Last week, CAR-T biotech Poseida Therapeutics said it was gunning for another IPO attempt a year after ditching it in favor of a new funding round led by Novartis.
This time, the IPO is still going ahead, but, in the middle of it, the company has announced a new $110 million funding round ahead of its $115 million public offering attempt.
Novartis didn’t appear on its statement this time, with the financing led by funds advised by Fidelity Management Research Company with help from Adage Capital Management and Schonfeld Strategic Advisors. “A number of current investors also participated in the financing,” the biotech added in its brief update.
In April last year, the cell therapy player put the kibosh on original its IPO plans, settling instead for a $142 million series C round with more than half of the money coming from cell and gene therapy devotee Novartis.
The Big Pharma put up a $75 million equity investment in the San Diego-based company, which has a stable of CAR-T candidates manufactured through a nonviral process.
The expected IPO cash and its series D is earmarked for Poseida’s leading candidate P-BCMA-101, an autologous CAR-T currently in a potentially registrational phase 2 trial for multiple myeloma.
“This financing supports the approach we are taking to leverage our broad proprietary gene engineering platform technologies, including the piggyBac DNA Modification System and Cas-CLOVER site-specific gene editing system, for the creation of numerous differentiated cell and gene therapy product candidates,” said Eric Ostertag, M.D., Ph.D., CEO at Poseida.
PAOG Targets International Segment Of $5 Billion CBD Nutraceutical Market
Sandusky, OH, May 13, 2021 – OTC PR WIRE — PAO Group, Inc. (OTC Pink: PAOG) today revealed it will include foreign sales in the planned Q4 launch of its three CBD Nutraceutical Products.
The 2020 CBD Nutraceuticals Market had an estimated value of $5.2 Billion and it is expected to reach $16.4 Billion by 2027.
That market value represents global sales. PAOG management is targeting specific international segments to be included in its Q4 sales launch. PAOG management anticipates a lower market entry expense in the targeted international segments. PAOG management also anticipates the international segments to likely contribute a major portion of its overall CBD Nutraceutical sales.
Last week, PAOG released a preview of the company’s plan to launch a CBD Nutraceuticals line of products. PAOG’s CBD Nutraceuticals are expected to generate revenue this year, in 2021, while the company continues with its long-term CBD pharmaceutical developments.
PAOG is working on the development of a CBD pharmaceutical product under the name RespRx, for the treatment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) derived from a patented cannabis extraction method – U.S. Patent No. 9,199,960 entitled “METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR PROCESSING HERBACEOUS PLANT MATERIALS INCLUDING THE CANNABIS PLANT.”
The first CBD Nutraceutical under development will sell under the name CBD RELAX-RX targeting the anxiety and depression treatment market anticipated to reach a value of $18 billion by 2025.
The second CBD Nutraceutical under development will be derived from PAOG’s ongoing COPD research targeting the COPD treatment market separately from the pharmaceutical market also targeting COPD treatment.
The third CBD Nutraceutical is being developed in partnership with the EVERx CBD Sports Water Brand owned by Puration, Inc. (OTC Pink: PURA) and will target the sports nutrition market.
PAOG plans to develop and distribute its CBD nutraceuticals with Alkame Holdings, Inc. (OTC Pink: ALKM) as a copacker and North American Cannabis Holdings, Inc. (OTC Pink: USMJ) as a distributor.
Learn more about PAOG at www.paogroupinc.com.
Forward-Looking Statements: Certain statements in this news release may contain forward-looking information within the meaning of Rule 175 under the Securities Act of 1933 and Rule 3b-6 under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and are subject to the safe harbor created by those rules. All statements, other than statements of fact, included in this release, including, without limitation, statements regarding potential future plans and objectives of the company are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Technical complications, which may arise, could prevent the prompt implementation of any strategically significant plan(s) outlined above. The Company undertakes no duty to revise or update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.
DYAI’s C1 Technology May be Key in the Race to Vaccine-Induced Herd Immunity
Dyadic International Inc (NASDAQ: DYAI) is in an interesting position, being one of the very few names in the anti-Covid space that offer a new path that isn’t simply a reproduction or tie-in to the big pharma game right now.
DYAI has a new approach that isn’t new-age quote-unquote “science”, but a powerful new potential solution that holds the capacity to possibly become better able to deal with new variants and even possibly better able to drive cheap and efficient production capable of vaccinating the world compared to others such as: Astrazeneca (NASDAQ: AZN), Moderna Inc. (NASDAQ: MRNA), Novavax Inc. (NASDAQ: NVAX), Pfizer (NYSE: PFE), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: NJ), and Biontech (NASDAQ: BNTX).
The company has now started to move toward collaborations that could produce the next major breakthrough in fighting Covid-19 over the long term, including vaccines that cover Covid-19 variants. In fact, DYAI believes it can produce trivalent and quadrivalent Covid-19 vaccines – ie a single vaccine that can cover three or even four variants of the virus simultaneously.
According to materials published by Dyadic International Inc (NASDAQ :DYAI), the C1 microorganism that forms the basis of its technology enables the development and large-scale manufacture of low-cost proteins and has the potential to be further developed into a safe and efficient expression system that may help speed up the development of biologic vaccines and drugs at commercial scales, while lowering production costs and improving performance at the same time.
There is still a lot of testing to be done. But the building blocks are potentially in place, and the company is moving forward with data-gathering activities that may produce game-changing results.
Dyadic’s Technology and Production Vectors
The technological breakthrough in play from DYAI has, most centrally, to do with vaccine production and the biological technology required to produce vaccines in large quantities.
Proteins associated with vaccine production are produced through a “vector”. The baculovirus–insect cell expression system is a commonly used vector and has been extensively utilized for the production of many recombinant proteins and commercial vaccines.
For example, for the production host of antigens for the Schmallenberg virus (SBV), we have comparative data. SBV antigens have been produced through both baculovirus–insect cell expression systems and through DYAI’s fungal system. As it turns out, the SBV antigen from C1 produced 300 times greater yields than the SBV antigen from baculovirus and was more stable.
Additionally, the C1 SBV antigen was shown to be safe and very effective (Full Protection) in protecting cattle and mice from the SBV.
DYAI believes its system could represent a breakthrough on a potentially significant scale as a biopharmaceutical gene expression platform. The key differentiating factor is that the DYAI system is based on the fungus Thermothelomyces heterothallica (formerly Myceliophthora thermophila), named C1.
The C1 microorganism is technically a fungal body, which differentiates its platform from other major vaccine programs.
Based on its SBV results, additional fully funded animal trials are continuing in 2021 with C1 expressed antigens for SBV and RVFV and to generate additional safety and efficacy data. The company is also beginning to test its platform as a system for generating results in the battle against Covid-19.
Why it Matters
According to Bloomberg, enough doses have now been administered to fully vaccinate 8.6% of the global population—but the distribution has been lopsided. Countries and regions with the highest incomes are getting vaccinated about 25 times faster than those with the lowest.
But new and potentially deadly variants can emerge anywhere and still end up taking over the world.
New variants are popping up almost weekly, it seems. Eventually, one will emerge that falls outside the efficacy range of our currently approved vaccines. The more people on the planet that remain unvaccinated, the faster such a threat will become a manifest reality.
In other words, either we find a faster, cheaper means of reaching vaccine-induced herd immunity, or we may be headed back into a new chapter in an ongoing pandemic crisis.
If DYAI’s CI-based platform is able to prove itself as a solution that can produce more vaccine doses at a lower cost without sacrificing efficacy, then it could represent an important breakthrough that changes the course toward a less vulnerable path.DISCLAIMER: EDM Media LLC (EDM), is a third-party publisher and news dissemination service provider, which disseminates electronic information through multiple online media channels. EDM is NOT affiliated in any manner with any company mentioned herein. EDM and its affiliated companies are a news dissemination solutions provider and are NOT a registered broker/dealer/analyst/adviser, holds no investment licenses, and may NOT sell, offer to sell or offer to buy any security. EDM’s market updates, news alerts, and corporate profiles are NOT a solicitation or recommendation to buy, sell or hold securities. The material in this release is intended to be strictly informational and is NEVER to be construed or interpreted as research material. All readers are strongly urged to perform research and due diligence on their own and consult a licensed financial professional before considering any level of investing in stocks. All material included herein is republished content and details which were previously disseminated by the companies mentioned in this release. EDM is not liable for any investment decisions by its readers or subscribers. Investors are cautioned that they may lose all or a portion of their investment when investing in stocks. For current services performed EDM has been compensated six thousand dollars for news coverage of the current press releases issued by Dyadic International Inc (NASDAQ: DYAI) by a third party.
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Tiny, wireless, injectable chips use ultrasound to monitor body processes
Columbia Engineers develop the smallest single-chip system that is a complete functioning electronic circuit; implantable chips visible only in a microscope point the way to developing chips that can be injected into the body with a hypodermic needle
New York, NY–May 11, 2021–Widely used to monitor and map biological signals, to support and enhance physiological functions, and to treat diseases, implantable medical devices are transforming healthcare and improving the quality of life for millions of people. Researchers are increasingly interested in designing wireless, miniaturized implantable medical devices for in vivo and in situ physiological monitoring. These devices could be used to monitor physiological conditions, such as temperature, blood pressure, glucose, and respiration for both diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.
To date, conventional implanted electronics have been highly volume-inefficient–they generally require multiple chips, packaging, wires, and external transducers, and batteries are often needed for energy storage. A constant trend in electronics has been tighter integration of electronic components, often moving more and more functions onto the integrated circuit itself.
Researchers at Columbia Engineering report that they have built what they say is the world’s smallest single-chip system, consuming a total volume of less than 0.1 mm3. The system is as small as a dust mite and visible only under a microscope. In order to achieve this, the team used ultrasound to both power and communicate with the device wirelessly. The study was published online May 7 in Science Advances.
“We wanted to see how far we could push the limits on how small a functioning chip we could make,” said the study’s leader Ken Shepard, Lau Family professor of electrical engineering and professor of biomedical engineering. “This is a new idea of ‘chip as system’–this is a chip that alone, with nothing else, is a complete functioning electronic system. This should be revolutionary for developing wireless, miniaturized implantable medical devices that can sense different things, be used in clinical applications, and eventually approved for human use.”
The team also included Elisa Konofagou, Robert and Margaret Hariri Professor of Biomedical engineering and professor of radiology, as well as Stephen A. Lee, PhD student in the Konofagou lab who assisted in the animal studies.
The design was done by doctoral student Chen Shi, who is the first author of the study. Shi’s design is unique in its volumetric efficiency, the amount of function that is contained in a given amount of volume. Traditional RF communications links are not possible for a device this small because the wavelength of the electromagnetic wave is too large relative to the size of the device. Because the wavelengths for ultrasound are much smaller at a given frequency because the speed of sound is so much less than the speed of light, the team used ultrasound to both power and communicate with the device wirelessly. They fabricated the “antenna” for communicating and powering with ultrasound directly on top of the chip.
The chip, which is the entire implantable/injectable mote with no additional packaging, was fabricated at the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company with additional process modifications performed in the Columbia Nano Initiative cleanroom and the City University of New York Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC) Nanofabrication Facility.
Shepard commented, “This is a nice example of ‘more than Moore’ technology–we introduced new materials onto standard complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor to provide new function. In this case, we added piezoelectric materials directly onto the integrated circuit to transducer acoustic energy to electrical energy.”
Konofagou added, “Ultrasound is continuing to grow in clinical importance as new tools and techniques become available. This work continues this trend.”
The team’s goal is to develop chips that can be injected into the body with a hypodermic needle and then communicate back out of the body using ultrasound, providing information about something they measure locally. The current devices measure body temperature, but there are many more possibilities the team is working on.
About the Study
The study is titled “Application of a sub-0.1-mm3 implantable mote for in vivo real-time wireless temperature sensing.”
Authors are: Chen Shi1, Victoria Andino-Pavlovsky1, Stephen A. Lee2, Tiago Costa1,3, Jeffrey Elloian1, Elisa E. Konofagou2,4, Kenneth L. Shepard1,2
1 Department of Electrical Engineering, Columbia University
2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Columbia University
3Department of Microelectronics, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
4Department of Radiology, Columbia University
The study was supported in part by a grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation and by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) under Contract HR0011-15-2-0054 and Cooperative Agreement D20AC00004.
Chen Shi and Kenneth L. Shepard are listed as inventors on a provisional patent filed by Columbia University (Patent Application No. 15/911,973). The other authors declare
no competing interests.
Columbia Engineering, based in New York City, is one of the top engineering schools in the U.S. and one of the oldest in the nation. Also known as The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, the School expands knowledge and advances technology through the pioneering research of its more than 220 faculty, while educating undergraduate and graduate students in a collaborative environment to become leaders informed by a firm foundation in engineering. The School’s faculty are at the center of the University’s cross-disciplinary research, contributing to the Data Science Institute, Earth Institute, Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute, Precision Medicine Initiative, and the Columbia Nano Initiative. Guided by its strategic vision, “Columbia Engineering for Humanity,” the School aims to translate ideas into innovations that foster a sustainable, healthy, secure, connected, and creative humanity.
COVID-19 alters gray matter volume in the brain, new study shows
Covid-19 patients who receive oxygen therapy or experience fever show reduced gray matter volume in the frontal-temporal network of the brain, according to a new study led by researchers at Georgia State University and the Georgia Institute of Technology.
The study found lower gray matter volume in this brain region was associated with a higher level of disability among Covid-19 patients, even six months after hospital discharge.
Gray matter is vital for processing information in the brain and gray matter abnormality may affect how well neurons function and communicate. The study, published in the May 2021 issue of Neurobiology of Stress, indicates gray matter in the frontal network could represent a core region for brain involvement in Covid-19, even beyond damage related to clinical manifestations of the disease, such as stroke.
The researchers, who are affiliated with the Center for Translational Research in Neuroimaging and Data Science (TReNDS), analyzed computed tomography scans in 120 neurological patients, including 58 with acute Covid-19 and 62 without Covid-19, matched for age, gender and disease. They used source-based morphometry analysis, which boosts the statistical power for studies with a moderate sample size.
“Science has shown that the brain’s structure affects its function, and abnormal brain imaging has emerged as a major feature of Covid?19,” said Kuaikuai Duan, the study’s first author, a graduate research assistant at TReNDS and Ph.D. student in Georgia Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. “Previous studies have examined how the brain is affected by Covid-19 using a univariate approach, but ours is the first to use a multivariate, data-driven approach to link these changes to specific Covid-19 characteristics (for example fever and lack of oxygen) and outcome (disability level).”
The analysis showed patients with higher levels of disability had lower gray matter volume in the superior, medial and middle frontal gyri at discharge and six months later, even when controlling for cerebrovascular diseases. Gray matter volume in this region was also significantly reduced in patients receiving oxygen therapy compared to patients not receiving oxygen therapy. Patients with fever had a significant reduction in gray matter volume in the inferior and middle temporal gyri and the fusiform gyrus compared to patients without fever. The results suggest Covid-19 may affect the frontal-temporal network through fever or lack of oxygen.
Reduced gray matter in the superior, medial and middle frontal gyri was also present in patients with agitation compared to patients without agitation. This implies that gray matter changes in the frontal region of the brain may underlie the mood disturbances commonly exhibited by Covid-19 patients.
“Neurological complications are increasingly documented for patients with Covid-19,” said Vince Calhoun, senior author of the study and director of TReNDS. Calhoun is Distinguished University Professor of Psychology at Georgia State and holds appointments in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech and in neurology and psychiatry at Emory University. “A reduction of gray matter has also been shown to be present in other mood disorders such as schizophrenia and is likely related to the way that gray matter influences neuron function.”
The study’s findings demonstrate changes to the frontal-temporal network could be used as a biomarker to determine the likely prognosis of Covid-19 or evaluate treatment options for the disease. Next, the researchers hope to replicate the study on a larger sample size that includes many types of brain scans and different populations of Covid-19 patients.
TReNDS is a partnership among Georgia State, Georgia Tech and Emory University and is focused on improving our understanding of the human brain using advanced analytic approaches. The center uses large-scale data sharing and multi-modal data fusion techniques, including deep learning, genomics, brain mapping and artificial intelligence.
CITATION: K. Duan, et. al., “Alterations of frontal-temporal gray matter volume associate with clinical measures of older adults with COVID-19.” (Neurobiology of Stress, May 2021) https:/
Georgia State University is an enterprising urban public research institution in Atlanta, the leading cultural and economic center of the Southeast. Georgia’s largest university and a national leader in graduating students from diverse backgrounds, Georgia State is changing the way more than 54,000 students experience college across six campuses in metro Atlanta. The university’s world-class faculty scientists oversee a wide-ranging research portfolio that is generating new insights and new discoveries in health, sustainability, data science, cybersecurity and more.
The Georgia Institute of Technology, or Georgia Tech, is a top 10 public research university developing leaders who advance technology and improve the human condition.
The Institute offers business, computing, design, engineering, liberal arts, and sciences degrees. Its nearly 40,000 students, representing 50 states and 149 countries, study at the main campus in Atlanta, at campuses in France and China, and through distance and online learning. As a leading technological university, Georgia Tech is an engine of economic development for Georgia, the Southeast, and the nation, conducting more than $1 billion in research annually for government, industry, and society.
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