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2019 U.S. Life Sciences Clusters

February 13, 2019
  • The life sciences revolution is occurring at a record pace. In this report, CBRE identifies the U.S. market clusters leading this revolution, as well as a selection of markets emerging as the industry’s next hot spots.
  • Boston-Cambridge and the San Francisco Bay Area are the nation’s leading life sciences clusters, based on a compilation of CBRE data.
  • San Diego, New Jersey, Raleigh-Durham and Washington, D.C.-Baltimore round out a second tier of primary life sciences markets in the U.S.
  • Significant industry momentum in New York City—evidenced by more than 1.5 million sq. ft. of lab space under construction, strong municipal support and a major concentration of sought-after talent—support it as one of the nation’s rising life science clusters.
  • CBRE’s data shows which markets have the most scientists fueling innovation and where the most qualified graduates are coming from.
  • Emerging life sciences hubs that offer a growing source of life sciences talent include Seattle, Houston, Austin and Denver. These and other markets have premier educational and medical institutions to drive continued industry growth.
  • Venture capital funding to the life sciences industry has surged 86% over the past year, driving employment growth, new construction and increased attention from investors.


Ranked by size of laboratory inventory, size and long-term growth2 in life sciences employment,3 number and concentration of key scientists,1 size of funding sources.

Source: CBRE Research, Q4 2018.

1 Biomedical Engineers, Biochemists & Biophysicists, and Chemists as identified by the U.S. BLS OES.
2 2002-2017.
3 Life Sciences employment consists of the following NAICS categories: Manufacturing (pharmaceuticals and medicines) (3254), Electromedical apparatus (334510), Analytical laboratory instruments (334516), Irradiation apparatuses (334517), Surgical and medical instruments (339112, 339113), Medical, Diagnostic and Testing laboratories (54138, 6215) and R&D in the physical, engineering, and life sciences (54171) as obtained on a county level from the U.S. BLS QCEW.


Ranked on the basis of recent life sciences employment growth, number and concentration of key scientists, NIH funding, quality and quantity of (1) educational institutions providing life science graduates and (2) medical research and health services institutions, and number and concentration of high-tech workers.

Source: CBRE Research, Q4 2018.

For more information, please visit CBRE’s Life Sciences page and download the full report below.

Connect with CBRE Research:

Ian Anderson
Senior Director of Research and Analysis
+1 215 561 8997
+1 215 557 6719
Todd Richardson
Todd Richardson
Global Sr. Managing Director
+1 (704) 972 0074
Spencer Levy Headshot
Spencer Levy
Chairman, Americas Research & Senior Economic Advisor
+1 617 912 5236
Lisa Denight Headshot
Lisa Denight
Senior Research Analyst
+1 215 561 8932

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