BioMaryland Center Awards $865,000 to Accelerate Life Sciences Commercialization

BALTIMORE, MD (February 25, 2015) – The BioMaryland Center announced today that it has awarded $865,000 to five growing life sciences companies and one medical institution through its Biotechnology Development Awards program. The companies, which received up to $200,000 each, will use the funding to accelerate the commercialization of a wide range of treatments and technologies; including a device that monitors congestive heart failure; a portable PET scanner; and a device to detect arterial graft failure that would have resulted in avoidable amputations. An award was also given to a Johns Hopkins School of Medicine surgeon for his work with a novel treatment of brain cancer. The BioMaryland Center is part of the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED).

“These awards provide critical funding and help to ensure that the life-saving research being done at these companies has the opportunity to move to the commercial marketplace and potentially impact million around the world,” said DBED Secretary Mike Gill.

For this year’s awards, the BioMaryland Center launched a new partnership with Maryland’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) and the Center for Medical Technology Policy (CMTP) to incorporate improved health care quality and cost reduction criteria into the selection process. The awards were made on a competitive basis, with preference given to projects that improve patient outcomes and reduce health care costs. The BioMaryland Center, DHMH and CMTP will provide ongoing advice and support to the companies selected for funding and help address any technical, scientific, regulatory and reimbursement issues that may be encountered during the development process.

Since its inception in 2010, more than $8.3 million has been awarded through the program to advance 48 Maryland life sciences projects. Three previous awardees – Gliknik, Telcare, and Unither Virology – collectively have raised more than $130 million after using their biotechnology development award funds to advance the early stages of their technology.

Awardees this round are:

Brain Biosciences (Rockville) – A compact portable PET scanner for evaluation of patients with suspected Alzheimer’s or other neurodegenerative disorders.

GraftWorx LLC (Bel Air) – A “smart” graft that automatically alerts clinicians of critical events before they occur so that cost-effective, early interventions replace emergency procedures.

JPLC Associates (Baltimore) – A device, the “Raven,” which integrates optical, mechanical and radiation quality assurance parameters for radiation therapy equipment.

Mindoula Health (Silver Spring) – A telehealth platform enabling virtual and in-person 24/7 behavioral health case management services and collaborative care.

Vixiar Medical Inc. (Annapolis) – A noninvasive device to monitor congestive heart failure that functions by having the patient breathe into a hand-held device to use airway back pressure to calculate cardiac filling pressures.

Dr. Quinones-Hinojosa and Dr. Jordan Green, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (Baltimore) – A biodegradable nanoparticle therapy enabling effective transfection of patient’s stem cells derived from adipose tissue that are applied directly to the post-operative site of brain cancer.

ABOUT BIOMARYLAND CENTER

The BioMaryland Center is the office within Maryland’s Department of Business and Economic Development which connects life sciences companies, academic and federal researchers with each other and with potential capital sources, partners, clients, and other resources. Center staff provides information regarding funding and other resources, business plan feedback, and access to market research, advocacy, and other industry support. The BioMaryland Center also promotes the state’s life sciences industry domestically and abroad. For more information regarding the Center and the Biotechnology Development awards program, visit www.Bio.Maryland.gov.

ABOUT DBED

The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development stimulates private investment and creates jobs by attracting new businesses, encouraging the expansion and retention of existing companies, and providing workforce training and financial assistance to Maryland companies. The Department promotes the State’s many economic advantages and markets local products and services at home and abroad to spur economic development and international investment, trade and tourism. For more information, visit www.ChooseMaryland.org.