When asked how much they foresee emerging bioclusters growing in 2012, voters were somewhat evenly split but mostly optimistic. By a bare plurality (33.3%), respondents predicted that nine emerging regions identified in a recent survey by a commercial real estate firm would grow “a great deal” this year, while almost as many (30.4%) thought the emerging bioclusters would grow “somewhat.” The latter group was outnumbered, however, by the 32.4% of respondents who said they foresaw “not much” growth for the up-and-coming regions, identified by Jones Lang LaSalle as Minneapolis, Raleigh-Durham, Seattle, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Florida, Atlanta, and Indianapolis.

While the first three are pretty established, a stronger case can be made for the rest as emerging clusters. As active as all have been, however, they remain overshadowed by the San Francisco Bay Area as well as Boston and Cambridge, MA, as the weak economy of the past four years combined with cutbacks due to mergers and acquisitions have helped consolidate U.S. biopharma activity further within the nation’s largest life science clusters. The remaining 3.9% of respondents were undecided.

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