Industry News and Notes – July/August 2012

Trenton Report

Business Facilities Magazine Ranks NJ No. 2 for Biotechnology Strength

TRENTON — Signaling the continued success of the Christie Administration’s policies to spur economic development and create jobs, Business Facilities magazine, a trade publication that tracks national and international corporate real estate and site selections, ranked New Jersey among the nation’s top business locations, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno announced on July 11.

This year’s ranking appears in the July 16, 2012, edition of the magazine. The Christie Administration’s business growth and job creation policies are reflected in New Jersey ranking first in the nation for workforce health and safety and jumping eight positions to rank second for biotechnology strength. New Jersey also ranked second for installed solar power capacity and fifth for education climate.

BioNJ President Debbie Hart commented on the ranking in an email to BioNJ Members: “This great news documents the continuing vitality of the New Jersey biotechnology industry. We thank Governor Christie and Lt. Governor Guadagno for their support of the industry, encourage State government to continue to develop innovative policies and programs to support the ongoing growth of the industry. We look forward to future reports documenting why New Jersey remains The Medicine Chest of the World.”

Click here to learn more.

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno Concludes Statewide Life Sciences Tour with Visit to Enterprise Development Center at NJIT

NEWARK — Capping a month-long tour to better inform economic development policy by getting direct insight from businesses in New Jersey’s life sciences industry, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno on June 28 visited the Enterprise Development Center (EDC) at the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). The visit and tour of the EDC, home to nearly 86 high-tech and life science companies, was the Lt. Governor’s final stop in her Business Life Sciences Tour across the Garden State that occurred throughout the month of June. The Lt. Governor visited 12 life sciences companies during the month.

The visit included meeting with the executives of four resident companies: Edge Therapeutics, Inc., a drug-development company working to reduce the effects of traumatic brain injury; SimPhoTek, Inc., a global leader in the simulation of laser; Endomedix, Inc., a developer of medical devices that is working on a product to control surgical bleeding; and Menssana Research, Inc., a developer of medical devices that has designed a portable breath collection apparatus that can collect breath samples virtually anywhere, for highly sensitive laboratory analysis.

Click here to learn more.

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno Announces New Office of International Business Development and Protocol

TRENTON — Capitalizing on the State’s improved business climate to attract additional foreign investment and support greater job growth, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno on July 9 visited Evonik Degussa Corporation in Parsippany to announce the Christie Administration’s new Office of International Business Development and Protocol.

Foreign companies seek to invest in areas that support innovation, are close to other global firms, provide access to markets, and offer a world-class workforce. The new office will leverage the State’s advantages in these areas to attract foreign investment, expand New Jersey’s partner network to improve lead development, and increase export opportunities for New Jersey’s businesses.

The office will concentrate its outreach efforts on New Jersey’s top investor nations — Germany, Switzerland, Japan, France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Canada — and countries where New Jersey enjoys rich relationships, such as Taiwan, India, Korea, and Israel.

The office will be led by Director Eddy Mayen, who will be responsible for managing foreign direct investment attraction and export promotion activities, as well as establishing and maintaining positive working relationships with the foreign business investment community.

Click here to learn more.


Washington Report

BIO: Supreme Court Affordable Care Act Ruling Must Now Lead to Implementation Promoting Innovation and Expand Access

WASHINGTON, DC — Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) President and CEO Jim Greenwood issued the following statement on the ruling recently issued by the U.S. Supreme Court regarding the Affordable Care Act:

“BIO will continue to work with relevant federal and state agencies to ensure implementation of the law in a manner that helps enable the U.S. biotech community’s continued development of lifesaving cures and other medical breakthroughs while expanding patient access to these critical cures, medicines, and innovations. We will work to ensure that biotech researchers can continue to address the diseases of today while conducting the research and investment required to develop the advanced medicines and cures of tomorrow.

“We also will continue our work with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to implement the bipartisan-backed biosimilars pathway that was enacted under the law. Specifically, we will advocate for implementation approaches that ensure patient safety, expand patient access and competition, and provide necessary and fair incentives that will help spur continued biomedical breakthroughs. FDA regulations and guidance must help today’s patients while enabling the biotech community to move into tomorrow with cures and continued breakthroughs so our children and grandchildren won’t have to live with the same diseases we have faced and, perhaps, one day, any diseases at all.

“In addition, BIO will continue to support efforts to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), which threatens patient access to needed cures and medical breakthroughs.”


Funding Opportunities

Don’t Miss the Next Opportunity to Submit Israel-U.S. Joint Proposals to the BIRD Foundation


The Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation, which has as its mission to stimulate, promote, and support industrial research and development (R&D) of mutual benefit to the United States and Israel, is seeking proposals.

To be considered, a project proposal should include:

  • R&D cooperation between two unrelated companies, one registered in Israel and the other in the United States. The companies should jointly apply for BIRD support.
  • R&D topics within the scope of this call include but are not limited to Life Sciences, Cleantech, Communications, Electronics, Software, Homeland Security (HLS), etc.
  • The jointly developed technology or product(s) must have considerable innovation.
  • The jointly developed technology or product(s) must have significant commercial potential.

The maximum conditional grant per project is up to $1 million (up to 50 percent of the R&D costs associated with the joint project).

Timetable and deadlines:
Executive summaries (using BIRD’s template) — September 23, 2012
Full proposals (following BIRD’s detailed instructions) — October 23, 2012
Decisions — December 18, 2012

Please refer to BIRD’s website for submission details.

For further inquiries, please contact:
In Israel: Ms. Einat Spivak (email:; phone: 972-3-6988300)
In the United States: Ms. Michal Miasnik (email:; phone: 650-752-6485

Please keep informed with BIRD’s latest news and updates on our Facebook page.


News from Our Colleges and Universities

Dr. Kenneth J. Breslauer to Lead Rutgers Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development

NEW BRUNSWICK — Dr. Kenneth J. Breslauer, vice president for health science partnerships and an accomplished researcher at Rutgers, has agreed to expand his administrative role to provide immediate oversight and leadership for the university-wide functions and operations associated with the research and economic development offices currently under the vice president for research domain.

Richard L. Edwards, interim executive vice president for academic affairs at Rutgers made the announcement to the university community on June 25.

Dr. Breslauer has a doctorate in biophysical chemistry from Yale University and conducted postdoctoral studies at the University of California, Berkeley, before joining the Rutgers faculty in 1974. He is an award-winning scientist in biophysical chemistry, and a moving force in collaborative biomedical initiatives throughout the university and the State, including the Cancer Institute, the Stem Cell Research Center, the Keck Center for Collaborative Neurosciences, the Biomaterials Center, the Proteomics Center, the Brain Health Institute, the State High-Field NMR facility, the Chemical Biology Collaborative Laboratory, shared core facilities for public and private use, as well as developing initiatives in personalized medicine, biomedical imaging, and wellness.

Click here to learn more.

Learn More about Technology Transfer at UMDNJ

The latest version of Technology Transfer, the quarterly newsletter from the UMDNJ Office of Technology Transfer and Business Development, is now available online.

Click here to access this issue.


Items of Note

High School Chefs in Service to Pediatric Cancer Patients Seeking Expertise

TETERBORO — Students of the Bergen County Technical High School have been working on designing new food products to address the nutritional and sensory needs of pediatric oncology patients at Hackensack University Medical Center. These students are part of a new CTE major at Teterboro called Culinology. This field integrates traditional culinary arts with sciences such as nutrition, microbiology, and chemistry in an effort to provide real solutions for food production and distribution.

As the program prepares to begin its second year, Richard Panicucci, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, writes that the school is seeking the assistance of volunteers with expertise in the areas of nutraceuticals, packaging, distribution, and food promotion to listen to the students’ ideas and give them some practical feedback along the way as they put their business plan together.

“Ideally, this would be a two-part interaction consisting of two 1-hour meetings. The first would be an opportunity for the industry person to provide our students with some basic concepts in his or her area of expertise. The second meeting would be an opportunity for the students to share what they have done in applying those concepts to their product and receive feedback on that application,” Panicucci writes.

Click here to learn more.

To volunteer, please contact:
Richard Panicucci
Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction
Bergen County Technical Schools and Special Services
327 E. Ridgewood Ave.
Paramus, NJ 07652

Chromocell Research Highlighted in June Edition of Nature

NORTH BRUNSWICK — Chromocell’s innovative work to discover and develop flavor ingredients and natural taste enhancers was featured in an article, “Food science: Taste bud hackers,” which appeared in the June edition of Nature magazine.

In discussing the use of high-throughput technologies to identify potential compounds, the article reported that Chromocell, “Rather than synthesizing potential taste enhancers in the lab, its researchers are putting more emphasis on using their high-throughput fishing net to catch natural compounds. This is an approach with popular appeal – a growing proportion of the public views artificial sweeteners and fat substitutes with suspicion, so many companies are looking instead for natural products.”

Click here to read the article.

Parsippany Startup, Polymer Therapeutics, Wins Elevator Pitch Competition at Rutgers Entrepreneurship Day 2012

NEW BRUNSWICK — At the recent Rutgers Entrepreneurship Day, Polymer Therapeutics Inc., a startup company in Parsippany, won the SNR Denton Elevator Pitch Competition. The company’s CEO, Braun C. Kiess, gave a presentation on their polymer drug-delivery technology. A panel of judges chose the pitch as the best, and the company will receive a $2,500 cash award and 1 year of cost-free mentoring through the new Rutgers Entrepreneur Mentor Program.

Click here to learn more.

Agile Therapeutics and Senesco Technologies Finalists in E&Y Entrepreneur Awards

Congratulations to BioNJ Core Member Agile Therapeutics and Senesco Technologies, Inc., for being recognized as finalists in Ernst & Young’s 2012 Entrepreneur of the Year program.

Agile, headed by President and CEO Alfred Altomari, was a finalist in the Pharmaceutical and Medical Technology section. Senesco Technologies, led by President and CEO Leslie Brown and Chief Scientific Officer Dr. John Thompson, were finalists in the Life Sciences section.