development Yvonne Hao. “This initiative supports an ecosystem that enables MBI and RoslinCT to advance their R&D efforts, bolster their workforce, and generate meaningful economic output. Our economic development bill will foster an environment that continuously fuels innovation, attracting new talent and businesses to Massachusetts.”  

“The life sciences sector serves as a powerful, regional catalyst for economic and workforce development,” said MLSC Acting Chief Executive Officer and Vice President of Economic Development and Partnerships Jeanne LeClair. “We are incredibly proud of the continued growth being experienced in Central Massachusetts and the MetroWest. Both regions still have a great deal of untapped potential to further advance as life sciences clusters. Moreover, these regions serve as a model for other parts of our Commonwealth as we look to accelerate our efforts to grow out the benefits of the Life Sciences Initiative.” 

The Governor’s first stop was at MA Biomedical Initiatives (MBI) in Worcester. MBI is the longest-running life sciences incubator in the state, helping emerging life sciences companies advance from concept to clinical trials. It is estimated that since 2000, MBI has assisted over 188 companies that have created over 1,800 jobs and had over $1.9 billion in economic impact. 

MBI has been supported by the MA Life Sciences Center (MLSC), which enabled the company to triple the capacity of the incubator’s facility, expand its workforce programming, and advance its cluster building activities. MBI’s most recent expansion of its new Pilot Biomanufacturing Centr was supported through $3.5 million in MLSC funding, adding 10 new biomanufacturing labs to support startup companies in process development and early-stage manufacturing. 

The MLSC has supported several other Worcester institutions in recent years. UMass Chan Medical School received $2.8 million in 2021 from the MLSC for the purchase of an advanced Glacios cryo-electron microscope from Thermo Fisher Scientific. This investment has enabled UMass Chan’s capabilities to meet growing demand and continue to transform biomedical research in Massachusetts. The UMass Cryo-EM Core has supported data collection for dozens of companies and an even greater number of academic labs. Structural biology is the foundation of a significant portion of biomedical research, opening windows into biology and structure-based drug design. The Cryo-EM Core at UMass Chan was established in 2015, in part with $5 million in funding from the MLSC. 

Additionally, CERES (Cell Engineering Research Equipment Suite) at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) is a fee-for-use core lab designed to provide WPI researchers and regional industry and academic partners access to state-of-the-art instruments for quantitative analysis of engineered cells. It is located within the WPI Biomanufacturing Education and Training Center. CERES was made possible by $877,314 in capital funding from the MLSC in 2020. MLSC funds supported the purchase of key equipment to create a modular core facility focused on high throughput cell analytics, providing startups access to resources needed to bring cell-based products to market. The equipment capabilities were designed through partnership between WPI and Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives (MBI) given that a major indicator of success for CERES is the growth and maturation of the biotech discovery ecosystem in central Massachusetts. 

Beyond supporting research and innovation, the MLSC has also provided more than $13 million in workforce development and STEM-focused capital investments to Worcester colleges and schools.  

“Before other major cities voted to approve zoning for Research and Development, Worcester knew the potential of the life sciences,” said Worcester Mayor Joseph M. Petty. “Having Worcester be supported by our state leadership allows us to further the opportunities that come from our life sciences, and I look forward to our continued collaboration together.” 

“Central Massachusetts led the nation as the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution. Today, we are focused on leading the nation again as the world’s next global biomanufacturing hub”.  said MBI President and CEO Jon Weaver. "We are grateful for the Healey-Driscoll Administration’s vision and leadership represented in the Mass Leads bill, which includes the reauthorization of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center. The MLSC’s support is essential to our ability to compete on a global stage and create jobs for our region." 

The Governor also visited RoslinCT (formerly Lykan Bioscience) in Hopkinton, which develops and manufactures cell-based therapies. They’ve received nearly $1 million from MLSC for tax incentives around job creation. They also previously received $390,000 in funding through MLSC’s Massachusetts Transition and Growth Program (MassTAG), which is a recruitment tool designed to attract out-of-state, international, and newly formed companies that want to become part of the Massachusetts life sciences ecosystem. The company was able to create 26 jobs with this funding. RoslinCT has also utilized MSLC’s internship challenge program.  

When RoslinCT first engaged with MSLC in 2019, they had only six full time employees. Today, they have 115 full time employees. 

The MetroWest life sciences cluster is another example of the continued regionalization of the life sciences in Massachusetts. The MLSC has invested nearly $71 million in the region through various funding program and initiatives. This includes capital investments in colleges and universities located in the MetroWest, such as Framingham State University, and the region’s vocational technical schools. RoslinCT is one of nearly 30 MetroWest companies which have benefited from the MLSC’s Tax Incentive program. Nearly $30 million in tax incentive funding has helped create 1,685 jobs for MetroWest-based life sciences companies. 

“RoslinCT, a global cell and gene therapy contract development and manufacturing organization, applauds the proposal by the Healey administration to re-authorize the Life Sciences Initiative,” said President & CEO RoslinCT Patrick Lucy. “The proposed investment of $1 billion over 10 years will enable the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to continue our global leadership in life sciences to develop cutting edge technologies and therapies offering hope to individuals around the world impacted by disease. The cell therapy sector is advancing efforts against the most complex and rare diseases and in some cases these therapies are potentially curative after a single dose.” 

“We are honored to have Governor Healey and her team in Hopkinton to celebrate the reauthorization of the Life Science Initiative. The state-wide initiative can be an investment in our community's thriving biotech hub on South Street and its anchor companies, such as RoslinCT. The success of this industry in Hopkinton is made possible by the strength of our relationship with the state and the private industry, substantiated by partners at MassBio and the Hopkinton Chamber of Commerce,” said Hopkinton Town Manager Norman Khumalo. "This partnership has led to Hopkinton’s most recent designation as a Platinum Community, marking Hopkinton's readiness and competitiveness for innovative biotechnology firms. We look forward to the future of Hopkinton’s Biotech Hub and the impact the Healey-Driscoll Administration will have on the economic vitality of our town."” 


Last year, Massachusetts was chosen by the federal Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H), an agency within the National Institutes of Health, to host its Investor Catalyst Hub, demonstrating the effectiveness of the state’s investments in the life sciences.  

The Governor’s proposed long-term commitment will position Massachusetts to win more investment in the life sciences industry, develop more life-saving cures, and create more jobs. It will build on the success of prior authorizations while making adjustments to account for present-day challenges and opportunities. The initiative has three core parts:  

  1. Capital: The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center will embrace a model that encourages multi-institution, cross-sector collaboration among key industries, such as biotechnology, manufacturing, medical technology, higher education, and healthcare. Through this realignment, the state will be better able to pursue health equity ventures, research and development, and capital eligible initiatives to support the ecosystem.  

  1. Tax Incentives: The Life Sciences Tax Incentive Program has proven successful in incentivizing the creation of jobs in the industry. This bill proposes to increase the statutory cap for life sciences tax incentives to create more capacity in the future and extends the program to 2033 to demonstrate the state’s commitment for the next decade. This will further enhance a valuable business development tool to attract and retain companies in Massachusetts.    

  1. Operating: This new strategy also projects annual appropriations for workforce development programming and other strategic initiatives, including support for early-stage companies. Notably, this component of the strategy incorporates an expansion of Pathmaker, a key component of the Healey-Driscoll Administration’s MassTalent Initiative, to scale career training programs for in-demand job opportunities within the industry.   

In addition to competitiveness and innovation, equity will be elevated as a priority for the Healey-Driscoll Administration under the new initiative, including creating better workforce pathways into careers in the industry and improving health outcomes for residents in Massachusetts.   

More information can be found in the Life Sciences issue brief.   


Media Contact   for Governor Healey Highlights Life Sciences Investments from Mass Leads Act in Worcester and Hopkinton

  • Governor Maura Healey and Lt. Governor Kim Driscoll 

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