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VABIO E-News September 26, 2014
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VABIO E-News: September 26, 2014 Edition

Focus Around Virginia
A Word from CEO Jeff Gallagher

Members and friends of Virginia Bio,

The convergence of bio with IT and big data is well described. Indeed most of you know it firsthand. This week I seemed to see it everywhere I went. To start with, a global pharma company’s 4 hour briefing on its future vision of new drug development – one planted on deep phenotyping and proven specific biomarkers requiring the skills and technologies of big data. Later, I met two different startup companies, one in diagnostics and the other in neuroimaging, and both based on a facility and intelligence in gathering, shaping and gaining insights from massive datasets. I’ve had or heard conversations with health care providers striving to harness those same technologies and capabilities to mine clinical records and real world data to discover how to deploy bio, pharma, device and diagnostic innovations to select the most effective care to patients and to provide it efficiently.

Like many others, I believe this convergence presents our members, the Virginia bioscience community, and the Commonwealth itself, with an historic strategic opportunity because of Virginia’s unrivaled IT/big data assets and expertise.

For complete article click here.

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


HDL, Inc. President And CEO
Welcome aTTIMO r&d
VABIO Community News
VABIO Member Anniversaries

vAbio events
Virginia Bio Calendar


HDL, Inc. President And CEO Steps Down, Succeeded By Co-Founder

HDL, Inc. President and CEO Tonya Mallory is stepping down from those positions effective immediately. Dr. Joe McConnell, a co-founder of the company and currently its Chief Laboratory Officer, succeeds her in both roles. Mallory will continue to serve HDL, Inc. as a member of its Board of Directors and as an advisor to McConnell.

Mallory, who is leaving for personal family reasons, said of McConnell: "I am confident that HDL, Inc. remains in good hands. Joe’s highly distinguished scientific career, including more than a decade of work at the Mayo Clinic and his in-depth knowledge as an HDL, Inc. co-founder, leaves him well positioned to lead this company.”

Mallory told employees, "Like you, I am very proud of the work we have done together to help people – revolutionizing patient care by changing the way that cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and related conditions are diagnosed and treated.”

For complete article click here.

CIT GAP Funds Invests In Biotherapeutics, Inc

The CIT GAP Funds closed an investment in Biotherapeutics, Inc. BioTherapeutics, Inc. (BTI) is a pre-clinical stage company that has established an innovative platform for developing safer and more effective small-molecule drugs to treat inflammation associated with autoimmune related disorders and diabetes by targeting novel therapeutic targets.

CIT President and CEO Pete Jobse said, "The experienced team at Biotherapeutics is developing an innovative means to satisfy an unmet need in the treatment of inflammatory disease. Current treatment options available in the market are often costly and come with significant side effects. Our investment reflects our confidence in their plans to develop a new more effective and economic solution.”

For complete article click here.

Virginia Tech Infection Models Reveal Critical Pathway In Immune Response

Scientists from the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech and Vanderbilt University have made steps toward understanding the immune response involved in Helicobacter pylori infection — a common cause of stomach ulcers.

Using a combined computational and experimental approach, the researchers demonstrated how a protein known as IL-21 may play a key role in immune responses to H. pylori infection. IL-21 is produced by a variety of immune cells and has anti-tumor and anti-viral properties. But it also leads to excessive inflammation. Often, the immune and inflammatory responses triggered by the bacteria are far worse than the infection itself, and it is these responses that lead to pathology and disease.

For complete article click here.

House Passes Hurt Bill to Help Small Companies Access Capital

The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 5405, Promoting Job Creation and Reducing Small Business Burdens Act, which combines the text of 11 bills to remove unnecessary federal regulations hindering job growth. H.R. 4164, the Small Company Disclosure Simplification Act, which was introduced by Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Virginia) and Representative Terri Sewell (D-Alabama) in March 2014, was incorporated into H.R. 5405:
Hurt released the following statement after the passage of H.R. 5405:

"I was pleased to see the Small Company Disclosure Simplification Act pass the House today, and I thank my colleagues for joining me in this effort to grow our economy and create much-needed jobs throughout Virginia and America.”

For complete article click here.

GMU Professor James L. Olds to head NSF Biological Sciences Directorate

The National Science Foundation (NSF) selected George Mason University's James L. Olds to serve as assistant director for the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO). BIO's mission is to enable discoveries for understanding life. BIO-supported research advances the frontiers of biological knowledge, increases our understanding of complex systems, and provides a theoretical basis for original research in many other scientific disciplines.

Olds is a director and chief academic unit officer at the Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study, a position he has held for 15 years. He is also the Shelley Krasnow University Professor of Molecular Neuroscience. The international Decade of the Mind project was begun under his leadership at Krasnow, which helped shape President Obama's BRAIN Initiative.

For complete article click here.

Fahrenheit Group Merges With HR Business

The Fahrenheit Group, a Henrico County finance, business advice and human resources company, is merging with Axeo, a human resources business based in Northern Virginia. The combined company will be called The Fahrenheit Group, this according to the Richmond Times Dispatch.

Fahrenheit was founded in January 2010 as Fahrenheit Finance by Keith Middleton and Rich Reinecke. The company originally provided accounting, bookkeeping and chief financial officer services to growing businesses and found that many of the company’s clients also needed assistance with human resource services.

For complete article click here.

Virginia Biotech Park Appoints Executive Director and President/CEO

The Virginia Biotechnology Research Park Authority and Corporation Boards unanimously approved the appointment of Carrie Roth as the Executive Director of the Authority and President/CEO of the Corporation, effective September 9, 2014. Roth has been serving as the Interim Executive Director and President/CEO since December 2013 and prior to that held the position of Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade for Governor Bob McDonnell.

Roth brings over 20 years of broad experience in government, non-profit organizations and the private sector to the position. She helped lead the successful effort before the General Assembly to provide over $113 million in new economic development funding – including over $57 million to support Virginia’s innovation economy. In addition, she worked with the technology community and the Virginia General Assembly to bring new tools to encourage entrepreneurship based on best practices from across the country.

For complete article click here.

GENETWORx Certified To Perform Pharmacogenetic Testing In NY

Richmond-area laboratory GENETWORx has obtained certification to perform its DNA Drug-Response genetic testing on samples collected from patients in the state of New York. The laboratory will begin performing its pharmacogenetic testing panel that includes assays for drug metabolizing enzymes and cardiac disease risk factors for physicians in New York State, one of the largest markets for pharmacogenetic testing in the United States.

GENETWORx CEO William Miller explained, "The New York State certification demonstrates our commitment to provide the highest quality laboratory services, and gives us a competitive edge over laboratories that are not certified in New York State."

For complete article click here.

Tau Therapeutics And Xdynia Merge To Form Cavion

Managers and shareholders of both Tau Therapeutics LLC and Xdynia LLC approved a merger of the two companies and the surviving entity, Tau Therapeutics LLC, has been renamed Cavion LLC. The name "Cavion” reflects the combined company’s therapeutic approach of selectively inhibiting the Cav3 ion channel (T-type calcium channel).

Both Tau Therapeutics and Xdynia have been developing T-type calcium channel inhibitors for separate indications. Tau Therapeutics has worked to develop T-type calcium channel antagonists that improve the efficacy of standard chemotherapies and radiation therapies against solid tumor cancers. Xdynia has focused on inhibiting the T-type calcium channel to provide better treatments for the prevention and treatment of neuropathic pain and other neurologic disease.

For complete article
click here.

NIH Finalized Genomic Data Sharing Policy

The National Institutes of Health has issued a final NIH Genomic Data Sharing (GDS) policy to promote data sharing as a way to speed the translation of data into knowledge, products and procedures that improve health while protecting the privacy of research participants. The final policy was posted in the Federal Register August 26, 2014 and published in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts August 27, 2014.

Starting with funding applications submitted for a January 25, 2015, receipt date, the policy will apply to all NIH-funded, large-scale human and non-human projects that generate genomic data. This includes research conducted with the support of NIH grants and contracts and within the NIH Intramural Research Program. NIH officials finalized the policy after reviewing public comments on a draft released in September 2013.

For complete article click here.

Virginia Tech Scientist Uses Novel Technique To Study Inherited Diseases

Hehuang Xie, an associate professor at the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech, described the biochemical process called DNA methylation in a recent paper in Genome Research.

DNA methylation, in which a methyl group is added to DNA, is one way in which the expression of genes may be altered. DNA methylation patterns are heritable, and thus may be a way of tracing how cancers begin since the methylation pattern helps cells differentiate into specific tissues. But the inheritance of methylation patterns has been up until now very hard to track across generations.

For complete article click here

TEDMED Live Access Extended

In case you missed any speaker talks or would like to relive your favorite moments from the stage, we’re happy to share. We're keeping TEDMED Live access available through October 10. Members can contact us for complimentary access.

Welcome New Member: Attimo Research & Development

Attimo Research and Development provides biotechnology-based project management consulting services to academic institutions, government agencies, and scientifically developing countries. Attimo also provides technical consultation and management for research activities, including product development and validation, biological decontamination and low-impact agricultural treatments.

For more information please visit their website.

Welcome New Member: Cherry Bekaert LLP

As a nationally recognized, growth-oriented CPA firm, Cherry Bekaert LLP provides guidance and support that helps their clients move forward to reach their organizational goals. Ranked among the largest accounting and consulting firms in the country, Cherry Bekaert specializes in offering solutions that impact their client's growth and success.

For more than 65 years, global corporations, private businesses, emerging firms, start-ups, government entities, and nonprofits have relied on Cherry Bekaert to guide them forward to their growth destination. With a resource network that stretches across the states of Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington, D.C., out service reach extends nationally and internationally through an alliance with Baker Tilly International, an association of independent accounting services and consulting firms.

For more information please visit their website.

Welcome New Member: Johnson & Johnson

Johnson & Johnson is a global company that embraces research and science to bring innovative ideas, products and services forward that advance the health and well-being of people. Employees of the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies work with partners in health care to touch the lives of over a billion people every day, throughout the world. Johnson & Johnson has more than 275 operating companies in more than 60 countries employing approximately 128,700 people.

For more information please visit their website.

VABIO Community News TO TOP

David Ayares of Revivicor, Inc. and his wife Terri are the proud first-time grandparents to Tommy Ray, born Aug 26, 2014.

VABIO Member Anniversaries TO TOP

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

CIT - 22 years


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



October 6-8
Event: AdvaMed 2014
Where: McMormick Place, Chicago, Illinois
Details:Click here for more information
Registration: Virginia Bio Members receive a discount on registration, please contact Susan Moore for details

Event: Charlottesville Biotech and Beer
Where: U.Va. Licensing and Ventures, Charlottesville, VA
When: Wednesday, October 8, 5:00 - 7:00 pm
Details: Spice up your autumn evening with food, fun and lively conversation at Biotech and Beer. Meet old friends and new colleagues in the life science community. Complimentary admission for all bioscience company employees, and university students and researchers with advanced registration. All others may purchase tickets.
Registration:Click here to registration

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Virginia Biotechnology Research Park, Richmond, VA
When: Thursday, October 9, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm, networking begins at 11:30, program begins at 12:00
Title:The sky is the limit: the data-driven, data-smart bioscience organization
Registration:Click here to register
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work For Health and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park


Event: BioTeach Events
Where: See Individual Sessions for location
When: Thursday, October 9, 4:30 - 6:30 pm
Details: Virginia BIO Foundation is hosting a teachers only event at businesses throughout Virginia as part of the first-ever state-wide Virginia Science Festival organized by Science Museum of Western Virginia and Virginia Tech.
Registration:Click here to register


Event: Focused Ultrasound 2014 4th International Symposium
Where: Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center, North Bethesda, MD
Details: Organized by the Focused Ultrasound Foundation, the symposium will spotlight leading edge preclinical, translational and clinical research related to one of today’s most promising and innovative therapeutic technologies.
Registration:Click here to register

Event: VCU Sanger Series: Science and the World's Future
Where: McGlothlin Medical Education Building, Richmond, VA
When: Tuesday, October 21, 12 - 1:30 pm
Details: The world badly needs the innovation that comes from continual scientific and technical advances. And both the knowledge and the problem-solving skills of scientists are critical for every nation, no matter how rich or poor. Every society also needs a "scientific temper," the type of rationality and tolerance that stems from the central values of science: honesty, generosity, an insistence on logic and evidence and a respect for all ideas and opinions, regardless of their source of origin. Learn more as leader and advocate Bruce Alberts discusses the important role of science and science education to our future.
Registration:Click hereto register

Event: 2nd Pediatric Surgical Innovation Symposium
Where: The Knight Conference Center at the Newseum, Washington, DC
When: Friday, October 24, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Details:Click here for more information.

Event: Virginia Conference on World Trade
Where: Richmond Marriott, Richmond, VA
Details: Meet, develop and cultivate international partnerships with a network from around the world. When expanding your business globally, networking with the right people will set you up for success. Valuable connections that can take your international business to the next level are waiting to happen. Attend informative workshops, hear compelling speakers, and walk away with new ideas that puts global trade to work for your business.
Registration:Click hereto register

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Virginia Biotechnology Research Park, Richmond, VA
When: Thursday, November 13, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Title:Things that go in the night: Risk management for the bioscience company
Registration:Click hereto register
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work For Health and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Virginia Biotechnology Research Park, Richmond, VA
When: Thursday, December 11, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Title:18 Month Report: Life science technologies, commercialization and industry partnerships from VCU Engineering School
Registration:Click hereto register
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work For Health and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Virginia Biotechnology Research Park, Richmond, VA
When: Thursday, January 8, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Title:Licensing biomedical technology - dispatches from the dealmakers
Registration:Click hereto register
Sponsors: Data Blueprint, Greater Richmond Partnership, VCU Innovation Gateway, We Work For Health and the Virginia Biotechnology Research Park

Event: Virginia Bio Commercialization Luncheon
Where: Virginia Biotechnology Research Park, Richmond, VA
When: Thursday, February 12, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Title:Finding and Working with an Investment Banker (plus updates from January's 32nd Annual JP Morgan Health Care Conference).
Registration:Click hereto register
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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