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Just the One, Really

Women only make up a small percentage of executives at San Diego-based biotechs, Stat News reports.

A new report from the UK-based recruitment firm Liftstream has found that only 2 percent of biotech companies in San Diego have a female CEO, as compared the US average of 7 percent to 9 percent. Indeed, Stat News notes that that boils down to one female CEO in San Diego: Helen Torley of Halozyme.

"It's kind of crazy, but it's true — I couldn't believe it when I found out," Magda Marquet, founder of the contract research organization Althea Technologies and a San Diego life sciences investor, tells Stat News.

Stat News notes that a number of factors are likely at play. For instance, it notes that most biotechs in the area are startups and the venture capitalists that fund such efforts are themselves predominantly male. In addition early-stage companies are generally small and are under less pressure to hire female executives.

Regulus Therapeutics' Mary Glanville says that her firm has tried to recruit women to its board, but that it has been difficult, as there appear to be more men with the proper backgrounds who are willing to sit on boards.

Marquet adds that the issue may also be generational and that as time goes on, more women might be on biotech management teams.

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