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TCM is proud to announce that Governor Martin O'Malley will be the featured speaker at TCM’s Leadership Dinner.  The Governor will talk about Maryland’s knowledge economy, his legislative priorities and what’s in store for technology and biotechnology in 2013.  Our annual Leadership Dinner in Annapolis brings together the region’s technology and life sciences sectors to network and learn about important policy issues.   TCM will also share its legislative priorities for 2013.

We hope you can join us.  Last year we had over 150 executives, TCM’s Board of Directors and 50 members from the Maryland General Assembly in attendance.

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NHLBI Funding and Research Opportunities

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

NIH Guide Notices:

Please note that most links to RFAs, PAs, and Guide Notices will take you to the NIH Web site. RFPs will take you to FedBizOpps. Links to RFPs will not work past their proposal receipt date. Archived versions of RFPs posted on FedBizOpps can be found on the FedBizOpps site using the FedBizOpps search function. Under “Document to Search,” select Archived Documents.

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Venture capital firm SR One has launched “OneStart,” its first business plan competition, in association with Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable and Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst. OneStart is designed to inspire and encourage its participants to become the next generation of European bio- entrepreneurs. The £100,000 winner-takes-all prize will be the largest of its kind in the world. Uniquely, OneStart will actively connect individuals from a range of institutions and backgrounds.

OneStart is open to aspiring life science entrepreneurs age 35 and younger who are studying or working in Europe. The competition will be run in stages and cover four tracks: drug discovery, medical devices, diagnostics and health information technology. The competition will team up those who have developed a technology or idea, such as academics, with individuals who have complementary backgrounds and skills, e.g. business school students, or young professionals from pharma or biotech.

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Emergent BioSolutions Inc., a pharmaceutical company, has initiated the Phase II clinical trial for NuThrax or AV7909, with the dosing of the first subject.

NuThrax, a next generation vaccine being developed as part of Emergent's anthrax franchise, consists of Anthrax Vaccine Adsorbed in combination with a novel immune stimulatory adjuvant, CPG 7909.

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A £50m venture capital fund focusing on early-stage life science and health technology companies has been launched in Scotland.

Rock Spring Ventures said it had already secured commitments worth more than £25m from a range of investors.

Backers include the universities of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

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Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering is collaborating with universities around the country on a project to create robots that work more efficiently with people. The National Science Foundation has funded the four-year, $3.5-million human-robot interaction research project, part of the National Robotics Initiative, a federal effort.   

“In the world of robotics, there are two natural extremes: the completely autonomous robot and the fully technically-operated robot,” says Gregory Hager, chair of the computer science department at the engineering school.

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District-based Acceleprise, a business accelerator program for companies that sell technology or services to other companies or organizations, is expanding in an effort to serve more start-ups and raise its national profile.

Started last spring, the program is the brainchild of managing partner Sean Glass and partners Allen Gannett and Collin Gutman. In addition to a $30,000 investment, participating start-ups spend several months honing business models and products at the Acceleprise office.

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In 1953, Cambridge researchers Watson and Crick published a paper describing the interweaving ‘double helix’ DNA structure – the chemical code for all life.

Now, in the year of that scientific landmark’s 60th Anniversary, Cambridge researchers have published a paper proving that four-stranded ‘quadruple helix’ DNA structures – known as G-quadruplexes – also exist within the human genome. They form in regions of DNA that are rich in the building block guanine, usually abbreviated to ‘G’.

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Baltimore City’s technology incubator, ETC  (Emerging Technology Center), announced today that six companies have been selected to participate in the 2013 AccelerateBaltimore™ program –a 50% increase from the first AccelerateBaltimore™-. The program received over 120 applications from all over the world. The three month accelerator will kick off on February 4, 2013. 

“The quality of the applications and the number of participants was amazing. It made the job of choosing the final participants very difficult,” says Deb Tillett, President of ETC. “We had the help of some professionals from the tech community and it was a challenging but fun process. Congratulations and thanks to all I can’t wait to get started.”

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Companies in Maryland, Virginia and D.C. raised a paltry $94.9 million in venture funding in the last three months of 2012, according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP MoneyTree report, marking one of the shabbiest quarters in years.

The region hasn't seen this weak of a fundraising total since the $89.7 million raised in the first quarter of 2009, according to historical MoneyTree data. Excluding that period, the end of 2012 would have ranked as the worst quarter since the first quarter of 1997.

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Emergent BioSolutions, Inc., recently signed a license agreement for the manufacture and sale of VaxInnate Corporation’s recombinant influenza vaccine.

The deal is considered to be a step in the right direction towards preparing the United States for the event of a major influenza pandemic. The licensing agreement grants Emergent BioSolutions, Inc., the right to manufacture and sell VaxInnate’s pandemic flu vaccine in the United States. VaxInnate, in turn, will receive payments and royalties associated with vaccine’s production and sale.

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Bicoastal venture titan New Enterprise Associates ranked as the most active VC firm in the country last year, according to investment research firm CB Insights.

NEA, which has major offices in Chevy Chase, beat out Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Google Ventures, Andreesen Horowitz and other top VCs, according to the report, which attributes NEA's exuberance to its shiny new $2.6 billion fund. Major NEA deals last year include Sonatype Inc., Desire2Learn, 10Gen and Lithium Technologies.

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Gov. Martin O'Malley released a $37 billion spending plan Wednesday that for the first time in recent years contains no drastic cuts or proposed tax increases.

Amid a stronger economy, O'Malley also proposed to boost the pay for state workers, expand tax credits for some high-tech industries and set aside more money to clean up the Chesapeake Bay.

"These have been challenging years to say the least," O'Malley said.

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Another day, another class of digital health startups. That’s how it feels sometimes, with so many accelerators working with dozens of new companies each year. While there are plenty of “me-too” startups entering crowded markets, accelerators are still managing to find some fresh and interesting gems.

Blueprint Health’s winter program kicks off this week with the addition of Verizon, Humana and Aetna as partners, as TechCrunch reports. It’s also brought on mentors from powerhouses like the Cleveland Clinic, Optum, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Weight Watchers.