CEWIT Medical Technologies and Healthcare Innovations Symposium

CEWIT, the Center for Biotechnology and Henry Schein, Inc., have joined forces to host an expert symposium presenting cutting-edge advances in biomedical and clinical-related technologies, digital health, and smart medical devices, focusing on the technology as well as the joint industry, academic, and R&D partnerships that are integral to major innovations in the healthtech domain — at Stony Brook University.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017, 9:30am-3:30pm
The Center of Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology (CEWIT) at Stony Brook University
1500 Stony Brook Road, Stony Brook, NY 11794-6040

Event is free but registration is requires. View full agenda and register here: www.cewit.org/events/healthtech.html

Codagenix Inks Exclusive License Agreement

Codagenix, Inc. has entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Stony Brook University, through the Research Foundation for the State of New York, to commercialize a platform technology to develop a pipeline of live attenuated vaccines against viral infections in people and animals. The technology relies on software to re-design the genomes of potentially harmful viruses to make them safe and effective vaccines. The technology stems from research in the laboratory of Eckard Wimmer, PhD, Distinguished Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology. The lead indication for vaccine development generated is a vaccine against Seasonal Influenza slated for Phase I human clinical trials in 2017.

Dr. Wimmer, along with Steffen Mueller, PhD, Codagenix President and Chief Science Officer, and J. Robert Coleman, PhD, Codagenix Chief Operating officer, worked as colleagues for years in Dr. Wimmer’s laboratory examining and experimenting with the genes of viruses. By collaborating with Stony Brook scientists Bruce Futcher, PhD, in the Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology, and Steven Skienna, PhD, in the Department of Computer Science, they discovered a way using gene manipulation and computer algorithms to “re-code” the genes of viruses. This re-coding process makes viruses extremely weak and thus ideal candidates as ultra-low dose attenuated vaccines.

The licensing agreement enables Codgenix to develop and potentially market next generation vaccines using software-based gene design and whole viral synthesis to create low-dose, attenuated virus vaccines. The company expects to use this design to first test its vaccine against influenza; however, there are plans for human testing of their Zika and other vaccine candidates. Codagenix is also in partnership with a large agricultural company to make vaccines using the technology for companion and agricultural animals.

The technology has been shown to be effective against numerous viruses including ZIka, Dengue, and RSV all of which are in preclinical testing. The development of this pipeline of vaccines can be seen in numerous scientific papers since 2008, including a paper in Science, PNAS, National Biotechnology and most recently in 2015 in MBIo.

Read Stony Brook University’s full press release here. 

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Long Island Bioscience Hub Announces Additional Funded Projects

Third round of grants awarded for the development of commercially promising biomedical innovations

The Center for Biotechnology at Stony Brook University, on behalf of the Long Island Bioscience Hub (LIBH), announced the recipients of the third round of funded projects under the Hub’s technology development and commercialization initiative. Funding for ten projects totaling $550,000 has been awarded to applicants from the Hub’s partner institutions. Partner institutions include Stony Brook University, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research at Northwell Health. Eighteen months after its establishment, the LIBH has already awarded more than $2M to faculty innovators.

The technology development awards made available by the LIBH are specifically aimed at growing a pipeline of commercially promising biomedical technologies that can be out-licensed for further development or serve as the foundation for new company formations in the region. There are two tiers of funding, each with the goal of accelerating technology development to reach a critical development inflection point. Feasibility awards ($50,000) are designed to rapidly test the feasibility of new ideas in a “fail-fast-or-proceed” format, or to add value to existing intellectual property leading to new market applications. Proof-of-Concept Awards ($100,000) provide targeted, milestone driven support for further development, testing, and analysis of existing intellectual property.

A wide range of disciplines are represented in the project awards this cycle including radiology, quantitative biology, biomedical engineering, chemistry, neurosurgery and cancer research. Nine Feasibility awards and one Proof of Concepts award have been funded this cycle. Projects awarded funding in this round include the development of radiotracers for use with PET scans to detect bacterial infections, specifically infective endocarditis (IE); a non-immune-based drug targeting amyloid ß-protein (Aß) for the treatment of mild Alzheimer’s disease; DNA nano-carrier platform technology for targeted anti-thrombotic drug delivery in prosthetic heart valve and mechanical circulatory support patients; A medical device utilizing electrical and software engineering in order to detect congenital heart disease in newborn children, and profiling the human immune system through machine learning and bioinformatics. The full list of funded projects can be found on the LIBH webpage.

“The latest announcement of funded project for the LIBH demonstrates the volume of innovation housed within partner institutes that is primed to be moved out of the academic lab and into the commercial sector in order to help patients” said Clinton T. Rubin, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor, Chair, Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Director, Center for Biotechnology. “It is exciting to witness our region’s innovators contemplating their research in ways they hadn’t before, and to see the vibrancy of the bioscience cluster on Long Island growing with each new project proposed.”

“Putting CSHL scientists together with HUB biotech entrepreneurs and industry reviewers is key to the successful translation of early stage ideas resulting from the basic research of Dr. Lingbo Zhang and Mickey Atwal, said Teri Willey, CSHL Vice President Business Development and Technology Transfer. “Zhang’s genetic research on myelodysplastic syndrome will be complimented by experience in medicinal chemistry. Similarly, Atwal’s work on developing therapeutics using physics and math to profile to the immune system will benefit from industry reviewers to guide it toward patient benefit.”

“The success of the Long Island Bioscience Hub demonstrates the value of creative partnerships in bringing medical solutions that help address patients’ needs from the research lab to the doctor’s office and the medical clinic. We are proud to be part of the Bioscience Hub’s success,” said Kevin J. Tracey, M.D., President and CEO of the Feinstein Institute.

The main goal of the LIBH is to foster the development of therapeutics, preventatives, diagnostics, devices and research tools emerging from LIBH partner institutions that address diseases within the NIH’s mission.

Download a PDF of the press release here.

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Center For Biotechnology Awarded $500k U.S. Department of Commerce Grant

The i6 Challenge award sets aim on enhancing Long Island Bioscience Ecosystem

The Center for Biotechnology at Stony Brook University has announced that is has received a three-year, $500,000 U.S. Department of Commerce i6 Challenge Investment. The award will support the Center for Biotechnology’s (CFB) efforts to bolster the regional bioscience ecosystem by supporting a formal mentorship program, as well as a critical NIH-focused SBIR/STTR training and application development program which will assist in capital formation and launching new companies.

The Center for Biotechnology is among 35 organizations — including nonprofits, institutions of higher education, and entrepreneurship-focused organizations — from 19 states that will receive nearly $15 million to create and expand cluster-focused, proof-of-concept and commercialization programs, and early-stage seed capital funds through the Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) Regional Innovation Strategies (RIS) program. The Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE), housed within the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), leads the Regional Innovation Strategies Program to spur innovation capacity-building activities in regions across the nation.

“Long Island’s innovation economy is rooted in cutting-edge basic and applied science and engineering, fostered by top-tier research institutions, a highly educated population, and a depth, breadth and scope of intellectual capital.” said Dr. Clinton T. Rubin, Director, Center for Biotechnology. Dr. Rubin continued, “This award and the initiatives it will support add to the growing, concentrated efforts the Center for Biotechnology, the Long Island Bioscience Hub and the hub’s partner institutions are making to grow the high technology innovations born in our region into fully realized ventures.”

The Center for Biotechnology (CFB) at Stony Brook University is an Empire State Development Division of Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR) Center for Advanced Technology. Established in 1983, the CFB’s efforts are focused on accelerating the development of biomedical technologies in order to have a positive impact on human health and society. The CFB is also the lead administrative institution for the Long Island Bioscience Hub (LIBH) an NIH-designated Research Evaluation and Commercialization Hub (REACH) established with a National Institutes of Health grant in 2015. The initiatives under the i6 Challenge award will complement the efforts of the LIBH, a partnership between the Center for Biotechnology, Stony Brook University, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory and the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, to commercialize biomedical innovations emerging from the partner institutions.

Download a PDF of the press release here.

Related Articles:
Schumer: Biz-Development Funds Big Deal For SBU – Innovate Long Island
Stony Brook Biotech Center Wins $500,000 to Foster Companies – Newsday

Long Island Biomentoring Initiative Established

Program Established to Foster Vibrant Bioscience Cluster in the Region

On Friday, November 18th at the Long Island High Technology Incubator, the Long Island BioMentor Initiative (LIBMI) will be hosting its first full-day mentor training session for the founding mentors of the new initiative. Led by the Center for Biotechnology at Stony Brook University and Accelerate Long Island, the LIBMI has been established on behalf of the Long Island Bioscience Hub – an NIH-designated Research, Evaluation, and Commercialization Hub. The LIBMI is a platform to bring highly qualified, volunteer mentors together with motivated, early-stage bioentrepreneurs to provide guidance and support as they advance their business strategy.

The LIBMI is based on the successful mentoring model developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Venture Mentoring Service (VMS), and created in collaboration with Stony Brook University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Hofstra University, and the Feinstein Institute at Northwell Health Systems. Through MIT VMS’s team mentoring approach, the LIBMI aims to provide objective and unbiased advice that will help entrepreneurs navigate the challenging landscape that growing bioscience ventures face. Mentors participating in the November 18th training session led by a MIT VMS Co-Director will benefit from curriculum and interactive teachings along with a mentoring session with one of the first entrepreneurs chosen to serve as mentee.

“There is an abundance of innovation on Long Island as well as a growing pool of entrepreneurs looking to create ventures that will take root and grow in the region” said Mark Lesko, Board Member, Accelerate Long Island. Diane Fabel, Director of Operations for the Center for Biotechnology added “Establishing a formal mentoring program, specifically for the bioscience sector, is critical as these companies need diverse support in order for them to thrive.”

The initiative employs the team mentoring approach and brings together experts with great depth and a range of experiences. The members of the founding mentor team include Dr. Linda Amper, Chief People Officer of Clever Devices; Dr. Gian Luca Araldi, founder and principal of US Pharma Services; Kara Cannon, Global Head of Sales & Marketing of Enzo Life Sciences, Inc.; Dr. Anil Dhundale, former Executive Director of the Long Island High Technology Incubator; Dr. Wayne Koff, President and CEO of Human Vaccines Project; Ric Overton, President of Overton Operations Advisors; Jeff Peacock, VP Global Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs at Henry Schein, Inc.; Dr. Saied Tousi, Managing Director for NW Advisors; and Edward Travaglianti, Market President of Long Island for TD Bank.

The entire process is guided by a statement of principles to ensure confidentiality and a conflict free environment. The initiative will build upon a suite of services and resources provided by the NIH-designated Research, Evaluation, and Commercialization Hub (LI Bioscience Hub), Accelerate Long Island and the Emerging Technology Fund, the New York State Center for Advanced Technology in Medical Biotechnology.

“It’s important to me to help support the entrepreneurial ecosystem on Long Island” founding mentor Ed Travaglianti stated, “and the team approach expands our capacity, allowing us to mentor more than one entrepreneur.”

Learn more about the Long Island BioMentor Initiative here.

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