NCBiotech News

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North Carolina-based Advanced Medicine Partners has announced a new financing agreement led by Deerfield Management, with additional support from ARCH Venture Partners and other investors. Once complete, this latest funding round of $32 million will bring the total direct investment in Advanced Medicine Partners to $60 million since its separation from Jaguar Gene Therapy.

Daniel R. Saban, Ph.D., founder and chief scientific officer of Duke University spinout Piximune Therapeutics was honored with the 2024 Cogan Award from the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), the world’s largest association of eye and vision researchers. 

The Foundation Fighting Blindness has awarded Opus Genetics, a Research Triangle Park drug development startup focused on inherited diseases of the retina, $1.7 million in funding to help advance two preclinical therapy candidates.

Kyowa Kirin, Inc., an affiliate of Kyowa Kirin Co., Ltd. (Kyowa Kirin), a global specialty pharmaceutical company based in Japan, this week announced that its board of directors approved plans to invest up to $530 million to build a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Sanford, N.C. 

The 171,700-square-foot, two-reactor facility will accelerate the company's development and production of biologic therapies for patients with rare and serious diseases while contributing to the Sanford area's economic growth and development, according to a company press release.

Durham-based Deep Blue Medical Advances has been honored with the Angel Capital Association (ACA) 2024 Luis Villalobos Award in the life sciences category. 

The prestigious award signifies the most ingenious and innovative ideas recently backed by members of the ACA, a professional association of more than 15,000 accredited angel investors and 250 angel groups, accredited platforms and family offices across North America.

Durham-based restor3d this week announced it has received $70 million in financing by closing $55 million in Series A funding by private investors and securing $15 million in debt financing. 

The designer and manufacturer of 3D-printed orthopedic implants will use the investments to release new patient-specific 3D-printed implants, invest in new 3D technology, expand its implementation of software and 3D automation tools, and provide medical education training for surgeons and its sales team. 

A Swiss contract research organization, Solvias, is establishing a cell- and gene-therapy (CGT) testing center in Morrisville, where it plans to employ more than 170 people by the end of 2025.

New research funded in part by the North Carolina Biotechnology Center shows that bioengineered platelets can be used to stop bleeding and enhance wound healing in animal models of trauma.

An industry consortium funded by a federal agency has chosen Allucent, a Cary-based clinical research organization, for its initial project award for a decentralized clinical trial involving the next generation of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Bezos Center for Sustainable Protein has launched at North Carolina State University.

The Bezos Earth Fund awarded NC State $30 million over five years to lead a center of excellence to create a biomanufacturing hub for dietary proteins that are environmentally friendly, healthy, tasty and affordable. The Earth Fund has committed $100 million to establish a network of open-access research and development centers focused on sustainable protein alternatives, expanding consumer choices.

CSL Seqirus, a global vaccine maker with a massive manufacturing plant in Holly Springs, has won a federal contract to produce a stockpile of vaccines in case of a pandemic of avian influenza, or bird flu.

Under terms of the $22 million contract, awarded by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), CSL Seqirus will complete the fill-and-finish process for about 4.8 million doses of pre-pandemic vaccine that is well-matched to H5N1, the currently circulating strain of bird flu virus.

Fayetteville Tech, Livingstone College latest to offer training programs

With North Carolina’s biopharmaceutical manufacturing industry continuing to expand, two college-based programs are working to stay ahead of the growth by preparing students for promising careers in the sector.

Five startup life sciences companies have emerged as regional winners of the North Carolina Biotechnology Center’s 2024 statewide Venture Challenge.

The companies (listed below) are the top picks by panels of judges from each NCBiotech region outside the Research Triangle. The five winners were chosen from a field of 14 startup companies that qualified for and just completed a two-month “regional assistance” period.

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center awarded 71 grants and loans totaling $2,757,090 to universities, bioscience companies and non-profit organizations in the third quarter of its fiscal year.

The awards, made in January, February and March, will support life science research, technology commercialization and entrepreneurship throughout North Carolina. The funding will also help universities and companies attract follow-on funding from other sources.

The “Accelerate NC Career Celebration” at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center on May 7, 2024, brought together key players in the complex ecosystem that makes North Carolina a global leader in life sciences manufacturing.

This inaugural event recognized 69 individuals who have recently joined the life sciences workforce alongside their peers, teachers, employers, family and friends.

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