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SCOTT JAGOW: California's not the cheapest place to do business, but a new report says the state's biotech industry is booming anyway. Sarah Gardner reports.


SARAH GARDNER: California is now home to more than 2,700 biomedical firms, and they provide some of the state's best-paid jobs. The average salary is a little over $70,000 a year.

All this according to the latest study by California Healthcare Institute, a trade group for the industry. Its president, David Gollaher, credits the 100-plus universities and research institutions in the Golden State.

DAVID GOLLAHER:"What happens is the researchers who tend to be the scientific founders of these companies want to stay in California."

But Gollaher says the real challenge for California will be keeping the manufacturing jobs produced by all this biomedical R&D.

California's high taxes, long commutes and expensive real estate could drive that business elsewhere.

I'm Sarah Gardner for Marketplace.

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Follow Sarah Gardner at @RadioGardner