Daily Business Report-Sept. 11, 2017
Elizabeth Blackburn is shown in a video provided by the Salk Institute.
Salk Institute President Elizabeth Blackburn
Honored by TIME as a ‘Trailblazing Woman’
Salk Institute President Elizabeth Blackburn — the institute’s first female president and one of only 12 women to have won a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine — is among 46 honorees featured in FIRSTS, a new TIME multimedia project celebrating “women who broke ground in their fields” and “played pioneers in history.”
“Our goal with this extraordinary project … is for every woman and girl to find someone who moves her, to find someone whose presence in the highest reaches of success says to her that it is safe to climb, come on up, the view is spectacular,” said TIME managing editor Nancy Gibbs. “(These women) were candid about their challenges, aware of their responsibilities, eager to tell their stories that will surprise and inspire. We hope everyone, at every life stage, will encounter an insight here that will open a door to new ambitions.”
Blackburn has led Salk since January 2016 as its first female president. She won the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine in 2009 for discovering the molecular nature of telomeres, the ends of chromosomes that serve as protective caps essential for preserving genetic information, and for co-discovering telomerase, an enzyme that maintains telomere ends. She also has received nearly every major award in science including the Lasker, Gruber and Gairdner prizes. Helping to guide public science policy, she was a member of the Stem Cell Research Advisory Panel for the California Legislature and is a regular participant in the World Economic Forum.
The FIRSTS project will be included in the Sept. 18, 2017 issue of TIME.
Cenata Outsources Prenatal Test
In Response to Illumina Suit
German genetic diagnostic laboratory Cenata said this week that it is temporarily outsourcing its Harmony noninvasive prenatal test to Medirex, a laboratory in Slovakia, in response to a patent lawsuit brought against it late last year in Germany by Illumina and Sequenom.
From now until March 2018, when the patent in question expires, Cenata will have all its Harmony tests performed by Medirex, which is based in Bratislava. Cenata licenses the Harmony test technology from Roche’s Ariosa and has been offering the test from its Tübingen laboratory since 2015.
Cenata Managing Director Dirk Biskup said that Illumina and Sequenom filed suit against Cenata and Roche in the District Court Mannheim in December of 2016, claiming that both companies are infringing European Patent EP 0994963 B2, titled “Non-invasive prenatal diagnosis.” The patent is valid in a number of European countries, but apparently not in Slovakia, which is a member of the European Union.
The suit is still pending, but according to Cenata, a judge said during a hearing before the court that performing the Harmony test in a country not covered by the patent would be permitted.
Innovation Ridge Completed in Carlsbad
Badie Development has completed construction of Innovation Ridge, the firm’s industrial project formerly branded as the Carlsbad Victory Industrial Park. The 55,573-square foot building is located at 3248 Lionshead Ave. in Carlsbad.
“Innovation Ridge is the first of five new industrial offerings Badiee Development will bring to market through 2018 to North County San Diego, where new, Class A industrial buildings are in great demand,” said Ben Badiee, CEO at Badiee Development.
TFW Construction was the general contactor. Cushman & Wakefield is the leasing broker.
Zika Virus Can be Used to Treat
Aggressive Brain Cancer
A harmful virus that can cause devastating brain damage in babies could offer up a surprising new treatment for adult brain cancer, according to U.S. scientists.
Until now, Zika has been seen only as a global health threat — not a remedy. But latest research shows the virus can selectively infect and kill hard-to-treat cancerous cells in adult brains. Zika injections shrank aggressive tumours in fully grown mice, yet left other brain cells unscathed.
Human trials are still a way off, but experts believe Zika virus could potentially be injected into the brain at the same time as surgery to remove life-threatening tumors, the Journal of Experimental Medicine reports.
The Zika treatment appears to work on human cell samples in the lab.
Researcher Receives Grant to Study
How the Brain Processes Sound
Salk Associate Professor Tatyana Sharpee has been awarded a grant of approximately $950,000 over 4 years by the National Science Foundation to study how the brain processes complex sounds. This grant is part of a multi-national project together with groups in France and Israel.
Sharpee, who is a member of Salk’s Computational Neurobiology Laboratory, seeks to develop a unifying theory of “biological control” to understand the universal principles of behavior. Specifically, she is uncovering how animals sense and adapt to their environment as well as make predictions and decisions. To do this, she applies mathematical strategies — like statistics and probability models — to chart the principles by which the brain’s billions of neurons exchange energy and information.
BNBuilders Awarded First Project
for Sharp HealthCare
BNBuilders has been awarded the $1.5 million Sharp Infusion Therapy Relocation project. As part of the design-build team with FreemanWhite Architects, BNBuilders will complete the tenant improvements at Sharp Infusion Therapy’s upcoming new facility in Kearny Mesa, across the street from its current location at Sharp Memorial Hospital.
Officials said the new facility will help Sharp Infusion Therapy continue to deliver high-quality, compassionate, patient-centered care.
Sharp Infusion Therapy brings together a specially trained group of medical experts to administer medication intravenously for serious or chronic infections that do not respond to oral medicines. Typically, infusion therapy is used dispense chemotherapy and other medications to treat cancer and the pain caused by cancer, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, Crohn’s Disease, multiple sclerosis, some types of immune deficiency disorders, and certain congenital diseases. The 5,500-square-foot facility will accommodate 17 infusion therapy rooms, a nursing station, an administrative area, a medicine/preparation room, a communications room, utility/storage rooms, a waiting area, private restrooms, and a public restroom. Construction is anticipated to begin this monthand be complete in March 2018.