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October 4, 2017 Comments (0) Views: 567 Biotech, Biotech Briefing, Blog

Biotech Briefing: San Diego Launches Its Newest Business Accelerator Program

Plus: Mapp Bio receives a $46 million federal contract, and this year’s Nobel Prizes have been announced

Reports + Research

San Diego’s Newest Business Accelerator Program

The City of San Diego will partner with the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation and CONNECT to open the first business accelerator designed to grow local early-stage businesses in San Diego’s most underserved communities. The accelerator will be located in San Diego’s Diamond neighborhood, a federally designated Promise Zone.


Mapp Awarded $46 Million Federal Contract to Advance Ebola Drug

San Diego-based Mapp Biopharmaceutical received a $46 million Project BioShield five-year contract from BARDA to advance a monoclonal antibody cocktail, called ZMapp, to treat the disease. The contract has options for an additional $297 million of funding that could extend the agreement an additional five years, and separate options for procurement of ZMapp for the Strategic National Stockpile.


TSRI and Janssen Fight the Flu

TSRI and Janssen have devised peptide molecules that could neutralize a broad range of influenza virus strains. To design the peptides, the researchers used structural information from two recently discovered “super-antibodies” that are widely effective against influenza A strains. Contrary to the antibodies, which are expensive to produce and rely on IV or injection dosing, the peptides could be delivered in pill form. The study was published in Science.


Awards + Honors

Nobel Prizes Announced

This year’s Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash, and Michael Young for their discoveries of molecular mechanisms controlling the circadian rhythm. The Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Jacques Dubochet, Joachim Frank, and Richard Henderson for developing cryo-electron microscopy, which allows for 3D visualization of molecules at atomic resolution. Explore more on


Read + Listen

POW! Podcast of the Week

Revisit September’s Science Moments with They look at Venter’s controversial paper on using a person’s genome to predict facial features, Alnylam’s historic phase 3 data, and picks for science of the month.

BOW! Book of the Week

The Gene: An Intimate History explores the history of the gene and asks a defining question of the future: What becomes of being human when we learn to “read” and “write” our own genetic information?



It’s Happening Here

October 6:
October 6 is MFG Day, which is the largest manufacturing day on the West coast. Come see what is #MadeinSD.

October 13:
French BioBeach Monthly Networking and Happy Hour
will be on October 13. The organization promotes scientific exchange and partnering between U.S. and European biotech communities, with a focus on France.

November 15:
Save the date, November 15, for a first look at the 2018 California Life Sciences Industry Report.


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