With more than 100 biotechnology companies to its name, Worcester is at the center of health-care research and development. The University of Massachusetts is in Worcester, and the area's 15 other universities and colleges provide an unusually large pool of research talent. Craig C. Mello was a UMass professor when he won 2006 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, and some area community colleges offer technical certificates in biotechnology.
Local business support comes from incubators such as the Massachusetts Biomedical Initiative, which offers life science startups cheap laboratory space in three facilities in Worchester's research parks. Worcester-based groups such as the Boynton Angels and the Worcester Polytechnic Institute Venture Forum provide funding opportunities.
NEXT: Oro Valley, Ariz.