The biotechnology industry said that rule poses a threat to startup companies in their industry since it would unnecessarily add costs to their operations at a critical time.


Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) President and CEO Jim Greenwood said earlier this year that the bill is needed to spare startup companies this extra cost at a time when they have little revenue and limited cash resources. He said that could block efforts to find new cures for diseases.

"If compliance costs of additional regulations such as mandatory auditor rotation are substantial, it will have an unnecessary and negative impact on the limited financial resources of micro cap and small cap companies at the forefront of developing new treatments and cures for patients suffering from devastating diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's, diabetes, Parkinson's Disease and HIV/AIDS," he said.

BIO and supporters of the bill argue that while strong auditing standards are important, it's better to leave decisions about external audits to the companies themselves.

The legislation appears likely to pass the House in a near-unanimous vote. It was approved by the House Financial Services Committee in mid-June by a 52-0 vote.