UB CAT invests $253,000 in six life sciences companies

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Companies are developing treatments for cancer, neurovascular disease and more

BUFFALO, NY – The University at Buffalo Center for Advanced Technology in Big Data and Health Sciences (UB CAT) has awarded six life science companies a total of $253,000 to support new biomedical technologies.

The companies are working on the development of cancer vaccines, tests to assess the risk of infection and complications from COVID-19, and improved treatments for breast cancer, among other efforts.

“UB CAT is an incredible resource for life science companies developing new technologies,” said Rick Gardner, UB associate vice president for economic development. “It allows companies to partner with faculty experts and utilize sophisticated labs and other technology located at UB.”

UB CAT is sponsored by the New York State Division of Science, Technology, and Innovation (NYSTAR). He is dedicated to leveraging university resources to drive the growth of life sciences companies in New York State.

Companies benefiting from UB CAT support for the 2022-23 financial year are:

Therapeutic Concarlo

Concarlo Therapeutics, a Brooklyn-based company that develops pharmaceuticals to improve the long-term survival of breast cancer patients, will receive $82,000 from UB CAT. The company is developing IpY.20, a protein-lipid nanoparticle that has been shown to inhibit cancer cell proliferation and tumor growth in preclinical models. Yun Wu, PhD, an associate professor in UB’s Department of Biomedical Engineering – a joint program of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences – has partnered with Concarlo for the help in his research.

“The UB CAT funding provides strong support for my lab to collaborate with New York-based Concarlo Therapeutics, perform preclinical studies, move the company’s proprietary drug into clinical trial, and ultimately benefit patients with the condition. drug-resistant breast cancer,” Wu said.

Empire Genomics

Empire Genomics is a Williamsville, New York-based company founded in 2006 by Norma J. Nowak, PhD, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry at the Jacobs School. The company will receive $30,000 from UB CAT to create a new cancer diagnostic test. The test, known as “Immuno-flowFISH”, combines two technologies; flow cytometry, a technique used to detect and measure the physical and chemical characteristics of a population of cells or particles; and FISH, which stands for fluorescence in situ hybridization. Donald Yergeau, PhD, associate director of genomics technologies at CBLS, will act as lead professor.

KSL Diagnosis

KSL Diagnostics, Inc., based in Williamsville, New York, will receive $33,000 in UB CAT funding to validate the COVID-19 Immune Index™ test, for novel strains of COVID -19. The COVID-19 Immune Index™ test helps monitor the effectiveness of protection against the COVID-19 virus through a simple blood test. Patients can better understand their immune status to help determine the appropriate timing for vaccine booster doses and make informed decisions regarding potential exposure to COVID-19. The test is continuously validated for new strains of COVID -19 in collaboration with Amy Jacobs, PhD, associate research professor in the Jacobs School’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology and director of the Biosafety Level 3 (BSL3) Laboratory at the UB.

Neurovascular diagnosis

Neurovascular Diagnostics, a UB spin-off company developing a low-cost blood test to screen patients at high risk for intracranial brain aneurysms, will receive $47,000 from UB CAT. Three of the company’s four co-founders are UB researchers. John Kolega, PhD, associate professor of pathology and anatomical sciences at the Jacobs School, is the project’s lead professor.

Parker Isaac Instruments

Ithaca-based Parker Isaac Instruments will receive $11,000 to support the creation of a lymph node database that leverages AdiPress, the company’s automated pathology tool that standardizes lymph node detection for disease staging. cancer. Specifically, the project will explore how computational methods for identifying and analyzing lymph nodes for metastatic disease can be validated and optimized by normalizing preanalytical variables. John Tomaszewski, MD, SUNY professor emeritus and chair of the Jacobs School’s Department of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences, is the lead on the project.

POP Biotechnologies Inc.

POP Biotechnologies Inc. was founded by UB SUNY Empire Innovation Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering Jonathan Lovell, PhD; and UB Law School alumnus Jonathan Smyth. The company will receive $50,000 from UB CAT to support the development of a liposome-based vaccine delivery platform. Specifically, researchers are examining the platform’s effectiveness for cancer vaccines.

“The support of the CAT program, along with our ongoing partnership with the University at Buffalo, has been instrumental in maximizing the impact of the company funds used to identify and validate business targets. Our current project, involving the use of our cancer vaccine platform in combination with immunogenic neoepitopes, will generate valuable data to secure future investments and non-dilutive funding,” said Smyth.

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