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The biomedical cluster spearheading Kobe's revitalization

Cutting-edge research thrives in health care technology ecosystem

Startup Myoridge uses its new laboratory to develop cardiac muscle cells for regenerative medicine procedures. “We are very fortunate to have a base in Kobe," said COO Shungo Adachi. (Photo by Shoya Okinaga)

KOBE, Japan -- When the city of Kobe was devastated by an earthquake in 1995, few imagined a thriving biomedical industry emerging from the rubble.

But the Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster, which marks its 20th anniversary on Friday, has grown to attract 350 institutions and companies, ranging from promising startups to multinational health care companies, including Germany's Bayer. After $4 billion in public investments, it is now the largest biotech center in Japan, employing 9,400 people.

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