BioHealth Innovation
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April 2, 2019


Five Innovative BioHealth Companies Selected to Present Technologies at 4th Annual BioHealth Capital Region Crab Trap Competition

– Winner to be announced during 2019 BioHealth Capital Region Forum –

Five innovative companies focused on the diagnosis or treatment of Multiple Sclerosis, TBI, Autism, Spinal misalignment, and Metastatic Cancer will present their innovative technologies to a panel of judges and industry leaders on April 9th during the 2019 BioHealth Capital Region Forum, at the AstraZeneca campus in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Founded by BioHealth Innovation, Inc. (BHI) and AstraZeneca in 2016, the annual Crab Trap Competition highlights biohealth companies with strong commercial potential. The five finalists were selected from a competitive field of almost fifty entries. The 4th Annual Crab Trap Competition is sponsored by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. The grand prize this year is $10,000.

In 2016, the initial prize was awarded to Sonavex, a commercial stage Johns Hopkins spin-out focused on Empowered Patient Care. The company’s first technology is a dual-component system comprising an FDA-cleared bioabsorbable implant (EchoMark) and an FDA-cleared custom automated ultrasound (EchoSure) to detect post-operative vascular complications prior to catastrophic surgical failures that represent a $3B annual market and cost hospitals up to $577,000 per instance. The company closed a $4.5M Series A in 2018, recently secured a $3M NIH grant and is currently raising its Series B. In 2017, the winner was another Johns Hopkins (JH*) spinout, LifeSprout, developer of a suite of products to address soft tissue needs in the aesthetic and reconstructive markets. Last year’s winner, Galen Robotics, is developing, in partnership with JHU, a surgical robot to make minimally invasive surgeries faster, safer and more precise. The company plans a 510k submission next year, is raising Series A financing, and will be relocating the HQ team in CA to join their engineering experts in Baltimore.

The 2019 BioHealth Capital Region Crab Trap Finalists presenting at the forum at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 9th, are:

BeCareLink - Predictive Artificial Intelligence Digital Therapeutic Mobile Platform for Multiple Sclerosis and other neurological conditions.

BRAINBox Solutions - Multi-Modality capability to diagnose and provide prognostic information for mild Traumatic Brain Injury.

Floreo Inc. - Leveraging the power of virtual reality to develop a subscription platform that delivers immersive, fun, and affordable lessons for children and adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Spine Align - Spine Align is a medical device company developing technologies that enable spine surgeons to make real-time intraoperative measurements of spinal alignment.

Unleash Immuno Oncolytics - Developing armed, oncolytic viruses to treat metastatic cancers. Our platform combines tissue-specific control of both viral replication and the expression of human cytokines to provide a dual punch in cancer cells.

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Noble Life Sciences’ CEO Srujana Cherukuri, Ph.D. joins Rich Bendis for a New Episode of BioTalk!

A very interesting episode of BioTalk where Srujana Cherukuri, Ph.D. discusses her path from Intern to CEO and where the company is headed next

Before becoming CEO, Dr. Cherukuri served in multiple roles at Noble Life Sciences including Chief Operations Officer, Chief Scientific Officer, Vice President of Product Development and Operations, and Director of Scientific Affairs.  In her previous roles at Noble, Dr. Cherukuri was instrumental in optimizing new preclinical animal models and streamlining operations to achieve operational efficiency.  In addition, Dr. Cherukuri led the successful consolidation of Noble operations at the Spring Valley Laboratories site. Prior to joining Noble, Dr. Cherukuri held positions at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, National Cancer Institute and University of Maryland where she led projects focused on understanding the basic biology and mechanistic actions in cancer cells. Dr. Cherukuri has expertise in diverse areas of Biology and has 12+ years of research experience in the areas of oncology and stem cell biology.  Dr. Cherukuri completed her PhD in biology at Cleveland State University.

Listen now on iTunesGoogle Play, and TuneIn

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Job Opportunity: BHI ASSOCIATE

BioHealth Innovation, Inc. (BHI), is a Montgomery County innovation intermediary which translates market-relevant research into commercial success by bringing together management, funding, and markets. BHI is seeking an early stage life sciences professional to join the BHI team and work within an entrepreneurial environment.


Reporting to Senior Analyst, the Associate will assist in the evaluation of early-stage technologies and will provide strategic planning and operational support for start-up companies. The Associate will work directly with BHI EIRs, analysts, and company management in this endeavor. The Associate supports the BHI organization by strategically managing and providing information, intelligence and insights that drive critical business decisions. The Associate will participate in appropriate networking events within the region to represent the BHI mission.

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Successful Marketing and PR Strategies for Your Startup

Successful Marketing and PR Strategies for Your Startup

  • PR and Marketing – What’s the difference?
  • How do you establish your brand?
  • Are there tips for marketing on a tight budget?
  • How do we become known as an Employer of Choice?
  • How can I become known as a Thought Leader in my field?
  • How do we get press coverage for our products/service/technology?
  • What should we budget for our website, social media, PR activities?


  • Sasha Whitaker - American Gene Technologies
  • Warren Ellis - Montgomery County Economic Dev. Corp.
  • Jennifer Owers and Rachel Wojnilower – Clark Concepts


  • 8:15 a.m. - Networking and Coffee
  • 8:30 a.m. - Discussion with Q&A (in person/by videoconference)
  • 9:45 a.m. - One-on-One Meetings with Experts*

 Pre-Registration REQUIRED: RSVP by NOON, 4/3 at

No charge to attend

More Details »

*In person attendance during the discussion is required to participate in 1:1 meeting with experts.

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AstraZeneca and Daiichi Sankyo Sign $6.9 Billion Deal for a Single Cancer Drug | BioSpace

AstraZeneca signed a global development and commercialization deal with Daiichi Sankyo for trastuzumab deruxtecan (DS-8201), an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC).

An ADC is a chemotherapy agent attached by a molecular linker to an antibody focused on a specific cancer marker. This way, the antibody delivers the toxic chemical directly to the tumors, minimizing the effects of the chemotherapy on healthy cells.

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Innovators – Deadline Extended to April 9th for $250K Pediatric Device Competition

Pediatric orthopedic and spine medical device innovators –good news---the deadline has been extended until Tues., April 9 at midnight EST to apply for the NCC-PDI “Make Your Medical Device Pitch for Kids!” competition with $250K in awards.

This is your chance to capture up to $50,000 in funding and gain access to the first-ever NCC-PDI “Pediatric Device Innovator Accelerator Program” led by MedTech Innovator.

Innovators earning a spot at this one-of-a-kind pediatric accelerator will receive mentorship and support from NCC-PDI’s network of medtech executives, investors, specialty pediatricians and FDA regulatory and business consultants. All finalists will be offered pitch perfect coaching by Entrepreneurs-In-Residence at BioHealth Innovation.

The competition will be held April 30, 2019 at the University of Maryland, College Park. Be part of it!

Jump start your journey to commercialization. The first step is applying here before the April 9, 2019 midnight EST deadline.

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BrainScope Completes Large-Scale Clinical Studies of Concussion in Universities, High Schools and Concussion Clinics — BrainScope

BrainScope®, a medical neuro-technology company focused on concussion and mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) assessment, announced today that it had concluded both algorithm development and clinical validation studies in adolescent and young adult populations using its objective, EEG-based technology. The purpose of the studies was to create and validate an objective, personalized capability for assessment of concussion and readiness to return to activities in males and females between the ages of 13-25. The studies conducted from 2015 through 2019 at 52 clinical sites included nearly 1,700 patients and healthy controls, with over 4,000 evaluations. Funding sources for the studies included a $9.9 million research contract from the U.S. Department of Defense, award funding from the NFL-GE Head Health Challenge (in which BrainScope was a two-time awardee), and BrainScope private funding.

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Creatv MicroTech’s Liquid Cell Biopsy and CAML cancer biomarker featured at AACR 2019 - Press Release

Creatv MicroTech, detecting and diagnosing cancer when it matters most, will present its latest findings on cancer diagnosis and treatment at the Annual American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Meeting at Atlanta, Georgia, March 29 – April 3, 2019. Two posters will showcase the clinical utility of cancer-associated macrophage-like cells (CAMLs) biomarker.

Abstract No. 437 / 9: “Combining circulating stromal cells with cell free DNA for increased sensitivity in profiling oncogenic mutations and indicates highly aggressive non-small-cell lung cancer,” investigating the clinical potential of Circulogene’s Patient Mutation Load (PML) analysis from matched cfDNA, CAMLs, and tumor tissue to evaluate progression free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) in non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

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Dr. Kurt Newman @ Children's National Health System - Innovations in Pediatrics by The #PopHealth Show

Join us today as we speak with Dr. Kurt Newman from Children's National Health System about innovations in pediatrics.

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LRIG Metro DC Spring Show

April 4, 2019 3pm-6:30pmUniv. Shady Grove Convention Center 9630 Gudelsky Drive, Rockville, Maryland 20850

Welcome to the Spring 2019 Meeting of the Metro DC Chapter of the Laboratory Research Interest Group! Although we have deep roots in Laboratory Automation, we also invite you to learn about other research technologies, new tools, and projects that are available and ongoing in the Capitol Bioscience hub!

This years theme is Emerging Technologies at the Forefront of Bioscience, with emphasis on 3D Cell Printing, Organoids, Tissue-On-Chip models, and Artificial Intelligence in Bioscience.

Attendance is free with your Eventbrite reservation, and we encourage you to register early.

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AstraZeneca to support creation of Life Sciences Innovation Park in China

AstraZeneca is spearheading the creation of a new life sciences park, in Wuxi, China, that aims to nurture innovation by bringing together local and international companies, government, and medical and academic institutions to help create a world-class healthcare innovation ecosystem.

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Initial Results from Autolus Therapeutics’ ALLCAR19 Phase 1/2 Trial in Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Presented at the AACR Annual Meeting | Autolus Therapeutics plc

Autolus Therapeutics plc (Nasdaq: AUTL), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing next-generation programmed T cell therapies for the treatment of cancer, announced that Claire Roddie MB, PhD, FRCPath, honorary senior lecturer, Cancer Institute, University College London (UCL), presented today initial data from the ongoing Phase 1/2 ALLCAR19 trial of AUTO1 in adult acute lymphoblastic B cell leukemia (ALL) as a late-breaking poster presentation at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia.

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FDA CBER director Peter Marks on developing rare disease gene therapies - Business Insider

These are boom times for gene therapy, an innovative type of medicine that works to treat disease at the genetic level to offer a longer-lasting treatment and potentially even a cure.

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Useful Stats: Sources of funds for R&D at colleges and universities, by state | SSTI

Outside of the private sector, colleges and universities perform the vast majority of R&D in the United States – but where do these funds come from? An SSTI analysis of data from the National Science Foundation’s National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NSF NCSES) finds that, across the country, the federal government was the source of more than half (53.5 percent) of all R&D performed at colleges and universities in 2017. Institutional funds (25.1 percent), nonprofit organizations (6.8 percent), businesses (5.9 percent), state and local governments (5.6 percent), and other sources (3.0 percent) comprised the remaining sources of higher education R&D funding. The interactive chart below shows the breakdown of funding sources for research and development at colleges and universities for each state.

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The Region's Leaders are Talking About the Capital CoLAB

Last week, the Greater Washington Partnership (the Partnership) and Business Roundtable (BRT) held an event showcasing the Capital CoLAB (Collaborative of Leaders in Academia and Business). The Capital CoLAB is an action-oriented partnership of university and business leaders across the Capital Region, from Baltimore to Richmond, who have come together to position the region as a leading global hub for innovation.

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Thermo Fisher to buy gene therapy contract manufacturer Brammer Bio for $1.7B - MedCity News

A company that makes products for science researchers has bought one of the largest contract manufacturers of viral vectors for gene therapy.

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2019 NCI and FNL Technology Showcase - Keynote Speaker: BHI's Rich Bendis

We are excited to announce that Rich Bendis of BioHealth Innovation will be the keynote speaker at the 2019 Technology Showcase. Now in its third year, the Technology Showcase promises to be a "must attend" event for biotech stakeholders in Maryland/DC/VA region. Check out the event page to learn more about our keynote speaker and some of the great panel sessions that we have planned.

Make sure to reserve time on your calendar for the afternoon of Wednesday, June 12.

The 2019 Technology Showcase is a half-day event that will showcase technologies being developed at the NCI and the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNLCR) to encourage startup company formation, technology licensing and collaborations. Innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and business development professionals should attend.

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