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The Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative

The Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative

The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC) is the hub for the state's thriving life sciences community, which includes biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, diagnostics and bioinformatics.  They are the stewards of the state's $1 billion investment to ensure that the life sciences continue to be a major economic engine for the Commonwealth.  The Center's goals are to create jobs, drive innovation and promote good science.

Life science companies can now apply for the new grant programs and state tax incentives outlined in the Massachusetts Life Science Initiative (MLSI). To apply, please visit www.masslifesciences.com 

Deadline to apply for tax incentives: May 15, 2009 and the first round of Accelorator Funding will be announced by April  30th , 2009. Tax incentives will be awarded by September 15, 2009.


The following is a brief overview of MLSC Programs.  More information is available at the MLSC web site at www.masslifesciences.com.

Life Sciences Accelerator Program - The Center's flagship program to assist early stage companies, the Accelerator program will provide loans of up to $500,000 for early-stage life sciences companies to help leverage additional sources of capital.

      • Companies must apply to the MLSC to become a Certified Life Science Company.
      • Deadline to apply for first round of Accelerator funding: March 6, 2009
      • The first round of Accelerator funding will be announced by April 30, 2009
      • For more information or to apply, go to: http://www.masslifesciences.com/accelerator.html

Life Sciences Tax Incentive Program - The MLSC is authorized by the Life Sciences Act to make $25 million per year available in tax incentives to certified life sciences companies.  Companies that are growing jobs, investments, and revenue are prospects for the nine distinct tax incentives of the LSI. To receive the benefits, companies must apply to the MLSC. The tax incentives include:

    • Refundable 10% Investment Tax Credit
    • Refundable Research Tax Credit
    • Special Sales Tax Exemption
    • Extension of Let Operating Losses to 15 years
    • Refundable FDA User fee Credit
    • Life Sciences Research Credit
    • Deduction for Orphan Drug Clinical Testing
    • Elimination of Sales Factor Throwback
    • Construction Sales Tax Exemption
    • Deadline to apply for tax incentives: May 15, 2009
    • Tax incentives will be awarded by September 15, 2009
    • For more information on the tax incentive program, or to apply, go to: http://www.masslifesciences.com/taxincentive.html

Corporate Consortium Program - In order to leverage additional sources of capital and maximize support for its portfolio companies, MLSC has developed a Corporate Consortium Program for corporate and investment partners to contribute matching funds for MLSC's activities. Through a suite of initiatives, MLSC will identify and make funds available to early-stage life sciences companies with a high-potential for commercialization, rapid growth, and downstream institutional financing. Johnson & Johnson has signed on as the charter member of the Consortium, and the Center is approaching other potential partners as well.

Academic research programs:

  • Cooperative Research Grant - Supports industry-sponsored research at universities and to facilitate scientific discoveries that lead to medical applications with grants of up to $250,000 per year for up to three years, in a 1:1 match with the industry partner.
  • New Faculty Startup Grant - Targets investments to attract and retain nationally prominent faculty at Massachusetts' colleges and universities with grants of up to $250,000 per year for up to three years, in a 1:1 match with the academic institution.
  • New Investigator Grant - Aimed at spurring innovative new research and advancing the careers of new investigators who are working on cutting-edge life sciences research at Massachusetts academic research centers and institutions with grants of up to $100,000 per year for up to three years.