Fenwick & West Joins In Stem-Cell Initiatives

The promise of $3 billion in state funding for biotechnology research in California has prompted action in San Francisco law firms – especially now that San Francisco has been picked to host the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

"The idea is that we provide the business community with an overview and guidance of the issues presented," said partner Michael Shuster, who chairs Fenwick’s life sciences group. "Our intent is to position ourselves so that we are the go-to firm for companies driving funding from Proposition 71."

Shuster said the firm, which counts the University of California among its clients, will offer practical business advice. New entrepreneurs, for instance, may not realize that they can’t do work on unapproved cell lines if they have used federal funding to support infrastructure.

Other attorneys have been involved in building the infrastructure of tomorrow's San Francisco's biotechnology industry by doing volunteer work for the initiative, such as preparing siting proposals the institute.