In Ohio, Sarepta Therapeutics is Poised for More Genetic Breakthroughs
Published: Thu Mar 03 2022
When faced with the diagnosis of a genetic disorder, families frequently have few, if any, options. Thanks to groundbreaking research from companies like Sarepta Therapeutics, people living with genetic disorders have hope for the future.
The company has more than 40 programs in development across three modalities, RNA, gene therapy and gene editing, and has three marketed therapies.
The Opportunity for Growth in Ohio
In 2021, Sarepta officially opened its Genetic Therapies Center of Excellence (GTCOE) in Columbus, Ohio, signifying the region’s role in Sarepta’s future as a leader in precision medicine. Ohio is increasingly the focus of gene therapy developments. In fact, Ohio is tied for fourth among states in its number of identified gene therapy startups and companies. Academic institutions such as The Ohio State University also provide strategic partnership opportunities in genetic research, as well as contributing to the rapidly evolving field in gene therapy.
For Sarepta, its gene therapy programs began in Ohio through its partnerships with Nationwide Children’s Hospital and gene therapy pioneer, Louise Rodino-Klapac, Ph.D., a former Nationwide Children’s researcher, who now serves as Sarepta’s head of R&D and Chief Scientific Officer.
As part of its commitment to expand in Ohio, Sarepta’s plans include increasing its footprint and significantly adding to its GTCOE team over the next few years in the areas of R&D, facilities, IT and other functions. In support of this goal, Sarepta looked to JobsOhio’s Talent Acquisition Services program.
JobsOhio provided the necessary insights and expertise to Sarepta’s recruiting efforts in Ohio, greatly enhancing and accelerating the Company’s recruiting goals. Through the JobsOhio Talent Acquisition Services Incentive, a variety of initiatives were employed, including:
- The creation and launch of biotech specific job board campaign to attract scientific candidates
- Diversity, equality, and inclusiveness (DEI) training
- The creation of a website landing page for potential candidates highlighting important information about what life is like in Central Ohio, and a view into building a career at Sarepta Ohio.
JobsOhio helped Sarepta establish itself with a JobsOhio Economic Development Grant for Building, Machinery, and Equipment. Ohio also welcomed Sarepta with a Job Creation Tax Credit. By making a $32 million investment to grow into a larger, 85,000 square-foot facility in Columbus, Ohio, and creating an additional 100 jobs, Sarepta has the opportunity to advance its work in genetic medicine toward its goal of helping patients with rare genetic diseases. In partnership with organizations such as One Columbus, JobsOhio, and the Ohio Development Services Agency, as well as the city of Columbus, Sarepta is positioned for continued success as a leader in precision genetic medicine.
Sarepta's new center will contribute to Columbus' emergence as a hub for biotech innovation and helps us advance the science of genetic medicine, as we work alongside the region's unparalleled medical institutions like Nationwide Children's Hospital, already a longstanding partner of ours.