BioHealth Innovation
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May 7, 2019


Laurie Strongin, Founder and CEO, Hope for Henry Foundation, Joins Rich Bendis for a Special BioTalk

Recorded at the National Capital Consortium for Pediatric Device Innovation Competition in College Park in front of a live audience!

Laurie Strongin is Founder and CEO of the Washington, DC-based Hope for Henry Foundation which is reinventing the pediatric patient experience in hospitals around the country. Laurie’s work with Hope for Henry and the memoir she published, “Saving Henry,” have placed her at the forefront of supporting the rights of patients and their families and the responsible use of new medical technologies. Laurie’s advocacy has led her to service on the nation’s preeminent science policy and bioethics panels. Her activism has produced op-eds in national newspapers; appearances on television and radio; collaborations with Congressional leadership; and recognition from the White House. An in-demand inspirational speaker, Laurie has been featured as a People magazine “Heroes Among Us” and was the subject of profiles in the USA Today and the Washington Post and on Good Morning America. Laurie serves on the board of directors of the National Marrow Donor Program/Be the Match; on the Advisory Committee to Disney’s “Team of Heroes,” and on the Advisory Committee of the Association of Child Life Professionals. Learn more at

Listen now on Google Play, iTunes,, TuneIn

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Inside Aperiomics, the biotech company hoping to solve medical mysteries

The 3rd hour of TODAY looks at the Virginia-based biotech company Aperiomics, which says it has technology that could shake up health care and find answers for the millions of people living with chronic and undetected illnesses.

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Five winners to receive share of $250K NCC-PDI grant funding and access to unique pediatric device accelerator program

The National Capital Consortium for Pediatric Device Innovation (NCC-PDI) announced five winners of its "Make Your Medical Device Pitch for Kids!" competition who will each receive $50,000 in grant funding and access to the consortium's first-of-its-kind "Pediatric Device Innovator Accelerator Program" led by MedTech Innovator. A panel of expert judges from business, healthcare, regulatory and legal sectors selected the winners based on the clinical significance and commercial feasibility of their medical devices for children. The competition focused solely on advancing care in pediatric orthopedics and spine, a sector that the FDA identified as an emerging underserved specialty which lacks innovation.

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University of Vermont Health Network Ventures and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati Invest in BioFactura – BioFactura

The University of Vermont Health Network Ventures and legal firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati recently invested in BioFactura’s $6M Series B Financing Round.

“With the commitment from the UVM fund and WSGR, BioFactura is now securing value-added institutional investors who bring significant financial and business resources to bear as we advance our biopharmaceutical products to the clinic,” said Darryl Sampey, BioFactura’s President and CEO.

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SoPE National Capital Chapter: The Titanic Effect: Successfully Navigating the Uncertainties that Sink Most Startups

Wed, May 8, 2019, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM EDT

Inova Center for Personal Health, 8100 Innovation Park Drive, Conference Center, Fairfax, VA 22031

The Titanic represents to many of us the iconic tale of what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. The tragedy is embodied in that instant when The Ship struck The Iceberg, killing over 1,500 passengers and crew—and the hubris of thinking we can build something too big to fail. But while the iceberg may have represented the killing blow, what many do not realize is that the demise of the Titanic was in fact a result of a series of small decisions and missteps across a number of dimensions.

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GlycoMimetics Aiming At Tough Targets

Startups may spring from pure academics or from a healthy and heterogenous mixture of science, business experience, and inspired thinking. Rachel King, CEO of GlycoMimetics, and others brought experience to the company. Her cofounder, Dr. John Magnani, brought original science, and an expert team soon joined in response to the inspiration created by the company’s concept. The germ idea was to make a formerly “undruggable” set of disease targets druggable. Deep, careful studies of molecular structures were required, followed by rational drug design to achieve the goal of small molecule therapy mimicking natural carbohydrates critical to the “glycosylation” of cellular proteins.

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Precigen Opens Gene and Cell Therapy Manufacturing Facility in Germantown, Maryland

Precigen, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Intrexon Corporation (NASDAQ: XON) and a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company specializing in the development of innovative gene and cellular therapies to improve the lives of patients, today announced the official opening of its new manufacturing facility. Precigen commenced the build-out of the nearly 5,000 square foot manufacturing facility in 2018 to support gene therapy manufacturing. The good manufacturing practices (GMP) facility was designed with agility and control in mind, focusing on rapid manufacturing and the ability to scale production appropriately to meet early stage clinical trial needs.

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LifeSprout is moving into Port Covington manufacturing space - Baltimore

LifeSprout, makers of synthetic tissues for aesthetic and reconstructive medicine, is moving from Johns Hopkins‘ East Baltimore innovation hub into a manufacturing accelerator for medical device companies in South Baltimore’s Port Covington.

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This injectable gel could one day rebuild muscle, skin, and fat | Science | AAAS

Car crashes, battle wounds, and surgeries can leave people with gaping holes in soft tissue that are often too large for their bodies to repair. Now, researchers have developed a nanofiber-reinforced injectable gel that can rebuild missing muscle and connective tissues by serving as a scaffold and recruiting the body’s wound-healing cells. So far, the team has tested the material only in rats and rabbits. But if it performs as well in humans, it could give reconstructive surgeons a fast and easy way to help patients regenerate lost tissues without scarring or deformity.

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Computer science facility opens at University of Maryland

The University of Maryland has opened a 215,600-square-foot computer science facility on its College Park campus.

The university says the Brendan Iribe Center for Computer Science and Engineering will support team-based, interdisciplinary research in virtual and augmented reality, artificial intelligence, robotics, computer vision, algorithms, programming languages and systems.

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New development patterns likely to emerge in Maryland's life science market

Available life science space is dwindling in Maryland's traditional life science core.

  • Only six buildings currently offer space larger than 20,000 s.f.
  • Space with high ceilings and utility capacity are scarce.
  • Investor demand has increased in the last plots of vacant and underutilized land.

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Xconomy: Roche Spinout Nimble Therapeutics Bags $10M to Find New Peptide Drugs

For the past five years, Jigar Patel and a group of fellow Roche employees have been quietly developing drug discovery technology at the global pharma company’s outpost in Madison, WI. Now, they’re setting out on their own to see if their approach to identifying promising peptide-based therapies can have an impact on the sector.

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Annual Research Symposium to Feature Keynote Address from NCI Scientist

On Tuesday, May 7, the Center for Biotechnology Education will hold its 14th annual research symposium. During the event at the Johns Hopkins University Montgomery County Campus, biotechnology students and some high school students will participate in a poster session devoted to their research.

Following the poster session, Barry O’Keefe, a scientist at the National Cancer Institute, will give a keynote address about natural product-based drug discovery. O’Keefe is acting chief of the Molecular Targets Program at the Center for Cancer Research and chief of the Natural Products Branch, Developmental Therapeutics Program at the Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis.

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Biotech runs on venture capital. But not all VC models are created equal - STAT

Venture capital dollars are flooding into biotech, totaling $8.5 billion in 2017 alone. But there’s no one way to fund a startup.

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Protenus Announces Former Chief Privacy Officer of HHS Office of the National Coordinator to Keynote 3rd Annual PANDAS Conference in Baltimore

The privacy and security of patient data continues to be increasingly important as access to this data increases and threats to this sensitive information continue to grow. At the same time, several new federal health information policies will make electronic health information about individuals more widely available to individuals and their caregivers and health care professionals. Lucia Savage, Former Chief Privacy Officer of HHS Office of the National Coordinator, will provide the opening keynote for the Privacy and Analytics (PANDAS) conference, focusing on innovation that equips privacy teams to effectively navigate the shift that occurs when organizations begin to more frequently utilize consumer tools to deliver healthcare.

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Life Sciences Industry On Uptick In Virginia

In February 2019, the French immuno-oncology diagnostics company HalioDx opened its first laboratory in North America. The five-year-old company, a Qiagen spin-off, selected Richmond, VA, as the location of the lab, in part, because the state’s capital city is only a two-hour drive from the FDA’s headquarters in Maryland.

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First Annual Patenting Trends Study Provides Decision Makers With Clear and Actionable Information

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton and GreyB Services released today their findings from The First Annual Kilpatrick Townsend & GreyB Services Patenting Trends Study (Study). The Study provides clear and actionable information that assists decision makers in envisioning the technological future of their respective industries and setting their companies’ strategies over the coming years and decades in an increasingly globalized economy.

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Report details life science industry's growing importance in helping transform NC economy | WRAL TechWire

The newly published document, “2018: Evidence and Opportunity: Impact of Life Sciences in North Carolina,” is a fascinating story of transformation for a state that once held the unfortunate reputation as the second-poorest in the nation.

It marks the 10th anniversary of the North Carolina Biotechnology Center’s contract with TEConomy Partners to track and evaluate the state’s life science landscape.

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