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Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Are you an early stage company with innovative biohealth technology? Have you considered non-dilutive funding to advance your technology? Do you want to know if federal or state non-dilutive funding makes sense for you? Sign up for a free 1:1 advice and feedback session regarding non-dilutive funding applications with BHI’s expert grant strategists. Learn more about funding sources and discuss potential strategies for success. BHI has worked with over 100 companies, helping them secure SBIR/STTR and other federal awards —at twice the national average win rate. 

Click here to schedule a time.

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The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) announced the commencement of the Phase III trial (NCT04611802) of the Novavax investigational COVID-19 vaccine, in a press release issued on Monday, December 28, 2020. The trial will evaluate the effectiveness, immune response, and safety of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate developed by Novavax, Inc., of Gaithersburg, Maryland, called NVX-CoV2373, and is estimated to complete data collection by March 31, 2021.

 

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RICHMOND, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Governor Northam and the Virginia Biotechnology Association announced today that GO Virginia has approved a competitive grant request to help fund Virginia Bio-Connect, a $3.2 million Statewide industry cluster scale up initiative. The project, directed by the Virginia Biotechnology Association, is a multi-regional collaboration designed to increase connectivity and awareness of the existing programs, resources, and communities in the Commonwealth that support the life sciences industry.

 

Supernus Pharmaceuticals, Inc Logo

ROCKVILLE, Md., Dec. 22, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Supernus Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUPN), a pharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing products for the treatment of central nervous system diseases, today announced positive topline results from a Phase III study of SPN-812 in adults (P306) for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

At a daily dose of up to 600mg, the trial met the primary endpoint with robust statistical significance (p=0.0040) compared to placebo in improving the symptoms of ADHD from baseline to end of study as measured by ADHD Investigator Symptom Rating Scale (AISRS). In addition to meeting the primary efficacy endpoint, the Phase III study met the key secondary efficacy endpoint with statistical significance (p=0.0023) in the change from baseline of the Clinical Global Impression – Severity of Illness (CGI-S) Scale at week 6. The active dose was well tolerated.

SPN-812 is under review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of ADHD in pediatric patients 6 to 17 years of age. As announced in November, 2020, the FDA issued a Complete Response Letter (CRL) regarding the New Drug Application (NDA) for SPN-812 for the treatment of ADHD in pediatric patients to indicate that the review cycle for the application was complete and that the application is not ready for approval in its present form. The Company will be meeting with the FDA in January 2021 to discuss the CRL. Assuming approval for pediatrics, the Company plans to submit a supplemental NDA (sNDA) to the FDA for SPN-812 in adults in the second half of 2021.

 

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Maryland is home to one of the largest life science clusters in the United States with more than 500 biotech companies. In addition to several state-of-the-art labs, Maryland is home to the NIH in Bethesda. Research opportunities, as well as BS and MS degree programs, are offered at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore and the University of Maryland in College Park. Montgomery College in Germantown offers the AAS degree and certificate programs in biotech. World-class training by companies like BioTrac and Biotech Primer attracts an international audience of professionals.

Image: https://www.americangene.com

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ROCKVILLE, Md., Dec. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- 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 that it has entered into an agreement to sell a portion of the royalty rights due to REGENXBIO from Novartis Gene Therapies from the net sales of Zolgensma® to entities managed by Healthcare Royalty Management, LLC (HCR) for a gross purchase price of $200 million. This transaction provides immediate, non-dilutive capital to REGENXBIO for continued innovation in the development of potential breakthrough gene therapies for patients and completion of its internal manufacturing capabilities.

 

Judy Costello

BHI’s Managing Director, Economic Development, Judy Costello was recognized by voters in the 1st Annual BioBuzz awards this past week as the top Community Builder in the BioHealth Capital Region.  This award honors someone in the region who has gone above and beyond their responsibilities to make an impact on the ecosystem by being a thoughtful community builder who fosters intentional collaborations and meaningful contributions of their time, energy, and expertise to support the biohealth community. This person is a servant leader who sees beyond their job description or the balance sheet and strives to create a rising tide for all across the BioHealth Capital Region so that we can collectively make a greater impact on public health and patients around the world.

BIoTalk Logo

The BioTalk with Rich Bedis Podcast created by the BHI President & CEO and Andy Eckert was awarded the 1st Annual BioBuzz Media Award. This award honors a media campaign that most aligns with our mission; ‘to create exceptional experiences that better connect people and employers and foster a stronger regional ecosystem.’ At its core, it recognizes the media campaigns or platforms that have successfully engaged, informed, and connected people and reflect favorably on the BHCR. Eligible nominations may include social media, podcasts, video series, blog series, event or webinar series, and other advertising, marketing, and public relations campaigns.

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SILVER SPRING, Md. and RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., Dec. 28, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Therapeutics Corporation (Nasdaq: UTHR) announced today an agreement to acquire a Rare Pediatric Disease Priority Review Voucher (PRV), which it plans to use with a forthcoming New Drug Application (NDA) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The PRV entitles the holder to designate an NDA for priority review and provides for an expedited eight-month review, instead of the standard twelve-month review period. Following the close of the transaction, United Therapeutics intends to apply the PRV to its NDA for Tyvaso DPI, expected in the first half of 2021.

 

united therapeutics corporation logo

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the second-ever genetically modified subtype of pig for human consumption. But there are no plans to raise this pig for meat or other foodstuffs—the use case is actually much, much cooler.

Get unlimited access to the weird world of Pop Mech. LET'S GET WEIRD. By adjusting the pig’s genes so it doesn’t produce a particular sugar called galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose (alpha-gal), scientists can make medicines that are safe for a group of people who suffer from a peculiar, little-understood allergy. And while this certification isn’t planned for meat, that could be next.

Image: TIM MACPHERSON

Cursor and Biotech Showcase™ Investor conference Co produced by Demy Colton and EBD Group

We are now only a few weeks out from Biotech Showcase and excited to launch the Spotlight Sessions on our on-demand hub on partneringONE.

We have also posted several Digital Medicine and Medtech Showcase sessions this week. Sponsor Insight content, on-demand public and private company presentations as well as Investor strategy videos are available for you to watch on demand.

Be sure to look at the sessions we have planned for the weeks of January 5 and 11.

James Crowe AND Rich Bendis

BioTalk Media Award-Winning Podcast BioTalk Welcomes Dr. James Crowe, Director, Vanderbilt Vaccine Center, Professor, Pediatrics and Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, Ann Scott Carell Chair and Founder of ID Biologics.

Listen now on Apple http://apple.co/34u0kz6, Google http://bit.ly/38jfE2I, Spotify http://spoti.fi/3pddVme, and TuneIn http://bit.ly/37D2M8z.

His laboratory has a broad portfolio of work in the area of viral immunology and antibody sciences, with the goal to discover mechanisms of immunity important to developing new therapeutics and vaccines.

Mark pictures.. before and after the weightloss

I’ve been reluctant to write this blog post because historically I don’t like talking about weight. But I’ve been promising to publish how I lost 65 pounds in the past 18 months without any fad diets or gimmicks to try and be helpful to others. I have a plan,

I know it works and for the friends and family who have followed what I’ve done they’ve equally lost a lot of weight.

 

Washington Memorial from the Steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

More than 50 local leaders have mapped out an economic recovery strategy for the Washington area that they say would leave it more unified, resilient and prosperous than before the novel coronavirus upended the region.

Connected DMV — a group representing the local academic, nonprofit, public and private sectors — initially came together in March 2019 to drive economic growth in the D.C. area. When the pandemic struck a year later, the group pivoted to creating what it calls a “strategic renewal” task force, which issued a report this month with 12 initiatives to remedy the region’s social and economic challenges.

 

REGENXBIO Logo

ROCKVILLE, Md., Dec. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- 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 that it has entered into an agreement to sell a portion of the royalty rights due to REGENXBIO from Novartis Gene Therapies from the net sales of Zolgensma® to entities managed by Healthcare Royalty Management, LLC (HCR) for a gross purchase price of $200 million. This transaction provides immediate, non-dilutive capital to REGENXBIO for continued innovation in the development of potential breakthrough gene therapies for patients and completion of its internal manufacturing capabilities.

 

novavax logo

GAITHERSBURG, Md., Dec. 28, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Novavax, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVAX), a late-stage biotechnology company developing next-generation vaccines for serious infectious diseases, today announced initiation of PREVENT-19, its pivotal Phase 3 study in the United States and Mexico to evaluate the efficacy, safety and immunogenicity of NVX-CoV2373, the Company’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The trial builds on research from Phase 1/2 studies demonstrating that the vaccine provoked a robust immune response, generated highly neutralizing antibodies against the virus and was generally well-tolerated.

 

Sarah Kreikemeier tunes an optical assembly at IonQ's offices.

(Photo courtesy IonQ/Erin Scott)

Advances in technology that shape the future come in different forms. Some help us realize possibilities of systems that already exist. Others allow us to reframe what’s possible.

Take computing, for instance. Advances in transistors over time have produced more powerful processors that can fit into ever smaller and more affordable packages. This has made it possible to do computing tasks more efficiently and conveniently, but in the end these improvements apply the same principles of classical computing that were used when there were room-sized mainframes.

Image: Sarah Kreikemeier tunes an optical assembly at IonQ's offices. (Photo courtesy IonQ/Erin Scott)

united therapeutics corporation logo

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the second-ever genetically modified subtype of pig for human consumption. But there are no plans to raise this pig for meat or other foodstuffs—the use case is actually much, much cooler.

Get unlimited access to the weird world of Pop Mech. LET'S GET WEIRD. By adjusting the pig’s genes so it doesn’t produce a particular sugar called galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose (alpha-gal), scientists can make medicines that are safe for a group of people who suffer from a peculiar, little-understood allergy. And while this certification isn’t planned for meat, that could be next.

Image: TIM MACPHERSON

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This has certainly been a year unlike any other for BioHealth Capital Region (BHCR) life science companies of all sizes and kinds. Just a few months into 2020, the coronavirus pandemic swept the region, seriously disrupting, albeit temporarily, the best-laid plans of aspiring founders, entrepreneurs, emerging startups, pre-clinical and more established, larger biohealth organizations in Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Maryland. 

Image: https://biobuzz.io

Covid 19 Vaccine

A biotechnology company whose research and intellectual property has helped to create the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine has raised new investment from venture capitalists.

Oxford-based Vaccitech has agreed the funds – understood to be as much as £10million – from Future Planet Capital which also invests in health, climate change and education projects.

 

United Therapeutics Logo

SILVER SPRING, Md. and RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., Dec. 28, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Therapeutics Corporation (Nasdaq: UTHR) announced today an agreement to acquire a Rare Pediatric Disease Priority Review Voucher (PRV), which it plans to use with a forthcoming New Drug Application (NDA) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The PRV entitles the holder to designate an NDA for priority review and provides for an expedited eight-month review, instead of the standard twelve-month review period. Following the close of the transaction, United Therapeutics intends to apply the PRV to its NDA for Tyvaso DPI, expected in the first half of 2021.

 

Gates Notes Cover Image from Linkedin

The latest on the innovations that will let us go back to normal. This has been a devastating year. More than 1.6 million people have died in the COVID-19 pandemic, with more than 75 million cases and tens of trillions of dollars in economic damages. Millions of people are out of work and struggling to pay their bills, and more than a billion children are missing out on crucial time in school. In the U.S., this year also saw the horrifying killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, ruinous wildfires, and a presidential election unlike any other in modern times.

 

Husband-wife co-founders Matthew and Marnel Goins run Puzzle Huddle, which saw increased demand amid stay-at-home orders, school closures and the refocus on supporting Black-owned businesses.
Puzzle Huddle

It’s tempting to look forward to the new year — especially after such an abysmal 2020 for so many.

But before we do, let’s not forget all that happened in the region’s innovation ecosystem this year. It wasn’t all bad.

Here, we recap some of the top trends, events and topics over the last 12 months.

Image: Husband-wife co-founders Matthew and Marnel Goins run Puzzle Huddle, which saw increased demand amid stay-at-home orders, school closures and the refocus on supporting Black-owned businesses. Puzzle Huddle

James Crowe AND Rich Bendis

BioTalk Media Award-Winning Podcast BioTalk Welcomes Dr. James Crowe, Director, Vanderbilt Vaccine Center, Professor, Pediatrics and Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, Ann Scott Carell Chair and Founder of ID Biologics.

Listen now on Apple http://apple.co/34u0kz6, Google http://bit.ly/38jfE2I, Spotify http://spoti.fi/3pddVme, and TuneIn http://bit.ly/37D2M8z.

His laboratory has a broad portfolio of work in the area of viral immunology and antibody sciences, with the goal to discover mechanisms of immunity important to developing new therapeutics and vaccines.

Judy Costello

BHI’s Managing Director, Economic Development, Judy Costello was recognized by voters in the 1st Annual BioBuzz awards this past week as the top Community Builder in the BioHealth Capital Region.  This award honors someone in the region who has gone above and beyond their responsibilities to make an impact on the ecosystem by being a thoughtful community builder who fosters intentional collaborations and meaningful contributions of their time, energy, and expertise to support the biohealth community. This person is a servant leader who sees beyond their job description or the balance sheet and strives to create a rising tide for all across the BioHealth Capital Region so that we can collectively make a greater impact on public health and patients around the world.

BIoTalk Logo

The BioTalk with Rich Bedis Podcast created by the BHI President & CEO and Andy Eckert was awarded the 1st Annual BioBuzz Media Award. This award honors a media campaign that most aligns with our mission; ‘to create exceptional experiences that better connect people and employers and foster a stronger regional ecosystem.’ At its core, it recognizes the media campaigns or platforms that have successfully engaged, informed, and connected people and reflect favorably on the BHCR. Eligible nominations may include social media, podcasts, video series, blog series, event or webinar series, and other advertising, marketing, and public relations campaigns.

qiagen logo

Qiagen North American Holdings has announced plans to renovate and expand its U.S. headquarters and R&D and manufacturing facility in Montgomery County, Md.

More specifically, Qiagen plans to renovate its 146,000-square-foot facility at 19300 Germantown Road in Germantown, Md., to accommodate expanded production of testing products for COVID-19 and other diseases, as well as lease additional space in the area.

Image: Image by DarkoStojanovic via Pixabay.com

Brian Darmody

“5 Questions With…” is a weekly BioBuzz series where we reach out to interesting people in the BioHealth Capital Region to share a little about themselves, their work, and maybe something completely unrelated. This edition features 5 Questions with Brian Darmody, CEO, Association of University Research Parks (AURP).

Brian Darmody is CEO of AURP, a global nonprofit representing research parks and innovation districts sponsored by universities, federal labs, communities, hospitals, and other institutions in the US and 12 other countries.

 

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ROCKVILLE, MD, Dec. 18, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --  

MacroGenics, Inc. (NASDAQ: MGNX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative monoclonal antibody-based therapeutics for the treatment of cancer, announced today a research collaboration and global license agreement to develop a preclinical bispecific molecule with Janssen Biotech, Inc. The research collaboration will incorporate MacroGenics' proprietary DART® platform to enable simultaneous targeting of two undisclosed targets in a therapeutic area outside oncology.

 

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Sykesville, MD, and Fairfax, VA, December 21, 2020 - Noble Life Sciences (NLS), a preclinical contract research organization located in Sykesville, MD, has signed a Collaboration Agreement with George Mason University (Mason) to access the National Center for Biodefense and Infectious Diseases (NCBID) BSL-3 facility located within their Biomedical Research Laboratory at Mason’s Science and Technology Campus in Manassas. The Agreement enables NLS to perform federal and non-federally funded BSL-3 animal model projects to support the development of new antiviral and antibacterial agents against infectious and resistant pathogens.    

Sisu Global Logo

The hemafuse set contains a big syringe, which acts as the collection barrel, a nozzle connected to a filter on the syringe pulls the blood in while sieving the clots.

With a push, the blood is redirected through another tube, connected to the same syringe and operated by a stopcock, to the blood bag for transfusion back to the patient.

Image: Dr Gerald Osei-Owusu with the hemafuse medical device - https://dailyguidenetwork.com