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Biotechnology Industry

  • By: Barney Warf
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Biotechnology may be defined as the application of molecular and cellular processes to solve social, scientific, and environmental problems, develop new products and services, or modify living organisms to carry desired traits. Arising after the discovery in 1973 of recombinant DNA, biotechnology has been a rapidly growing industry worldwide, with extensive linkages to agriculture, health care, energy, and environmental sciences. In 2005, the U.S. biotech industry (excluding medical equipment firms) consisted of roughly 1,500 firms that employed 400,000 people and generated $64 billion in output. There is a wide range in the size of firms in this industry, including single proprietorships and firms of more than 500 employees; the mean national annual salary in the industry is $62,500, which is well above the national average.

Pharmaceutical ...

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