According to Reuters, 14 biotech companies have gone public so far in 2013, marking a possible turnaround for the sector with a rising stock market, low interest rates and an absence of market volatility apparently making high-risk investments more palatable to investors. These initial public offerings (IPOs), the best start in six years, have brought strong average returns of about 20 percent, compared to 16 percent gains across all industries.

Meanwhile, a new PricewaterhousCoopers/National Venture Capital Association MoneyTree™ report, based on Thomson Reuters data, shows that venture investments in some biotechnology specialties, such as early-stage biosensor companies, soared some 152 percent in the first quarter of 2013. Animal biotech businesses also reportedly experienced a more-than-doubling of investments and biotech research companies posted a 37 percent jump over 2012. See Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, May 15, 2013; Reuters, May 22, 2013.