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IowaBio Monthly Newsletter

April 2020




The global and local spread of SARS-CoV-2 virus and the effects of COVID-19, the disease it causes, have upended the daily lives of millions of people here in Iowa, and around the world. IowaBio’s member biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies and our support members are stepping up in big ways to address this challenge head-on. Whether it be through vaccine development, creating and manufacturing test kit components, collaboration to speed research or test processing, donations of critical resources like personal protective equipment, or the development of information resources, these companies and institutions are approaching this challenging time with a focus on collaboration, community, and ultimately the science that will solve this pandemic.

COVID-19 has changed everything from top to bottom for businesses and the people who work for them, no more so than for the bioscience companies and organizations IowaBio strives to serve and connect. During this time of unprecedented change, IowaBio’s staff and its Board are thinking through IowaBio’s mission and our members’ needs, as well as sustainability of the Association. We want to proactively strategize and adapt to COVID-19 and its impacts, to help our members and ultimately our association come out stronger from these challenges. As a member driven association we will:
  • Look for ways to support our members through assessing needs, one-on-one communication, and highlighting our members efforts to battle COVID-19, protect your workers and contribute to your communities.
  • Facilitate collaboration between companies and foster connection with government officials and decision-makers.
  • Strategically examine our budget and ensure we are good stewards of our resources.
  • Thoughtfully engage our members’ expertise and leverage the talent you bring to the table, while respecting the tremendous pressures, faced by businesses and individuals right now.
  • Strive to provide value in new ways, through our approaches to member events, information sharing and the formation of strategies for our approaches now and in the “new normal” of COVID-19.
I want to close by saying, I have never been prouder to work for IowaBio. In the state of Iowa and across the country, biotech and biopharmaceutical companies are working overtime to fight this pandemic. They are searching for new treatments and a vaccine. They are creating the components necessary for tests. They are running the tests. They are keeping vital global supply chains open. Iowa’s biotech companies have answered the call to work together to defeat COVID-19, just like so many other researchers and companies across the country. I know that with all of us working together, we will get through this challenge and come out stronger on the other side.
Jessica Hyland, J.D.
Executive Director
Iowa Biotechnology Association

IowaBio has been keeping up with the latest government and industry news on the COVID-19 pandemic. As an Association we are grateful for the work of member companies responding to COVID-19 directly, by helping tackle the virus and its effects by developing vaccines, treatments and tests, to implementing policies internally to lessen the impact of this public health emergency. As staff, we have implemented measures to mitigate the spread of the virus. 

We know this is a time of great uncertainty, and a time of stress for individuals and our member companies. Although this makes planning some of the in-person benefits of our Association offers such as networking opportunities and educational events difficult, we are still here to serve the members, especially in this time of need. 

With that at the forefront of our minds, we intend to move forward with planning for events the remainder of 2020. We will continue to follow CDC and Iowa Department of Public Health guidelines, and if cancellation of any IowaBio event due to COVID-19 should be required and/or prudent to protect the health of our members, sponsors, and guests, we will absolutely do so. Weighing each situation, we pledge to ensure fairness to our sponsors and attendees, who have made financial commitments to events that must be cancelled. 

We can all look forward to the time that we can soon plan for and hold events without this concern, but for now, we hope you will look forward with us to planning and participating in IowaBio’s events and educational opportunities, to enjoy the networking and educational benefits IowaBio provides its members. We appreciate your continued support of and participation in IowaBio.
Mark your calendars for our Legislative Update Calls, which will be held at key times during and after session, to give you the latest on what’s happening at the capitol. These calls are open to all IowaBio members. With the uncertainty caused by COVID-19 and the legislative session suspension, we will keep our May 1 call and update you on what we know, as well as slate a fourth “post session” call TBD, when we know more about how session will unfold.

All calls with take place from 9:30-10:00am CST on the following dates:
  • Friday February 21 (post First Funnel) 
  • Friday March 20 (post Second Funnel) 
  • Friday May 1 (Session Update) 
  • Post Session Summary (TBD)
To hear more about what’s going on at the state and federal levels RSVP here for the next legislative update call.
Iowa Biotechnology Association (IowaBio) and Bio Nebraska Life Sciences Association (Bio Nebraska) are excited to announce the fourth installment of Animal Health In the Heartland with this year's focus on Whole Animal Health. The symposium will be held on Wednesday, August 19th at the ISU Alumni Center in Ames. The program will be preceded by an optional facility tour (location TBA) and a networking reception on Tuesday, August 18th.

Whole Animal Health
The animal health industry is using cutting-edge research and innovation to provide solutions to address today’s animal health needs and combat growing health threats, which seem to be coming at a faster pace than ever. These discoveries don’t address just one area of animal health, but span a wide range of approaches to holistically look at all aspects of animal health and their impacts on human health, our food supply, and the environment. From new vaccines, to reduced antibiotic usage, to healthier feed additives, to advances in technology and data that assist producers, today’s tools to improve animal health are not isolated, but thoughtfully inter-connected.

Request for Presentations - OPENS TODAY!
Bio Nebraska and IowaBio invite you to submit a presentation proposal to be a solo or panel speaker at our 2020 Animal Health in the Heartland symposium. Presentation submissions will be accepted April 20 - May 8 at Following the deadline, a 30-minute call will be scheduled between May 18 - 22 to further discuss your idea and ask questions about the symposium. You will be notified the following week if you have been selected to speak.

Presentation ideas include:
  • New vaccines
  • Reduced antibiotic usage
  • Healthier feed additives and their benefits
  • How to stop another spread of avian flu/other impactful animal diseases
  • Worldwide threats to animal health
  • Animal-to-human transmission prevention efforts
  • Advances in technology and data that assist producers
  • Environmental and human health benefits linked to advances in animal health
Presentations will be held in person (unless otherwise arranged or altered by the associations due to COVID-19 concerns). We are seeking to fill 5-6 timeslots, each lasting 45-60 minutes depending on the final lineup.

Additional Resources
Back by popular demand, IowaBio will once again host a golf outing this June at The Legacy Golf Club in Norwalk, Iowa!

The event is scheduled for September 3rd and will host a 9:30am shotgun start, a play-through lunch, course contests and a raffle!

For the first time ever, this event will be open to members and non-members - the more the merrier!

Learn more at
2020 Partnering for Growth was one of the few events in March that was able to be held before "social distancing" became status-quo. We are thankful for all of our attendees, speakers, and sponsors who helped us make this another great year!
To view all pictures from the conference as well as an overview of the conference presentations, please click here.
We know many of our member companies are helping respond directly to the COVID-19 pandemic. If your company is helping respond to COVID-19, IowaBio wants to know about it.  We currently issue a daily newsletter to our members that compiles information on state, federal and industry action to combat the virus and its impacts. Past IowaBio COVID-19 Update newsletters are now available at and can be found under the Industry News tab on the IowaBio website.

Please, send any information about what your biotechnology company is doing to help, to Jessica Hyland at If IowaBio can assist you in getting information out, connecting with public officials, or support your company in another way, please do not hesitate to reach out.

The Legislative Council extended the current Iowa legislative session suspension through April 30 which coincides with the Governor’s business closures and recommended school closures. The session originally was paused through April 15. Before they adjourned on March 16. The legislature funded Iowa’s budget at status quo levels through August 31, but any policy bills that had made it through the first funnel have been thrown into question.
Although timing is still unclear, we expect when the legislature returns, it will be a very truncated session, with little policy that isn’t important for both chambers, and a focus on the budget. The state’s revenues will likely be severely impacted by the shutdown of businesses due to COVID-19, so previous Revenue Estimating Conference (REC) projections, will likely need to be revised. In addition, the state will receive a $1.25 Billion grant from the federal CARES Act, and this money will also come into play for overall budgeting. We will keep you informed as we know more about when the Iowa Legislature aims to reconvene, and what policy might be considered at that time.
For a list of all Iowa agency resources and each of the Governor’s proclamations dealing with COVID-19 click here.
IowaBio will hold our next legislative update call May 1. Please, RSVP here.  We will also hold a call to be announced at a later time, when session officially closes, to recap what occurred.

Businesses and organizations are urged to donate personal protective equipment, or PPE, by contacting their local public health department and the county emergency management agency. 

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) is encouraging Iowa businesses and organizations to donate extra personal protective equipment to assist health care providers and health care facilities responding to COVID-19.

"This is an unprecedented public health disaster, and stocks of personal protective equipment for health care providers are being used rapidly," said Ken Sharp, division director of Acute Disease Prevention, Emergency Response and Environmental Health. "Any organizations that have extra PPE supplies that aren't immediately needed should consider donating them to help those on the front lines of this disease."  

Any type of health care PPE will be welcomed, especially gloves, gowns, eye protection, and masks. Local public health and local emergency management officials can work to address needs locally and beyond. 

To donate PPE, please contact your county public health department or local emergency manager.  Local health department contact information can be found at, county emergency management agency information can be found at

IowaBio welcomed the following new member last month:

IowaBio thanks the following members for recently renewing:

The Session Bill Tracker is a weekly report issued every Friday during legislative session. It provides an update on state and federal activities as well as a tracking record of bills relevant to the biotech industry and IowaBio’s position. This report is best suited for government affairs representatives and biotech companies engaged in policy efforts. To view archives of this distribution of sign up for the communications, please click here.

Our Monthly Newsletter is a great resource to keep up with IowaBio's activities, member and industry news, as well as additional savings, educational and networking opportunities in your area and across the globe. To view archives of this distribution or sign up for the newsletter, please click here

Starting March 23rd, IowaBio began issuing daily updates to share the latest news surrounding the virus from the biotech industry's point of view. Topics covered include state, national and global updates, legislative activities on the state and federal level, IowaBio member efforts and innovations, helpful resources/media and more.

If you are an IowaBio member and wish to receive this daily communication, please email Melissa Moyer at Non-members can access the communications once they've been issued on our archives page.
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Des Moines, IA 50309-2057

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