Social Media Apps

The Social Dilemma: What Can The Biotech Industry Learn From The Failures Of The Social Media Industry?

By now, we’re all aware that Big Tech has a problem. Social media giants in particular, like Facebook and Twitter, were originally intended to connect people online. But instead, the rise of hate speech, political extremism, and a fundamental distrust of science and facts has become a painful example of how our best intentions can go awry. So, what does this mean for Big Biotech? Social media has shaken our world with words and images. If the same failings were to occur in the biotech industry, the consequences could be unimaginable.

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Nurses

Biotech Looking To Fight Kidney Disease Launches with $51 Million

Cambridge biotech that’s working on drugs to reverse kidney disease — rather than merely slow its progression ― was unveiled Tuesday after raising $51 million in venture capital.

Walden Biosciences was created by Chicago-based ARCH Venture Partners and UCB Ventures, of Belgium. Both venture capital firms funnel early-stage funding to promising startups.

COVID 19 Test

Missoula Biotech Firm Joins Statewide Effort To Boost COVID Testing Capacity

A biotech lab based in Missoula will join the statewide effort to boost its coronavirus testing capacity while providing sample collection kits to Montana schools and healthcare providers.

FYR Diagnostics said this week that it will begin to process COVID-19 tests immediately, joining the state lab and Montana State University in the effort.

Montana also contracts with Mako Diagnostics in North Carolina for testing.

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Biotech 3

Ag Biotech Poised to Start a New Green Revolution

If you enjoy gnawing on a buttery ear of corn or biting into a luscious porterhouse steak, you’ve savored the results of Ag Biotech (agricultural biotechnology). Ag Biotech encompasses an expansive landscape involving biological, chemical, and even digital processes used in its two major sectors: plants and animals. With ever increasing world hunger, diminished resources, and accelerating climate change, new technologies are emerging that promise to enhance product yield and sustainability.

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Female Biotechnician

Firmenich Launches Biotechnology Pilot Plant and Lab For Clean Label Flavor Solutions

01 Oct 2020 — Flavor house Firmenich has launched its new biotechnology pilot plant and laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland. Leveraging novel digital technologies, the facility is touted as opening “a new era for the development of ingredients and clean label solutions” by providing faster speed-to-market and greater flexibility for customer collaboration.

Integrated into the group’s flagship ingredients production site at La Plaine, Geneva, the facility operates in accordance with safety and environmental standards, while reducing waste and energy consumption.

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Coronavirus

COVID-19 ‘Far From Done,’ Expert Tells Biotech Meeting in Madison

With daily COVID-19 cases on the rise again nationally and more than doubling in Wisconsin since early this month, a leading infectious disease expert said Wednesday he expects the trend to carry on.

“We are going to continue to see major increases occurring right through the fall,” Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, said during the first day of a three-day Wisconsin Biohealth Summit. “We’re far from done with this virus.”

The online event, which continues the next two Wednesdays, is sponsored by BioForward Wisconsin, a biohealth industry group. The first day included updates on UW-Madison and industry working together to make masks, face shields and other equipment in response to the pandemic.

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Biotech

Four Biotech Companies Are Going Public Today. What to Know About Each.

Four biotechnology companies are going public Friday, led by PMV Pharmaceuticals, which just increased the size of its deal.

PMV could raise as much as $211.8 million when it prices its deal later Thursday. Earlier, the company boosted the size of its offering and is now selling 11.765 million shares, up from 7.35 million shares, according to a regulatory filing dated Sept. 24. The price range remained $16 to $18 each.

PMV is expected to trade Friday on the Nasdaq market under the ticker PMVP. Underwriters on the deal include Goldman Sachs, Bank of America Securities, Cowen and Evercore ISI.

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Biotech Concept

Legend Biotech CEO Detained in China as Part of Investigation

Legend Biotech’s man in charge will be working from home for the time being.

The Chinese company announced Monday that its CEO and chairman, Frank Zhang, has been detained by Chinese customs as part of an investigation involving Genscript Biotech, Legend’s majority shareholder and former parent company. Current CFO Ying Huang has been named interim CEO, effective immediately.

Medicine Pills

This Biotech Startup Just Raised $47 Million To Make Drugs From Fungi

In 1928, a Scottish researcher by the name of Alexander Fleming came back from vacation to discover that he’d accidentally grown a species of fungi called Penicillium on a petri dish containing bacteria. The fungi, to Fleming’s surprise, appeared to be keeping the growth of that bacteria at bay. Further investigations led him to discover the  life-saving antibiotic penicillin, which sparked a revolution in the treatment of infectious disease.

Almost a century later, Hexagon Bio wants to discover more medicinal uses for fungi (though this time, it will be on purpose). On September 15th, the company announced that it raised a $47 million Series A round that will help it genetically sequence fungi and find new breakthrough medications. The next penicillin, the company wagers, is already out there waiting to be discovered.

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Pills in Packaging

N.C. Biotech Firm Announces Promising COVID-19 Treatment

DURHAM, N.C. – Researchers with a Triangle-area biotech firm on Thursday said experiments with a known immune booster yielded some surprising results.

Scientists at Durham-based KNOW Bio infected host cells with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the virus that causes COVID-19. They then exposed the cells to a solution containing nitric oxide. Within 24 hours, 99.9 percent of the viruses were dead. More importantly, the remaining viruses were unable to replicate and the host cells were undamaged.

“You can kill the virus, but damaging its ability to replicate? That is truly an amazing discovery,” CEO Neal Hunter says.

Nitric oxide is a compound the human body produces naturally. Scientists had proposed using it to combat the SARS-CoV-2 virus, but Hunter says nobody had tried doing so.

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