R&D

Missouri is Actively Investing in Leading-Edge Industries

Missouri is actively investing in high-tech industries including agtech, geospatial analysis, cybersecurity, human health and animal health. 


The Global Agtech Leader

Missouri is the global leader in agtech and the gateway to the future of advanced farming, leading future growth with innovative technology and research. 

39 North is the world’s first agtech innovation district. It spans nearly 600 acres and includes many of the region’s top agtech companies such as Bayer Crop Science’s Global Seeds & Traits HQ, the Danforth Plant Science Center, Bio-Research & Development Growth (BRDG) Park and the Helix Incubator.

Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is the world’s largest independent research institute focused on plant science, with more than 1,000 plant scientists conducting research targeted at increasing crop yields, their nutritional value, and resistance to drought and disease. 

Nearby, Missouri Botanical Garden (St. Louis) conducts the most productive and diverse botanical research in the world, employing nearly 50 Ph.D. botanists. 

Missouri has one of the largest concentrations of plant science PhDs in the world.


Missouri’s Animal Health Corridor

Missouri is home to national headquarters for leading agricultural associations – including the American Angus Association and the U.S. Animal Health Association. More than half of the world’s animal health industry is represented in the Kansas City region, home of the Animal Health Corridor. It stretches from Kansas to Columbia, Missouri. The corridor is home to more than 300 animal health companies, representing the largest concentration in the world.


Missouri’s Knows Geospatial – We Map The World

Missouri is home to the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency HQ West, and much of the R&D in the region is connected to this leading-edge U.S. government agency. 


Rendering of the planned NGA West HQ in St. Louis

  • Eight research institutions recently joined forces to create the Taylor Geospatial Institute
  • GeoHornet Lab at T-REX serves as a career path launching pad for geoscience students. 
  • The NGA Accelerator Powered by Capital Innovators recruits startups developing technology that can help address geospatial challenges. 
  • The Geospatial Innovation Center at T-REX, Powered by Bayer, is 16,000 sq. ft. of innovative and creative workspace dedicated to connecting and growing our geospatial community. 
  • NGA opened its first unclassified innovation center inside T-REX incubator Moonshot Labs.


Missouri is Healing the World

Institutions within the Cortex Innovation Community district receive more than $400 million in NIH funding annually. The Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) Innovation Center aims to “address health security and foster job growth.”

Pfizer’s Missouri locations played a critical role in developing and manufacturing a key component of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The Saint Louis University Center for Vaccine Development is a multi-disciplinary research facility for vaccines and biologics, and it is one of only nine NIH-funded vaccine research institutions. The Center conducted pivotal research on the H1N1 influenza vaccine, biodefense, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and tuberculosis vaccines. 

The Stowers Institute for Medical Research (Kansas City), conducts basic research on genes and proteins to determine the causes, treatment and prevention of diseases. The McDonnell Genome Institute at Washington University in St. Louis was one of the first three sites to begin full-scale human sequencing as part of the Human Genome project. Scientists there were the first in the world to decode the complete DNA sequence of a cancer patient.


Missouri Universities are Key to Research Innovation

Missouri has two universities ranked in the top 100 in the U.S. for R&D spending, Washington University in St. Louis (26th) and the University of Missouri in Columbia (70th). In fact, U.S. News and World Report ranked Washington University 18th in its ranking of Best Value Schools.

Washington University received over $1 billion in total research support in 2022 with more than 3,000 research projects underway each year. The University of Missouri in Columbia had $432 million in total research expenditures in 2022 and is the home of the first Center for Regenerative Agriculture in the Midwest. 

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