San Antonio's Life Science Hub
San Antonio’s healthcare and bioscience industry comprises a uniquely diverse set of resources. San Antonio is home to world-renowned research centers, universities, military medicine and private companies. Our collaborative culture permeates the life science industry in research and service agreements, advice, and even sharing resources, making it easier to do business here.
According to the latest San Antonio Chamber of Commerce Economic Impact Study, San Antonio’s healthcare and bioscience industry contributed over $42B to the economy in 2019 and is responsible for nearly one out of every five jobs in San Antonio. The healthcare and bioscience industry continues to grow with an increase of over 50,000 jobs in the past decade.
Life Science in SA
The backbone of the life science and healthcare industry is our area hospitals. The 7th and 8th largest hospitals in the United States are located in San Antonio, Methodist Hospital and Baptist Medical Center, with a combined total of approximately 2,816 beds. San Antonio has two Level 1 Trauma Centers at University Health System and the San Antonio Military Health System (SAMHS). In total, San Antonio has 4 major hospital systems and numerous independent hospitals. These institutions serve the public and participate in clinical research.
A list of the major clinical institutions can be found here.
San Antonio’s bioscience companies have access to local manufacturers and close proximity to manufacturing in Mexico. The local manufacturing community includes contract manufacturing of: components, cells, tissues, cGMP pharmaceuticals, and complete medical devices. Manufacturers in San Antonio have been supported by the San Antonio Manufacturers Association for over 100 years.
For a list of manufacturers participating in the life sciences, click here.
San Antonio is home to premier research organizations and numerous research centers. The foundation of the non-profit research community is comprised of: Texas Biomedical Research Institute, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UT Health San Antonio), University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), and Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), who have also joined together to form the San Antonio Partnership for Precision Therapeutics (SAPPT). SAPPT has recently published a guide to their work. For information on UTSA’s facilities available to assist companies with their research, click here. UT Health San Antonio maintains a bio-specimen bank and a database of researchers and their research areas. SwRI’s bioscience research program includes: computational biomedicine, biomedical devices and biomechanics, and pharmaceutical development.
The military conducts biomedical research in San Antonio via the 59th Medical Wing, the US Army Institute for Surgical Research (USAISR), and the Navy Medical Research Unit (NAMRU).
Many companies collaborate and conduct their own biomedical research in San Antonio, such as BioBridge Global. For a list of research organizations in San Antonio, click here.
Pre-clinical studies are conducted in San Antonio using a variety of animal models. The Southwest National Primate Research Center at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute houses over 2,500 nonhuman primates including over 1,000 baboons, making it the world’s largest colony of baboons available for internal and contracted biomedical research. The US Army Institute for Surgical Research and the 59th Medical Wing conduct internal and sponsored studies with rodents, rabbits, swine, and ruminants. Bridge PTS specializes in contracted testing services to support wound healing, infection control/biofilm, and surgical method research and regulatory submissions using rabbits, swine, and rodents.
San Antonio has an extensive clinical trial presence with over 1400 clinical studies active in San Antonio in 2019. Our local population includes several important groups, including: Hispanics, diabetics, fatty liver disease and obesity. Non-clinical medtech and pharmaceutical product testing is also conducted in San Antonio at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) and the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA).
For a list of organizations participating and managing clinical studies, click here.
Military Medicine in SA
San Antonio, “Military City USA”, is the home of military medicine. The San Antonio Military Health System (SAMHS) serves over 240K beneficiaries with state-of-the-art medical facilities managed by the 59th Medical Wing (Air Force) and Brooke Army Medical Center. SAMHS represents the largest in-patient and outpatient system in the Department of Defense (DoD). The Center for the Intrepid provides state-of-the-art rehabilitation for amputees, burn victims, and limb salvage patients. In partnership with SAMHS, the Audie Murphy Memorial Veterans Hospital, affiliated with University of Texas Health, provides comprehensive health care to veterans and families. The San Antonio University Health Education Consortium (SAUSHEC) includes training in 49 medical and allied health education programs with over 600 interns, residents and fellows from the Air Force, Army, and Navy. The SAMHS and local DoD partner biomedical research facilities support military medical education and research, and can also be used to support corporate research activities via several types of contract mechanisms and in collaboration with military medical foundations.
San Antonio houses the DoD’s only:
- Level I trauma center
- Burn Association-verified burn center
- Bone Marrow Transplant Unit and Hematology/Oncology Clinic
For more information on how to work with the military to further your organization’s goals and those of military medicine, click here.