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VABIO E-News July 29, 2014
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VABIO E-News: July 29, 2014 Edition

Focus Around Virginia
A Word from CEO Jeff Gallagher

Members and friends of Virginia Bio,

Governor McAuliffe and his Administration are making it widely known they are focusing on growing the economy, and they understand that the bioscience industry as a critical part.

Several weeks ago the Governor attended the BIO International Convention in San Diego, accompanied by Secretary of Commerce Maurice Jones, Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore, and Virginia Economic Development Partnership CEO Martin Briley and VEDP staff. Because he was the first governor in the nation to commit to attend, VEDP staff, the convention organizers at BIO and Virginia Bio were able to build the delegation an outstanding itinerary.

Governor McAuliffe started off his full two day visit by hosting a breakfast for C level leaders of Virginia companies and research institutions, to learn more about the industry, gather ideas for improved public policies and tips on selling the advantages of Virginia for bioscience the world-wide BIO audience.

For complete article click here.

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In this issue
focus around Virginia
VABIO Articles
VABIO Community News
VABIO Anniversaries
VABIO Calendar

Former BIO CSO Appointed UR Provost
AMPEL Identifies Noval Lupus target
cel-sci's 3rd indication wins sbir grant
Algorthmrx receives crcf award
vcu wins $4.4 Gates Grant
competition inspires young scientist
sign up for fedex friday offers
Welcome allianz global assistance

Welcome ampel biosolutions
Welcome dan river plants
VABIO Community News

VABIO Member Anniversaries

VABIO Events
Virginia Bio Calendar


Former Biotech Software CSO Appointed New UR Provost

Jacquelyn S. Fetrow has accepted the appointment of Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs for the University of Richmond. She will also hold an appointment as Professor of Chemistry. She brings to the role of Provost a distinguished record of academic, administrative leadership and an equally distinguished record of research and teaching and bioscience industry experience.

Dr. Fetrow comes to Richmond from serving as Dean of Wake Forest College and Reynolds Professor of Computational Biophysics at Wake Forest University. Prior to joining the Wake Forest faculty in 2003, Dr. Fetrow was Chief Scientific Officer and Director of GeneFormatics, a biotechnology software company. She also holds a U.S. patent for co-inventing GeneFormatics’ primary technologies.

For complete article click here.

FDA Approval Good News For Ashland Based Lyotropic Therapeutics

Eagle Pharmaceuticals ($EGRX), Woodcliff Lake, NJ, last week announced it received FDA approval for its new-and-improved formulation of dantrolene sodium, which will be sold as Ryanodex, for potentially lethal cases of malignant hyperthermia.

This is good news for Lyotropic Therapeutics, Ashland, Virginia, a long time member of Virginia Bio. Eagle Pharmaceuticals is the exclusive licensee under a license with Lyotropic Therapeutics to a family of patents and applications that relate to low volume formulations of dantrolene and methods of treatment using dantrolene that cover the approved product.

For complete article click here.

AMPEL BioSolutions Co-Founder Identifies Novel Lupus Target

Dr. Peter Lipsky, co-founder of AMPEL BioSolutions and a Charlottesville, VA scientist, coordinated a scientific study published this month in Science Translational Medicine, between his Charlottesville office and Peking Union Medical Center University in Beijing. The study unveiled a novel pathway for Lupus that could be targeted by drugs in development by the biopharmaceutical industry.

A hallmark of Lupus is an overactive immune system that attacks almost any organ system of the body. Dr. Lipsky and his Beijing team found that Lupus patients have abnormally low levels of a switch that puts the bad-acting autoantibody-secreting B cells to sleep. That switch is called PTEN and Dr. Lipsky’s team found that Lupus patients with a low level of PTEN exhibit a more severe disease.

For complete article click here.

SBIR Grant Awarded to CEL-SCI for Potential RA Indication

CEL-SCI Corporation (NYSE MKT: CVM) has been awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant in the amount of $225,000 from the National Institute of Arthritis Muscoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The grant will fund the further development of CEL-SCI’s LEAPS technology as a potential treatment for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disease of the joints.

The NIH grant was awarded based on preliminary data by Tibor Glant, MD, Ph.D., and his team at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois in collaboration with CEL-SCI showing that the administration of a proprietary peptide using CEL-SCI's LEAPS technology prevented the development and lessened the severity - including inflammation - of experimental RA when it was administered after the disease was induced in the animals.

For complete article click here.

algorithmRx Awarded Grant From Center For Innovative Technology

algorithmRx, LLC was one of only four private companies in the Greater Richmond, Virginia area that received a $50,000 grant from the Virginia Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) for its innovative new aRx Statin Advisor product. algorithmRx received this grant for the second time.

The grant was one of 38 awards made to Virginia organizations in academia, the research community and industry to fund targeted areas of research with commercial promise aligned with the Commonwealth Research and Technology Strategic Roadmap.

For complete article click here.

VCU Receives $4.4 Million Grant To Lead AIDS Drug Research Effort

A $4.4 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is giving Virginia Commonwealth University School of Engineering and collaborating research universities an opportunity to supply developing countries with affordable access to AIDS drugs.

Due to his extensive experience in pharmaceutical process development, B. Frank Gupton, Ph.D., VCU School of Engineering research professor and chair of the Department of Chemical and Life Science Engineering, will serve as the principal investigator of the entire effort. With his leadership, an interdisciplinary team will focus on cost improvements for the drug nevirapine. The World Health Organization considers nevirapine a first-line therapy for the treatment of AIDS.

For complete article click here.

Competition and Networking Inspire Young Scientist

Fifteen year old Adriel Sumathipala, a rising junior at Broad Run High School in Ashburn Virginia attended the BIO International Convention in San Diego last month to represent Virginia by competing in the International BioGENEius Challenge. The BioGENEius Challenge is the premier high school competition for bioscience students. His project "Point-of-Care Biosensors: Cholesterol and Oxidized LDL Biomarker Detection for Tracking Coronary Heart Disease" was selected from a field of fourteen applicants as the Virginia BioGENEius Challenge winner.

The Virginia BioGENEius Challenge is a program of Virginia Bio and sponsored by ATCC, designed to encourage young scientists. Each year a volunteer panel of judges, made of up bioscience professionals from across the Commonwealth, evaluate applications and posters. The Virginia winner receives an all expense paid trip to the BIO International Convention to compete in the International BioGENEius Competition for a chance to win up to $7500 and the title of International BioGENEius.

For complete article click here.

Sign up for Exclusive Offers from FedEx Fridays

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With FedEx Fridays, it’s even more rewarding to join the FedEx Advantage discount program. Our members will continue to save up to 33%% on select services all year long, even after this promotion ends.† It’s free to join and there are no minimum shipping requirements. And, you may be eligible for other special offers and promotions. Enroll now or call 1.800.475.6708 by August 15, 2014. Be sure to provide passcode FEDEX1.

Welcome New Member: Allianz Global Assistance

Allianz Global Assistance has a location in Richmond, VA and is a part of the Allianz group of companies that includes 13,224 employees spread across 34 countries and more than 400,000 service providers working with to provide around-the-clock assistance to our clients and customers.

Through its subsidiaries in the US, Allianz offers a broad portfolio of insurance, retirement, assistance services and asset management products and services. By collaborating across various lines of business, Allianz is able to offer its US customers not only dependable financial strength but also comprehensive products and services from a single, reliable partner.

For more information please visit their website.

Welcome New Member: AMPEL BioSolutions

AMPEL BioSolutions, LLC is a Charlottesville, VA biomedical consulting firm with unparalleled expertise in auto-immune and inflammatory disorders. AMPEL BioSolutions works closely with non-profit and advocacy organizations and pharmaceutical developers in sifting through up-to-date biomedical research and advising them on drug targeting and research protocol.

Their members have over 50 years combined experience in immunology, oncology, and biomedical research there of. AMPEL was co-founded by Amrie C. Grammer, PhD and Peter E. Lipsky, MD, following over 20 years of collaboration in Lupus research, including time at the NIH.

Welcome New Member: Dan River Plants

Dan River Plants located in Danville, VA creates, clones and grows ornamental plants and biorenewable feedstock for nurseries and growers.

They are the first commercial spinoff for the Institute for Sustainable and Renewable Resources (ISRR). ISRR was created as a result of collaboration between the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech and the Danville, VA based Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR).

Dan River Plants’ advantage is a technique pioneered by researchers at ISRR known as "micropropogation”, enabling the cloning of biorenewable crops at a rate which is more rapid and reliable that competing technologies by orders of magnitude.

A biorenewable crop, miscanthus, which can be used for conversion into fuels, plastics and other materials, was able to show robust growth after 12 months in the field. This success convinced the Danville Regional Foundation to award $1.2 Million in start-up funds. Dan River Plants was dedicated in January 2011.

For more information please visit their website.

VABIO Community News TO TOP

Sara Maddox has joined the Virginia Biotechnology Research Partnership Authority team as Outreach and Community Affairs Manager. Sara comes from the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services where she served as a Deputy Director. She holds a BA from James Madison University and MPA from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Dick Atkinson, Obetch, was recently selected as the recipient of the 2014 Mickey Stunkard Lifetime Achievement Award from the Obesity Society. The Mickey Stunkard Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes people who have made a lifetime of outstanding contributions to the field of obesity in terms of scholarship, mentorship and education.

Ben Burruss with Toxicology Regulatory Services and Debbie Paley joyfully announced their marriage on June 13th, 2014. They were married at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in beautiful Charlottesville, VA.

INDOOR Biotechnologies was recently named one of Charlottesville’s Better Business Challenge’s "2014 Better Business Champions.”

Wako Chemicals recently celebrated their 25th year anniversary of being established in the U.S. with a cookout for its employess.

Venebio would like to welcome Molly Ronayne to their team as Manager, Business Development.

The School of Engineering at Virginia Commonwealth University has appointed a new director of marketing and communications. Cheryle Caplinger.

VABIO Member Anniversaries TO TOP

Virginia Bio would like to thank our long term members who have recently celebrated their membership anniversaries:

Greater richmond partnership - 18 years


Virginia Bio would also like to thank our members renewing for the first time:


July 30
Event: Northern Virginia Biotech and Beer
Where: National Center for Biodefense and Infectious Diseases. 10650 Pyramid Place, Manassas
When: Wednesday, July 30, 5:00-7:00 PM
Details: Enjoy a summer evening with food, fun and lively conversation at Biotech and Beer. Meet old friends and new colleagues in the life science community at the George Mason University National Center for Biodefense and Infectious Disease. Complimentary admission for any bioscience company employees, and university students and researchers with advanced registration. All others may purchase tickets.
Registration: Click here to register
Sponsors: ​Stites & Harbison, and Cherry Bekeart

September 4 (Tentative)
Event: Charlottesville Biotech and Beer
Where: TBA
When: Thursday, September 4, 5:00-7:00 PM
Registration: Coming Soon

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Robert Ball Conference Center, Virginia Biotechnology Research Park
When: Thursday, September 11, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm, networking begins at 11:30, program begins at 12:00
Title: Focused Ultrasound Foundation
Details: The Focused Ultrasound Foundation in Charlottesville is an extraordinary, innovative and world class institution, devoted to improving the lives of millions of people worldwide with serious medical disorders by accelerating the development and adoption of focused ultrasound. Focused ultrasound is an early-stage, non-invasive therapeutic technology that could transform the treatment of many medical disorders by serving as an alternative to surgery and radiation. To see complete description click here.
Speakers: Chairman Dr. Neal Kassell and Scientific Director, Dr. Jessica Foley, Charlottesville
Registration: Register here. VCU students/faculty and VBRP tenants please contact Susan Moore for special instructions.
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work for Health, and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park

September 19-20
Event: LifeNet Health Cartilage Regeneration Symposium
Where: LifeNet Health, 1864 Concert Drive, Virginia Beach
Details: Click here for more information.

September 27
Event: MDMA 7th Annual Medical Technology Executive Forum
Where: Palo Alto, CA
Details: Click here for more information
Registration: Virginia Bio Members receive $100 off registration, contact Susan Moore for discount code

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Robert Ball Conference Center, Virginia Biotechnology Research Park
When: Thursday, October 9, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm, networking begins at 11:30, program begins at 12:00
Title: Managing Risk at a Bioscience Company
Details: Coming Soon
Speakers: TBA
Registration: Coming soon
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work for Health, and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park

Virginia Bio, was formed in 1992 and incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia as a non-profit association. The purpose of the Association is to promote the biotechnology industry in Virginia, expand the knowledge and expertise of Virginia's businesses concerning biotechnology through seminars, educational publications and other means, to enhance public awareness of the biotechnology industry in Virginia and the scientific, economic and other benefits it provides, and to represent the interests of the biotechnology industry in Virginia before federal, state and local legislators and regulators. We provide a forum for members and their guests to get to know each other and the many bioscience companies operating today in Virginia and serving our biotech community. We coordinate information among the many agencies and organizations interested in biotechnology.

To learn more about Virginia Bio and how you can get involved, Click Here

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