The Massachusetts Biotechnology Research Institute (MBRI) willreceive $2.4 million from the U.S. Department of Commerce tocontinue its basic operations and expand its economic developmentprogram into Boston.

The funds were earmarked for MBRI in the Commerce Department'sfiscal 1994 appropriations bill, approved by Congress on Thursday.

The $2.4 million consists of two grants. A $1.4 million grant willsupport MBRI's program for industry development in CentralMassachusetts, and $1 million will be used to establish the programin Boston.

Marc Goldberg, MBRI's president and chief executive officer,explained that through the economic program, MBRI assistsuniversities in evaluating and commercializing research, identifiespotential start-up companies and provides them with financialassistance, equipment and advice; and develops and overseeseducation and training programs.

Based in Worcester, Mass., MBRI said it has helped launch 15companies that have generated more than 2,200 jobs. Thisachievement was hailed by Massachusetts Democrats Sen. EdwardKennedy and Rep. Joseph Moakley in a news release announcingadoption of the Commerce Dept.'s funding bill.

"The biotech boom in Massachusetts already employs over 15,000workers and its continued growth is vital to the state economy andhealth research for the future," the congressmen stated. "Through itssupport today, Congress has given the Massachusetts economy a solidlift."

Kennedy also helped push through Congress recently a provision inthe U.S. Department of Agriculture's fiscal 1994 appropriations billthat earmarks $256,000 for MBRI.

-- Brenda Sandburg News Editor

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.