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Emergent BioSolutions Inc. (EBS) today announced approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the Prior Approval Supplement (PAS) submitted by the company for its oral cholera vaccine, Vaxchora® (Cholera Vaccine, Live, Oral). The PAS supports the change in storage conditions of the vaccine from frozen to refrigerated at 2-8°C and the transfer of bulk drug substance manufacturing from Emergent’s product development facility in San Diego to its manufacturing facility in Bern, Switzerland. The PAS also covers changes in labeling regarding these developments. The company’s oral cholera vaccine is the only FDA-licensed vaccine for the prevention of cholera caused by Vibrio cholerae serogroup O1, a potentially serious intestinal disease.

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The great American political divide shows no sign of ending as the United States lurches toward the 2020 presidential election. However, one of the few areas where the parties have joined together in recent years has been where NIH funding is concerned.

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Emergent BioSolutions Inc. (NYSE: EBS) today announced a contract award by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) valued at approximately $535 million over 10 years for the continued supply of Vaccinia Immune Globulin Intravenous (VIGIV) into the U.S. Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) in support of smallpox preparedness.

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REGENXBIO Inc. (Nasdaq: RGNX), a leading clinical-stage biotechnology company seeking to improve lives through the curative potential of gene therapy based on its proprietary NAV® Technology Platform, today announced the first U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of a gene therapy that leverages REGENXBIO's proprietary NAV Technology Platform, Novartis AG's ZOLGENSMA® (onasemnogene abeparvovec-xioi; AVXS-101). ZOLGENSMA was approved by the FDA as a one-time infusion for pediatric patients with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) who are less than two years of age.

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Today, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) released the 2019 Emerging Therapeutic Company Trend Report, highlighting ten years (2009-2018) of biotechnology funding and deal making across five areas: venture capital, Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), follow-on public offerings, licensing, and acquisitions. The report also contains a 2019 snapshot of the industry’s clinical pipeline to highlight the significant contribution of emerging companies.

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For aspiring entrepreneurs, the thought of building a company from scratch can be daunting. What if no one wants to buy what you're selling? Where will the money come from to grow the business? And what will happen if you fail?

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June 12, 2019! 

Register now for the 3rd annual Technology Showcase! The 2019 Technology Showcase will again highlight technologies being developed at the NCI and Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNLCR) to encourage technology licensing and collaborations, startup company formation and the translation of NCI discoveries into solutions to benefit patients.

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QIAGEN (NYSE: QGEN; Frankfurt Prime Standard: QIA) today announced the immediate launch of its therascreen® PIK3CA RGQ PCR Kit (therascreen PIK3CA Kit) after it received U.S. regulatory approval as a companion diagnostic to aid in identifying breast cancer patients eligible for treatment with PIQRAY (alpelisib), a newly approved therapy developed and marketed by Novartis.

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Regenxbio (RGNX) announced that a gene therapy developed based on its technology was approved by the FDA. This gene therapy product is known as Zolgensma, which Novartis (NVS) now owns after acquiring AveXis for $8.7 billion back in 2018. While Novartis does own Zolgensma, it will have to pay royalties to Regenxbio on net sales for it. That means Regenxbio can start earning revenue for one of its very first products. The company is in good shape because it has many other gene therapy programs in its pipeline. The most notable one would be RGX-314, which is being developed to treat patients with wet age-related macular degeneration.

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Funding and Research Opportunities

The following funding opportunity announcements from the NHLBI or other components of the National Institutes of Health, might be of interest:

 

Notices

Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Maximizing the Scientific Value of Existing Biospecimen Collections: Scientific Opportunities for Exploratory Research (R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

(NOT-OD-19-100)National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Secondary Analyses of Existing Datasets of Tobacco Use and Health (R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

(NOT-OD-19-104)National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Notice of Correction to Award Budget for RFA-HL-19-024 "Short-Term Research Education Program to Increase Diversity in Health-Related Research (R25 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)"

(NOT-HL-19-698) National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Notice of Change to Key Dates in RFA-RM-19-005 " NIH Directors Pioneer Award Program (DP1 Clinical Trial Optional)"

(NOT-RM-19-007) Office of Strategic Coordination (Common Fund)

 

Program Announcements

Lasker Clinical Research Scholars Program (Si2/R00 Clinical Trial Optional)

(PAR-19-262) National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute