THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY DATABASE
April 25th through July 18th, 2005
MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
CRYO-CELL International, Inc. (OTC:CCEL) (BULLETIN BOARD: CCEL),
a company that provides blood cord storage services for new-borns, a stem-cell technology that has promise to protect these
same new-borns from disease years in the future, reported that its revenue increased 12 percent for the quarter ended May
31, 2005. Revenue for the second quarter was $3.6 million compared to $3.2 million for the same quarter a year ago.
CRYO-CELL, located in Oldsmar, Florida, presently has over 80,000
clients and is accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB). The company reports that it operates in a Good
Manufacturing Practice and Good Tissue Practice (cGMP/cGTP) compliant facility.
NutraCea (OTC:NTRZ) (BULLETIN BOARD: NTRZ) is bringing its FlexProtex
COX-2 inhibitor product to market via an infomercial campaign to be broadcast on ITV Direct. The new product is for the treatment
of arthritis and joint inflammation. The infomercial is scheduled to air in the United States on ITV direct on July 21, 2005.
FlexProtex is based on stabilized rice bran derivatives and other
ingredients known as natural COX-2 inhibitors. The company indicates that the mechanism of COX-2 inhibition is also the basis
for a number of pharmaceutical drugs.
Patricia McPeak, Founder and CEO of NutraCea, gave her reasons for
the selection of ITV as the market avenue, "We selected ITV Direct because of their historical success in bringing dietary
supplements to market and to introduce our novel stabilized rice bran products, such as FlexProtext, to the entire nation.
Backed by many years of research and patents, which give us a unique positioning in the marketplace, we're very proud to be
able to offer such high quality products at very reasonable prices by using the medium of direct-to-consumer selling."
NutraCea is focused on the development of nutraceuticals for natural
arthritic relief and the lowering of cholesterol and all-natural "cosmeceutical" beauty aids. The company has also been in
the news to provide low-cost nutrition to the world’s malnourished through the use of rice bran.
BrainCells Inc., oriented towards solving central nervous system
diseases, has announced that it has closed a $17.7 million Series A round of funding. Lead investors in the round included
Technology Partners, Oxford Bioscience Partners, and Bay City. The lead investors as well as the other investors on completion
of certain milestones by BrainCells are expected to invest another $9.7 million.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Vitae Pharmaceuticals announced that it has secured $15 million
in equity financing as a result of its licensing and development agreement with GlaxoSmithKline. The company indicated that
the funding was a result of the fact that it had met conditions of the closing, which included Federal Trade Commission clearance
under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act.
Vitae and GlaxoSmithKline entered into their alliance in June of
2005. That agreement was to develop and commercialize drug compounds used for the treatment of hypertension and related cardiovascular
disorders. Intel Corporation, better known for its microprocessors, has collaborated with Vitae in the design of its drugs.
NanoViricides, Inc. (Pink Sheets:NNVC), a company that is developing
a technology that selectively destroys viruses, and initially focused on the AIDS virus, has announced that the conditions
of its Series A Convertible Debenture to be offered to select investors.
Eugene Seymour, MD, CEO, on announcement of the terms, indicated
that the financing would enable the company to complete its HIV work, "The financing, when completed, is anticipated to be
sufficient to allow the Company to complete its HIV drug Hivicide 1 preclinical work, and bring it to the point of applying
for an IND with the Food and Drug Administration."
Kodak's Dental Systems Group, as part of its imaging and practice
management system operations, now offers USB 2.0 connectivity for its KODAK 1000 Intraoral Video Camera System. The USB connection
offers dentists the capability to easily interface the camera to a wide range of computer peripherals and PCs, simplifying
the installation process and allowing dentists in multi-office environments to share in the costs and benefits of the KODAK
1000 system. According to Paul Tucker, Dental Market Manager at Kodak's dental systems group, "Our improved intraoral video
camera delivers a streamlined, digital option our customers can use to quickly and easily acquire video images and access
them from their desktops. We're pleased to add this new camera system to our growing portfolio of integrated digital imaging
The KODAK 1000 System, besides not requiring any needed hardware to install, also comes with KODAK
Dental Imaging Software version 6.0.5 to simplify image acquisition and management tasks.
MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
July 14th, 2005
Solexa, Inc. (NASDAQ:SLXA) has completed a private placement valued
at $24 million as the second and final closing of a $32.5 million placement. Solexa’s investors, Abingworth Management
Limited, Amadeus Capital Partners Limited, Oxford Bioscience Partners and SV Life Sciences contributed $10.8 million to the
John West, Solexa's CEO indicated that performance results of its
sequencing system would be announced sometime soon, "This financing demonstrates our investors' confidence in our ability
to execute on our business plan to develop and market our next-generation sequencing systems based on Sequencing-by-Synthesis
(SBS) and Cluster molecular arrays. In the coming months, as we move closer to product launch, we expect to be able to announce
additional experimental results demonstrating the performance of our platform in high-end genetic applications."
Solexa’ genetic analysis platform is based on Sequencing-by-Synthesis
and Cluster molecular arrays. The company has focused its product development efforts on integrating sequencing, gene expression,
genotyping and micro-RNA analysis into the system. The company has planned for the SBS-Cluster genetic analysis instrument
system to be ready before the end of 2005.
Life Science Angels has closed a total of $1 million in investments
in three early stage companies. The companies include Athenagen, Inc., Pegasus Biologics, Inc. and Uptake Medical Corporation.
Athengen is focused on angiogenesis-related diseases such as cancer, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and rheumatoid
arthritis. Pegasus is a bioimplant company and Uptake Medical is focused on lung therapy, which improves the functioning of
the lung for those with lung diseases.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
HepaLife Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB:HPLF), a company that is giving
its technical attention to the development of products for the treatment of liver diseases, an ailment the company indicates
afflicts about 25 million Americans, has entered into a stock purchase agreement with Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC. As part
of the agreement, Fusion Capital has agreed to purchase up to $15 million of newly issued stock over a period of 30 months.
The agreement, which is subject to stipulations concerning the exact timing, price of the stock and amount of the investment,
is expected to revolve around a program that involves 30 monthly payments of $500,000.00 each.
Mr. Harmel S. Rayat, one of the Directors at HepaLife Technologies
indicated that the one-investor financing had a number of benefits, "Fusion's unique and innovative financing commitment will
allow our Company to raise a significant amount of capital efficiently and on a cost effective basis from a single institutional
investor. With the added capital, our management team can focus on HepaLife's core research activities, expanding and accelerating
the scope of our science and working towards creating the first-of-its-kind artificial liver device and developing proprietary
in-vitro toxicology and pre-clinical drug testing platforms."
HepaLife Technologies also noted that the patented PICM-19 cell
line has potential in the development of the artificial liver device.
Emphasizing that the most widely used medical treatments are based
on compounds derived from nature’s greenhouse, PhytoMedical Technologies, Inc. (OTCBB:PYTO), reported that it has entered
into an agreement with Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC to finance the development and commercialization of its plant derived pharmaceutical
and nutraceutical compounds.
Similar to Fusion Capital’s agreement with HepaLife, Fusion
Capital has agreed to purchase $10 million in common stock over a period of 25 months. The agreement, which is subject to
stipulations concerning the exact timing, price of the stock and amount of the investment, is expected to revolve around a
program that involves 25 monthly payments of $400,000.00 each.
Mr. Harmel S. Rayat, a Director of PhytoMedical Technologies and
also, HepaLife, commented on the investment and the PhytoMedical’s medical focus, "Fusion's unique and innovative financing
commitment will allow our Company to raise a significant amount of capital efficiently and on a cost effective basis from
a single institutional investor. Now our management team can focus on PhytoMedical's core research activities, expanding and
accelerating the scope of our science and working towards developing clinically approved products for two of the most devastating
disease states in America - diabetes and cachexia."
PhytoMedical also provided interesting statistics that illustrate
what may be lost as tropical rain forests are turned indiscriminately into barren landscapes. The company reports that an
estimated 300 important drugs still remain to be discovered from the 250,000 species of higher plants. The company says that
only 15 percent of the plants so far have been studied for bioactive compounds. Underscoring the point, PhytoMedical reports
that twenty of the best selling drugs come from natural plant sources.
Currently PhytoMedical is focused on the development of BDC-03,
a plant derived compound that has potential to fight Cachexia through the promotion of a lower fat percentage, lower cholesterol
and increased lean muscle mass. Cachexia, a real concern for those that have cancer or AIDs, can result in a lose up to 30
percent of lean muscle mass – a major factor that effects vital organs and often results in the death of the patient.
Cachexia is said to afflict 25 percent of all AIDs patients and
90 percent of all cancer patients.
The company also is focused on diabetes. An interesting result that
the company noted from a study published in Diabetes Care, from the American Diabetes Association, was that one gram of cinnamon
can lower blood sugar by an average of 18 to 29 percent. Significant reductions in triglycerides and LDL cholesterol were
also noted in the study. These positive effects lasted for at least 20 days after the cinnamon treatment was stopped. PhytoMedical
is currently working on synthesizing the active components in cinnamon.
Atonomics, a Point of Care company based in Denmark, has developed
a biochip technology around a technology used in the design of cellular phones. Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) technology, which
forms the basis of SAW filters in cellular phones, is also the basis for Atonomics’ biochips.
According to the company’s web site, the technology developed
requires just one drop of blood, as opposed to numerous pricks needed to perform traditional allergy analysis. The company
reports that most allergy sufferers are not aware that a simple blood test, which requires just one drop of blood, can be
used to diagnose their symptoms.
So how does the system work? The acoustic surface waveforms are
extremely sensitive to differences in DNA structure. Because of this, unique and determinable waveforms are generated for
specific types of genes. Different DNA structures or molecules have a different mass. When these collect on the surface of
the sensor, the mechanical forces, which control the electrical oscillatory nature of the SAW device, are change, resulting
in distinct waveform variations. The company reports that the disruption of acoustic surface waves as a direct result of specific
DNA hybridisation and elongation reactions can be measured with low-cost instruments within 15 minutes. Besides allergy DNA
reactions, the system can also be used to detect the delta 508 mutation of the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Regulator (CFTR)
Atonomics goes on to estimate that about 11 million patients take
allergy tests and the market is worth about $245 million. The company projects that if the 150 million Type 1 allergy sufferers
took allergy tests, the total market would exceed $3 billion.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
July 12th, 2005
CoreValve, which has developed a delivery system for percutaneous
heart valve replacement, has closed a $24 million Series B round led by Apax Partners and joined in by HealthCap.
Jacques Seguin, MD, PhD, CEO at CoreValve commented on the investment
and emphasized that the new technology offers a potential alternative to those who can not be treated with conventional open-heart
surgery, and as a less traumatic approach to all patients in need of heart valve replacement, "This significant cash
infusion from experienced and successful investors is a dramatic endorsement of CoreValve's ReValving approach to percutaneous
aortic valve replacement--a procedure that no doubt represents the area of legitimate excitement for the future of interventional
cardiology. Not only will ReValving offer immediate hope to patients who are currently left untreated because of their high
surgical-risk profile, but ReValving also will eventually offer all patients the opportunity to avoid the trauma of open-heart
The percutaneous heart valve replacement technology that CoreValve
is working on uses a catheter-and-self-expanding-frame approach like angioplasty and stenting. The company notes that the
approach results is less trauma than open heart surgery and also provides substantial cost savings.
Transgene (Eurolist Paris : FR0005175080 - NASDAQ: TRGNY) has raised
34.9 million Euros in an oversubscribed subscription placement of 4,657,500 ABSA priced at 7.50 Euros. The company indicated
that an extension is planned that may result in a further 18.7 million euros.
Transgene develops therapeutic vaccines and immunotherapeutic products
for the treatment of oncology and infectious diseases.
Primera Biosystems, Inc, which is developing gene expression analysis
systems and assays, has closed an $11 million placement of Series A Preferred Stock. Investors in the round lists include
MPM Capital, Burrill and Company, and the Malaysian Technology Development Corporation. Primera plans to use the funds for
the further development of instrument systems and disease specific diagnostic reagent kits.
Primera’s "STAR" (Scalable Transcription Analysis Routine)
system is based on real-time PCR and DNA microarray technologies. The gene expression analysis system is characterized by
faster speed, lower costs and high accuracy.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
In an effort to find a cure for cystic fibrosis, Structural
GenomiX, Inc. (SGX) and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics, Inc. (CFFT), affiliated with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation,
has entered into a three-year $15 million drug discovery program. As part of the agreement, CFFT will provide over $15 million
to SGX. The funding will come in the form of technology access, funding and payments for specific research related developments.
The agreement also will give SGX eligibility rights for royalty payments on product sales. In exchange, SGX will focus on
Fundamental to SGX’s product development effort goal is the
production of “correctors” of the delta F508 form of the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Regulator (CFTR) protein.
People with Cystic Fibrosis have genetics characterized by the delta F508 mutation. According to Robert J. Beall, Ph.D., President
and CEO of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and CFFT, "Our work with SGX over the past four years has produced significant advances
in understanding the cellular defects that cause this difficult disease. SGX was the first to solve the structure of the mutant
domain of the CFTR protein, which is present in 90 percent of people with cystic fibrosis."
According to the report, over 30,000 people in the United States
alone are estimated to have cystic fibrosis. Furthermore there are over 10 million Americans who carry one copy of the defective
gene. Those that inherit the disease, as a result of two parents who have a defective gene, in general will have lung disorders
that often result in serious infections. Correctors offer hope in correcting this problem by enabling chloride transport across
the lung epithelium.
Furthering its position in the general market for cancer therapeutics
with a Series C Private Placement is Panacea Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The company has been working on product development related
to the enzyme human aspartyl (asparaginyl) Beta-hydroxylase (HAAH). The company reports that HAAH over-expression has been
observed in the tissue of over twenty tumor types that have been tested so far. These include pancreas, breast, ovary, liver,
colon, prostate, lung, brain, and bile duct tumors. The company also says that “HAAH over-expression has been detected
in 99% of tumor specimens (greater than 1000) tested to date and has not been detected in normal or adjacent non-affected
The company in collaboration with MIT has indicated success with
product developments formulated with HAAH in mind. According to Hossein A. Ghanbari, PhD, CEO and Chief Scientific Officer
of Panacea, "We're excited by the continued strength of our findings in the HAAH cancer program. These include the recent
milestone we achieved under our antibody development collaboration with MIT, as well as positive efficacy studies in animal
models of human primary liver cancer and metastatic human colon cancer."
Investors in the Series C Private Placement, which raised about
$7 million, were listed as Mitsubishi Corporation Life Sciences Venture, Olympus, JSR, Shin-Etsu Chemical, Fuji Photo Film,
Dai Nippon Printing, and Tokio Marine and Nichido Fire Insurance.
Adlyfe, Inc., based in Rockville, Maryland, reports that it has
developed a sensitive blood test for protein folding diseases. The test, based on synthetic peptides, detects an increase
in defective proteins in the bloodstream. So far, Adlyfe has been able to detect prion diseases, which Mad Cow disease is
one, in a number of animals. According to Alan S. Rudolph, CEO, the test allows for early detection of the disease before
it has accumulated in the brain, "We are very encouraged by the early results of our test which show we can detect disease
in blood and tissue samples from animals and humans. We look forward to offering a new test for early detection and diagnosis
of these debilitating diseases."
Adlyfe reports that it now has 11 patents pending related to protein
folding brain diseases, which also includes Alzheimer's and Huntington's disease.
As the present generation ages, and develops the associated medical
problems, the ability to provide quality medical care at low cost is expected to become more difficult. One reason is that
patient visits will rise without a corresponding rise in the number of doctors. Telemedicine, the capability to monitor and
diagnose patients from a distance, is one solution to that problem. Low-cost medical instruments that interface via a wireless
connection to the Internet, or in the case of Housecall Plus, through a telephone line and modem, are expected to be instrumental
in that solution. According to Michael J. Coyle, President of St. Jude Medical's Cardiac Rhythm Management Division, "With
the number of ICD patients expected to expand significantly over the next few years, physicians face an enormous challenge
in managing regular follow-up visits for those patients. The version 2.1 software upgrade offers physicians even greater flexibility
to provide excellent follow-up care more efficiently when using the Housecall Plus system."
St. Jude has just received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) for the software upgrade version 2.1 of its Housecall Plus remote patient monitoring system. That software
is designed to remotely monitor implantable cardiovinverter defibrallator (ICD) patients. The new software version helps create
PFD files of monitoring results and transmits them securely to the physician’s web site.
Other features of the Housecall Plus system include real time doctor-to-patient
communication, real-time electrograms, surface ECGs, signals and settings of the ICD, delivered therapies and stored electrograms.
Housecall Plus also supports a number of St. Jude’s medical devices. These include St. Jude Medical's Atlasand Epic
line of ICD and cardiac resynchronization therapy devices and pacemakers.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
As the lead partner of a regional consortium, the University of
Washington was awarded a $15.4 million grant to develop an advanced, portable medical diagnostic system that can be used to
quickly diagnose diseases anywhere a health worker can walk to. From the list of companies involved in the project, which
includes Nanogen, the silicon microarray company, Micronics, the lab-on-a-card company, and PATH, a non-profit health strategy
company, the road points to a device that combines the latest miniaturized microfluidic analysis and sampling technology with
the latest genetic clinical analysis technology.
Commenting on the group was Paul Yager, lead investigator on
the project and Vice Chair and Professor at the University of Washington’s Department of Bioengineering, "This is a
formidable group. Each partner brings vital skills and experience to the mix. I believe this combination is what led to our
being selected from such a wide range of applicants and it's what will make our efforts successful.”
The award is one of 43 research projects that have been funded through
the $436 million Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative. The initiative is specifically focused to improve health care
and provide treatment for the diseases of the poor, the majority of diseases. That market is considered under served because
of market dynamics and differences in cost of living in different geographic areas.
The target size for the final working system is expected to fit
in a pocket, or about the size of a handheld computer.
Sirna Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:RNAI), a company that has taken
a RNAi approach to solve medical problems, reports that it has completed the initial closing of a $28.01 private placement
of its common stock and warrants. Venture capitalists included Sprout Group, Oxford Bioscience Partners, and Venrock Associates.
The funds are planned to further the development of Sirna-027 in AMD (age-related macular degeneration). The funding is
also expected to go towards two preclinical programs involving Hepatitis C and Dermatology.
NanoViricides, Inc. (Pink Sheets:NNVC) as a better way to reflect
the company’s nanomedicine focus has changed its name from Edot-com.com, Inc. to NanoViricides, Inc. and stock symbol
from ECMM to NNVC - effective July 5, 2005.
NanoViricides, Inc. is developing nanomaterials for viral therapy
based on technologies developed by Theracour Pharma. The five viruses the company lists as targets include HIV, HCV, Herpes,
Asian (bird) flu and Influenza.
The company defines a NanoViricide as a nanoparticle that contains
an encapsulated active pharmaceutical ingredient, which is designed for a specific type of virus. The NanoViricide, once in
the blood stream, is designed to locate, attack and immobilize specific virus particles. Once the virus particle is immobilized,
perhaps analogous to an insect in a spider’s web, the active pharmaceutical ingredient is injected into the virus by
the NanoViricide particle. The injection results, like the spiders bite, in the death of the virus particle (through the collapse
of the virus cell wall). The company first plans the development of HIV drugs first, then to license to pharmaceutical companies
Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ANDS), an anti-infective medicines
company, reports that as a result of the expiration of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements
Act, the company will receive an initial payment of $20 million from Novartis. The original agreement with Novartis was for
the development and commercialization of ANA975 for chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV). The company
also indicated that in addition to the $20 million payment, it is now eligible for $550 million in regulatory and commercial
milestone payments. These payments are contingent on the development and commercialization of ANA975.
Soon, one may just put a pair of eyeglass- like devices on when
the cell phone rings. One will then be all set to play a lively video game with a far away friend or have a serious video
teleconference with a business partner. With Kopin’s nanotechnology based microdisplays, Orange’s video service,
MicroOptical’s Kopin-enabled eyewear and Samsung’s cell phone one may have all that one needs to both work and
play in the modern world.
In this scenario, of the not to distant future, one will be delivered
movies, TV, photos, web sites or perhaps games through Orange SA mobile video service, then see the results with virtual big-screen
eyewear provided by MicroOptical Corporation. The infrastructure is just about there. The recent order from MicroOptical for
Kopin’s CyberDisplay 230 K microdisplays will provide the necessary hardware component to get the production lines moving.
Orange SA, a unit of French Telecom, which already has 52 million
customers in 16 countries, will bundle together the complete package. That package will include MicroOptical binocular video
eyewear and Samsung’s SGH-D600 cell phone as the “Orange World” wireless multimedia service. The complete
system has already been demonstrated at the European Research and Innovation Exhibition in Paris and will be available to
Orange’s customers in October of 2005.
Will the product be a hit? The dual eye display, consisting of quarter-inch
diagonals provides a 12 inch big screen virtual image. The eyewear itself only weighs 2.5 ounces. The device does accept composite
video input (NTSC or PAL), so the eyewear can be plugged into devices such as DVD players, and even perhaps screenless portable
Future applications may include special eyeglasses to adjust for
even the most severe vision problems. MicroOptical also has a strategic alliance with Essilor International, a company with
over 25,000 employees, for ophthalmic eyewear devices. Essilor manufactured over 180 million lenses in 2004.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
July 7th, 2005
Depomed, Inc. (NASDAQ:DEPO) as a result of the approval of Glumetza
for the treatment of Type II diabetes from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, has received a $25 million dollar payment
from Biovail Corporation. According to John W. Fara, Ph.D., Chairman of Depomed, "As anticipated, Biovail made the milestone
payment to us within the time frame called for in our agreement. We now look forward to the launch and commercialization of
the product in the United States and Canada and beginning to generate royalties from product sales in those regions." Depomed
expects to receive further payments from Biovail as product sales begin in the United States and Canada. To reduce the royalty
rate, Biovail has the option of making a $35 million buy-down payment.
Depomed, Inc. focuses on the development of oral-delivery based,
time-released drug formulas. The company has also received approval for its time-release tablets (Proquin XR) for the treatment
of urinary infections and has a Phase II trial underway for a post herpetic neuralgia treatment (Gabapentin GR).
In the United Kingdom, the International Development Secretary Hilary
Benn announced that £60 million would be available to eradicate polio. The funding is expected to be used to vaccinate 500
million children to ensure that polio can not resurface. 20 million is expected to be available by the end of 2005 with the
remaining 40 million pounds available in the 2006 to 2008 time frame. The report indicated that polio still afflicts 12 nations.
These were listed as Yemen, Nigeria, Indonesia, Sudan, India, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Niger, Mali, Cameroon and Angola.
The report also indicated that in 2004 over 90 percent of the 1,255 cases were found in Africa.
Galapagos (Euronext Brussels, GLPG; Euronext Amsterdam, GLPGA) a
genomics-based drug discovery company, has entered into an agreement with Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. relating to its SilenceSelect
technology. As part of the agreement, Galapagos will receive payments for that technology and its research services. Onno
van de Stolpe, CEO of Galapagos, commented on the agreement, "We are very pleased that Novartis Pharmaceuticals has decided
to work with Galapagos for its expertise in knock-down technology and cellular assays. This collaboration will allow Novartis
Pharmaceuticals UK Limited to utilize our SilenceSelect target discovery engine in a very beneficial way. We are confident
that our technology will perform well in the hands of Novartis. Our SilenceSelect platform has proven to deliver for our other
partners, opening significant opportunities for continued collaboration."
Novartis plans to utilize the research and technology from Galapagos
to validate drug targets. This will be done through the analysis of protein functions found in the primary cells of
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
First is was wireless, now San Diego, according to the San Diego
Union Tribune, is set to receive approximately $100 million from The National Institutes of Health. According to the newspaper,
the goal of the grants is to develop a better understanding of genes to further develop drugs and treatments. The grants are
part of a $300 million nationwide program called the Protein Structure Initiative to determine the three dimensional shape
The Tribune also reports that two companies will administer the
funds. These include, Structural Genomix (SGX), responsible for $48.5 million and The Scripps Research Institute, responsible
for $52.7 million.
Stuctural Genomix reported that it will allocate half of the funding,
which it says came from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and is called a National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Cooperative Agreement Award, to institutions and use the other half for its own research. Institutions that are
expected to receive funding as part of the grant are the University of California ay San Diego, the Burnham Institute and
the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation – according to the Tribune.
According to Dr. Stephen K. Burley, SGX's chief scientific officer
"We are pleased that SGX's comprehensive protein structure research efforts to date laid the groundwork for this NIH award.
Understanding of protein structures plays an integral role in comprehending complex biological systems and in developing the
next generation of drug targets and medicines. This award gives SGX an unprecedented opportunity to favorably impact both
basic biomedical research and the drug discovery process."
Westside Medical Imaging, located in Beverly Hills, California,
now offers one of the most precise medical imaging technologies on the market. The company has made available its 64-Slice
CT scanner, in an off-hospital site location, for the quick analysis of coronary abnormalities before they become a major
problem. The company also indicates that the CT Scanner can also be used to detect diseases such as cancer before other common
tests reveal them.
Noting the stealth-like nature of heart attacks, Norman Lepor, M.D.,
a cardiologist at Westside, also commented on the very fast CT test, "Nationally, about 50% of heart attack victims have no
warning symptoms. With the 64-slice CT scanner, we can detect signs of potential cardiovascular problems in just a few seconds."
The 64-slice CT allows for the precise identification of both calcified and non-calcified plaques and allow for the early
initiation of treatments to prevent heart attacks and sudden cardiac death.
Another cardiologist at Westside, Hooman Madyoon, M.D., pointed
out that the test was noninvasive, “Because the technology takes such a clear image of the fast-moving heart muscle
and arteries, we can now identify potentially life threatening coronary artery disease at its earliest stage, without discomfort
to the patient because the procedure is noninvasive."
Westside also said its faciolity is used to educate physicians
on the benefits of noninvasive CT-coronary angiography. The system used at the facility is the Siemens SOMATOM Sensation Cardiac
64, which the company says is used in 11 of the top 15 hospitals in America. Unlike the hospitals though, the test is streamlined
and doesn’t require repeat trips – according to the the company.
Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ:NVAX), noted for its micellar technology,
a topically applied drug delivery system based on oil and water nanoemulsions, has completed $4 million in financing as a
result of a stock offer of 4,000,000 shares priced at $1.00 a share.
Novavax currently offers prescription pharmaceutical products and
prenatal vitamins. One of its products based on micellar nanoparticles is ESTRASORB. That topical emulsion lotion is
used to deliver estrogen to help manage vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women. Another planned micellar based product,
Androsorb, a topical testosterone treatment, has completed Phase I trials.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
July 5th, 2005
Isolagen, Inc. (AMEX:ILE), a company focused on the development
and commercialization of autologous cellular therapies for soft and hard tissue regeneration, announced positive results for
its Phase II dental study for the treatment of interdental papillary insufficiency. Dr. Michael McGuire, Past President of
the American Academy of Periodontology and a clinical researcher in tissue engineering stated, "The results are very encouraging.
The Isolagen Process appears to offer the potential to grow gum tissue which is something that no other product or treatment
has ever been shown to do before."
Dr. Lindner, Senior Vice President of Medical and Business Affairs,
also commented on the positive results, "Based on these positive results, the company and its clinical experts expect to prepare
protocols for Phase III Pivotal trials to assess the efficacy and safety of our dental product candidate for the treatment
of interdental papillary insufficiency. These clinical trials will be traditional double blind, internal and placebo controlled
studies and will be designed to assess the therapeutic efficacy and safety of our dental product candidate as an aesthetic
product for improving the appearance of gum tissue.”
The company,however, indicated that although the Investigator determined
that the results were superior to the placebo, the linear measurements did not provide statistically significant data. This,
however, was attributed to a lack of accuracy with the measurement instrument. The company plans to investigate other forms
Autologous cellular therapy, according to the company, uses a patient’s
own cells, multiplies them, and then injects them back into the patient.
Neurome Selected for Grant to Develop Needle-less Vaccines
Neurome, Inc. has reported that it has been selected for a grant from the Foundation for the National Institutes
of Health through the Grand Challenges in Global Health Initiative. The grant would be for the development of a needle-free
vaccine delivery system to be developed over the course of the next three years. The new system aimed for is also expected
to be simple, not require complex equipment and be able to be administered without the need for specialized training. In order
to address the challenge, the plan is to develop the vaccines for specific receptors in airway or intestinal epithelium (external
lining) to protect against infectious organisms.
According to Warren Young, Ph.D., President and Chief Operating
Officer of Neurome, "This project continues the process from our successful application of Neurome's TOGA gene discovery tools
toward the development of technologies and therapeutic products that promise to have a significant impact on global health."
Cevena Bioproducts, Inc. has secured $6.0 Million in funding to
commercialize its ViscoFiber product, a beta-glucan concentrate, derived from oats and barley through a patented fractionation
process. The new product is used to improve the health of the heart and offers satiety benefits.
ViscoFiber is presently in clinical trials to evaluate its effect
on cholesterol levels, glycemic response for heart health and efficacy for gastrointestinal health.
The lead investor for the funding was The Business Development Bank
of Canada's Venture Capital Group. Others investors that participated included Golden Opportunities Fund, Foragen Technologies,
Inc and AVAC, Ltd.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
July 1st, 2005
NutraCea (OTC:NTRZ) (BULLETIN BOARD: NTRZ) has reported that it
has entered into a binding letter of intent with Food Trading Dominicana S.A., the largest rice milling company in the Dominican
Republic. Under the plan, Dominicana is to become the manufacturing and distribution hub for RiSolubles for the Caribbean,
Central and South America. To accomplish this, NutraCea will construct a rice processing facility that will have the capacity
to generate one million servings per day. The rice processing facility will convert rice bran, a byproduct of rice, which
has in the past been not used, to a nutritious and inexpensive source of food.
The company will supply initially RiSolubles, NutraCea’s primary
product, to minimum of 100,000 children per day during the construction phase of the facility. RiSolubles forms the basis
of a highly nutritious drink, which will be given to the children.
The agreement was met with an enthusiastic response from government
and the two companies. Rafael Alburquerque, Vice President of the Dominican Republic was quoted as saying, "This is a very
important initiative, not only from a business and economic perspective, but from a humanitarian one that we believe will
benefit the most underprivileged population of our country."
Paul Gautreaux and Juan Jose Agramonte, the co-owners of Food Trading Dominicana, S.A., indicated
their desire to move with the plan and to help commercialize NutraCea’s other products that deal with the treatment
of a number of common medical problems, "As the largest rice processing mill in the Dominican Republic, we are eager to move
forward on this new joint venture with NutraCea. Food Trading Dominicana has played an important role in the economic success
within the Dominican Republic and has played an ongoing role in providing support for meaningful social progress within the
country. We are pleased to be able to be a partner in this initiative within the Dominican Republic as well as potentially
other countries within this hemisphere. Additionally, we plan to commercialize NutraCea's proprietary, patented formulations,
which target specific health concerns such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis and diabetes through our existing and expanding
Bradley Edson, President of NutraCea noted that the economic model
for the project has already been tested, "NutraCea is pleased to be able to partner with an established Dominican company
to launch our international initiative. Our technology enables us to transform thousands of metric tons of rice bran, a by-product
of rice milling, into a powerful nutritional drink that can benefit the nation's children. This social and economic model
has already been tested in Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua, and is now ready to be demonstrated on a commercial basis."
Margie Adelman, Senior Vice-President of NutraCea, indicated that
the Dominican Republic will be the final proving ground for the product and the world hunger program, "Our intention is to
work with our joint venture partner to create a large central procuring and processing entity with its operations anchored
in the Dominican Republic for exportation of the processed and finished products throughout the Caribbean and Central and
South America. We feel the Dominican Republic represents the ideal economic and political partner to demonstrate NutraCea's
worldwide initiative to increase world food supplies and significantly impact world hunger. We believe that this project will
become a model system for the expansion of our operations throughout South and Central America."
BioPhysics Assay Laboratory (BioPAL), Inc., with its gadolinium
nanocolloids and microspheres, indicates it has devised a readily usable technology to image and track injected stem cells.
The technology is expected to be central in the determination of the effectiveness of stem cells for the regeneration of cells
in specific organs and areas. The technique involves the labeling of stem cells with nanometer sized colloids and the precise
determination of the number of delivered cells to the target anatomical tissue, bone or organ. The microspheres role in the
process is to determine the quantity of living tissue in a region and the blood flow to a region. The company says that with the technology, a researcher can determine the amount of living tissue that has grown as
a result of a stem cell treatment.
Two of the company’s executives helped explain the technology.
Ernest Groman, Ph.D., VP R&D, said, "Our cell tracking nanocolloids are unique materials that have powerful properties
including low toxicity, stability to sterilizing procedures and high assay sensitivity. In fact, the ability to image a gadolinium-based
nanocolloid with MRI was thought to be impossible, but we have discovered a new technology that we have designated Proton
Cascade which makes this important new contrast agent highly effective."
Christopher Reinhardt, Ph.D., President and CEO, added, "BioPAL
labeled microspheres are easy to use, very robust and have high sensitivity yielding superior measurements of blood flow and
new tissue generation. Detection down to the level of single microspheres is possible. We are confident that all of these
new products will play a central role in helping to bring effective cellular therapies to patients as soon as possible."
One concern with stem cell technology are stem cells that don’t
reach the desired target destination. Stem cells lodged in non-targeted locations have the potential for unwanted side effects.
BioPAL’s technology can also be used to help determine the percentage of stem cells that don’t reach their target
Immunicon Corporation. (NASDAQ:IMMC) has completed the sale of 4,137,902
shares of common stock generating gross proceeds of $19.7 million. Immunicon is focused on the development and commercialization
of cell- and molecular-based human diagnostic and life science research products. Within that realm the company has concentrated
its efforts on cancer disease management. Specifically its platforms are used for the selection and analysis of rare cells
that circulate in the blood stream, such as tumor cells and endothelial cells.
The Medical Technology Journal
Torax Medical Inc. has completed a $10 million Series B round
of financing. The round was led by Thomas, McNerney & Partners. Other investors included , Mayo Medical Ventures and Sanderling
Ventures. The company intends to use the proceeds for pre-clinical testing of an implant for the treatment of gastroesophageal
reflux disease (also referred to as GERD or acid reflux). According to the company, chronic acid reflux affects about 20 million
people in the United States.
Todd Berg, Torax Medical's CEO indicated that the technology under
development would overcome limitations of present day treatments of the problem, "We believe our proprietary technology has
the potential to correct the underlying defect of GERD and help millions of the people who suffer from this disease. Our objective
is to provide a measurable cure for this high health-risk condition in a way that is minimally invasive to the patient."
Topping off a $5.7 million Series A round in 2004, Exagen Diagnostics,
Inc. has completed a $7 million Series B round of financing. Participants in the new round included Tullis-Dickerson &
Co., the round leader, as well as vSpring Capital and Wasatch Venture Fund.
Waneta Tuttle, Ph.D., Exagen’s President, outlined the budget
for the funds, "This round of funding gives Exagen the resources to accelerate our go-to-market plans and advance our pipeline.
We plan to be the first provider of genomic marker IVD kits for breast cancer that enable widespread use in any CLIA-certified
laboratory. Our first tests are the Key2 Breast Cancer Prognosis panel of products that detect changes in DNA copy number
in both hormone receptor-positive and hormone receptor-negative tumors."
Exagen’s IVD kits are used to predict the risk of the advancement
of a disease and a patient's individual response to a specific drug planned for treatment. The company in addition to its
breast cancer tests, plans tests for hepatitis C in order to determine if a patient will respond to treatments with interferon
STMicroelectronics’ and Acacia’s Microlaboratory Agreement Signals
Chip Industry 's Advance Into the Forefront of Medical Technology
STMicroelectronics, which first introduced its genetic Polymerase
Chain Reaction (PCR) MEMS-based silicon chip in 2002, has furthered its involvement with the biotechnology market
through a co-development agreement with CombiMatrix Group, a unit of Acacia Research Corporation (NASDAQ: CBMX) (NASDAQ:ACTG).
The agreement, which will received financial support from STMicroelectronics, will seek to integrate CombiMatrix’s ElectroChemical
Detection Technology (ECD), with STMicroelectronics In-Check Lab-on-Chip platform for applications in the point-of-care diagnostics
One of the goals of the project is to develop a feature rich and
more sensitive technology than current fluorescent/optical detection technology.
The Medical Technology Journal
pSivida Limited (NASDAQ:PSDV) and the Singapore General Hospital
have reported on PhaseIIa clinical trials as a result of the use of BrachySil, a new brachytherapy treatment for inoperable
primary liver cancer. Results of the trial, conduted at Singapore General on eight patients, indicated tumor regression with
what appears to be no significant adverse affects. The patients were evaluated at three and six months periods following
According to Gavin Rezos, Managing Director of pSivida, "This report
confirms the excellent results for BrachySil that we previously announced at the 12-week interim study time point, and will
provide not only a robust foundation for future clinical development and regulatory filing, but also a springboard for our
ongoing licensing activities with partners looking to enhance their own portfolios of specialist cancer therapies."
Dr. Pierce Chow, Senior Consultant, Hepatobiliary and General Surgery
at Singapore General Hospital, also expressed optimism about the treatment, "From the perspective of patients suffering with
advanced cancer of this kind, BrachySil promises to offer the possibility of an effective, safe and relatively pain-free
treatment, which can potentially improve both the duration and quality of life. We, at the SGH, are very encouraged by the
promising data seen to date with BrachySil(TM) and are optimistic that subsequent clinical trials will continue to show positive
results in this and other serious cancer indications."
Among many of the attributes of the technology is that it
is a simple procedure that permits the patient to be discharged from the hospital the next day. BrachySil, is a micron-sized
nanostructured silicon particle administered through a needle directly into tumors. Within the BrachySil is radioactive
32-phosphorus (32-P) used to induce tumorcide.
One of the features of the technology, as opposed to other methods,
is that the radioactive material is immobilized and because of this apparently has little negative effect on adjacent healthy
tissue. According to pSivida, the “key finding is that BrachySil microparticles remain in the tumor with
no or insignificant detectable radioactive leakage. This observation is a very significant outcome for the trial. Unlike other
liver brachytherapy approaches that involve delivery via the hepatic artery which, in some cases, results in radioactivity
becoming associated with healthy tissue, BrachySil is administered directly into tumors restricting radioactivity to
the tumor itself.”
MemoMind Pharma, an affiliate of Austria-based Ebewe Pharmaceuticals
has announced the availability of MempProve, a neuropeptide tablet, that is used to improve short term memory. The company
indicates that the drug has the capability to improve short term memory in middle aged and older adults, on average, by 15
Thomas Crook, PhD, former Chief of the National Institute of Mental
Health's Geriatric Psychopharmacology Program, noted how fortunate we are to have the Age Related Memory Problem (ARMP) tablet,
"Age-related memory problems are a very real issue for millions of adults. As we all get older, we are extremely fortunate
to have this easily-administered neuropeptide tablet available to help counter ARMP and preserve vital memory function."
To further validate the product, MemoMind pointed to a placebo controlled
trial published in the journal International Clinical Psychopharmacology. In that test, memory was shown to improve significantly
with the peptide.
Supratek Pharma Inc. has reported the discovery of a new drug
target that the company considers a key to stopping the spread of aggressive and deadly forms of cancer.
Dr. Francis Bellido, President of Supratek, in reporting the development first explained the cancer growth mechanism,
"This is very exciting news in cancer research. Ultimately, the cause of death for most cancer patients is metastasis, the
spread of cancer from primary to distant sites. This is the first step towards developing drugs capable of halting this
Identified as the potential culprit, which allows cancer to spread
quickly, is a protein secreted by cancer cells known as the Metastasis Associated Protein. This protein is said to induce
the formation of blood vessels with the intended function of nourishing the cancer cells. Dr. Bellido noted that the
protein is now the subject of the company’s present efforts, since its function in cancer progression
has just been realized, "The protein has been studied for years, but its role in cancer progression eluded scientists
until now. Our research team has been working diligently to translate this new knowledge into new antimetastatic
Supratek also noted that several drug candidates have been identified
for the new target. The company is optimistic that a new drug treatment will arise much faster than is the usual case in medical
The Medical Technology Journal
In an effort led by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the
Grand Challenges in Health Initiative has offered 43 grants with a total value of $436.6 million. The grants are for
the development of medical technology to serve the needs of the world’s poorest countries. With the announcement
the initiative listed a wide range of projects that are to be the focus of the research.
The initiative is supported by an existing $450 million commitment
from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a $27.1 million commitment from the Wellcome Trust, and $4.5 million from the
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).
The Gates Foundation is credited with the establishment of the Grand
Challenges in 2003, in partnership with the National Institutes of Health. Bill Gates, co-founder of the Bill & Melinda
Gates Foundation with the announcement noted how little research was directed towards the diseases of the poor, "It's shocking
how little research is directed toward the diseases of the world's poorest countries. By harnessing the world's capacity for
scientific innovation, I believe we can transform health in the developing world and save millions of lives."
IsoRay Medical, Inc. with the close of its latest round reported
that it has raised over $10 million in the last 18 months. The company offers a proprietary medical isotope, Cesium-131, for
the treatment of prostrate cancer. The isotope is considered a low-level radioactive treatment alternative. According to Roger
Girard, CEO of IsoRay, "We believe Cesium-131 to be a very effective option for men choosing brachytherapy to treat their
prostate cancer. We expect it to kill the cancerous cells more rapidly, with a shorter duration and with less side-effects.
This will allow patients to return to a normal lifestyle within a very short time period."
The company plans another funding round in October of 2005. The
company notes that over 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostrate cancer in the United States this year.
The Medical Technology Journal
Orqis Medical Corporation, which has developed the Cancion CRS cardiac
recovery system, has announced the close of its Series D round. The round, which brought in $22.7 million, is expected to
be used for further evaluation of the company’s heart therapies. According to Marvin Konstam, M.D., Medical Director
at Orqis Medical, "This financing will allow Orqis Medical to complete scientific and clinical validation of its novel hemodynamic
discovery that continuous blood flow augmentation to the descending aorta treats underlying mechanisms responsible for heart
failure. This discovery could be a significant advance in the treatment of patients who suffer from heart failure."
The Cancion CRS cardiac recovery system is used to treat, according
to the company, “the underlying disease progression of congestive heart failure.” The company’s technology
is also focused on the treatment of cardiac patients that have been considered untreatable with present modern day medicine.
Investors in the round included Boston Scientific Corporation, Lighthouse
Capital Partners and previous investors.
Diseases without markets, a problem that keeps much of the world
sick, has been given more attention through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The four-year grant, for
$5.4 million, was announced by BIO Ventures for Global Health (BVGH) at BIO 2005. The company estimated that 90 percent of
global disease receives less than 10 percent of health research funding.
Richard Klausner, MD, Executive Director of the Gates Foundation's
Global Health program alluded to the biotech’s industry’s capability to easily eradicate most of the world’s
diseases, "The biotech industry has tremendous potential for developing new therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics against
diseases of the developing world. For too long, funding, market, and information barriers have prevented biotech companies
from realizing this potential. We believe that BIO Ventures for Global Health will provide the means to help industry overcome
some of these barriers. We congratulate BVGH in taking leadership in helping to bring the potential of biotechnology to improving
health equity in our world."
Cardiva Medical, Inc. has closed an $8.3 million round of financing.
The Series B round was led by Stockton Partners, Inc and included investments from Sycamore Ventures, Harbinger VC Corp.,
and W.I. Harper Group.
Cardiva offers the Boomerang ClosureWire device, which has been
cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to assist in the closing of femoral artery puncture sites. That technology,
a vascular closure technology, according to Ken Goldman, M.D., Managing Director of Stockton Partners, may provide the underpinnings
for the capture of the vascular closure market, "We think that Cardiva and its Boomerang technology have the ability to become
the market leader in vascular closure. This financing will allow Cardiva to continue its rapid sales growth in the U.S. and
accelerate the introduction of its new products to the marketplace."
According to Cardiva, the worldwide vascular closure market is in
the neighborhood of $1 billion to $1.5 billion.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
NutraCea (OTC Bulletin Board: NTRZ), a company focused on nutrition
product development, has launched a program to market its rice bran based food and nutrition products to feed the world's
hungry. The company, has devised a way to turn the nutrients of rice bran into food and other nutritional supplements.
Rice bran, which has been traditionally considered a waste by-product
of rice, will be central to the company's plan to feed the world. The company plans to align with foreign governments and
rice mills to deploy its stabilization technology, which will convert the rice bran into food products.
According to Brad Edson, President of NutraCea,"An aggressive plan
is underway to build relationships with governments and owners of large rice mills that share in the vision to create a new
industry and further their own economic development and stability. Equally important, these programs would help provide a
long term solution for food security for these countries as well a dynamic revenue stream for NutraCea."
Mr. Edson went on to comment on the marketing work done so far,
and the company's involvement in world hunger programs, "We see an enormous potential to pursue rapid deployment of our global
strategic marketing development. We met with the Ambassadors of several rice producing nations and government organizations
that are eager to move forward on our business proposal. From the inception of NutraCea, its Founder's vision was to positively
impact world hunger, and we are still firmly committed to that endeavor. NutraCea plans to execute on the success of previous
feeding programs and studies, which unequivocally demonstrated the value of our RiSolubles in feeding programs in children
throughout Central America.”
OrthoLogic Corp. (NASDAQ:OLGC) announced the publication of
a preclinical study related to its Chrysalin (TP508) fracture repair program. The journal of Orthopaedic Research, affiliated
with the Orthopedic Research Society, published details about the study.
One of the study's goal was to determine if Chrysalin, when injected
into an experimental fracture, would upregulate genes that control the inflammatory phase of fracture repair and result in
new vasculature into the fracture callus. Affymetrix's genomescale profiling was used in the study.
The study indicated that Chrysalin "induced expression of inflammatory
response modifiers and angiogenesis-related genes." As well, the study showed that Chrysalin accelerated fracture repair.
Mechanical tests were used to test bone strength.
As an alternative to heavy, 200 pound ultrasonic imaging machines,
SonoSite, Inc. (NASDAQ:SONO), has begun shipments of its new eight pound design, called MicroMaxx. The new ultrasonic imager
takes advantage of new advances in integrated circuit technology, which permits more electronic functions to be placed into
a standard sized chip package.
Kevin M. Goodwin, SonoSite President and CEO noted that the market
was once again receptive to its product, "Over the last several weeks we have introduced the MicroMaxx system to physicians,
sonographers and hospital administrators across the medical spectrum in the US and international markets. Although still in
the early stages, we have been pleased with the high degree of enthusiasm expressed for the product. Once again the SonoSite
team has executed an on-time launch and on-time delivery of a new product platform."
SonoSite, spun off and founded as a portable ultrasonic company,
had revenue growth of 37% in 2004. The company with $116 million. in sales is considered one of the leaders in the hand-carried
ultrasound market, with over 20,000 units installed.
Martin Nutraceuticals Inc. (Pink Sheets:MTNU) has suggested
that women suffering from arthritis take a closer look at Arthrizyme as an alternative to Ibuprofen. Ibuprofen, the company
notes, has been indicted as a source of breast cancer. The company took the following quote from the Journal of the National
Cancer Institute, in support of its claim, "1,500 women who have been taking Ibuprofen for 5 years or more, are at an increased
risk of breast cancer by 51%."
Dr. Martin, Director of Research and Product Development at Martin
Nutraceuticals Inc. commented on the bad news about Ibuprofen, "These results ought to scare the life out of arthritic patients
on Ibuprofen. With the use of Celebrex and Vioxx also causing great concern, the market is looking for a safe alternative
that is highly effective. The answer is found in Arthrizyme, the all natural patent-pending systemic oral enzyme formula developed
by Martin Nutraceuticals Inc."
Martin Nutraceuticals notes that Arthrizyme operates through the
breakdown of harmful protein and 1 out of 3 Americans have some form of Arthritis.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Philips Medical Systems has opened an advanced magnetic resonance
imaging (MRI) facility at is Cleveland operation. The 7.0 tesla system at the facility has one of the highest levels
of sensitivity for a MRI machine. It is to be used in the study of neurological diseases such as Alzheimers, Parkinsons and
Today, most common MRI scanners are specified at 1.5 teslas. High
end machines are rated at 3.0 tesla. Tesla is a unit of magnetic strength that reflects the imaging resolution capabilities
of MRI scanners.
Dr. Michael V. Knopp, Chairman of the Department of Radiology
at The Ohio State University and Principle Investigator, commented on the advanced 7.0 tesla system, "The advanced capability
of the 7.0T research system has exciting implications for some of medicine's most difficult challenges. Although we are still
in the early stages of research, it is clear that the 7.0T capability suggests that the system will be particularly strong
in many areas of oncology and at imaging degenerative neurological diseases - Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and multiple sclerosis
- as well as other neurological conditions such as epilepsy, since it is clear that the 7.0T produces improved imaging of
blood flow and oxygen use in the brain."
TriMed Research, Inc. has secured 5 million Euros in a Series A
funding round. The funding is expected to go towards clinical studies for the company’s MAA technology. MAA is an anti-infective
compound used for the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases. Because the technology is not an anti-biotic, bacteria cannot
develop a resistance to it. According to Dr. David Winter, CEO at TriMed Research. "MAA represents an opportunity for the
development and introduction of a new class of anti-infective compounds. Unlike antibiotics, MAA does not have the potential
of resistance development and does not fall under the constraints of veterinary use of antibiotic therapy."
Grant Life Sciences (OTC Bulletin Board: GLIF) expects to complete
$2 million in financing in connection with 10 percent Callable Secured Convertible Notes. The company plans to use the funding
to increase its revenue stream from its AccuDx product line. According to Stan Yakatan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
"In addition to providing us with working capital, this financing allows us to begin executing our plans to generate revenues
from our AccuDx product line, and it allows us to substantially advance development of our cervical cancer blood test."
Sinovac Biotech Ltd. (AMEX:SVA) has announced its first purchase
order for its Bilive hepatitis vaccine. The agreement was signed with Hunan Province Center for Disease Control (CDC).on the
16th of June 2005.
According to Sinovac's VP of Marketing and Sales, Mr. Changju Fu,
sales of the product are expected to grow rapidly, "Sinovac's products are sold in the private market to individuals. Since
people have more disposable income the demand for Sinovac's product keeps increasing. We expect to achieve rapid market penetration
with Bilive in China. Moreover, we are projecting sales growth rates similar to past Healive sales."
Sinovac also noted that the Hepatitis B virus infects approximately
800,000 Chinese citizens and two billion people in the world.
The Life Sciences Greenhouse of Central Pennsylvania (LSGPA) has
made an investment of $250,000 for the development of biological and chemical sensors. Hanson Technologies Inc. received the
funding, which is expected to be matched by other investors. Ben Franklin Technology Partners recently approved over $129,00
in funding for Hanson to develop its sensor technology.
Hanson is involved in the development of tests for Mad Cow disease.
According to Chairman and CEO, William Hanson, "There is a growing sentiment among consumers and health officials that the
United States should test as many cattle as possible to allow unfettered access to export markets and that transition can
only occur when the next generation of BSE diagnostic equipment, like what we are developing, is introduced. We are very excited
about the investment by the Life Sciences Greenhouse and believe it will be critical to the refinement of our patented and
licensed technology." According to Hanson in 2004 alone there were over 11 million Mad Cow tests performed.
Hanson, which has developed a definitive test for the determination
of mad cow disease (BSE Prion Detection), also indicates that other applications for its sensor technology include milk antibiotics
testing and infectious disease testing.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Psivida has announced the issuance of another patent. This patent,
a Korean patent, refers to the electronic based properties of BioSilicon, the company's silicon based tissue repair scaffolds.
BioSilicon scaffolds give a directed path for tissue to attach itself to and grow.
One of the applications Psivida refers to the use of Micro-electro-mechanical
devices to assist in the implant process and for hip and knee prostheses applications. One use of MEMS devices is to measure
bone strength and strain. Hip replacement operations require significant post-operative monitoring to ensure that the replacement
procedure doesn't result in complications.
pSivida Managing Director, Gavin Rezos summarized the market
briefly, "The global market for products enhancing bone growth and fusion is growing rapidly and this trend is likely to continue
as the requirement for specialist management of a variety of orthopedic conditions increases."
The patent was assigned Korean Patent Number 488643.
Prolacta Bioscience, a company focused on milk bank operations
for infants and premature babies, raised $4 million in a Series B round. The funds are planned for the construction of a pharmaceutical
processing facility, and further operations in the milk bank area, which includes further product development efforts.
Elena Medo, CEO of Prolacta Bioscience, took the funding announcement
as an opportunity to explain why breastmilk can be very important in the treatment of newborn infants, "Breastmilk contains
inherent immunological, therapeutic and nutritional properties that need to be available for patients, particularly premature
babies. These funds will enable the company to focus on processing human donor milk to ensure it is as safe as possible. The
success of this financing round is evidence of Prolacta's long-term commitment to the safety and availability of human milk."
Siemens through a signed agreement with Sensant Corporation
to acquire the company, will have available Sensant’s micromaching technology to develop Capacitive Microfabricated
Ultrasonic Transducers (CMUT) for use in medical imaging applications. These types of transducers are expected to enable what
Siemens calls 3D / 4D volumetric imaging systems.
Klaus Hambuechen, President and CEO of Siemens Medical Solutions
Ultrasound Division, mentioned that, "Not only should this technology enable higher frequency imaging, which will allow clinicians
to view the smallest details within the body, but the integrated circuit technology should also deliver superior quality control
and manufacturing processes. Additionally, it will be easier to tightly integrate the electronics of the transducer and the
ultrasound system. This improved integration is where the greatest possibilities for ultrasound imaging and manufacturing
advancements can be realized, especially in the area of volumetric (4D) imaging."
To discuss the capability of silicon ultrasound technology
to enable a better understanding of disease and lower medical care costs was Igal Ladabaum, CEO of Sensant Corporation, "We
believe the combination of technologies from Sensant Corp. and Siemens Ultrasound will position the company to streamline
advanced transducer development through the power of silicon ultrasound technology and allow the realization of cost-effective
two dimensional (2D) matrix array transducers capable of volumetric 4D imaging. As a result, complete detailed volume images
will enable a better understanding of disease in 3D and will simplify image acquisition and interpretation. By enabling clinicians
to reach a confident diagnosis faster and more easily, volumetric 4D imaging will improve patient care and reduce overall
costs to patients and the healthcare system."
The CMUT ultrasonic transducers look and operate like miniature
drums. Seven of the tiny drums, fit into the width of a hair will transmit and receive sounds. In order to develop complete
ultrasound subsystems, hundreds or even thousands of the drums are integrated into a chip or tiny ultrasound catheters –
to take precise ultrasonic pictures of very small internal forms.
Hambuechen emphasized the critical size, "The size of catheter transducers
is critical in diagnostic imaging and the CMUT technology should further enable the development of miniaturized catheter transducers,
enabling clinicians to better visualize functionality within the heart, for example, where plaque or obstructions could be
more easily detected."
Hambuechen also commented on the breaking of a new medical imaging
cost-performance barrier, "As a result, we anticipate quality to be increased and costs to be reduced, which would improve
access for clinicians and patients to advanced diagnostic technologies like the AcuNav catheter."
The technology however is not expected to be available for two to
three years. Plans are to integrate the technology into a complete line of ultrasound imaging systems.
Considered the world’s largest microarray and microtechnology
conference, Chips to Hits, has been scheduled to be held at the Boston Convention and Expo Center from September 12th to September
15th. The Chips to Hit conference, which focuses on the intersection of semiconductor technology and medical technology, that
is microfluidic, micromechanical, microoptical and microelectrical technology has over 100 exhibitors that have technology
related to both fields.
STMicroelectronics, which has been involved with micromachine technology for several
years will be in attendance along with two other MEMs vendors, SiMEMS Pte Ltd. and TECAN. Nanogen, one of the first companies
that integrates the silicon world with miniaturized lab technology will also be there. Big names in the DNA microarray world
will also exhibit. These include Affymetrix, Applied Biosystems, GE Healthcare and Roche. IBM Corporation is also on the list
The conference is to be held as part of the 4th Annual Molecular
Diagnostics and Personalized Medicine conference.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
June 20th, 2005
Mosaic Ready to Market Weight Patch Ready
Mosaic Nutraceuticals (OTC:MCNJ) has announced that it "has completed
composition" of its VitalHealth Premium Weight Loss Patch. The President of Mosaic Nutraceuticals, Charlie Townsend on announcement
of the product said, "We view our VitalHealth Premium Weight Loss patch as another key product to augment our VitalHealth
Premium Candy Chew line. We believe that dieters will see enhanced results by using our VitalHealth Diet Patch and our very
flavorful LeanLicious Candy chew with Hoodia Gordonii".
The weight patch consists of nutrients that are said to assist in
weight loss programs.
RegeneRx Files $60 Million Registration
RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (AMEX:RGN) has filed a shelf registration
statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to sell up to $60 million of common stock and warrants. Once declared
effective, RegeneRX will be able to sell the securities.
RegeneRX focuses its attention on the impaired wound healing market.
These include wounds that are internal and external and result from prolonged immobility, disease and age. With the announcement
RegeneRX noted that impaired wound healing costs an estimated $5 to $7 billion per year and is expected to rise at a rate
of 10 percent a year. The company also stated that 1.5 million in the United States have impaired healing problems.
Along with those statistic the company reported that heart attacks
result in a million deaths annually in the United States and 13 million plus Americans suffer from coronary artery disease.
The company indicate heart attacks contribute to $250 billion in medical bills every year. Strokes also result in a high medical
bills, $54 billion.
Pfizer in Agreement With Vicuron to Merge = $1.9 Billion Deal
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and Vicuron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:MICU)(NASDAQ:Nuovo
Mercato) announced a definitive agreement whereby the two will merge operations. The purchase price of Vicuron has been initially
estimated at $1.9 billion. Vicuron has two products under review at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These products
are used for the treatment of fungal infections and for Gram-positive infections.
Arrowhead Tallies $20 Million from Warrant Redemption
Arrowhead Research Corporation (NASDAQ:ARWR), with the passing of
its warrant exercise deadline, reported net proceeds of over $20 million in cash from the redeemable warrants. Commenting
on the funding was R. Bruce Stewart, President of Arrowhead, "We continually see exciting opportunities in nanotechnology.
Having a strong cash position will allow us to act quickly when the right opportunities are identified. The proceeds from
the warrant call will allow Arrowhead to continue to fund existing companies, to expand our research programs, and to continue
implementing our overall business plan."
Arrowhead Research acquires and commercializes technology in the materials,
electronics, life sciences, and energy fields.
SuperArray Bioscience Announces Low-Cost Customized Personalized Microarray Program
SuperArray Bioscience has begun its program for the provision of affordable
custom designed genetic microarrays. The microarrays permit researcher to select the specific genetic content of the microarrays.
Besides the selection of microarrays from SuperArray's catalog, researchers will be now be able to choose from a much broader
set. According to David Martz, Director of Marketing and Sales at SuperArray, "researchers are really the ones who know which
genes are most important for their specific research project. Their gene lists may come from their own literature reviews,
or may be discovered through their own microarray-based surveys of the whole genome. This custom microarray service provides
them with the affordable flexibility they need to make the ideal focused microarray for their initial experiments or larger
screening and validation projects."
SuperArray noted that their GEArray system can be used with as little
as or less than 100 ng (nanograms) of total RNA. Mr. Martz went on to comment about the easy to use procedure and low cost,
"The method is very easy to perform and doesn't need any special or dedicated equipment. The low price also allows it to be
used routinely in any biological laboratory setting. With their flexibility, ease-of-use and low cost, these custom arrays
should be well-suited for a very wide range of laboratories interested in microarray experiments."
Analogic Reports Healthy Medical Sales in Quarterly Report
Analogic Corporation (NASDAQ: ALOG) with its fiscal third quarter
report, for the period ended April 30, 2005 indicated that sales of its advanced medical subsystems, which include Data Acquisition
Systems (DASs) for Computed Tomography (CT), and power systems for Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), have continued to grow.
The company also reported strength in the sale of its system products, which include medical and security CT systems.
The company's President, John Wood, also commented on the direction
of its medical imaging focus as well as its component and integrated circuit product lines, "We are also confident of our
direction in medical imaging," Wood said. "During the quarter we generated considerable customer enthusiasm for the first
prototypes of a new generation of compact, modular, liquid-cooled radio frequency amplifiers for MRI. Subsequent to the quarter,
we also delivered the first prototypes of a compact, proprietary Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) for a new
generation of CT data acquisition systems. Our medical subsystems business is very strong and growing."
Mr. Wood also noted that some product sales were below expectations,
"The results from operations, excluding the effect of the asset writedowns, were a modest improvement over the prior year's
third quarter. As we had anticipated, sales of Camtronics cardiac information management equipment were below original expectations
as a result of its revenue recognition issues earlier in the year. Fortunately, those issues are being resolved and there
are clear indications that the new management at Camtronics is affecting a turnaround of the business. Sales of Digital Radiography
(DR) systems through our ANEXA subsidiary and DR subsystems through our Anrad subsidiary were also lower than originally expected.
In addition, shipments of patient monitors were less than expected due to an OEM customer's decision to discontinue marketing
one of the models that we developed and manufactured for them."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Exelixis, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXEL) in an agreement with Symphony Capital
Partners, L.P. have formed Symphony Evolution Inc. The new company is to further develop XL647, XL999 and XL784. The formation
of the company involved an $80 million funding transaction. As part of the transaction, Symphony Evolution will be initially
capitalized at $40 million and has an option for an additional $20 million to $40 million investment. As part of the agreement,
Exelixis licensed intellectual property for the XL647, XL999 and XL784 compounds to Symphony Evolution.
The XL line of compounds are used in the treatment of a wide variety
of diseases includingcancer. Specificallly, the XL647, XL999 and XL880 are anti-cancer compounds currently in Phase I clinical
Exelixis is a genomics based drug discovery company.
Nutrigenomics, an emerging area of nutrition that bases dietary
needs on an individual's genetics, has entered into a research and licensing agreement with Rutgers, The State University
of New Jersey. The newly expanded agreement includes bioactive compounds, like anti-inflammatory compounds, in addition to
a technique for in vitro validation of anti-inflammatory compounds.
WellGen presently has two compounds that are expected to complete
clinical trials this year. These include an anti-arthritis compound and an anti-colon cancer compound.
WellGen's nutrigenomics' platform is used to examine the role nutrients
play in gene and protein expression. The company also has a gene screening technology, which is used to help analyze the role
of nutrients in the prevention of disease, or the expression of disease causing genes.
Dermacia, a company that develops cosmetics that are designed to
enhance the health and healing of the skin, has formed a biomedical research and development subsidiary, National Genecular
Institute, Inc. That subsidiary plans to study the role genes plan in skin and skin aging.
Matt Nicosia, Dermacia's CEO, elaborated on the potential of the
genetic research, "We strongly believe that a focused research effort in this area will accelerate the introduction of more
revolutionary products and will usher in the next generation of cosmeceuticals and skin care -- where each person can get
custom made, individualized products that are targeted only at their own skin's characteristics and susceptibilities, such
as sun sensitivity, tendency to form wrinkles, predisposition to early aging or skin cancers, etc. In the near future, we
expect each customer will be able to take a simple, self administered swab of their inner cheek, return it to National Genecular
Institute, and within days receive customized products for them based on their personal DNA."
Mr. Nicosia also outlined the uses of its present product line,
which are often used after serious burns or surgery, "This is a natural extension of Dermacia's cosmeceutical business. We
already produce specialized products, using our groundbreaking breathable base technology and unmatched color and cover, combined
with patent-pending proprietary ingredients and complexes that facilitate healing and permit the product to be applied directly
on raw skin following a burn or surgery. Research at National Genecular Institute is in the areas of nanotechnology applications,
molecular genetics of the skin, and skin diseases and conditions. We will be able to produce products that are so precisely
matched to the individual's skin needs as to address even genetic skin factors of which the customer is unaware because the
associated skin problems have not yet manifested themselves. This will give consumers the confidence that they are doing all
they can for the health of their skin today, as well as applying the best available prevention for their particular skin problems
Cosmeceutical is a term Dermacia uses that refers to cosmetics
and skin care products that have therapeutic benefits and active ingredients in addition to traditional color and coverage
Martin Nutraceuticals Inc. (Pink Sheets:MTNU) indicates that new
research indicates that Pine Bark Extract, the main active ingredient in the company’s Oxygenol product may be
helpful in the treatment of asthma.
Dr. A.W. Martin DC, Ph.D., RNCP, DNM, Director of Research at Martin
Nutraceuticals referenced a double blind placebo study published in the Nov/Dec 2004 issue of Journal of Asthma, "found that
60 children aged 6-18 were able to significantly reduce or discontinue their use of rescue inhalers with Pine Bark Extract,
more specifically Pycnogenol, more often than the placebo group."
Following a trend, Moore's Law, which has guided semiconductor advances
over the last 40 years, Affymetrix Inc. (NASDAQ:AFFX) reports that its new GeneChip Scanner (GCS) 3000 7G is able to scan
microarrays with feature sizes which range from 2.5 micron to 0.51 micron. The ability to scan such small features gives the
scanner the ability to analyze 500 percent more data than past generations.
Chip Leveille, Vice President of Product Technologies Group at Affymetrix
summarized the achievement, "The GeneChip Scanner 3000 7G combines advanced design improvements with high-resolution scanning
to dramatically improve efficiency in genetic analysis for gene expression and DNA analysis applications. We designed the
original GCS 3000 to be forward-compatible, requiring only a simple upgrade to support the next-generation of high-density
microarrays that develop as GeneChip technology continues to advance."
In comparison, today's most advanced digital semiconductors are
built with process technologies with feature lengths in the order of 0.09 microns, about five times smaller than the feature
length of the current biochips.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
June 15th, 2005
GenoMed, Inc, (National Quotation Bureau's Pink Sheets Symbol GMED),
has been allowed claims and will be issued a patent by the United States Patent Office for a technology that treats acute
kidney failure without a dialysis machine. In lieu of the traditional and expensive dialysis machine, the company has developed
a drug treatment based on an existing generic drug, which the company reports has an initial success rate of over 70 percent.
The company has plans for a more extensive trial.
GenoMed indicates that a dialysis-free treatment offers those in
adverse conditions, where access to kidney dialysis machines is difficult, such as war zones or impoverished countries, a
life-saving alternative. The company also indicated that first world countries interested "in reducing healthcare costs and
improving the atrocious mortality of acute renal failure" may want to investigate the company's treatment method.
Verus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company focused on the medical issues
of children, reported it has completed its initial $98 million in financing. That financing included $78 million in Series
A funding and $20 million in "product-specific royalty financing." The Series A financing was led by Domain Associates and
Prospect Venture Partners. Others that participated included Paul Royalty Fund, MPM Capital, Montreux Equity Partners, Athenian
Venture Partners, Windamere Venture Partners, and undisclosed private investors. Paul Royalty Fund provided the royalty financing
Olav B. Bergheim of Domain Associates discussed the focus of the
company, "We are very excited about Verus' pediatric-oriented strategy and their initial focus on the treatment of asthma,
allergies, and related diseases and conditions. With this financing in place, the company is well-positioned to become the
partner of choice for those companies interested in optimizing the development and commercialization of novel, pediatric-oriented
Verus Pharmaceuticals' present strategy is to build a product portfolio
through acquisitions and alliances.
Household and industrial strength pesticides, considered dangerous
to the ozone layer and at best questionable to the development and maintenance of human health, has opened another new growth
market opportunity - the natural pesticide market. Analogous to the renewable energy market, which draws its strength from
the total available market for oil, the safe alternative pesticide market draws its strength from the large and well-established
line of pesticides that have its roots in the 1950s.
Taking advantage of this market opportunity is AgraQuest, a biotechnology
company that develops "safe and environmentally friendly natural pest management products, " Others that see a market opportunity
are AgraQuest's investors, which have recently invested $14.35 million in a private round of financing.
In a short commentary about the market opportunities and its alignment
with investor TPG (Texas Pacific Group) Ventures, a venture capital firm with $500 million in capital, Dr. Mike Miille, AgraQuest's
CEO stated, "AgraQuest has many exciting opportunities to continue our global sales expansion and to launch new products in
our pipeline. The sizeable resources and experience of TPG will help create significant value for our customers and investors."
AgraQuest indicated it now expects to see rapid growth. Part of
this rapid growth may come about as consumers become more aware of the dangers pesticides pose to their drinking water from
simple actions of just watering their sprayed lawns. Local governments are also concerned. Pesticides, from lawn watering
enter storm drains and then the water supply, pose liability questions for them.
Other companies that invested in AgraQuest, which won the World
Technology Award for the Environment, included Capital LLC, Halcyon Capital. SAM Sustainability Private Equity LP, Sustainable
Performance Group (Unlisted) N.V., Swiss Re Investors, Berndt Trusts, JSS Management, Vivo Ventures and Boldcap Ventures.
Pegasus Biologics, Inc. has raised $10 million in a Series B funding
venture led by Three Arch Partners and Frazier HealthCare Ventures. Life Science Angel Investors also participated in the
round. The company is developing collagen-based implants.
France Dixon Helfer, Founder of the company described the applications
of the technology and the use of the funds, "Our innovative collagen-based technologies have enabled us to develop uniquely
intelligent bioimplants that will advance the field of soft tissue repair and replacement in orthopedic, spine and neurosurgery.
The proceeds of the financing will be used to launch our premier product, the Pegasus Biologics OrthADAPT Bioimplant, which
promises to raise the bar in orthopedic soft tissue repair. Furthermore, it will enable us to complete our human studies on
the DurADAPT Bioimplant for repair of the dura mater during craniotomy and spine operations, and for final development of
a biologic solution for replacement of the anterior cruciate ligament."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
June 14th, 2005
Siemens with the formation of its Siemens Medical Solutions Molecular
Imaging division, through a series of business combinations, has molecular plans that are expected to change the way diseases
are treated and diagnosed. Behind Siemens business strategy is a scientific premise that states that the onset of disease
is preceded with observable characteristic changes at the molecular and cellular level. The goal of molecular imaging is to
use molecules and cells to diagnose a disease at the very earliest stage. According to Siemens, "With molecular imaging,
earlier diagnosis of disease will be possible, since changes at the molecular level always precede anatomical structural changes.”
Molecular imaging systems may eventually also significantly reduce
health costs. According to Erich Reinhardt, Ph.D., President and CEO, Siemens Medical Solutions, "By strengthening our leadership
position in identifying disease earlier at the molecular level, we continue to transform the delivery of healthcare by improving
patient care while reducing costs."
Arrowhead Research Corporation (NASDAQ:ARWR) has obtained an exclusive
license for a nanotechnology device that is reported to control the behavior of stem cells. The license was obtained from
Stanford University. As part of the agreement Arrowhead will fund additional research related to device - about $600,000
over a two year period.
Dr. Nick Melosh in the Materials Science Department at Stanford
and his group, use nano-reservoirs built on a chip to stimulate adult stem cell behavior. According to Dr. Melosh, "The solution
we are pursuing is to build a device that can interact with the stem cell at the micro- and nanoscale. For example, exposure
to minute amounts of chemical at the appropriate time and place could be the key for guiding stem cells isolated from fat
tissue to turn into cartilage or bone constructs."
Cierra, Inc. announced a $21 million financing round. The round
was led by Delphi Ventures and included investments from Morgenthaler Ventures, Split Rock Ventures and Frazier Healthcare
Ventures. The company plans to use the funds for clinical trials and commercialization of its non-implant, catheter-based
technology. Elaborating on the investment was John Maroney a General Partner of Delphi Ventures, "Delphi Ventures is very
pleased to lead this key round of financing for Cierra. Cierra has an outstanding team of professionals who have developed
a unique approach to PFO closure that does not involve leaving behind an implant in the heart."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Maxim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAXM)(SSE:MAXM) reported the
publication of an article in the Journal of Molecular Cancer Therapeutics (4:761-771, 2005), that describes the a therapy
which selectively induces apoptosis in tumor cells. The anticancer compounds used were identified with Maxim's proprietary
cell and chemical genetics-based screening assay , considered essential to the identification of new pathways and drugs that
induce apoptosis selectively - sparing necessary human cells and speeding apoptosis in cancer cells. The system has potential
applications that may also help determine what pathways and nutraceuticals enhance the functions of vital human cells and
deter apoptosis. Maxim refers to its development system as a live cell high-throughput caspase-3 screening technology.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have donated $21.8 million
to the Albert B. Sabin Vaccine Institute, a vaccine development organization. The Sabin Vaccine Institute (SVI) plans to use
the grant for its Human Hookworm Vaccine Initiative (HHVI). Phase I safety trials. The vaccine is expected to manufactured
in Brazil, where the disease is endemic.
According to the organization, over 740 million individuals worldwide
are host to the dangerous parasite. Because the hookworm extracts large quantities of blood, it is a severe problem with pregnant
woman and children. According to H.R. Shepherd, SVI Chairman, "The Gates Foundation again has demonstrated its commitment
to achieving equity in global health, particularly among 'the poorest of the poor,' by awarding nearly US$40 million to HHVI
since 2000. Without this support, we simply could not develop a human hookworm vaccine."
Manufacturers of healthcare products, through BioElectronics Corporation
(Pink sheets: BIEL), now have access to the company's ActiPatch, a drug-free patch used to reduce swelling. BioElectronics
foresees manufactures of orthotics, braces, splints and wraps embedded the ActiPatch within their products.
The company apparently has some major contracts in the works. According
to Andrew J. Whelan, President and CEO. "We have been working diligently on this design approach for months and we have our
existing products working well with a couple of well respected companies. We expect to be announcing some major deals in the
coming months, beginning with the European market. This approach will add greatly to our goal of making our breakthrough medical
products available for a broad array of soft tissue injuries."
ActiPatch is referred to be the company as dermal patch. The dermal
patch contains a battery-powered microchip that delivers continuous pulsed therapy.
ZIOPHARM, Inc., a developer of small molecule therapeutics, has
completed a Series A Convertible Preferred Stock offering. The lead investor was Paramount BioCapital, Inc. Gross proceeds
were estimated at $18.1 million. Net proceeds are expected to be used for on-going research and development, manufacturing
and clinical trials related to ZIO-101 (organic arsenic) and ZIO-201 (isophosphoramide mustard-lysine) used in the treatment
of hematological malignancies, solid tumors and sarcoma (ZIO-201).
A central strategy of ZIOPHARM's business model is to acquire, develop
and commercialize technology through in-licensing of cancer related technology. Reflecting that strategy were comments from
Jonathan Lewis, MD, PhD, Chief Executive Officer at ZIOPHAR, "We are now better positioned to negotiate a third licensed clinical
product. ZIOPHARM is a semi-virtual specialty cancer company with industry-hardened veterans who can effectively deliver on
in-licensing products, out-sourcing of preclinical and clinical development, and eventual commercialization of niche products.
We expect that when brought to market, these products would have cost-effective manufacturing, pricing and reimbursement with
the potential for several hundred million dollars in sales through our own specialty force, marketing in major markets."
ZIOPHARM's first in-licensed product was ZIO-101, which was licensed
from The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center and Texas A&M University.
The Principal Financial Group (PFG), a provider of employee benefits
and considered one of the fastest growing dental carriers, is enticing customers to take better care of their teeth. The company
now offer discounts on products that it considers will help prevent tooth decay. To that end, In conjunction with Epic Dental,
PFG has announced a program that will give its customers as much as a 50 percent discount on Epic's xylitol products. Xylitol
is, according to Epic a natural sweetener that is not conducive to bacteria growth and reproduction. According to the company,
studies have shown that those that the use of xylitol products can reduce the risk of cavities by as much as 80 percent.
Theresa McConeghey, Dental Product Director for The Principal explained
the reasone behind most cavities, "The culprit behind most of our oral health concerns is the bacteria that live within
our mouths and on the surface of our teeth. Regular brushing and flossing will help reduce these bacteria, but adding the
use of products with xylitol - such as those offered by Epic - to that regimen will further work to eliminate them." She then
elaborated on the company's business model, "As a leader in offering dental care coverage and services, The Principal is dedicated
to going beyond dental insurance by offering services that help our members achieve and maintain good oral health. By providing
these discounts, our hope is that our members become more actively involved with the decisions made about their teeth and
gums - including the steps necessary to mitigate plaque and cavities."
The specific incentive program provides for a 50 percent discount
on an initial order of xylitol and 25 percent off any reorders.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Lifeline Therapeutics, Inc. (OTCBB:LFLT), a company focused
on the repair and prevention of oxidative damage, has reported that Protandim, a dietary supplement, "is proven to restore
age-related oxidative stress to levels seen in someone 20 years old or younger'." The technology increases the catalytic antioxidant
defense and repair system found in the body - specifically the process enables the production of antioxidants inside the cell
as opposed to being absorbed through the body with consumable antioxidants.
In support of its claim, the company referenced a study on aging
led by Dr. Peter Rabinovitch at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine. The study showed that increased levels
of natural antioxidants, such as Catalase, resulted in slowing of the aging process. In the study of mice, results indicated
an extended life in the order of 20 percent. Protandim is credited with the capability to increase the levels of two essential
natural antioxidant enzymes: Superoxide Dismutase (SOD) and Catalase (CAT).
Commenting on the cell antioxidant enhancement treatment was Dr.
Joe McCord, Director of Science for Lifeline Therapeutics, "Throughout my entire career, I've been focused on antioxidants.
Protandim is unlike other antioxidants or supplements available because it works within the cells to optimize the body's natural
enzymes. The pre-clinical and clinical studies have clearly demonstrated the effectiveness and impact of Protandim. In fact,
in clinical studies, Protandim restored oxidative stress to the level of someone younger than 20 years old."
Dr. McCord has an established reputation in the antioxidant field.
Lifeline notes that in 1997, Dr. McCord was awarded the Elliot Cresson Medal from The Franklin Institute. The work that won
him that award was on free radical reactions and their enzymatic control in living organisms and the pathology of free radical
diseases. Dr. McCord is also the President of the International Society of Antioxidants in Nutrition and Health (ISANH).
As a final note, the "fountain of youth" type product was featured
on ABC Primetime Live on June 2, 2005.
Copernicus Therapeutics, Inc. reported very positive results on
its DNA drug delivery system based on its non-viral nucleic acid nanoparticle technology. These results indicated that its
gene transfer system has a efficiency ten times greater for introducing DNA into the cells of the retina than other competing
systems. Dr. David Yurek at the University of Kentucky and Dr. Muna Naash at the University of Oklahoma presented the results
at the American Society of Gene Therapy Meeting in St. Louis, Missouri.
Commenting about the findings was Dr. Mark J. Cooper, Sr. Vice President
of Science and Medical Affairs at Copernicus, "We are most enthusiastic about these findings. Gene transfer in the brain of
animals was highly efficient and non-toxic, suggesting multiple treatment options for serious neurological disorders such
as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. In the eye, a remarkable 99% gene transfer efficiency in the retina was observed.
Treatment of important causes of blindness, including retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and
various viral infections may be possible using our nanoparticle technology."
Elaborating on the possibility for the treatment of more diseases
was Dr. Robert C. Moen, President and CEO of Copernicus, "These findings further demonstrate the platform nature of our nucleic
acid delivery technology which enables us to develop therapeutics for different parts of the body and for multiple diseases.
Our lead program, which already has had a successful clinical trial, involves developing a therapy for a serious disease affecting
the lung, cystic fibrosis."
Critical Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRTX) in an arrangement that
involves institutional investors, accredited investors, existing stockholders and affiliated entities, has entered into a
definitive agreements whereby the company will place approximately 9.9 million shares of its common stock at $5.48 per share.
With the added help of warrants, the company expects to raise about $54.5 from the transaction, which is scheduled to close
on or about June 20, 2005.
With the net proceeds, the company plans to launch its investigational
asthma drug ZYFLO Filmtab (zileuton tablets) The launch of the product is contingent on the company obtaining pending regulatory
approval of a supplemental New Drug Application. Other plans include the further development of the company’s other
products and the expansion of its drug discovery efforts.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Somaxon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a pharmaceutical company that offers
insomnia and other neuro-psychiatric products, has secured $65 million through the private placement of its Series C preferred
stock. Leader of the round was MPM Capital Partners. Other investors included Prospect Ventures, Domain Associates, LLC, BA
Venture Partners, Montreux Equity Partners and CDIB BioScience Ventures.
Kenneth Cohen, CEO of Somaxon indicated that the funds would help
the company complete clinical trials of its lead product, further clinical development of product used to treat pathological
gambling, and to initiate a study on nicotine dependency, "This investment will help Somaxon achieve its next clinical milestone
with our lead product, SILENOR(TM) (doxepin HCl) 1mg, 3mg and 6mg, which has completed Phase II clinical trials. The investment
also allows us to further the clinical development of oral nalmefene for the treatment of impulse control disorders including
pathological gambling as well as initiate a Phase II study in nicotine dependency. We are also proceeding with product formulation
work on acamprosate which we are targeting for the treatment of certain movement disorders."
Amenni has started the process of filling the 300,000 patch order
for its first United States client as part of the company’s sales program that addresses a market that Amenni believes,
for its Sports Patch alone, could reach $500 million annually.
The Sports Patch has been aimed at the Sports Healthcare market
. The company has stated that the Amenni Sports Patch "has shown significant benefits to aid the recovery from a Sports injury"
and when "applied immediately after injury helps with quicker recovery times." The company also believes there are currently
no direct competitors.
According to Pat Lochrie, CEO of Amenni, the company has other patch
plans, "We plan to follow the Sports Patch roll-out with further products from our Healthcare, Cosmetic and Medical ranges.
The use of a Transdermal Patch delivery system promises to be very exciting."
The primary active ingredients of the Sports Patch were based on
research in Veterinary Science.
Ray and Dagmar Dolby's donation of $5 million to The Independent
Citizens' Oversight Committee (ICOC) for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) has been accepted. The
organization also reported that it met with legislators about pending legislation entitled SCA-12 and approved 11 members
for its Scientific and Medical Research Facilities Working Group.
Chair of the ICOC, Robert Klein, on acceptance of the donation said,
"Last November, 7 million Californians voted for Proposition 71, in favor of stem cell research or regenerative medicine.
Among those in San Francisco were Ray and Dagmar Dolby, who recently thought about the critical nature of the Proposition
71 startup situation. They decided to step forward to make a gift of $5 million to the California Institute for Regenerative
Medicine to fund critical staffing needs essential to advance the Institute's mission. For my family, for every California
family suffering from chronic disease, and for every Californian with friends and relatives suffering from chronic disease,
we thank the Dolbys -- they are great champions of this medical frontier and the Institute's undaunted commitment to honor
the mandate of 7 million California voters."
Ray Dolby, founded Dolby Laboratories in 1965. Dolby Laboratories,
based in San Francisco, is a major provider of audio technology to semiconductor companies. The company recently went
public with an IPO.
Curon Medical, Inc. (NASDAQ:CURN) has reported it raised $8.8 million
by issuing over 13 million shares of common stock at a price of $0.65 a share.
The company indicated that it would use the funding to further develop
its radio frequency (RF) energy technology for the treatment of acid reflux with its Stretta System and bowel incontinence
with the Secca System. Both systems already have received U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance for the treatment of
the respective problems.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Nature Technology Increases DNA Vaccine Production Yields from Bacterial Fermentation
Nature Technology Corporation (NTC), a company focused on genetic
vector technology, has reported dramatic gains in the production of DNA vaccines. To obtain the gains, the company used a
bacterial fermentation process, a DNA manufacturing process. According to NTC's lead scientist on the project, Aaron Carnes,
"Just a few years ago, we were happy to obtain a hundred milligrams per liter. Now, it is possible to obtain improved yields
of over a gram per liter, and we continue to see gains as we learn more about the upstream fermentation process."
The company through a series of awards from the Small Business Innovation
Research and the National Institutes of Health, plans to further improve the process. Specifically mentioned was the use of
genetic engineering to increase the DNA processing and growth capabilities involved in the DNA vaccine manufacturing process.
The company indicates that in combination with NTC's RapidVACC fast deployment system, effective solutions to such diseases
as HIV-AIDs, hepatitis B and C, influenza, SARS and smallpox may be able to be quickly found, validated and moved into production.
A long standing limitation of drug development has been the capability to produce trial drugs cost-effectively and in short
periods of time so that clinical tests can be obtained in a reasonable amount of time.
Cytochroma Inc., which just last month received funding for its
medical technology, has already reported positive results from a Phase Ia clinical study of its CTA018 product for the treatment
of psoriasis. According to Jukka Karjalainen, M.D., Ph.D., Vice-President of Drug Development at Cytochroma, "The data from
the Phase Ia study is very encouraging. We were able to demonstrate the drug's effectiveness in reducing psoriasis, and that
it did so without any symptoms or signs of skin irritation is particularly promising. Treatment-related skin irritation is
one of the main complaints of psoriatic sufferers using current treatments."
CTA018 is referred to by the company as a Vitamin D analog. The
company stated that the drug is "a strong activator of the vitamin D signaling pathway and also a potent inhibitor of CYP24
activity (the enzyme responsible for the breakdown of vitamin D)." A Phase Ib safety study of the drug is in its conclusion
With the announcement, Cytochroma noted that over 125 million people
in the world have some form of Psoriasis, however most cases are mild to moderate forms.
CardioVascular BioTherapeutics Indicates Possible Breakthrough
in Stroke Treatment
CardioVascular BioTherapeutics, Inc. (OTCBB:CVBT), announced results
for its stroke drug candidate, Cardio Vascu-Grow. The original discover of the drug, Dr. Thomas J. Stegmann, M.D., Chief Clinical
Officer at CVBT, and a cardiovascular surgeon gave a short overview of the results he saw, "These medical developments are
very encouraging, and I was pleasantly surprised by the magnitude of the medical results in which the stroke area in the animals
that received the Cardio Vascu-Grow was diminishing. I am looking forward to proceeding toward human trials, which for the
millions of people affected by strokes all over the world, could be a major breakthrough that could save lives, lessen pain
and suffering, and save money in the treatment of stroke victims if similar results as those in the animal studies are achieved."
As part of the announcement, CaridoVascular noted that stroke is
the third major cause of death in the United States and that the cost to treat the 5 million stroke victims in the United
States was $53.6 billion. In reference to the statistics, the company referred to the American Heart Association, which puts
the number of stroke victims in the United States each year at 700,000.
Elaborating on those staggering numbers and the company's stroke
product, was Mr. Daniel C. Montano, President of CVBT, "The most important thing about these pre-clinical results is the potential
impact of our drug candidate on the mortality and quality of life of the millions of stroke victims in the United States.
Secondly is the economic impact on payors. If CVBT's drug candidate can reduce the damaged area of the brain from a stroke,
sufferers of a stroke might be able to have a more normal life resulting in reduced medical care requirements over the rest
of their lives. This could result in a material cost reduction in medical care for stroke victims."
Mr. Montano went on to talk about the company’s protein
drug candidate, "CVBT now has encouraging medical results from its protein drug candidate in three different tissue groups.
The first is the 'Muscle Tissue Group' in CVBT's heart clinical trials in humans; the second is the 'Skin Tissue Group' in
its wound healing efforts; and now our third, the 'Nerve Tissue Group' for treatment of stroke, has been identified."
PharmaFrontiers Reports on Multiple Sclerosis Phase
PharmaFrontiers Corp. (OTCBB:PFTR), a cell therapy oriented company,
reported on interim results of Tovaxin in two Multiple Sclerosis (MS) open label studies. David B. McWilliams, CEO of PharmaFrontiers
commented on the positive results of the studies, "We are very encouraged by these preliminary MRTC levels, which demonstrated
a dose response and large mean percentage reductions from baseline at follow-up visits during the six-month period. Accordingly,
we plan on beginning our Phase IIb/III clinical trials by the end of 2005 or early 2006. These data, combined with the strong
safety profile of Tovaxin, should be welcome news to all MS patients and their families, especially in light of disappointing
product news of this past year."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
In order to assist doctors in their diagnosis of breast cancer,
without a biopsy, a new tool from Cedara Software Corp. is expected to be available soon in the United States. That tool,
the Cedara B-CAD, a Computer Aided Detection (CAD) solution for breast ultrasound, which has just received 510(k) clearance
from the United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA), according to the company is particularly well-suited for the
analysis of palpable masses in young, pregnant, and lactating women.
Jennie Sharpe, Clinical Specialist at Cedara Software, in apparant
reference to pregnant women, implied the tool would help eliminate the need for many unnecessary and traumatic biopsies "Today's
acid test for malignancy in breast cancer is the core biopsy. This is an invasive procedure that can be particularly traumatic
for women already concerned about their health. This said, statistics show that approximately 50% of biopsies ordered are
benign. It is our hope that further improvements to diagnostic imaging will help radiologists assess the need to biopsy a
selected nodule." The company also noted that trauma wasn't the only issue here, scar tissue as a result of the biopsies can
often complicate the non-invasive imaging process.
Speaking about the ultrasound based tools diagnostic capability
was also Dr. A. Thomas Stavros, MD of The Sally Jobe Breast Center, "This tool should facilitate acceptance and utilization
of the ACR BI-RADS Ultrasound Lexicon by radiologists as a standard upon which the foundation of CAD enabled ultrasound can
be built. Ultrasound CAD has many possible indications including assisting radiologists in analysis of solid breast nodules,
which is a significant first milestone. This tool may improve a radiologist's interpretive confidence."
Jeff Collins, CEO of Medipattern, the company that developed B-CAD,
noted applications of the tool to other diseases, "We have every intention of extending our pattern recognition platform to
other indications and modalities to help in the earliest possible detection and intervention for cancer and other diseases."
Medipattern Corporation (Toronto: MKI), develops Computer Aided Detection (CAD) software for the medical imaging market.
Cedara Software Corp., also a medical software company, is a division
of Merge Technologies Incorporated (NASDAQ: MRGE) (Toronto: MRG). Cedara, with the announcement, noted that approximately
216,000 new cases of non-invasive breast cancer were recorded in 2004. Breast cancer incidences have risen from 1 in 20 in
1960 to 1 in 8 today. In citing those statistics, Cedara referenced the American Cancer Association.
Zeno, a rechargeable handheld medical device, has been reported
to diminish or vanquish 90 percent of pimples within 24 hours after treatment. The prescription-free device has won the praises
of Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD, Board Certified Dermatologist and Associate Professor of Dermatology at the University
of Minnesota Medical School and Medical Director of Crutchfield Dermatology. According to Dr. Crutchfield, who
has won National Awards in the Dermatology area, "When it comes to treating blemishes, Zeno is the most scientifically advanced
and effective device available without a prescription,"
Zeno's secret is allegedly in the short precisely controlled dose
of heat it delivers to the affected area. The heat apparently destroys the bacteria and shortens the pimple's life cycle.
Also increased blood flow to the pimple, as a result of the heat dose, is thought to also aid in the faster disappearance
of the pimple.
As new technology emerges from the semiconductor and nanotechnology
worlds, minimally invasive is expected to be a phrase one sees more often in the medical world. Electromagnetics, low -cost
advanced imaging technologies, nanodrugs, and miniature micromachined devices all have the potential to make non-invasive
medicine a reality.
Venture capitalists also have an interest in minimally invasive
companies. superDimension Ltd. for instance recently completed a Series B round valued at $27 million. The investment was
led by OrbiMed Advisors LLC, CIBC World Markets and the Strategic Investments Group of Pfizer, Inc. Other existing investors
included Mi3. Other investors superDimension listed were Oxford Bioscience Partners, Pitango Venture Capital, Medica Venture
Partners and Mi3.
Jonathan Silverstein, General Partner at OrbiMed gave his analysis
of superDimension's minimally invasive product, "In our estimation, superDimension is the best medical device platform in
the emerging field of interventional pulmonology. The superDimension system provides a quantum leap forward in a pulmonologist's
ability to successfully biopsy distal tissue in the lungs. In the future, we believe the Bronchus platform will enable doctors
to not only diagnose, but treat patients with pulmonary disease. By providing a new 'railroad' to distal regions of the lung,
superDimension will enable new treatment methodologies that should be more effective and less invasive. We look forward to
working with superDimension's management and board to make this company a commercial success." Concurrent with the closing
of the financing, Mr. Silverstein will join the board of directors of superDimension.
superDimension's states that its platform is based on electromagnetic
localization, image processing, image-to-body registration and steerable endoscopic tools.
BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. (NASDAQ:BDSI) (NASDAQ:BDSIW)
has closed another $2.5 million in the form of secured convertible debt financing from Laurus Master Fund, Ltd. That funding
is in addition to $2.5 million it received in February of 2005. The funding is planned for use to further R&D and commercialization
opportunities. BioDelivery holds drug delivery technology for the administration of nutraceuticals and micronutrients.
Millenium Biologix Corporation (TSX: MBC), a company with research
operations in skeletal tissue regeneration products, has reported a 25 percent increase in revenue for the fifteen month period
ended March 31, 2005 when compared to the 12 month period ended December 31, 2005. For the 15 months ended March 31, 2005,
sales of Millenium's Skelite products, its skeletal regeneration product, were reported to be $1.54 million compared to $0.9
million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2005. Total sales for the same two periods were $2.5 million and $2.0 million
The company pointed to initial strength in sales of its Skelite
implantable synthetic bone graft products, but indicated that overstocking by its distributor in 2004, resulted in minimal
shipments in the last 9 months of its fiscal 2005 year. The company did not elaborate as to why it used unequal time periods
for comparison purposes.
Millenium, a regenerative medicine company, bases its products on
advanced biomaterials, biologics and engineering. With this as the basis, the company has designed its product to facilitate
the repair and natural healing of human bone and associated connecting tissues like cartilage.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Through an agreement with Quester, another venture capital company
located in the United Kingdom, Catalyst Venture Partners, has increased its funds available to technology companies through
its Accelerator Programme. Of interest to Catalyst was Quester's three University Seed and Investment Funds For Quester, Catalysts
Accelerator Programme was a main point of interest. According to Jamie Brooke, a Director at Quester, "Joining Catalyst's
Technology Funding Partnership makes perfect sense for Quester as we are extremely impressed with the role Catalyst plays
in getting companies ready for funding. Its Accelerator Programme is rapidly gaining an enviable reputation as a basis for
preparing companies for investment and fast growth. The Programme is also a natural complement for our strategy of investing
in early-stage technology companies. We have investment funds available and participating in Catalyst's Technology Funding
Partnership will ensure that we have an early insight to some very high quality investment opportunities."
In addition to investing in emerging companies, Quester through
the Isis College Fund, Sulis Seedcorn Fund and Lachesis Fund, manages seed funds for nine universities. Its focus has been
on emerging information and communication technology (ICT) and healthcare/life sciences. Catalyst is also focused on
the technology sectors with a fund that has reached over £400 million. According to Richard Turner, a partner at Catalyst
Venture Partners, "The aim of our Technology Funding Partnership is to create a fast-track to investment for technology innovators."
Through the closing of a second registered direct sale of common
stock and warrant units to affiliates of Vivo Ventures, LLC, Advanced Magnetics, Inc. (AMEX:AVM) reported that it expects
to obtain net proceeds from the offering and the registered direct sale of common stock and warrants announced on June 1,
2005, of approximately $16.7 million.
Advanced Magnetics develops therapeutic iron compounds for the treatment
of anemia, and imaging agents used in the diagnosis of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Specifically, the company has been
focused on the development and commercialization of products based on its superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticle based
DALSA Corporation (TSX:DSA) has received a renewal contract for
its image sensor chips from an undisclosed medical equipment OEM. The company indicated that sales from the contract, in Canadian
dollars, are expected to total $3.8 million. One-third of the deliveries of the image sensors are planed in 2005, one-half
in 2006 and the remaining one-sixth scheduled for 2007.
DALSA indicates that the x-ray CCD image sensors used in this x-ray
diagnostic application replace x-ray film. With advances in the imaging capability of image analysis systems, DALSA's technology
is expected to further a medical trend to eliminate the need for many biopsies now often used in disease diagnosis. For this
particular application, DALSA notes that the "DALSA image sensors allow the OEM customer to produce x-ray systems that offer
reduced patient discomfort and reduced x-ray levels for the patient."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
GlycoGenesys, Inc., (NASDAQ: GLGS), a company focused on carbohydrate-based
drugs, was issued a patent related to the control of angiogenesis and diseases related to the angiogenesis process. The company
pointed out that angiogenesis, the blood vessel formation process, has relevance in the areas of cancer, macular degeneration,
and endometriosis. Bradley J Carver, CEO at GlucoGenesys, specifically referred to the company's drug , GCS-100, which the
patent helps protect, "Pre-clinical studies have shown that GCS-100 and other modified pectins covered by our new patent can
inhibit angiogenesis. This is important as it provides potential for the use of GCS-100 and other modified pectins not only
in the treatment of cancer, which is the primary focus of our clinical trials, but also in diseases outside of cancer. We
are quite pleased by the addition of this patent to the Company's already broad patent portfolio around GCS-100 and other
The company was issued United States Patent No. 6,890,906 , entitled,
"Method for controlling angiogenesis in animals."
Affymetrix Inc. (NASDAQ:AFFX) has agreed to acquire ParAllele BioScience
Inc. for about $120 million in a stock based transaction. In announcing the news of the acquisition, Affymetrix emphasized
ParAllele's proprietary Molecular Inversion Probe (MIP) assay. The MIP permits tens of thousands of reactions to be multiplexed
in just one tube. The technology, noted for its ability to enable scientists to conduct, unimpeded, any type of genetic experiment,
was used in the International Human Haplotype Mapping (HapMap) Project. As an invaluable tool for researchers, the combination
of ParAllele's assay and Affymetrix's GeneChip technology serve as a different type of "molecular microscope."
Stephen P.A. Fodor, Ph.D., Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive
Officer of Affymetrix emphasized the scope of the technology merger, "Together, Affymetrix and ParAllele have enabled new
areas of science by offering products to explore the whole genome, as well as specific regions of interest. The potential
for ParAllele's technology goes far beyond genotyping. We will combine both companies' technologies to accelerate discovery
and product development in a wide variety of areas, from basic research to the clinic."
Jivan Biologics, Inc. announced commercial genome-wide microarrays
for alternate splicing, the genetic encoding of multiple RNA and proteins . Subha Srinivasan, PhD, CEO of Jivan
Biologics commented briefly on the implications of the technology and market size, "TransExpress Whole Spliceome places Jivan
at the forefront of a paradigm shift from gene arrays to splice variant arrays that will transform the half-billion-dollar-a-year
microarray market." The new arrays, to be manufactured by Agilent Technologies - a world leader in the DNA microarray market,
are used to detect changes in RNA splicing throughout the human genome. The TransExpress Whole Spliceome has "148,693 probes
for 135,706 alternately spliced sites for 98,382 splice isoforms of 23,484 human genes." The arrays are said to increase
the number of clinical biomarkers and molecular diagnostics four fold over other commercially available DNA arrays.
Concurrent with the announcement, Jivan Biologics introduced TransExpress
Whole Blood. Dr. Srinivasen also commented on the market implications for that product, "The quest for clinically relevant
biomarkers already constitutes a large portion of the half-billion-dollar-a-year microarray market. By detecting RNA splicing
events in patient samples, TransExpress Whole Blood places Jivan at the forefront of a market shift from gene arrays to splice
arrays that can detect four or more times the number of potential biomarkers and molecular diagnostics as a conventional gene
array." According to the company TransExpress Whole Blood has "31,765 probes for 30,042 alternately spliced sites for 19,770
splice isoforms of 2,928 human genes expressed in whole blood."
Finally, with the announcement of the company's TransExpress Gene
Family of splice variant arrays, the company indicates that it has a complete line of splice variant microarrays for every
stage of drug development.
As part of a strategy to repair and engineer organs, StemCell Pharma,
Inc. has acquired exclusive rights to an FDA approval-free technology of Russian origins. The proprietary technology is based
on placenta stem cells, placenta nutrients, hormones and the actual placenta. According to the company, the implant "has everything
a placenta contains including vital nutrients and the stem cells capable of building practically every cell, tissue and organ
of the body."
The technique was first developed at The Filatov Institute in Odessa
and later expanded on with stem cell knowledge by Dr. Sapse. The implant operation, which can be done at a doctor's office,
involves the surgical placement of a 1" x 1/4" implant underneath the skin.
The company has focused its efforts on use of the implant in the
treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. A product is expected to be available within 12 months.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Seemingly a first, Zarlink Semiconductor (NYSE/TSX:ZL) has introduced
an ultra low-power transceiver chip that is intended to form the basis for an implantable medical communications and biomedical
device control system. Called the ZL70100, the chip meets the MICS standard defined by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission)
and ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute).
Steve Swift, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Ultra
Low-Power Communications at Zarlink Semiconductor commented on the range and transmission rate of the chip, "Zarlink's MICS
transceiver provides several orders of magnitude increase in data transmission rate and communication range compared with
previous technologies, offering an ultra low-power consumption and highly integrated radio telemetry solution."
He went on to comment on how the device would be used to both monitor
and control a patients internal biomedical system, "Our MICS radio platform ensures implanted medical device manufacturers
can design systems that meet strict global standards. The higher data rate and extended communication range of our radio transceiver
enables advanced in-body communication systems, such as implanted blood glucose sensors controlling insulin intake for diabetes
patients, networked stimulators restoring lost limb function or pacemakers using the high-speed wireless link to signal emergency
response during a cardiac event."
Hollis-Eden Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: HEPH) has entered into
a subscription agreement to raise $10.0 million through the sale of common stock and warrants. Although just one institutional
investor was sited, the name of the investor was not disclosed.
Hollis-Eden focuses its attention on investigational drugs called
immune regulating hormones (IRHs). The drug therapy, through the control of gene expression, controls the production of critical
cytokines and enzymes.
Protalex, Inc. (OTC:PRTX) (BULLETIN BOARD: PRTX) has raised, through
a private placement of common stock and warrants, approximately $5.1 million . The company has been developing a new class
of drugs for the treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis, Pemphigus and other autoimmune diseases.
Steven H. Kane, President and CEO of Protalex, gave an indication
of how the funds would be spent, "The Company will use the proceeds of the private placement primarily to finance the upcoming
Phase I clinical trials for its lead compound, PRTX-100, in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Pemphigus and general working capital
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
GeneOhm Sciences, a company that develops molecular diagnostic tests,
reported that it has closed its follow-on Series C funding. The funding came through Wasatch Advisors.
The company's technology is related to the new field of personalized
medicine, which is expected to dramatically reduce the time and costs associated with the identification of infections.
Molecular based DNA microarray analysis is an alternative to older culturing methods used to indentify infectious bacteria.
According to Karey Barker, Principal and Portfolio Manager, of Wasatch Advisors, "We believe that GeneOhm's portfolio of current
products, content and technology, combined with the experience they have in developing and commercializing new products will
continue to change the way medicine can be practiced." Besides, time and costs, personalized medical techniques are expected
to also provide for more accurate diagnostics and the more targeted drug selection for treatment.
GeneOhm's current products include two rapid, amplified nucleic
acid-based assays. These include the IDI-Strep B Assay for detection of Group B Streptococcus and the IDI-MRSA Assay for detection
of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
Chronix Biomedical, a company that develops disease analysis tests
for the human and livestock markets, has closed $1.1 million. The funding, in the form of a convertible note, came from the
John Dilts, President of the Los Angeles and Westlake Village Chapters
of Keiretsu Forum, noted that Chronix' technology would be helpful in the testing and treatment of two diseases, "We are very
excited about the important work pioneered by Chronix Biomedical. This is a company that can make a real difference in the
testing and treatment of Myeloma as well as Mad Cow Disease. We are hopeful that our member investors will see a tremendous
return on their investment and we are proud to support this very worthy cause."
Dr. Brian Durie, IMF Chairman of the Board and Director of Myeloma
Programs, Aptium Oncology noted the prospects for the Myeloma "Ultimately we see this as a simple way to evaluate and treat
Myeloma at a molecular level. This is one way to bring treatment for Myeloma into the 21st Century."
One of the Mad Cow disease products is used to determine if a cow
is susceptible to coming down with Mad Cow disease. Chronix points out that Mad Cow disease, like scrapies, appears to be
transmitted to different species by the consumption of infected animals. One theory is that Mad Cow disease evolved as an
off-shoot of scrapies - as a direct result of feeding parts of infected sheep to cows. As the disease evolves in a new host,
it often will take on a new form with different symptoms.
MethylGene Inc. (TSX:MYG) reported that preclinical results indicated
its lead molecule is competitive with other drugs currently offered for oral anti-tumor efficacy. The company explained that
its multi-kinase inhibitor program addressed the three tumor processes: initiation, maintenance and growth. MethylGene's small
molecule is said to target the tyrosine kinases involved in the three tumor processes.
Donald F. Corcoran, President and CEO of MethylGene noted the key
differences in his company's molecules than the competition,
"We believe that our advantage is that with one molecule we have the ability to target multiple kinases involved in three
key processes of tumor development whereas most of our competitors have molecules targeting only one or two of these processes.
This preclinical work further validates our ability to add depth to our pipeline by using our core competencies in medicinal
chemistry and rational drug design to identify novel compounds. We are in the process of choosing a clinical candidate from
our optimized leads."
HealthRenu Medical Inc. (OTCBB:HRUM), a skin and wound care company,
has received a $10 million commitment in the form of a 24 month, Standby Equity Distribution Agreement from Cornell Capital
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 31st, 2005
Fusion Capital Fund II, LLC, has entered into an agreement to purchase
$9 million of Oragenics stock over a period of up to 30 months, subject to Oragenics’ right to control the times and
amount of stock sold.
Chuck Soponis, Oragenics' President commented on the funding strategy,
"Overall, this financing commitment adds flexibility and gives Oragenics the financial resources to fund the initial clinical
development of Replacement Therapy, our investigational treatment against dental decay, currently undergoing Phase I clinical
studies. It also will support the ongoing preclinical development of our novel antibiotic, Mutacin 1140.
Oragenics has developed a new type of oral rinse for the prevention
of tooth decay. In addition the company is developing an antibiotic with, as it states, "broad-spectrum activity against gram-positive
bacteria." There are two major classifications of bacteria that are responsible for a wide range of human diseases,
gram-positive and gram-negative.
Led by Harbert Venture Partners, LLC, Innovative Biosensors, Inc.
(IBI) has raised $3.5 million in a Series A round of financing. The round was joined by New Markets Growth Fund and the Maryland
IBI offers pathogen detection technology based on the CANARY technology
licensed from MIT. The technology has been the basis for IBI's recent E. coli O157:H7 Detection Kit used in food safety analysis
applications. The company has indicated that it plans to offer more tests in this market as well as in the human clinical
The major benefits that IBI technologies’ promises are high-speed
testing and the ability to detect very low levels of pathogen content. According to IBI's Founder and CEO, Joe Hernandez,
"This funding will enable us to expand our commercial infrastructure, allowing us to bring IBI's technology to markets currently
in need of rapid, sensitive pathogen test results.” The company also indicates that the pathogen tests can be accomplished
in less than five minutes. The product because it is easy to use, has potential applications in the consumer market.
Will Brooke, Managing Partner of Harbert Venture Partners, commented
on the overall marketability of IBI's products, "We believe IBI's cutting-edge CANARY detection technology is applicable to
multiple markets. This, in combination with IBI's experienced management team, positioned IBI as an attractive investment
opportunity for us. We are pleased to support IBI and look forward to being a part of a company that has the potential to
revolutionize pathogen testing."
Cylene Pharmaceuticals has completed a $26.3 million Series B round
of financing. The funding was led by Coastview Capital. The eleven others that participated in the funding included BioVentures
Investors, IngleWood Ventures, Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners, Morningside Venture Investments, Novartis BioVentures, Sanderling
Ventures, TDL Investors, Lakeview Capital, Research Corporation Technologies, William Harris Investors, and the Viterbi Group.
William Rice, Ph.D., President and CEO of Cylene announced the financing
at the 7th Annual C21 BioVentures Conference, "Successful completion of this financing is a major milestone for Cylene. This
funding will enable us to advance our therapeutic pipeline of quadruplex targeting agents into the clinic, beginning with
CX-3543. We anticipate nominating a second clinical candidate within the next 12 months."
CX-3543, is the company's lead product for the treatment of multiple
cancers. In that area, the company has focused its attention on quadruplex motifs, which the company notes "regulate the expression
of clusters of key oncogenes but not normal cellular genes." Cylene's Quadruplex Targeting is used to drive its apoptosis
inducing technology towards cancer cells, enabling their destruction.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 27th, 2005
Phage Medical Technology Enters Western World through Phage
Phage International Inc., based in Los Altos CA, has entered into
an agreement with The George Eliava Institute of Bacteriophage, Microbiology and Virology, Republic of Georgia (Eliava) whereby
Eliava will supply bacteriophages to Phage International. The bacteriophages will be used at the Phage Therapy Center in Tijuana
Mexico for the treatment of infections. As part of the bacteriophage treatment program, bacterial cultures from patients are
first analyzed and then the necessary phage is produced to eliminate the infectious bacteria.
Bacteriophages, according to Phage International were used in the
1930s and 1940s for the treatment of infections. However after the arrival of antibiotics their use declined in the West.
The technology was however preserved and further developed in the East at Eliava and now is considered an effective treatment
for drug-resistant infections.
Research Think Tank Inc. has entered into a three year licensing
and distribution agreement with Virvo BVBA. The agreement relates to blood analysis tests used to determine the response of
HIV-1 to anti-retroviral drugs. The Antivirogram and vircoTYPE technologies are expected to complement
Research Think Tanks services. According to Robert M. Lloyd JR,
CEO at Research Think Tank,
"Combining Virco's Antivirogram and vircoTYPE technologies with
Research Think Tank's current portfolio of HIV-1 resistance genotyping and supporting esoteric molecular testing significantly
strengthens our comprehensive menu of services. Furthermore, the convenience of combined testing services for HIV-1 phenotyping,
genotyping and/or vircoTYPE reporting under single test codes will be offered as the PhenoTanker-GT and GenoTanker-VT assays."
Research Think Tank lists its services as FDA approved testing for
Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 (HIV-1), Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 2 (HIV-2), Hepatitis A Virus (HAV), Hepatitis
B Virus (HBV), Hepatitis C Virus (HCV), Cytomegalovirus (CMV), as well as human genetic markers.
Virco BVBA, based in Belgium has applied its bioinformatics efforts
to phenotypic drug resistance testing as related to HIV disease management.
NIH Reports on Wound Healing Genes
RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc. (AMEX:RGN) notes that at the 5th
Annual Meeting of the Wound Healing Society in Chicago, Illinois, data was presented on the use of Thymosin beta 4 (TB4) to
accelerate wound healing. The data was presented by Dr. Hynda Kleinman, Chief of the Laboratory of Cell Biology at the National
Institutes of Health's (NIH) Dental and Craniofacial Research Institute in Bethesda, Maryland. Her results indicated that
TB4 had the ability to turn on two genes that related to the cellular adhesion and cell migration process.
Dr. Allan L. Goldstein, Chief Scientific Advisor at RegeneRX elaborated
on the potential of the finding, "The ability of TB4 to enter the cell nucleus offers a very interesting possibility that
it could be used as a carrier or 'chaperone molecule' to allow manipulation of cells at the nuclear level. This capability
could open up a whole new avenue for delivering specialized chemotherapeutic agents, or other drugs, to cells in a very efficient
and targeted manner and further broadens the possible uses of TB4."
Ambit Biosciences on top of the $21 million it received in August
2004 reported in May it has received $10 million more in a Series C Funding round. The company, which has developed a small
molecule neuroprotectant for stroke treatment, indicated after the financing round, that neuroprotectant will enter the clinical
stage in 2006, followed by its small molecule kinase inhibitors for cancer treatment.
Participants in the round included Avalon Ventures, Canadian Medical
Discoveries Fund, Forward Ventures, GIMV, Genechem, Perseus-Soros Biopharmaceutical Fund, and Roche Venture. The long list
of investors joins in the efforts of Ambit with its notable corporate drug partners: Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, GlaxoSmithKline
Genomatix Corporation, which offers genetic design tools used to
control gene expression and modulate protein interactions, reported that it has closed a Series B round from NewVa Capital
Partners, LP. The $500,000 is planned for the launch of its genetic tools. The tools are considered important in that they
enable scientists to turn on or off genes to determine the effect on the production of proteins and the resultant effect on
cells. In this way, the positive and negative effects of drugs and nutrients on specific individuals can be more precisely
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has reported that the
U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Antiviral Drugs Advisory Committee has recommended the approval of its anti-HIV
drug tipranavir. Commenting on the approval and the clinical data review was Burkhard Blank, M.D., Senior Vice President,
Medical and Drug Regulatory Affairs at Boehringer, "We are pleased with the committee's recommendation and commend its thorough
discussion of the tipranavir clinical data. We look forward to working with the FDA on the comments raised by the Advisory
Committee and on the next steps of the application review process." Data was supplied to the FDA's advisory committee from
two Phase 3 clinical trials.
Boehringer presently provides tipranavir to eligible patients even
though it is not yet commercially available.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
AMD (NYSE:AMD) and HP (NYSE:HPQ)(NASDAQ:HPQ), major players in the
computer market, have announced a joint initiative to support the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF), a non-profit cancer organization.
AMD, for its part states that it "has made a two-year commitment to help generate a minimum of $4 million for the LAF from
this initiative." Additionally $50.00 from each HP Special Edition L2000 Notebook PC will be contributed to the LAF. That
computer bears a reproduction of Lance Armstrong's autograph.
Henri Richard, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer at AMD expressed
his thoughts about Lance Armstrong's struggle and accomplishments, "At AMD, we are inspired by Lance's perseverance to overcome
great odds, and impressed by his ability to effectively employ the power of technology. We are excited by the opportunity
to help empower the LAF and the community it serves using our technology and our established alliances with HP and Lance Armstrong."
Lance Armstrong, a Olympic bicyclist, founded the LAF foundation
Three biomedical research institutes in New York City, through The
Starr Foundation will receive $50 million over a three year period to further stem cell research. The new initiative called
the Tri-Institutional Stem Cell Initiative includes The Rockefeller University, Weill Medical College of Cornell University,
and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
One of the primary goals of the initiative is to combine the research
and advancements from different technologies to advance medical technology. Collaborations that the initiative encourages,
between the three institutions that compose it ,include toxicology, neuroscience, cell cycle research, chemistry, and physics.
Phenomix Corporation with a new round of $40 million in Series B
funding, brings its total level of funding up to $65.5 million. The drug discovery company, which is focused on oral alternative
treatments as opposed to the traditional injectable treatments, presently has under development therapies for type 2 diabetes
and rheumatoid arthritis.
Primary investors in the round included JPMorgan Partners and Delphi
Ventures as well as Baker Brothers Investments Alta Partners, Sofinnova Ventures, Bay City Capital, CMEA Ventures, GBS Venture
Partners and Novartis BioVenture Fund.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
According to the Associated Press, and the Seattle Business Journal,
Governor Christine Gregoire has signed a bill that establishes the Life Sciences Discovery Fund. The initial $350 million
from the fund is expected to be eventually matched with private and federal matching grants to bring the funds total to $1
billion. The life science funds are planned for those involved with medical and agricultural research in Washington
In line with current trends in the microarray medical diagnostic
market, DNAPrint genomics, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: DNAP) will soon start an analysis of its OVANOME predictive assay. The
goal of the study is to further the development of a diagnostic test to determine if a specific ovarian cancer patient will
elicit a positive response from Taxol-Carboplatin (TC) chemotherapy. According to the company, TC "elicits only a 70% positive
response rate." Furthermore according to Hector J. Gomez, M.D., Ph.D., DNAPrint's Chief Medical Officer, "This study could
lead to the development of a diagnostic test for predicting TC response, enabling physicians to identify patients most likely
to respond to TC therapy prior to treatment. It could also spare non-responding patients from going through a treatment program
that would not be effective in the first place."
Noting the seriousness of failed TC was Rafael Blanco, M.D., the
principal investigator at Bay Area Oncology, "Patients who do not respond to first-line treatment for ovarian cancer exhibit
higher mortality than those who do. Methods that allow the inference of a patient's reaction to treatment could enable those
genetically predisposed for non-response to avoid a failed TC first-line and be treated immediately with an alternative therapy."
In the never ending battle to fight infection, Boulder BioTechnology
Inc. has been awarded a $99,000 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of The National
Institutes of Health. The grant is for the improvement of gamma interferon, a human protein. The overall goal is to further
refine this protein to improve the human immune system's ability to conquer infections.
NovoStent Corporation, a company that has developed the anchored
helical stent, has closed $9.65 million of financing. The round was led by Sanderling Ventures. Other participants included
Montreux Equity Partners, The Band of Angels Fund and Peninsula Equity Partners. According to Michael Hogendijk, NovoStent's
President , the funds will be the basis for the company's efforts in moving the stent platform forward to the human clinical
trial stage. According to NovoStent, the stent "will be initially demonstrated in the superficial femoral artery (SFA) during
the Company's first human trial."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY
May 23, 2005
Zynex Medical Holdings, Inc. (OTCBB: ZYNX), a company that specializes
in pain management systems and electrotherapy products, reported that its sales increased 107.2 percent for its first quarter
of 2005 when compared to the same quarter a year ago. Revenues for the quarter ended March 31, 2005 were $544,943, compared
to $262,941 in the first quarter of 2004. The company also reported a profit of $0.002 a share.
Zynex President, Thomas Sandgaard commented on the positive sales
trend, and the company's stroke recovery product, NeuroMove, "We are seeing accelerating sales for our standard electrotherapy
products, which continue to gain market share, and more importantly we are also beginning to make strong inroads for our flagship
NeuroMove stroke recovery product, which represented a significant portion of sales in the quarter. With four million Americans
suffering from the debilitating effects of a stroke, we see solid potential for our proprietary and patent pending technology.
Sales of the NeuroMove to date have largely been through word-of-mouth and from a high number of inquiries that we receive
on our web site. We believe this sales effort could ramp up significantly with the marketing initiative we plan to implement
The NeuroMove system is an electro muscular training system. The
system monitors brain-to-muscle signals to determine if the patient is attempting to move a specific muscle. That specific
muscle is then moved through electrical simulation. In this way, the non-afflicted portions of the brain learn how to compensate
and send out the necessary neuro signal to move the muscle. The company indicates that the treatment has been successful and
that the treatment can also be used for spinal cord injuries.
Gemin X Biotechnologies Inc., focused on apoptosis regulation based
cancer treatments, has raised $62.5 million in financing. The funding, which consisted of $50 million in private equity and
a $15.2 million loan, is planned to be used for the further development of the GX15-0700 used for the treatment of chronic
lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
Dan Giampuzzi, President at Gemin X elaborated on the apoptotic
technology, a technology related to the regulation of the life span of dangerous cancer cells, "Gemin X's mission is to develop
innovative cancer therapeutics that can offer more effective alternatives than existing treatments, and to achieve this mission,
we've developed novel compounds that attack cancer at the heart of the apoptotic pathway. GX15-070 is designed to selectively
induce apoptosis in cancerous cells through pan-inhibition of proteins in the Bcl-2 family, the over-expression of which are
associated with tumor progression and resistance to chemotherapy. Similarly, our GX14 compounds selectively induce apoptosis
in cancerous cells despite mutations in the p53 pathway that often decrease the effectiveness of traditional therapies. This
financing provides Gemin X with the means to fully concentrate on evaluating the potential clinical benefits of these compounds."
Leading the round was the H.I.G. group of funds and the Sanderling
group of funds led the financing, with participation from Merlin BioMed Group, Pinnacle Biotech Ventures Fund and all of the
company's current investors. The loan is through Investissement Quebec's Biolevier Program, which is a government program
to promote the commercialization of life science technology.
Robert McNeil, Ph.D., General Partner of Sanderling Ventures explained
Gemin's technology in basic terms, "Many companies are trying to address cancer. Gemin X is one company that has been fortunate
enough to have discovered small molecules which inhibit the key proteins that keep cancer cells alive. Inhibiting survival
and thus driving cancer into its natural cell death pathway is a central goal of cancer research. Sanderling is proud to have
the opportunity to work with such innovative research and commercialization prospects."
Zelos Therapeutics has completed a Series B financing round that
has brought in an estimated $42.5 million. The funding, led by Alta Partners, included funding from a long list of both new
and existing investors. Frazier Healthcare Ventures, the Ontario Teacher's Pension Plan, Prospect Venture Partners, and SR
One were new investors. VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Inc., Genesys Capital Partners Inc., Seaflower Ventures and the
Business Development Bank of Canada were existing investors that invested again.
Robert (Duffy) DuFresne, Zelos' Chief Executive Officer, said besides
osteoporosis, the funding would also be used for the development of its topical psoriasis treatment, "Our Series B financing
provides us with sufficient capital to achieve several key corporate milestones. We anticipate that our current resources
will enable us to complete Phase II clinical trials for both our lead osteoporosis candidate, Ostabolin-C, and our second
PTH analogue program, for the topical treatment of psoriasis as well as to advance our remaining two programs into the clinic."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
SourceOne Healthcare Technologies, Inc., a distributor of medical
imaging systems, has reported that the Xplorer DR System, has resulted in strong equipment sales. Sales of the direct digital
radiography (DR) solution, from Imaging Dynamics Company, LTD., (IDC TSXV Symbol IDL), were attributed to the cost / performance
ratio of the system, which is priced at less than $200,000.
Jerry C. Cirino, CEO, SourceOne Healthcare Technologies, commented
on the products ranking and acceptance in the marketplace, "IDC's technology represents the strongest price to performance
DR offering in the digital X-ray market and has been readily adopted by hospitals, imaging, and outpatient centers and orthopedic
clinics throughout the country. IDC's product line is commanding the attention of key decision-makers to now look at DR as
an affordable digital solution with superior productivity."
Imaging Dynamics Co., developer of the product, was also pleased
with SourceOne's performance. Darryl Stein, CEO, had this to say, "SourceOne has greatly impressed us with their ability to
bridge many of the coverage gaps that we had been experiencing prior to signing our nationwide distribution agreement. SourceOne's
excellent reputation will greatly increase our road to success for meeting our U.S. sales objectives in 2005 and beyond."
The customers also had positive comments, Curt Layton, Director
of Radiology, at the Redmond Regional Medical Center said, "Our imaging department is responsible for the performance of approximately
80,000 procedures annually. While researching ways to improve our delivery of service to our patients and physicians, we wanted
to explore all options. After completing a site visit, we were impressed with IDC's DR system on a number of levels, including
its ability to produce high quality images, opportunities to improve our operational efficiencies, and a detector warranty
that is not matched by any of the other system manufacturers that we considered. All of these points made it an easy decision
to add the Xplorer DR system to our imaging department at Redmond."
GeneGo, Inc., a provider of high throughput computational platforms
for the data and computive intense genome analysis and drug discovery market, has licensed its MetaCore platform to Translational
Genomics Research Institute (TGen). MetaCore, which generates, compares and interprets biological networks and pathways, will
be used by Tgen in its translational genomics research efforts. According to Dr. Edward Suh, TGen's Chief Information Officer,
"GeneGo enables our scientists to generate global pathways and smaller targeted networks, and in addition, extending pathways
and networks with GeneGo was a very attractive feature for gaining information." The goal of transitional genomics research
is to analyze information obtained through the Human Genome project to improve the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of a
number of serious diseases.
GeneGo's products include MetaCore, MetaBase and MetaDrug. MetaCore, which is integrated
with MetaBase, a knowledge database, is for pharmaceutical scientists. One of the end-functions of MetaCore is to identify
biomarkers related to disease and toxicology. MetaDrug is used to predict the effects of small molecule compounds on human
toxicity and metabolism.
Tessera Inc., based in Seattle, has announced plans to begin clinical
trials on EPCA (Early Prostate Cancer Antigen), its blood test for prostrate cancer by years' end. Development work as well
as a study on the blood test's accuracy, was performed by Dr. Robert Getzenberg, Director of the Brady Urological Research
Institute at Johns Hopkins University. In that study, published in the May 15, 2005 issue of Cancer Research, the EPCA protein
was measured across a range of individuals - from the healthy to those afflicted with a number of health problems, which included
prostrate as well as a number of different types of cancer.
Dr. Getzenberg summed up the results of the study, "This new blood
test (EPCA), when coupled with PSA screening, may help reduce the number of unnecessary biopsies and undetected prostate tumors.
In addition to being highly sensitive to prostate cancer, the EPCA blood test is also very specific to it, meaning that other
cancers and benign prostate conditions are not detected, thus boosting doctors' confidence that a positive EPCA test is really
a sign of prostate cancer." Dr. Getzenberg also elaborated on the goals of the study, "Our ultimate objective is to differentiate
between aggressive and non-aggressive forms of prostate and colon cancer. Through our collaboration with Tessera over the
past three years, we are making significant progress toward the achievement of this important goal."
California Table Grape Commission reports that the current issue
of Phytotherapy Research, a scientific journal, has published research that indicates antioxidant properties of grapes may
eliminate bladder functions problems associated with an enlarged prostrate. The commission quotes an excerpt from Robert Levin,
Ph.D., of the Albany College of Pharmacy, "We are amazed at just how potent grapes appear to be in protecting against these
urinary dysfunctions. We saw more impact with the grape preparation than with other agents tested. The results from this study
are highly relevant to our male population: eating grapes every day might significantly reduce the progression of bladder
dysfunction resulting from an enlarged prostate." Levin also suggested that hat "the sooner men begin this regimen the more
effective it would be."
The press release also summarized results from the study, "The study
notes that in France, where per capita grape consumption is approximately twice that of the USA, although the incidence of
enlarged prostate is similar to that of the USA, and the mean prostate sizes are the same, the prevalence of moderate-to-severe
urinary symptoms in French men between 50 and 70 years of age is just 11 percent compared with 34 percent in American men."
Kathleen Nave, President of the California Table Grape Commission,
commented on the study, "This research furthers our understanding that fresh grapes are a significant source of beneficial
phytonutrients. We are supportive of solid scientific studies such as this one, which continue to shed light on just how grapes
provide their health benefits."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
World Gold Council Funds Solaris'
Ocular Nanorod Efforts - Gold Base Noted
Just shortly after Solaris has announced one round of funding, the company has revealed that
the World Gold Council, a organization funded by the world's leading gold mining companies, has also provided funding for
its anisotropic gold nanorod technology. The golden nanorods are planned to improve the quality of all types electronic
displays and to restore vision to those with retinal diseases. Dr. Nabil M. Lawandy, CEO of Solaris Nanosciences mentioned
specifically that the funding would benefit the development effort for the retinal disease known in short as AMD, "We are
excited to be working with the support of the World Gold Council in this application of our nanomaterials for improved LCDs,
The funding will accelerate the commercialization of our nanostructure additives for higher performance displays. This effort
will also directly benefit the development of our gold-based materials for restoring visual acuity in patients suffering from
retinal diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD)." Solaris Nanosciences is developing biologically active nanostructures,
which require gold, that may be able to restore the vision of those with Macular Degeneration and Diabetic Retinopathy. Solaris
reports that over 50 million people are afflicted with these two diseases.
Dr Richard Holliday, Industrial Sector Manager of the World Gold
Council explained the rationale for the investment, "Supporting the development of new technologies based on gold will lead
to important new applications for the metal in industry. Solaris Nanosciences has a powerful nanotechnology platform and an
experienced team to successfully commercialize this technology. This will lead to exciting new applications for gold in electronic
The World Council is actively seeking new ways to promote the use
of gold in order to increase industrial demand, which is currently estimated between 350 to 400 tonnes a year - considered
low when compared to other metals.
BioMimetic Pharmaceuticals, a company that develops products for
musculoskeletal disorders, reported the second closing of a Series C round of financing. The funding adds $11.8 million to
the $25.7 million raised in the first closing of the Series C round. Investors included Axiom Ventures, CMEA Ventures, HSS
Ventures, InterWest Partners, Knowledge Ventures LLC, MB Venture Partners, MC Life Science Ventures, Noro-Moseley and PTV
Samuel E. Lynch, D.M.D., D.M.Sc., CEO of BioMimetic Pharmaceuticals
outlined plans for the funding, "In addition to supporting the final phases of FDA approval and the launch of our lead product
candidate, GEM 21S, the additional funds raised will help us advance our multi-product orthopedic pipeline deep into clinical
development." GEM 21S, according to the company, has been developed for the treatment of bone defects in the jaw and maxillofacial
Besides GEM 21S inventory build-up, the company indicates that the
funds will also be used to expand its staff and corporate headquarters. Since its inception in 2001, BioMimetic has raised
$51 million in equity funding.
Montigen Pharmaceuticals Inc., a company engaged in the development
of molecular inhibitors for the treatment of cancer, announced that it has closed $5.2 million in Series A financing. Montigen
has developed two inhibitors, MP-470, a small molecule tyrosine-kinase inhibitor, and MP-235, a small molecule inhibitor of
According to David Bearss, Chief Scientific Officer at Montigen,
the funding would be used for pre-clinical drug development, "This funding enables us to complete pre-clinical development
of MP-470, and further advance MP-235. In parallel we will continue to progress our internal development technologies and
robust pipeline, focusing on the optimization of additional small molecule inhibitors discovered by Montigen scientists."
Aurora-A kinase, as Montigen reports, is a gene amplified in most
human cancer cells.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
Epigenomics AG (Frankfurt, Prime Standard: ECX) reports that its
proprietary DNA methylation markers are to be used in a test to determine the response of patients to chemotherapy. The marker,
used in the test, PITX2, is expected to eliminate chemotherapy as therapy for about 50 percent of breast cancer patients.
The company indicates that many patients can avoid the often very unpleasant experience of chemotherapy with just endocrine
Alexander Olek Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Epigenomics commented
on data from a study presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology and its own studies, "The results of these studies
are a major step forward for the team at Epigenomics and our clinical collaborators. Together with our previous studies, we
have now confirmed the strong correlation of PITX2 with disease recurrence in over 1000 breast patients from four different
studies. Due to the excellent clinical performance in all studies we have conducted so far and the fact that the marker can
be reliably measured in paraffin-embedded tissue, we are confident that our tissue-based tests incorporating these and other
specific DNA methylation markers will become a very valuable tools for oncologists to help them guide adjuvant therapy with
tamoxifen and potentially other endocrine based therapies, and/or chemotherapy in breast cancer."
Epigenomics also pointed to a study in the journal Cancer Research.
In that study, the company states "DNA methylation markers are also strong outcome predictors in patients treated with tamoxifen
for advanced disease." In that study microarray based technology was used " to determine the DNA methylation status of 117
candidate genes in a cohort of 200 steroid hormone receptor-positive tumors of patients who received tamoxifen as first-line
treatment for recurrent breast cancer."
Bayer HealthCare's Consumer Care Division has announced an addition
to its personalized multivitamin line, One-A-Day Cholesterol Plus. This multivitamin, of concern to those over 45, includes
policosanol, derived from sugar cane, an ingredient that Bayer states has been shown to maintain healthy cholesterol and blood
pressure levels. Besides policosanol, for healthy blood pressure levels the tablets also contain folic acid and calcium.
Shane Durkee, Director of Nutritional Science and New Business at
Bayer HealthCare outlined the motivation for the development of Cholesterol Plus, "As the baby boomer generation ages and
becomes more concerned about heart disease, we recognized a need to develop a multivitamin supplement to help keep cholesterol
and blood pressure levels normal. One-A-Day Cholesterol Plus is designed to support heart health along with providing key
essential vitamins and minerals for overall nutrition." According to Bayer over 41 percent of Americans over 45 are concerned
about their cholesterol or blood pressure levels.
One-A-Day Cholesterol Plus also contains a wide variety of other
vitamins and minerals. Among these are specific vitamin and mineral sets for joints and bones, the immune system and energy.
Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: IDIX) has reported that the
interim two year results of an extended treatment phase IIb clinical trial for telbivudine have been presented. Ching-Lung
Lai, M.D., lead investigator and Professor of Medicine and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, University of Hong Kong presented
the data at the 2005 Digestive Disease Week meeting held in Chicago. Professor Lai summarized the results, "Analysis of the
study data across treatment groups suggest that two-year efficacy outcomes, such as persistent control of HBV replication,
serum ALT normalization, and HBeAg seroconversion, are associated with achieving rapid viral suppression early in treatment.
Forty-one percent of patients with profound viral suppression after 24 weeks of treatment achieved seroconversion at two years,
compared to only 15 percent of patients who did not achieve similar rapid viral response. This correlation between early reduction
of viral load levels and longer-term efficacy outcomes suggests that maximizing viral load suppression early in the course
of treatment is an important therapeutic goal."
Nathaniel Brown, M.D., Idenix's Chief Medical Officer was encouraged
by the results, "These two-year treatment results for telbivudine demonstrate that, across key measures of virologic and clinical
outcomes in hepatitis B patients, the efficacy advantages for telbivudine treatment seen after one year were maintained through
two years of treatment. We are encouraged by these longer-term phase IIb data and look forward to the results of the comprehensive
telbivudine phase III GLOBE study, evaluating more than 1370 hepatitis B patients worldwide, which we expect to be available
in the fall of this year.
Eli Lilly and Company has reported that results of a Phase III clinical
trial of Gemzar (gercitabine, HCI) and Taxotere (docetaxel) were presented at the 41st annual meeting of the American Society
of Clinical Oncology (ASCO. The study examined the use of the two drugs in combination to treat metastatic breast cancer.
The results revealed that the treatment had similar efficacy, but with an improved safety profile than another treatment based
on Xeloda (capecitabine). Lilly indicated that the study revealed that the Gemzar combination was just as effective in increasing
progression free survival time and tumor response rate, but with fewer toxic side effects.
According to Stephen Chan, M.D., Consultant Oncologist, Nottingham
City Hospital, United Kingdom and a primary investigator in the study , "Treatment-related side effects can be severely debilitating
for women with metastatic breast cancer and have a tremendous impact on their quality of life. The combination of efficacy
and improved tolerability seen in this study with Gemzar/docetaxel suggests that we've taken an important step forward where
we can treat the cancer while helping women live their everyday lives more comfortably and with less risk of side effects."
Tranzyme Pharma, a biopharmaceutical company focused on gastrointestinal
disorder treatment technology, has completed an oversubscribed round of financing valued at $32 million. Lead investors in
the round included H.I.G. Ventures, Thomas, McNerney & Partners and Quaker BioVentures. Other investors included Business
Development Bank of Canada, Desjardins Venture Capital, Pacific Rim Ventures and The Solidarity Fund.
Tranzyme has in development orally bioavailable, small molecule
therapeutics for gastrointestinal (GI) disorders. Its products planned for clinical evaluation include TZP-101, which is designed
for the treatment of post-operative ileus. Additionally, the company has developed pre-clinical small molecule compounds for
diabetic gastroparesis, irritable bowel syndrome and functional dyspepsia. The company notes that its products correct GI
problems as opposed to just providing relief from symptoms.
Cell Genesys, Inc. (NASDAQ: CEGE) reported that follow-up trial
results related to Phase 2 trial of the GVAX vaccine for acute myleogenous leukemia were presented at the American Society
of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Orlando, Florida. Dr. Ivan Borrello from Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore,
Maryland presented the information.
Joseph J. Vallner, Ph.D., President at Cell Genesys commented on
the report, "We are encouraged by the results of our ongoing Phase 2 study of GVAX vaccine in acute leukemia, particularly
the observed correlation between vaccine-associated immune response, WT-1 response and relapse-free survival. We believe that
GVAX vaccine for leukemia represents a potential new treatment option for acute leukemia that may be particularly important
to consider for elderly patients and patients for whom bone marrow transplantation is not readily available or indicated."
According to Cell Genesys, the treatment involved "autologous bone
marrow stem cell transplantation and GVAX vaccine for leukemia."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
DENTSPLY International Inc. (NASDAQ:XRAY) and Two Cells Co. Ltd.
have entered into an agreement to develop a regeneration therapy based on neurotrophin (BDNF) for the treatment of periodontal
disease. The agreement revolves around a worldwide license from Two Cells and Professor Hidemi Kurihara at the University
of Hiroshima. DENTSPLY as part of the agreement will provide funding for Two Cells.
Mr. Gary Kunkle, DENTSPLY's CEO pointed out that the patent is fundamental
to the agreement, "This license agreement is based on an international patent application titled 'Remedy and Therapeutic Method
for Periodontal Diseases and Pulpal Diseases' submitted by Professor Hidemi Kurihara of Hiroshima University and the University's
venture company, Two Cells Co. Ltd. To date, this applied research into periodontal therapy using BDNF is unprecedented worldwide
and its potential application in periodontal regeneration therapy would provide a significant improvement in the treatment
of this disease."
Biotech Holdings Ltd. (TSX.V: BIO; OTTBB: BIOHF) announced last
week that orders for its diabetes drug from Mexico have shipped. According to Robert Rieveley, President of Biotech Holdings,
“The Sucanon orders received from Wal-Mart’s Superama and Supercenters divisions have now been delivered to Wal-Mart’s
distribution system. This Sucanon shipment will be distributed to Wal-Mart Superama and Supercenter stores in all parts of
Mexico, in preparation for the start of Sucanon infomercial and radio advertising,”
Biotech, whose diabetes drug, Sucanon, is for Type II diabetes,
notes on its web site that Mexico is one of the largest diabetics market in the world.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 16th, 2005
IDG Ventures Boston Closes $180 Million Fund - For Early Stage Companies
IDG Ventures Boston, a venture capital firm with its sites on early stage information and healthcare
companies has announced the final close of its second fund. That fund, valued at $180 million, received contributions from
AlpInvest Partners, FLAG Capital Management, GIC Special Investments, Grove Street for Finnish LGPI, HighVista Strategies,
International Data Group, Princeton University Investment Company, and an undisclosed Ivy League university endowment. The
new funds brings IDG's capital under management to $280 million.
High growth companies, the fund invests in, can expect to receive
between $6 million and $10 million.
IDG lists among its portfolio companies is MicroCHIPS, a company that has developed microimplantable
chips for medical applicaitons. IDG has invested in over 150 companies, which include life science companies as well as more
traditional electronic companies.
Cytochroma Inc. has received the first tranche of $15 million (Canadian)
as part of a financing plan to continue the development of CTA018 for Phase II clinical trials in the treatment of psoriasis
and to further build on its other preclinical products. The round was led VenGrowth Private Equity Partners Inc. through The
VenGrowth Advanced Life Sciences Fund Inc.
James M. Rae, CEO of Cytochroma, in a statement about the investment,
indicated CTA018 is a Vitamin D Signal Amplifier product with significant applications to other therapeutic drugs, "We are
very pleased to be receiving this additional investment from our current investors as it supports and reinforces our current
development approach. Cytochroma has confidence in the ongoing clinical development of CTA018 and will be using the same approach
to move other Vitamin D Signal Amplifier products into hyperparathyroidism secondary to chronic kidney disease, oncology and
multiple sclerosis indications. These additional indications for our compounds will add significant value to the Company."
Oral-B Toothbrush Selected as Most Effective
A study by a non-profit health research group based in Great Britain, Cochrane Collaboration,
has indicated that the Oral-B( Professional Care 8000 is the most effective in the removal of plaque and reducing gingivitis
when compared to other power toothbrushes - including sonic driven tooth brushes. The study included a review of published
studies from 1964 to 2004. Dr. Paul Warren, Vice President of Clinical Research at Oral-B took the moment to underline the
company's toothbrush technology, "This study again conclusively proves that Oral-B's rotation oscillation action power toothbrush
technology is superior in providing protection against gum inflammation and keeping teeth clean."
Power toothbrushes in the study included Oral-B, Philips Sonicare,
Interplak, Rowenta and Ultrasonex. The results can be viewed at Cochrane's web site, www.cochrane.org
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 13th, 2005
Nanofibre Based ELMARCO Signs with Alltracel -
To Develop Woundcare Products
Alltracel Pharmaceuticals Plc., (AIM: AP.L), a company with development
efforts in the consumer woundcare market, has entered into a product development agreement ELMARCO s.r.o., a Czech Republic
based company with R&D operations in the nanofibrous non-woven materials area. The two companies plan to review a number
of patents for possible commercial applications related to Alltracel's m-doc nanofibre technology. Elmarco with the Textiles
Faculty of the Technical University of Liberic has developed patented processes for spinning polymers for biomedical, chemical,
industrial and microelectronic applications.
Alltracel's CEO Tony Richardson indicated that the woundcare
market would be the initial focus of the agreement, "Alltracel has always been committed to innovation in our markets and
we are particularly excited by the prospects for m-doc based nanofibrous advanced woundcare delivery systems. Although at
an early stage of development nanofibre technology is showing market transforming potential in a number of our markets and
we are delighted to have formalised our partnership with Elmarco and the nanofibre technology team at the Technical University
of Liberic. We are now focussed on jointly reviewing a range of patent protected potential applications for m-doc based nanofibre
solutions, initially for the advanced woundcare and surgical markets and bringing these innovations to market via our network
of existing and new commercial partners."
Bio-Nano Files Patent for Wireless Biosensors - For Real-Time
Medical Treatment Applications
Advance Nanotech, Inc., (OTC BB:AVNA.OB) through its subsidiary, Bio-Nano Sensium Technologies,
reported that it has filed a patent for imbedded biosensors that have potential applications for the treatment of a number
of serious heath problems. These include diabetes, coronary and asthma. The patent relates to a technology that enables wireless
biosensors to meet the different frequency and operating standards countries and regions have for radio frequency transmission.
Stephanie Interbartolo, Vice President of Business Development at
Advance Nanotech elaborated on the hurdle that has been overcome, "Bio-Nano Sensium Technologies is advancing science, and
ensuring the comfort of patients of chronic illness. The company has removed a significant barrier to the widespread use of
wireless devices for medical applications, bringing down costs of ownership and facilitating practical new treatments."
Back in February of this year, Advance Nanotech and Toumaz Technology
Ltd. announced their joint venture called Bio-Nano Sensium Technologies. At that time the company indicated that the goal
was to develop implantable bio-nano sensors. These sensors are to diagnose and treat medical conditions. Toumaz Technology
has a background in low-power mixed signal design, used widely in medical devices.
Cellerant Therapeutics Inc., a company focused on the use of stem
cells for the treatment of cancers, genetic blood disorders and autoimmune diseases, has raised $16 million in a Series B
round of financing. The round's participants included Allen & Company, George Rathmann and CX Venture Group and MPM Capital.
The round was led by Novel Bioventures.
Pointing towards the commercialization prospects of the Cellerant's
products, Han Chiu, M.D., Managing Director of Novel Bioventures said, "Cellerant represents one of the strongest and most
impressive platforms and management teams for commercializing stem cell products. The company has significant near-term revenue
opportunities and is attracting a rich pipeline of ever more exciting technologies and breakthroughs. Novel is pleased to
have the opportunity to lead a company that has the seeds to become one if not "the" dominant player in the stem cell market,
one of the most important and exciting development areas in biotechnology today."
George Rathmann, Chairman at Cellerant, emphasized the company's
adult-derived stem cell technology, "Cellerant's hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) purification technology opens the door for
widespread clinical use of adult-derived stem cells for indications where conventional drug therapy has failed."
Plans for the funding were disclosed by Bruce Cohen, Cellerant's
CEO, "The proceeds from this financing will be used to accelerate commercial development of our HSC purification platform.
We also plan to initiate clinical trials for our first cell-based product - human Myeloid Progenitors for the treatment of
radiation- and chemotherapy-induced neutropenia. We are extremely pleased to have support for our programs from such strong
Cellerant's efforts have been in supporting the redevelopment of
the blood forming system of chemotherapy patients through the use of hematopoietic stem cells. Cellerant says that the blood
forming system is fundamental to the human immune system, which in turn is fundamental to the ability to fight off disease.
Vantage Oncology, Inc., a company that runs state-of-the-art oncology
centers throughout the United States, has raised $22 million in a Series C funding round. The company plans to use the funds
to acquire cancer treatment facilities as well as to form joint ventures and develop its cancer treatment centers - basically
a continuation of its business strategy. The funding was obtained through Conning Capital Partners, New Enterprise Associates,
Salix Ventures and Versant Ventures.
Michael Fiore, CEO at Vantage Oncology noted the company's expanding
network of centers in the context of the investment, "This indicates the ongoing real excitement about Vantage's potential
in the large and growing radiation oncology market. With 10 centers currently in operation or under development, and several
more in multiple states under letters of intent, Vantage continues to expand its presence nationwide."
Anacor Pharmaceuticals, focused on the use of proprietary boron
chemistry to develop drugs for dermatology applications, has secured $25 million in Series financing. The funding was co-led
by Care Capital and Venrock Associates. Other investors included Aberdare Ventures Red Abbey, Venture Partners and Rho Ventures.
J. Markham, partner, Care Capital, now a member of Anacor's board,
noted the company's market positioning, "Anacor's unique boron chemistry coupled with its advanced stage of development places
the company in a strong position to quickly bring new therapeutics to market. The experienced team at Anacor is well-versed
in the intricacies of guiding new products through the clinical development process. "
AC Immune, based in Switzerland, completed round B financing valued
at CHF 21 million. The company is developing treatment for Alzheimers through vaccination or passive immunization. The immunotherapy
centers on the beta amyloid protein, fundamental to the formation of plaques.
Andrea Pfeifer, CEO of AC Immune spoke about the stage of development
their products are in, "After obtaining encouraging results in animal studies showing the unique features of AC Immune's immunotherapeutic
approach, we are very excited to move into the next phase of testing our lead molecules for clinical submission."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
MAY 12th, 2005
DNA Semiconductor Sensor Tests DNA Samples in Minutes
Asia Pulse Ltd. reports
that Horiba Ltd. (TSE:6856), a subsidiary of Horiba Biotechnology Co. has developed a DNA chip that can test DNA samples in
minutes and without the need to amplify the DNA. Central to the technology is a semiconductor based sensor coated with DNA
fragments. The DNA fragments are selected to bind with a target gene within sample fluid. If the target gene is present, the
target gene will bind with the DNA fragments on the sensor and change the electric potential of the sensor. The work was done
in conjunction with Toyama University. The chip as reported by A-TIP, which translated the original report from the
Nikkei Business Daily, is over 10,000 times more sensitive than conventional DNA chips.
New Needleless Inhalable Insulin Offers Painless Solution for Diabetics - But Could Blunt MEMS
Based SiliconNeedle Market
a nanotechnology based company focused on oral and inhalable insulin technology, has revealed that Alveair, a product billed
as a needleless, or inhalable insulin, will be the focal point of a global consortium of diabetes companies. Frank K. Leung,
M.D., F.A.C.E., Coremed's founder, outlined the course of development for the drug, "Alveair's long-acting duration and efficacy
is clearly an advantage. It also makes sense to minimize the risks and exposure of pulmonary delivery. Alveair will be in
two clinical development directions: regular pathway and fast-track in different countries." The company also revealed that
its partners have the capability to produce bulk insulin API at costs that are much lower than current suppliers. Coremed
listed the injectable insulins on the market as Novolog, Humalog and Aprida. Alveair is considered a fast-onset and long-duration
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 11th, 2005
InSite Vision Incorporated (AMEX:ISV), a ophthalmic company focused
on ocular infections, glaucoma and retinal diseases, announced that it has entered into definitive agreements for a $9 million
private financing of common stock and warrants for common stock. The financing subject to American Stock Exchange approval,
is planned for the development and completion of Phase 3 AzaSite pivotal trials for the treatment of bacterial conjunctivitis.
The company indicates that with the financing, completion of the trials and associated regulatory filings and approvals, AzaSite
(based on the drug azithromycin) would ready to be introduced into the United States market in 2006.
InSite, for the treatment of glaucoma, has focused its attention
on the TIGR gene. InSite offers its OcuGene glaucoma genetic test to detect a genetic marker in the TIGR gene.
Tm Bioscience Corporation (TSX: TMC) has announced that its Tag-It
Cystic Fibrosis Kit, a DNA test used to determine if newborns and children are inflicted with mutations and variants of cystic
fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene, has been given clearance by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
for diagnostic use in the United States. The Tag-It Cystic Fibrosis Kit tests for 23 CFTR gene mutations and 4 variants (polymorphisms).
The company also indicated that the test could be used to determine if the genetic makeup of potential parents would result
in offspring with cystic fibrosis. The test is reported to be 100 percent accurate and have greater than 99.9 percent reproducibility
Greg Hines, President and CEO of Tm Bioscience indicated that the
clearance put the company in a good position relative to its competitors, "This clearance establishes Tm as a unique supplier
of CF tests to our rapidly expanding customer base against such competitors as ABI (NYSE:ABI). The Tag-It(TM) Cystic Fibrosis
Kit is the only CF testing system that has performance characteristics which have been established through extensive studies
reviewed by the FDA. Having the first CF test and second multiplexed genetic test behind Roche's (RHHBF.PK) AmpliChip CYP450
to be cleared as an IVD (in vitro device), sets the regulatory pathway for other tests in our broad and growing pipeline and
positions Tm as a leader in the commercial genetic testing market."
Dr. Michael Watson, Executive Director, American College of Medical
Genetics also signaled that the product would be well received, "Clearance by the FDA of a genetic assay for cystic fibrosis
provides a highly standardized product for laboratories that offers tremendous benefits to the genetic testing industry, physicians
and to patients."
Tm Bioscience, with the announcement, gave statistics about the
disease. In the Caucasian population, the incidence rate is approximately 1 in 3,200 live births.
MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 10, 2005
Bayhill's Multiple Sclerosis and Diabetes Effort Sees $35.4 in Series B Funding
Bayhill Therapeutics Inc. has completed a Series B round valued at $35.4 million. The private equity financing was
led by De Novo Ventures and Lilly Ventures. Other investors included A.M. Pappas Life Science Ventures, Boston Life Science
Venture Corp, CMEA Ventures, Grand Cathay Venture Capital Company, LTD, Latterell Venture Partners, Montreux Equity Partners,
Morgenthaler Ventures, PAC-LINK Bio Management Corp, Prudence Venture Investment Corp, Quintiles' PharmaBio Development, U.S.
Venture Partners, and the Vertical Group.
Mark W. Schwartz, PhD, and President and CEO discussed the use of the funding,
"This financing supports the development of our lead product candidate currently in phase I, BHT-3009, an antigen-specific
drug for treating multiple sclerosis, through Phase II clinical testing. The financing will also support development of our
second antigen-specific therapeutic for type I diabetes, as well as the development of our oligonucleotide therapeutic."
is focused on drugs for the treatment of autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis.
In addition, Bayhill is also developing oligonucleotide based drugs for autoimmune diseases.
Cell By Cell Facial Makeover Offers New Approach to Eternal Beauty
The search for younger skin, a time-aged pastime, has a new look - now its pixel by pixel, as Reliant Technologies
puts it. The company back in March announced that it has received FDA 510(k) market approval for its Fraxel Laser Treatment.
The company indicates that the treatment offers softer, smoother and toned skin. One of the secrets to the technology is that
the fractional resurfacing only effects between 12 and 20 percent of the skin, which allows the other cells to assist in the
healing process. The company indicates that the technology divides the skin into thousands of zones, and then targets just
the unhealthy skin, sparing the healthy skin cells.
Dennis Condon, Executive Vice President, Reliant Technologies
commented on the FDA's clearance and the product, "We are pleased to announce the FDA's clearance of the Fraxel laser for
skin resurfacing because it provides our physicians and their patients an innovative and efficacious treatment without the
inconvenience of traditional ablative techniques. This regulatory milestone caps off our successful introduction of a new
science of fractional resurfacing and is another example of our corporate mission to fulfill the promise of laser aesthetics.
We believe the patented Fraxel laser represents the first major invention in laser technology of the 21st century and will
be a significant enhancement to physicians' cosmetic treatment regimen."
Roy G. Geronemus, MD, Director of the Laser
& Skin Surgery Center of New York City, stressed the response from patients, "Our patients have been thrilled with the
results from Fraxel laser treatment. The procedure is well tolerated and most of our patients return to their normal activities
the next day. The clinical success and patient satisfaction we've seen in a relatively short period of time is remarkable.
As we continue to explore the versatility and functionality of this laser technology, I expect we will find more therapeutic
and cosmetic applications for fractional resurfacing procedures.
GenoMed Furthers Efforts to Educate Physicians about Advances in Medicine and Aging Gene
GenoMed Inc. (National Quotation Bureau's Pink Sheets Symbol GMED), a disease management company, will have
its CEO speak at the 25th Class Symposium at Harvard Medical School on June 9, 2005. The talk continues an effort by the company
to educate the world about the all-important medical advances that medical practitioners have not yet fully adopted, but could.
The speech will be on Clinical Genomics.
David Moskowitz MD, CEO at GenoMed, and a graduate of Harvard, commented
on the honor of the invitation and his own efforts to inform practitioners of the need for clinical genomics in every doctor's
office, "It's a tremendous honor to be selected to speak at our 25th medical class reunion. Since publishing three years ago
that angiotensin I-converting enzyme ('ACE') might be the aging gene, I've been trying hard to get the word out. Last week
at 'World DNA and Genome Day' in Dalian, China, the reception was quite enthusiastic. Speaking at Harvard next month should
be equally productive. I've already gotten inquiries from Harvard Medical School alumni who've seen the Class Day program.
The point of my talk will be that all physicians should be practicing clinical genomics already."
Dr. Moskowitz implied
that ignorance of today's revolutionary medical technology, especially in the medical community, has devastating results,
"GenoMed's primary goal right now is to educate the 80 million American Baby Boomers and their physicians, not to mention
the rest of the world, that medicine has already been revolutionized. Unfortunately, an entire cohort of kidney patients is
just now going on dialysis in the U.S. because their physicians didn't hear about our published results three years ago. If
we'd gotten to these patients then, we could have kept them off the kidney machine now. Getting the word out to patients and
their physicians in time is absolutely critical. Disease doesn't wait."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY
May 9, 2005
Quercetion, a phytonutrient found in strawberries, has been reported
to assist "apoptosis" , the process by which the body rids itself of damaged cells, such as cancer cells. The study, published
in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, was reiterated by the California Strawberry Association. In its account,
the association indicated that quercetion resulted in a reduction in cell viability after 18 hours of treatment in a study
that involved human liver cancer cells. The study also showed that quercetion was also the most active polyphenol of the pure
Senesco Technologies, Inc. (AMEX:SNT), a company that has developed
technology to increase crop yields, apparently without expensive and controversial genetic modification, has entered into
definitive agreements for a placement of 1.57 million units. The company expects that the private placement will bring in
about $3.32 million.
Senesco's technology regulates cell life, through a technique that
delays cell breakdown. Farms and grocers can take advantage of this because crops will stay fresher longer after harvesting.
Senesco stated that its technology can be used to develop superior strains of crops without any modification other than delaying
natural plant senescence.
Celator Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused
on cancer therapies, has closed a $40 million round of financing. The funding, which is said to be one of the largest in the
industry in the last twelve months, will go towards research related to Celator's CombiPlex technology platform. That platform
is one of the first to utilize the ideal ratios of chemotherapy agents to treat cancer. According to Dr. Andrew Janoff, CEO
at Celator, "Most cancers are treated with combinations of drugs. Our research has shown that the current standard used to
develop these regimens is far less than optimal because it does not recognize the critical role that drug ratios play in targeting
and killing cancer cells. Celator's CombiPlex technology platform positions us to develop an entirely new generation of cancer
therapies that will incorporate the ideal ratios of chemotherapy agents and make it possible to maintain those ratios in the
body to treat cancer more effectively."
Celator's lead product, called CPX-1, for colorectal cancer is undergoing
Phase I trials at the British Columbia Cancer Agency in Vancouver and at McGill University in Montreal. CPX-351, a treatment
for acute myeloid leukemia, is in development at the company.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 6, 2005
Nanogen, Inc. (NASDAQ:NGEN), a company with electronic based molecular
chip technology, has reported sales of $3.2 million for its latest quarter. The increase was 47 percent over the same quarter
last year, which came in at $2.2 million. The company has also projected a three fold increase in revenue in comparison to
2004 as a result of more of its products hitting the market and royalty revenues.
Howard C. Birndorf, Nanogen's chairman of the board and chief executive
officer, referred to the acquisitions and the timing of product revenue growth, "The results of Nanogen's first quarter show
the immediate increase in revenues we expected from our growing product portfolio and license agreements from acquisitions.
With renewed vigor in product sales, we are also seeing the benefits of our broader product line of reagents for conducting
genetic analysis. By building critical mass, we are accelerating our revenue growth while simultaneously continuing to realize
cost efficiencies as we complete the integrations of Epoch Biosciences and SynX. We anticipate further revenue growth during
the year as new products begin shipping during the second half of 2005."
Nanogen has built its product portfolio through recent acquisitions,
and its NanoChip Molecular Biology Workstation, and NanoChip Electronic Microarray. These products are used to analyze fluids
and biological samples for diseases related to genetic variations.
MAY 6th, 2005
Nanobac Life Sciences, Inc. (OTCBB:NNBP) has come out with a statement
that further substanciates clouds may contain nanobacteria that spread health problems like heart disease, HIV and kidney
stones. The company points to a recent paper published in the Journal of Proteome Research by Chandra Wickramasinghe, PhD
(Professor at Cardiff University, UK) and Andrei Sommer, PhD (Professor at the University Of Ulm, Germany) entitled "Nanobacteria
in Clouds may Spread Diseases around the World."
The Chairman of Nanobac Life Sciences, John Stanton, took the opportunity
to emphasize his company's nanobacteria products, "We are very excited about the current intensity of Nanobacteria research
being conducted, and about our product pipeline. We are very fortunate to be uniquely positioned to offer our patented Nanobacterial
diagnostics and anti-nanobacterial nanobiotic treatments to the medical research community. We are looking forward to partnering
with larger pharmaceutical companies so that we can expand the depth and breadth our research into Nanobacteria-related diseases
as well as expand our product pipeline."
Nanobacteria is also taken seriously by NASA. Astronauts, returning
from space often have developed kidney stones. NASA reports that microgravity is a better environment for the growth of nanobacteria.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
MAY 5th, 2005
Solaris Nanosciences Corporation, a company that plans to improve
solar cell technology efficiency with its nanomaterial technology, announced today that it has closed on an investment made
by the Slater Technology Fund. The investment came in the form of a $150,000 convertible note.
Ron Unterman, Ph.D., Managing Director of the Slater Technology
Fund was impressed not only with the solar cell technology but applications of Solaris' technology for eyewear and displays,
"Solaris' technology is one of the most innovative approaches I have seen for improving the efficiency and cost-effectiveness
of solar energy. In addition, their core nanotechnology holds tremendous opportunity for other market sectors, including improved
viewing angle for video displays, and enhanced vision for patients with macular degeneration. With its strong IP position
and creative technology team, Solaris will continue to expand on its nanotechnology platform which underlies these and other
potential products for both commercial and military markets."
Solaris's technology is based on an optical absorption phenomena
called plasmons. Plasmons, a type of optical absorption, occurs when metals are dissolved into the glass. Colors different
than the dissolved metals appear in the glass when a plasmon occurs. For a plasmon to occur, the dimensions of the metal particles
must be smaller than the wavelength of light.
Medtronic and Neurologix Expand Parkinson's and Epilepsy
Neurologix, Inc. (OTCBB:NRGX), a company that develops gene therapies
for brain and central nervous system disorders, and Medtronic, Inc. (NYSE:MDT) have entered into a joint development, manufacturing
and commercialization agreement for micro-infusion catheters. The micro-infusion catheters are to be developed to deliver
gene therapy to the brain and central nervous system as part of Neurologix's Parkinson disease and temporal lobe epilepsy
clinical programs. As part of the agreement, Medtronic made an equity investment in Neurologix valued at $2.0 million.
Michael Sorell, M.D., CEO of Neurologix, commented on the investment,
"This is a very important collaboration and a significant milestone for Neurologix. In 2002, prior to our beginning human
clinical trials, Medtronic made a $1.75 million equity investment in Neurologix based on our preclinical work. Enrollment
in our Phase I study for Parkinson's disease is nearly complete, and we are delighted that Medtronic is continuing to support
our work in gene therapy for Parkinson's disease and temporal lobe epilepsy." As part of the agreement, Medtronic, which also
has a microelectronics design unit, will manufacture the catheters. The companies also entered into a revenue-sharing agreement
related to the eventual commercialization of the device.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 4th, 2005
Gentris Corporation, a pharmaceutical safety company, has received
funding of $5 million for its venture into the personalized medicine market. Gentris closed a $5 million Series C funding
round with Mitsui & Co. (U.S.A.), Inc.
Gentris works with pharmaceutical companies to determine the effects
of drugs on patients with different genetic make-ups. According to Michael Murphy, Gentris' CEO, "Gentris already performs
drug metabolism and safety tests like the ones the FDA is recommending. These tests improve patient safety by identifying
at-risk patients. At the same time, pharmaceutical companies can conduct more efficient trials by eliminating the population
that won't respond well to the drug. This selective process--driven by science--will get drugs to market faster and into the
hands of patients who will benefit most from them."
Gentris also plans to develop pharmacogenomic diagnostic testing
kits for hospitals and doctors. These kits will be used by doctors to determine, at the doctor's office itself via a DNA analysis
test, how well the patient will respond to a prescription drug. Doctors will be able to select the best drug based on the
results of the DNA Genetic oriented drug test. genetic Mr. Murphy indicated that personal medicine was very close to a reality,
"Personalized medicine is coming faster than people realize."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 3rd, 2005
Maxim Pharmaceuticals Receives $1 Million Milestone - High Throughput Screening System Pointed
Maxim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAXM) (SSE:MAXM) reported that
it had achieved a $1 million development milestone under an agreement with Myriad Genetics. The milestone centers around the
safety and pharmacokinetic profile of MPC-6827, Maxim's tumor drug. Larry G. Stambaugh, Maxim's CEO indicated the direction
of the company and revealed the compound screening rate of the company's screening system, "We are very pleased with Myriad's
progress in the MPC-6827 program and look forward to the Phase 1 study results. In the meantime we are continuing our efforts
to advance other anti-cancer compounds into the clinic, either independently or through additional partnerships, over the
next 12 to 18 months. Further, we have recently initiated a new campaign to screen about 60,000 new compounds using our proprietary
caspase-3 screening technology, and we hope to discover new lead candidates and molecular targets that hold similar innovative
promise as oncology drugs."
Maxim points out that its methodology is to trigger cancer cell
death through a naturally occurring process called apoptosis.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
May 2nd, 2005
NovaMin Technology, Inc., a biomaterials company with tooth remineralization technology, has
received funds from investors to further its plan to eliminate dental bills associated with cavities and other oral health
problems. The company has obtained $4.4 million in a financing round to help commercialize NovaMin, which is NovaMin Technology's
proprietary active material used to stimulate bone growth. Intersouth Partners led the Series B round.
MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
April 29, 2005
Nulens Ltd., an Israeli medical device company focused on lens technology,
has received a $2.8 million investment from Elron Electronic Industries Ltd. (NASDAQ and TASE: ELRN). Doron Birger, Elron's
CEO indicated that Nulens had significant potential, "The new investment in Nulens is consistent with our strategy of new
investments in companies with innovative technologies that have the potential to create new paradigms in their industry. We
believe that together with Elron, Nulens has the potential to become a major company that will create significant value for
Nulens' Intra-Ocular Lens (IOL) is currently undergoing pre-clinical
trials. The IOL is primarily designed for cataract and presbyopia procedures.
Purity Solutions Company Secures $10.6 Million
Novazone, a company that develops food purification and safety technology,
has secured $10.6 million in Series A Financing. The investors included Foundation Capital and O Keiretsu Forum. The significance
of the technology, driven by legislative markets, was underscored by Mr. Weiss, General Partner at Foundation Capital, "Novazone
has developed ozone-based purification solutions to kill organic contaminants such as bacteria, viruses, and mold spores without
the use of toxic traditional chemical treatments. We were attracted to the investment by Novazone's technology, team, world-class
customers such as Safeway, Pepsi, Coca-Cola and the real consumer and legislative market drivers that are demanding this type
Affymetrix, Inc., (NASDAQ:AFFX), with a report that its latest quarterly
revenue reached $88.6 million, broke down its first quarter product sales as follows: $47.7 million in GeneChip sales (DNA
Arrays), reagent revenue of $9.9 million, and instrument revenue of $15.9 million. Affymetrix also shipped some 50 GeneChip
Systems in the quarter. Shipments of those systems now total over 1,225. Total product and product related revenue was $84.
9 million in the quarter ended March 31, 2005 compared to total product and product related revenue of $74.6 million for the
same quarter last year.
AMI Semiconductor Enters Into Medical Technology Development Agreement
AMI Semiconductor (NASDAQ:AMIS), a mixed signal semiconductor company, has entered into a development
agreement with Interventional Rhythm Management Inc. (IRM), a cardiology device company focused on cardiac arrhythmias and
Christine King, CEO of AMI Semiconductor gave details about the
agreement, "AMIS is proud to partner with IRM to facilitate the development of its pioneering electrophysiology technology
platform. By coming to AMIS for turnkey, mixed-signal, low-power and MICS data communications solutions, IRM has clearly demonstrated
that it is not necessary to employ armies of design engineers to implement ground breaking medical designs. We look forward
to further proving the depth of our experience and helping to bring other revolutionary life-saving medical technology to
market to enhance the lives of patients."
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
APRIL 28th, 2005
pSivida Limited (NASDAQ:PSDV; ASX:PSD; XETRA: PSI), a silicon based
nanotechnology company, announced several milestones for its latest quarter, which were underscored with its report that it
has $13.8 million of cash on hand. The company reported positive results for its BrachySil trial in the treatment
of liver cancer. For a group of 4 patients the company said that the average tumor regression was by volume of
80 percent and in some cases, 100 percent regression was observed. The company determined the results through CT scanning.
The final results for the trial are planned for announcement in June.
Along with the results, the company reported that it had completed
the construction of the factory that is used to manufacturers the company's main product, BrachySil. Atomising Systems Ltd.,
its UK manufacturing partner, manages and operates the cleanroom manufacturing facility.
SurModics, Inc. (Nasdaq:SRDX), a company involved in the drug delivery
market, has obtained an option from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey for the exclusive rights the use of biodegradable
polymers. Bruce Barclay, President and COO of SurModics commented about the relationship between the polymers and its
drug delivery platform, "SurModics continues to expand our technology offerings in ophthalmology following our acquisition
of InnoRx earlier this year. By combining these polymer families with the drug delivery platform technologies acquired from
InnoRx, we expect to be able to deliver a wide variety of drugs and other bioactive agents to the eye, treating such serious
diseases as age related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic macular edema (DME), two of the leading causes of blindness
in adults today, as well as glaucoma. This relationship with Rutgers demonstrates our commitment to offering leading-edge
proprietary technologies to our customers for this important market."
With the addition of the polymers, SurModics now has seven distinct
families of polymers available. These include PolyActive and OCTODEX, which were licensed by SurModics from OctoPlus,
as well SurModic's internally developed polymer families - Bravo, Encore and Accolade. The Bravo matrix is also used for
Kane Biotech Obtains License to Eradicate Medical Device
Kane Biotech Inc. (TSX VENTURE:KNE), has obtained the exclusive
license to the dispersin B enzyme, an enzyme capable of the eradication of a wide range of harmful bacteria and biofilms.
Commenting on the license agreement with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ), Mr. Gord Froehlich,
Vice President, Business Development at Kane Biotech said, "This novel and leading edge technology is a great fit with
our Company's strategy of developing products that target the eradication of biofilms. In addition to adding to our already
strong patent estate in this area, dispersin B has already completed proof of principle at the product level in studies against
significant pathogenic bacteria".
The company reports that dispersin B can be used to prevent and
disperse biofilms formed by Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli - very deadly infections
often caught through medical devices at hospital visits. Estimates from the The Center for Disease Control in Atlanta
indicate that one in ten patients in the United States will become infected in hospitals after admission. Estimated health
costs to insurers and patients are in the order of $5 Billion.
THE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY JOURNAL
APRIL 25, 2005
General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), through its business units,
GE Global Research and GE Healthcare, have entered into an agreement with Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY) to develop technology
related to the cure and diagnosis of Alzheimer's Diseases. The two company's plan to focus their efforts on beta-amyloid,
a protein in the brain, that is considered related to advancement of the disease. Steven Paul, Executive Vice President for
Science and Technology and President of Lilly Research Laboratories explained the strategy, "Earlier diagnosis of Alzheimer's--before
the advent of damage in the memory regions of the brain--has the potential to transform the treatment of this disease. A combined
diagnostic and therapeutic regimen that would identify people with pre-symptomatic elevated levels of beta-amyloid proteins
and plaques in their brain might enable physicians to prescribe a therapeutic to slow or stop the progression of the disease."
NanoLogix, Inc., (Pink Sheets: IFEC), a nanobiotechnology
company focused on the test kits that enable the early detection of fatal diseases in order to disenfranchise the disease,
released a study that is said to confirm that disseminated MAC and M. simiae disease exist among AIDS patients. Paul Hyman, Ph.D. Dr. Hyman, an investigator with NanoLogix, stated "With NanoLogix's Identikits, MAC could be detected
significantly sooner than expected for normal culture techniques."
Dr. Mitchell Felder, CEO of NanoLogix, explained the social-economic
benefits of the company's work, "Dr. Hyman's validation of NanoLogix's patented technology and the subsequent FDA registration
clearly show that we can identify a costly disease in a fraction of the time. These results may also have enormous implications
in the treatment of TB, AIDS and MAC sufferers, as antibiotic-sensitivity tests can now be performed early enough to make
a difference in these patients." A leading cause of death is AIDS patients according to the company are MAC related diseases.
The presence of MAC in an AIDS patient most often indicates that a patient has just four months to live.
ReOx Ltd., based in the United Kingdom, entered into a licensing
agreement valued at $9 million with an undisclosed international biopharmaceutical company. The company is investigating the
ability for drugs to effect the ability to process oxygen and the resultant ability to fight off diseases that result from
a depletion of oxygen in the cells. These include anaemia, cancer and strokes to name just a few.
Merrimack Pharmaceuticals, Inc. reported that a recent equity and
debt financing, which consisted of $28.3 million of Series D Preferred Stock, brought in $28.3 million. The funding brings
the companies total capital equity brought in to $87 million. Robert Mulroy, CEO commented, "This financing provides the Company
with the resources to advance our pipeline and research activities through several key milestones. We are pleased by the strong
and continuing support from our investors."
Merrimack focuses on autoimmune disease and cancer. Presently, one
of its drugs, MM-093, is under evaluation for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
AXM Pharma, Inc. (AMEX: AXJ) has completed a $3.125 million round,
which was obtained through an offering of convertible notes and detachable warrants. Douglas MacLellan, Vice Chairman of AXM
Pharma, Inc. indicated that the company expects more funding, "We are pleased to complete this round of financing and the
two new distribution agreements recently announced. With the current financing in place and potential for another $15.12 million
in funding from this round, we can continue fulfilling our fast-growing purchase orders that have come in since our factory
opened on March 1st. We look forward to our best year on record in 2005."
AXM Pharma, through its operations in China, lists its products
as injectables, capsules, tablets, liquids and medicated skin products.
Uroplasty, Inc. (OTC:UPST) (BULLETIN BOARD: UPST), a maker of minimally
invasive medical devices for the incontinence market, has obtained $7.5 million in funding through a Common Stock and warrant
Sam B. Humphries, President and Chief Executive Officer of Uroplasty,
Inc commented on the use of funds, and its agreement with CystoMedix, Inc. "As we plan and execute on new marketing strategies
for our developing product lines, these funds will enhance our overall capabilities. This transaction also supplies us with
the capital to meet our financial commitments and commence our work under the exclusive manufacturing and distribution agreement
we entered into earlier this week with CystoMedix, Inc. for its percutaneous tibial nerve stimulation technology to treat
American HealthChoice, Inc. (OTC:AMHI) announced that it obtained
a $500,000 line of credit from Northern Healthcare Capital, LLC. The funds are planned for the marketing of the DRX9000 Spinal
Decompression System, a non-surgical method, which relieves lower back pain and pressure between the discs of the spine. The
product is marketed through RehabCo, a subsidiary of the company.