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News Article | May 3, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

According to a new Finnish study, cardiorespiratory fitness is inversely related to risk of fatty liver. The research was conducted at the University of Turku, Finland, and shows that, despite the person's weight, achieving moderate cardiorespiratory fitness can protect from fatty liver. In the national Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study, researchers measured the cardiorespiratory fitness of 463 Finns with a cycle ergometer exercise test and determined fatty liver with an ultrasound. The participants were 30-47 years of age. -The study revealed that cardiorespiratory fitness is inversely related to the risk of fatty liver - despite physical activity, smoking, alcohol use, serum lipids, insulin, glucose, and C-reactive protein. Importantly, the same results could be seen in participants who were obese, says Researcher Kristiina Pälve from Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine of the University of Turku. The research results are significant for public health: despite the person's weight, achieving a moderate level of cardiorespiratory fitness can protect from fatty liver. Fatty liver is a significant and expanding public health concern. It is related to several metabolic disturbances, increased risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. The research article was published in April in the Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise journal. Pälve KS, Pahkala K, Suomela E, Aatola H, Hulkkonen J, Juonala M, Lehtimäki T, Rönnemaa T, Viikari JS, Kähönen M, Hutri-Kähönen N, Telama R, Tammelin T, Raitakari OT.: Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Risk of Fatty Liver. The Young Finns Study. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 2017 Apr 11. doi: 10.1111/MSS.0000000000001288. https:/ MD Kristiina Pälve, Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Turku tel. +358 2 333 7220, krsoma@utu.fi


News Article | April 18, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

(Reuters Health) - More than nine million people may miss out on cholesterol-lowering drugs that prevent heart attacks and strokes if doctors choose one set of medical guidelines over another, according to a new study. That's because the government-backed U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) set a higher threshold for use of the drugs, known as statins, than the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association (ACC/AHA). "I would say we’re still searching for the perfect guidelines," said lead author Michael Pencina, of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. The 2013 ACC/AHA guidelines recommend statins for people ages 40 to 75 with at least a 7.5 percent risk of having a heart attack or stroke in the next 10 years. (The ACC/AHA cardiovascular risk estimator tool is available online here: http://bit.ly/2pPwoXh.) The ACC/AHA also recommends statins for people with cardiovascular disease, for diabetics between ages 40 and 75 and for adults with high levels of “bad” low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. The 2016 USPSTF recommendation endorses statins for people ages 40 to 75 with at least a 10 percent or greater risk of a heart attack or stroke over the next decade and at least one cardiovascular risk factor like diabetes or high blood pressure. Pencina told Reuters Health fewer people would be using statins under the more conservative USPSTF guidelines. "What we wanted to do is quantify the impact and look at what it means in terms of numbers." The researchers applied the recommendations to nationally representative data collected from 3,416 people without a history of cardiovascular disease between 2009 and 2014. Overall, 21.5 percent were already on statins to prevent heart attacks and strokes. An additional 24.3 percent would be on statins if all doctors followed the ACC/AHA guidelines, compared to an additional 15.8 percent if all doctors followed the USPSTF recommendation. The difference between the two guidelines represents about 9.3 million people in the United States, the researchers write in JAMA. Under the USPSTF guidelines, some diabetics would be excluded from statin use. More than half of those excluded would be middle-aged adults with a more than 30 percent average risk of a cardiovascular event over the next 30 years. "About one in three people are going to experience a cardiovascular event over the next 30 years," said Pencina. In a statement to Reuters Health, the USPSTF said its recommendations are based on the best available evidence about a preventive service's benefits and harms. "Because the USPSTF makes recommendations that are closely tied to the available evidence, we focused on recommending statins for the people who the evidence showed were most likely to benefit, though ultimately this decision should be made through a conversation between each patient and their doctor," the statement continued. In its review of evidence, the USPSTF focused on 19 trials involving a total of 71,344 people who had no history of cardiovascular disease. Overall, people were 14 percent less likely to die during the study period if they were taking statins than if they were taking a dummy pill or nothing at all. The risk of serious side effects from statins was also low. The USPSTF is always more conservative in its recommendations than professional organizations - not just for cholesterol, said Dr. Steve Nissen, chairman of the Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic. "Whether you treat or not treat is frankly something that should be a discussion between patient and physician," he told Reuters Health. "That’s how I do it." Nissen, who was not involved in the new study, said some entity should step in to clear up the confusion between the USPSTF, ACC/AHA and several other statin guidelines. "I’m not terribly happy to have multiple guidelines floating around out there," he said. Pencina said it's important for patients to be informed about their risk of cardiovascular disease and understand the risks and benefits of statins. "Both sets of guidelines - to their credit - recommend an informed decision between the patient and the clinician," he said. "Those are crucial."


BOSTON & LISBON, Portugal--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Proterris, Inc., a clinical-development stage company focused on therapeutic applications of low-dose carbon monoxide, and Alfama, Inc. today announced the completion of a merger of the two companies that effectively creates the world’s dominant player in the field of carbon monoxide (CO) therapies. Proterris, which has a leading position in gaseous applications of CO, has acquired Alfama’s CO releasing molecule (“CORM”) assets, arguably the most extensive in the field. In connection with the asset acquisition, Proterris has acquired all of Alfama’s subsidiaries, including Alfama Lda. located near Lisbon, Portugal, which will be renamed Proterris (Portugal) Lda. In conjunction with the merger, Proterris will also implement a collaboration with Prof. Carlos Romão of the Institute of Chemical and Biological Technology (ITQB) of the New University of Lisbon (NOVA), one of the scientific pioneers and inventors of Aflama’s CORM assets, in order to further optimize CORM candidates for a variety of indications. Proterris looks to continue advancing its own gaseous Phase 2/3 trial in delayed graft function (DGF)prior to moving one of the CORM candidates into clinical trials, which the company aims to start in the next 18-24 months. “Alfama has discovered and developed unique families of CORMs which have demonstrated very potent anti-fibrotic, anti-inflammatory and cytoprotective effects with very low toxicity potential,” said Jeffrey D. Wager, M.D., Chairman & CEO of Proterris. “Until now, achievement of such drug-like profiles for CORMs has eluded scientists and companies alike. Alfama’s CORM assets represent excellent candidates for drug development for those indications which are less amenable to therapy with CO gas. In addition, by establishing Proterris (Portugal) Lda., we are now well-positioned to pursue a variety of European partnering and fundraising activities in both the private and public sectors. This coincides very well with the Series A fundraising campaign which are launching with the closing of this merger.” Dr. Wager has designed and structured multiple cross-border life science transactions in the past, including a major Japanese spin-out involving both Asian and American investors, a European Union-based corporate venture capital fund investing in both Europe and the U.S., and a specialty pharma roll-up in Brazil involving private equity funds from both Latin America and the U.S. “The merger of Alfama with Proterris represents a very synergistic and strategic fit between two companies with common goals, and substantially enhances corporate value for both sets of shareholders,” commented Nuno Arantes-Oliveira, founding Chief Executive of Alfama. “We are very glad to make Alfama part of Proterris’ exceptional IP portfolio, an important step in our evolution towards bringing low-dose CO therapies to patients.” Celso Guedes de Carvalho, CEO of Portugal Ventures, one of Alfama’s largest shareholders, added, “This transaction demonstrates how supporting investments for the ‘long-haul’ – given the capital and time required in the biotech sector – allows breakthrough technologies to reach patients. With regard to Alfama, their story demonstrates that when the technology is truly ground-breaking and the team strong and resilient, it is worth the wait. We believe this merger, with support from Portugal Ventures, will significantly increase the international visibility of the growing Portuguese Life Science startup ecosystem.” The Proterris-Alfama proposition for CO therapy is validated by almost $23 million in funding for three Phase 2 clinical trials using low dose CO gas. The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) has funded these trials over the past five years for indications covered by patents licensed from a group of top U.S. universities or written by Proterris. About Alfama Alfama is the leading company in the development of Carbon Monoxide-Releasing Molecules (CORMs) for therapy. The company has produced hundreds of CORMs and obtained exceptional results in various animal models of chronic and acute human diseases. CORMs have the potential to expand CO-based therapy to a wide range of high-value indications, can be administered orally or intravenously, and offer a very attractive therapeutic window and safety profile. After acquiring hemoCORM Ltd of London, UK, Alfama came to control a diverse set of families of patents and patent applications on CORMs which together position the company as the undisputed leader in CORM technology. Alfama was founded in Portugal and received funding from venture capital agencies such as Portugal Ventures, along with private investors from the U.S., the U.K, Spain and Portugal. The Company assembled an international team of scientific and business leaders. Its founders included Roche scientist Werner Haas, New University of Lisbon Chemistry Professor Carlos Romão, Stan Kugell, its founding Chairman, and Nuno Arantes-Oliveira, its founding CEO. About Proterris Proterris, Inc. is a clinical-development stage company focused on therapeutic applications of low-dose carbon monoxide (CO). Leveraging CO’s demonstrated anti-fibrotic, anti-inflammatory and cytoprotective properties, Proterris is initially focused on developing CO for delayed graft function (DGF) in renal transplant recipients and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Other indications, including pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), are also being developed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). CO has broad potential to significantly impact the lives of millions of patients suffering from a wide variety of both acute and chronic diseases. Proterris was founded on the pioneering science of Proterris co-founder Augustine M.K. Choi, M.D., who is Professor of Medicine and the Stephen and Suzanne Weiss Dean at Weill Cornell Medicine and Provost for Medical Affairs at Cornell University; and David J. Pinsky, M.D., the J. Griswold Ruth M.D. & Margery Hopkins Ruth Professor of Internal Medicine, Professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology, Chief, Cardiovascular Medicine, and Director, Cardiovascular Center of the University of Michigan. Between them, Dr.’s Choi and Pinsky have generated an extensive body of mechanistic, translational and clinical research data, as well as a broad intellectual property portfolio on the therapeutic opportunities of CO for multiple diseases. For more information, please visit www.proterris.com.


A Finnish study coordinated by the Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Turku shows that exposure to cardiovascular risk factors, such as high blood pressure, elevated serum LDL-cholesterol and smoking in childhood and adolescence, is associated with poorer learning ability and memory in middle age. With the aging population, cognitive deficits, such as difficulties in learning and memory, are becoming more common. Cardiovascular risk factors contribute to the occurrence of these deficits. Results from a longitudinal Finnish study show that the effects of cardiovascular risk factors on the brain begin already long before the occurrence of visible changes in cognitive performance. - Previous studies have focused on adulthood and old age, whereas this study brings novel information on the associations between cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive performance throughout the whole lifespan, says Senior Researcher Suvi Rovio from the Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Turku. The results of this study can be exploited by turning the focus of prevention of the cardiovascular risk factors actively to children and adolescence in order to promote brain health in adulthood. High blood pressure, elevated serum cholesterol levels and smoking can be regulated through healthy lifestyle choices. The cognitive performance of over 2,000 participants was measured at the age of 34-49 years. The results showed that high blood pressure and serum LDL-cholesterol level measured in childhood and adolescence as well as smoking in adolescence were associated with poorer cognitive performance in midlife. This association remained regardless of the presence of such risk factors in adulthood. The difference in cognitive performance between those participants whose risk factor levels often exceeded the guideline values for cardiovascular risk factors and those always remaining within the guideline values was equivalent to the difference caused by six years of aging. This study is part of the ongoing national Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study coordinated by the Research Centre of Applied and Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Turku. Initially, 3,596 participants have been followed up repeatedly for 31 years for their cardiovascular risk factors from childhood to adulthood. The results were published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology in May 2017. Cardiovascular Risk Factors From Childhood and Midlife Cognitive Performance The Young Finns Study Suvi P. Rovio et al. Journal of the American College of Cardiology Volume 69, Issue 18, May 2017 DOI: 10.1016/j.jacc.2017.02.060


News Article | April 6, 2017
Site: www.scientificcomputing.com

The American Heart Association Precision Medicine Platform -- a global, secure data discovery platform, recently developed in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS) -- is now open for use. Researchers, physicians, computational biologists, computer engineers and trainees from around the globe can leverage this cloud-based resource to access and analyze volumes of cardiovascular and stroke data to accelerate the care of patients at risk of the number one killer in the United States and a leading global health threat. The AHA Institute for Precision Cardiovascular MedicineTM is calling on all cardiovascular and stroke dataset owners and stewards to share their data as the first step in acquiring all the pieces needed to treat and prevent heart failure, stroke, coronary artery disease, atrial fibrillation and other cardiovascular diseases. Data from clinical trials, long-running epidemiologic studies, registries and real-time health data acquired through wearable devices and technology is sought. "We have blown away the barriers and welcome all to join this game-changing platform that promotes us working together as one community to ultimately benefit patients worldwide," said Jennifer Hall, PhD, the AHA's Chief of the Institute for Precision Cardiovascular Medicine. "The platform provides an opportunity to learn, search and discover in new and efficient ways, and we will keep working with the community to weave in new diverse data to help us drill deeper and enrich our understanding." Several organizations are leading the way toward the future of open data by contributing their information to the secure platform, including AstraZeneca, Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, Dallas Heart Study, Duke Cardiovascular Research Institute, Intermountain Health, the International Stroke Genetics Consortium, the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) and Stanford University. "The increasing breadth and depth of medical data presents a tremendous opportunity to generate more nuanced and precise pre-diagnoses. However, leveraging this data requires tools capable of integrating data of diverse origin. The AHA Precision Medicine Platform can empower researchers with both the framework and tools to ease the burdens of data harmonization, amplifying the insight available from their own data." Said Gabriel Musso, PhD, VP Life Sciences, BioSymetrics Inc., who has been actively using the platform during the initial phase. The AHA Precision Medicine Platform is the only resource of its kind focused on cardiovascular diseases and stroke. "I am so excited for the potential the AHA Precision Medicine Platform brings for doing research across data sets to find consistent research results, and replicate and confirm research," said early adaptor Laura M. Stevens, a Predoctoral National Library of Medicine Fellow in the computational biosciences program at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical School. "The platform makes big data analyses much quicker and easier. It's a great foundation for implementing precision medicine and research in a clinical setting. I can't wait to see where this will take us as a research community." Researchers are not charged for accessing the data but will pay a fee for cloud computing capabilities based on the current AWS model. Any revenue from cloud-based computing will be used to fund AHA's research initiatives. "By working together on datasets we have the ability to test the speed, agility and transparency of research," said Hall. "With your data and your efforts, the AHA Precision Medicine Platform can help enable your discoveries of novel underlying causal factors of heart failure, new diagnostic biomarkers to predict stroke, or exponential new approaches to precision care for those with cardiovascular diseases and stroke." Through the tool, the AHA reaches across the government, academic, industry, and patient communities to deepen data resources and spur research opportunities with an aim to transform cardiovascular research and patient care. To further foster research aimed at reversing and preventing cardiovascular diseases and stroke, the AHA Institute for Precision Cardiovascular Medicine also offers a variety of grant opportunities for scientists and researchers from many different fields of study. The application process for several grants is currently open.


News Article | February 28, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Chronic inflammation after a heart attack can promote heart failure and death. University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers have now shown that activated T-cells -- part of the immune system's inflammatory response -- are both necessary and sufficient to produce such heart failure. "These studies," Shyam Bansal, Ph.D., Sumanth Prabhu, M.D., and colleagues write in the journal Circulation: Heart Failure, "provide important proof-of-concept for T-cells as disease mediators in heart failure." Two key experiments demonstrated this necessary and sufficient role for the activated T-cells, which presumably attack heart muscle tissue in an auto-immune fashion. The first key experiment involved removing a specific subset of activated T-cells from mouse models. Treating the mice with antibodies against CD4+ T-cells four weeks after experimental heart attacks -- to deplete that subset of T-cells -- prevented the progressive abnormal enlargement of the left ventricle that leads to heart failure, as compared with untreated mice. The second key experiment showed the effect of transferring activated T-cells from heart-attack mice to healthy mice. When spleen CD4+ T-cells were transferred from heart-attack donor mice to naïve recipient mice, they induced long-term left ventricle dysfunction, fibrosis and enlargement, hallmarks of heart failure. These findings could translate to the clinic, the researchers say. "Our data suggests that targeting specific immune cell subsets at defined stages of disease may represent a better approach to therapeutic immunomodulation to improve heart failure." Nearly one-quarter of people suffering heart attacks in the United States develop heart failure. Overall, patients with heart failure have a 50 percent chance of survival in five years. The current research evolved out of an impactful 2013 paper that was named one of the five most outstanding papers in Circulation Research for the year. In Remodeling of the Mononuclear Phagocyte Network Underlies Chronic Inflammation and Disease Progression in Heart Failure: Critical Importance of the Cardiosplenic Axis, Prabhu and colleagues showed that immune cells that are stored in the spleen were intricately involved in the heart failure that follows a heart attack, or infarction, in a mouse-model system. The splenic immune cells that invaded the heart tissue included pro-inflammatory macrophages and dendritic cells. Since a primary function of the dendritic cells is to present an antigen to T-cells, to activate the T-cells and begin the immune response, the researchers suspected that T-cell activation in the heart tissue, and perhaps heart-tissue injury caused by T-cells, might be central to the pathological heart enlargement that is called remodeling. Normally, the inflammatory response to tissue damage after infarction -- death of muscle tissue in a heart attack -- has two stages. First there is a beneficial, early acute inflammation response that removes dead cells and begins repairs to the injured area. Then, in healthy healing, the acute inflammation resolves, and a healing process follows. One problem in heart failure is a nonresolving, persistently overactive inflammation at the heart. T-lymphocyte cells are distinguished by surface markers. The group of T-cells that have CD4 contains many subsets that have specialized functions. These include pro-inflammatory T helper cells, or Th1, that produce interferon-γ and interleukin-2, or IL-2; anti-inflammatory Th2 cells that produce IL-4, IL-5 and IL-13; pro-inflammatory Th17 cells that secrete IL-17; and immunomodulatory regulatory T-cells, or Tregs, that globally suppress activation of immune responses. So the UAB researchers began to look for changes in subsets of T-cells over an eight-week period after heart attack. They found the CD4+ T-cells were globally expanded and activated during chronic ischemic heart failure, and that there was an expansion of memory T-cells in the spleen. In particular, they found significant expansion of CD3+CD8+ cytotoxic T-cells and CD3+CD4+ helper T-cells in circulating blood, as well as increased CD4+ subsets of Th1, Th2, Th17 and Treg cells, indicating a pro-inflammatory response. In the failing heart, they found increased CD8+ and CD4+ T-cells, and increased Th1, Th2, Th17 and Treg CD4+ subsets. They also found a marked reduction of the Th1/Th2 ratio, and an increased Th17/Treg ratio, as well as upregulation of the inflammatory Th2-type cytokines. In the spleen and mediastinal lymph nodes, they found significantly increased Th1, Th2, Th17 and Treg cells. The spleen showed increased expansion of antigen-experienced effector and memory CD4+ T-cells. Memory T-cells are the cells that become primed to mount a specific immune response when an antigen from a pathogen or injured tissue appears a second time. Memory cells are why vaccination is effective; however, in the case of heart failure, memory cells may be responsible for an ongoing capacity of T-cells to injure the heart. At UAB, Prabhu is the Mary Gertrude Waters Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine, and he directs the Division of Cardiovascular Disease and the Comprehensive Cardiovascular Center, UAB Department of Medicine. Besides Prabhu and Bansal, authors of the paper, "Activated T-lymphocytes are essential drivers of pathological remodeling in ischemic heart failure," are Mohamed Ameen Ismahil, Ph.D., Mehak Goel, Ph.D., Bindiya Patel, Tariq Hamid, Ph.D., and Gregg Rokosh, Ph.D., all of the UAB Division of Cardiovascular Disease. Bansal and Prabhu also are part of the Birmingham Veterans Affairs Medical Center medical service.


WYNNEWOOD, PA, March 03, 2017-- Dr. Howard J. Eisen has been included in Marquis Who's Who. As in all Marquis Who's Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.Inspired by a personal interest in the field, Dr. Eisen has dedicated his career to advancing cardiovascular medicine. His journey started at Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in biology and an MD, respectively, and continued at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he served as a medical intern and resident of medicine. Dr. Eisen did his Cardiovascular Medicine Fellowship at Washington University in St. Louis/Barnes Hospital. Dr. Eisen proceeded to acquire various academic roles for the University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, and Drexel University. He has served as the Thomas J. Vischer professor of medicine at Drexel's College of Medicine since 2004 and as a member of study section for the National Institutes of Health since 1999. Over the years, he has worked in the areas of cardiology, cardiovascular disorders, heart failures and transplants, and general clinical research.In order to keep abreast of changes in his field, Dr. Eisen affiliates himself with the American College of Cardiology, the American Society of Transplantation, the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation, and the American Federation of Clinical Research. He is also a diplomate through the American Board of Medical Examiners, the American Board of Internal Medicine, and the American Board of Cardiovascular Diseases. Dr. Eisen is Boarded by the ABIM in Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease and Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Cardiology. Notably, he has been named a top doctor in Philadelphia Magazine and Castle & Connolly's Top Doctors in America every year since 1996, and in 2006, he was awarded the Alumni Service Award through the American Federation of Clinical Research. Dr. Eisen has also been featured in the 1st through 8th editions of Who's Who in Medicine and Healthcare, and five editions of Who's Who in Science and Engineering.About Marquis Who's Who :Since 1899, when A. N. Marquis printed the First Edition of Who's Who in America , Marquis Who's Who has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Today, Who's Who in America remains an essential biographical source for thousands of researchers, journalists, librarians and executive search firms around the world. Marquis publications may be visited at the official Marquis Who's Who website at www.marquiswhoswho.com


News Article | February 21, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

HAMBURG, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Evotec AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX, ISIN: DE0005664809) is pleased to announce that LAB282, the £ 13 m (over EUR 15 m) drug discovery partnership with Oxford University, has made its first wave of awards, backing projects targeting cardiovascular diseases and infectious diseases. Launched last year in November as a partnership between Oxford University, Evotec, Oxford University Innovation Ltd and Oxford Sciences Innovation plc, LAB282 aids the rapid translation of research outputs into new drug discovery and development programmes. It draws on expertise provided by Evotec and combines it with pre-clinical proof-of-concept grant funding to accelerate projects into a position where they can be commercialised and scaled up efficiently and effectively. Out of a pool of high-quality project proposals across various therapeutic areas and encompassing different therapeutic modalities, two projects were chosen. The two grant winners will be conducting further research into: - "Drugs from bugs" - A project developing evasins, a potential treatment for cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases derived from the saliva of ticks; - DarTG - A potential new target for the development of antibiotics that could shut down tuberculosis and several other pathogens. Evotec will exclusively contribute its drug discovery expertise and platforms to the selected projects and together with Oxford University and its academic researchers develop them further with the aim to have a pre-clinical proof of concept for new drugs. The next round of grants awards is due in June 2017. Dr Thomas Hanke, LAB282 Expert-in-Residence and Head of Academic Partnerships at Evotec, commented: "I am excited and very pleased we were able to select two outstanding and truly translational projects from a panel of high-quality applications for the first round of LAB282 awards. My cordial congratulations go to Prof. Bhattacharya and Dr Ahel and their teams for their excellent work. I am very much looking forward to closely collaborating with the Oxford University and Evotec teams in accelerating bona fide drug discovery from the awarded projects." Shoumo Bhattacharya, British Heart Foundation Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine at Oxford University and lead academic on the evasins project, said: "The LAB282 funding, which brings Evotec's world-class expertise in the development of peptide therapeutics and in inflammation to the evasin project, will help the development of new therapeutics - 'drugs from bugs' - that can treat orphan autoimmune diseases such as myocarditis." Carolyn Porter, Deputy Head of Technology Transfer, Oxford University Innovation, added: "The LAB282 partnership was established to accelerate drug discovery at Oxford University. This funding will enable the evasin project to enter the clinic more rapidly for the benefit of patients with cardiovascular autoimmune disorders for which there is no cure. Through validation of DarTG role in bacterial growth and function, our second funded project could uncover a new strategy for development of antibiotics." The "drugs from bugs" project will be looking to develop evasins, which are peptides derived from the saliva of ticks. Ticks have been around since the time of the dinosaurs, and have been evolving these peptides to block chemokines, which are proteins in the body that recruit inflammatory cells to the site of injury. The research team led by Professor Shoumo Bhattacharya have developed a new "Bug-to-Drug" technology to find these tick peptides in order to treat inflammatory and fibrotic diseases that are currently incurable. In this project, they will use these peptides to target chemokines that cause giant cell myocarditis ("GCM"), a rare autoimmune disease with no cure. GCM usually affects young adults, progressing rapidly to heart failure and death. There is no specific treatment except for a heart transplant. The second project, with Dr Ivan Ahel, looks to validate translational research on DarTG toxin-antitoxin system, a pathway found in tuberculosis. Essentially a back door around tuberculosis' defences, DarTG could be a potential target for small molecules, which could shut down the bacteria. If the project demonstrates that DarTG is the pathogen's Achilles' Heel, it will pave the way for a new class of antibiotics. Aside from offering a potential new therapy for tuberculosis, which will become a greater threat as antibiotic resistance increases, DarTG could also be a weakness in Escherichia coli, superbug Klebsiella pneumonia, and other gram-negative pathogens. LAB282, initiated in November 2016, is a new £ 13 m partnership between the Oxford University, Oxford University Innovation Ltd, Oxford Sciences Innovation plc and Evotec AG created to identify and develop new approaches to treating serious diseases, which originate from the Oxford University. The goal is to accelerate the achievement of pre-clinical proof of concept for new drugs and to generate new spin-out companies. The name derived from the pantone colour code of "Oxford Blue". For more information, please visit www.lab282.org. The Division is one of the largest biomedical research centres in Europe, with over 2,500 people involved in research and more than 2,800 students. The University is rated the best in the world for medicine, and it is home to the UK's top-ranked medical school. From the genetic and molecular basis of disease to the latest advances in neuroscience, Oxford is at the forefront of medical research. It has one of the largest clinical trial portfolios in the UK and great expertise in taking discoveries from the lab into the clinic. Partnerships with the local NHS Trusts enable patients to benefit from close links between medical research and healthcare delivery. A great strength of Oxford medicine is its long-standing network of clinical research units in Asia and Africa, enabling world-leading research on the most pressing global health challenges such as malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS and flu. Oxford is also renowned for its large-scale studies which examine the role of factors such as smoking, alcohol and diet on cancer, heart disease and other conditions. Oxford Sciences Innovation plc is the world's largest IP investment company dedicated to a single university. Founded in May 2015, we help turn Oxford University's world-leading scientific discovery into innovative science and technology companies that can have a positive impact on society. We provide capital and expertise to businesses driven by intellectual property developed in Oxford's Mathematical, Physical, Life Sciences Division and Medical Sciences Divisions. We are guided and powered by some of the world's leading organisations, including Invesco, Woodford Investment Management, the Wellcome Trust and Lansdowne Partners. Oxford University Innovation supports innovation activities across all University Divisions, managing technology transfer and consulting activities, and providing an innovation management service to clients around the world. We provide access to technology from Oxford researchers through intellectual property licensing, spinout company formation and material sales, and to academic expertise through our Consulting Services team. The New Venture Support & Funding team supports investors or donors with an interest in early-stage ventures, and manages the Oxford Angels Network. Our Startup Incubator supports members and ex-members of the University who wish to start or grow entrepreneur-driven ventures that are not University spinouts. Oxford University Innovation is the highest university patent filer in the UK and is ranked 1st in the UK for university spin-outs, having created over 140 new companies in 25 years. In the last reported financial year we completed 529 licenses and consulting agreements. Isis Enterprise, our innovation management consultancy, works with university, government and industrial clients from offices around the world. For updates on innovations from Oxford, follow Oxford University Innovation on LinkedIn and Twitter or subscribe at http://innovation.ox.ac.uk/about/contact-us. For more information or to arrange interview, please contact: Gregg Bayes-Brown, Marketing and Communications Manager, Oxford University Innovation T: +44 (0)1865 280867 | E: gregg.bayes-brown@innovation.ox.ac.uk Evotec is a drug discovery alliance and development partnership company focused on rapidly progressing innovative product approaches with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, academics, patient advocacy groups and venture capitalists. We operate worldwide providing the highest quality stand-alone and integrated drug discovery solutions, covering all activities from target-to-clinic to meet the industry's need for innovation and efficiency in drug discovery (EVT Execute). The Company has established a unique position by assembling top-class scientific experts and integrating state-of-the-art technologies as well as substantial experience and expertise in key therapeutic areas including neuroscience, diabetes and complications of diabetes, pain and inflammation, oncology and infectious diseases. On this basis, Evotec has built a broad and deep pipeline of more than 70 partnered product opportunities at clinical, pre-clinical and discovery stages (EVT Innovate). Evotec has established multiple long-term discovery alliances with partners including Bayer, CHDI, Sanofi or UCB and development partnerships with e.g. Janssen Pharmaceuticals in the field of Alzheimer's disease, with Sanofi in the field of diabetes, with Pfizer in the field of tissue fibrosis and Celgene in the field of neurodegenerative diseases. For additional information please go to www.evotec.com. Information set forth in this press release contains forward-looking statements, which involve a number of risks and uncertainties. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent the judgement of Evotec as of the date of this press release. Such forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, and which could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in these forward-looking statements. We expressly disclaim any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any such statements to reflect any change in our expectations or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.


News Article | February 21, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

Dr. Thomas Hanke, LAB282 Expert-in-Residence und Head of Academic Partnerships bei Evotec, kommentierte: "Es freut mich sehr, dass wir aus der Liste der Bewerbungen für die erste Runde der LAB282-Förderung zwei herausragende und wirklich translationale Projekte auswählen konnten. Meine herzlichen Glückwünsche gehen an Prof. Bhattacharya und Dr. Ahel mit ihren Teams für ihre ausgezeichnete Arbeit. Ich freue mich besonders darauf, eng mit der Oxford University und den Evotec-Teams zusammenzuarbeiten, um in den geförderten Projekten beschleunigt solide Wirkstoffkandidaten zu finden." Shoumo Bhattacharya, British Heart Foundation Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine an der Oxford University und führender Wissenschaftler im Evasine-Projekt, sagte: "Die Finanzierung durch LAB282 bringt Evotecs weltweit führende Expertise bei der Entwicklung neuartiger Peptid-Therapeutika auf dem Gebiet der Entzündungskrankheiten mit dem Evasin-Projekt zusammen. Dies wird die Entwicklung der sogenannten "Drugs from Bugs", beschleunigen, mit denen seltene Autoimmunerkrankungen wie Myokarditis behandelt werden können." Carolyn Porter, Deputy Head of Technology Transfer, Oxford University Innovation, fügte hinzu: "Die LAB282-Partnerschaft wurde etabliert, um die Wirkstoffforschung an der Oxford University zu beschleunigen. Durch die Finanzierung wird das Evasin-Projekt schneller in die klinische Phase kommen - zum Nutzen der Patienten mit kardiovaskulären Autoimmunerkrankungen, für die es noch keine Heilung gibt. Durch die Validierung der Rolle von DarTG beim Wachstum und in der Funktion von Bakterien könnte unser zweites Projekt eine neue Strategie für die Entwicklung von Antibiotika aufzeigen." Mit über 2.500 Forschern und mehr als 2.800 Studenten ist der Bereich einer der größten biomedizinischen Forschungszentren in Europa. Die Oxford University ist weltweit führend im Bereich Medizin und beheimatet die höchstplatzierte Medical School in UK. Oxford ist Vorreiter in der medizinischen Forschung, von der Genetik und molekularen Grundlage von Krankheiten bis zu neuesten Fortschritten im Bereich Neurowissenschaften. Die Universität verfügt über das größte Portfolio klinischer Studien in UK sowie umfangreiche Expertise im Voranbringen von Forschungsansätzen in die Klinik. Partnerschaften mit lokalen NHS Trusts ermöglichen es Patienten, an dieser engen Verbindung zwischen medizinischer Forschung und Gesundheitsversorgung teilzuhaben. Eine große Stärke dieses Bereichs an der Oxford University besteht in dem langjährigen Netzwerk aus klinischen Forschungseinrichtungen in Asien und Afrika, so dass weltweit führende Forschung hinsichtlich der größten Herausforderungen der globalen Gesundheit wie Malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS und Grippe betrieben werden kann. Oxford ist darüber hinaus bekannt für seine großangelegten Studien, die die Auswirkungen von Rauchen, Alkoholkonsum und Ernährung auf Krebs- und Herzerkrankungen sowie weitere Erkrankungen untersuchen. Oxford University Innovation unterstützt alle Aktivitäten der Bereiche der University, darunter die Verwaltung von Technologietransfers und Beratungsaktivitäten, und bietet Kunden weltweit Leistungen im Bereich Management von Innovationen. Wir bieten Zugang zu Technologien von Oxford-Wissenschaftlern durch die Lizenzierung von geistigem Eigentum, Unternehmensausgründungen und Verkäufen sowie zu akademischer Expertise durch unser Consulting Services-Team. Das New Venture Support & Funding-Team ermöglicht Investoren oder Stiftungen Anteile an frühphasigen Unternehmen zu erwerben und verwaltet das Oxford Angels Network. Unser Startup-Inkubator unterstützt Mitglieder und ehemalige Mitglieder Universität dabei, Unternehmen zu gründen und voranzubringen, die keine Ausgründungen der Universität sind. Oxford University Innovation ist führend unter den Universitäten in Hinblick auf die Anzahl der Patente in UK und ist mit über 140 neuen Unternehmen in 25 Jahren Nummer eins bezüglich Universitätsausgründungen. Im letzten veröffentlichten Geschäftsjahr wurden 529 Lizenzen und Beratungsvereinbarungen abgeschlossen. Isis Enterprise, unsere Beratungseinheit für Innovationsmanagement, arbeitet eng mit Universitäten, der Regierung sowie industriellen Kontakten weltweit zusammen. Um Neuigkeiten zu Innovationen von Oxford zu erhalten, können Sie Oxford University Innovation auf LinkedIn und Twitter folgen oder besuchen Sie den folgenden Link: http://innovation.ox.ac.uk/about/contact-us. Für weitere Informationen oder Interviews: Gregg Bayes-Brown, Marketing and Communications Manager, Oxford University Innovation T: +44 (0)1865 280867 | E: gregg.bayes-brown@innovation.ox.ac.uk Evotec ist ein Wirkstoffforschungs- und -entwicklungsunternehmen, das in Forschungsallianzen und Entwicklungspartnerschaften mit führenden Pharma- und Biotechnologieunternehmen, akademischen Einrichtungen, Patientenorganisationen und Risikokapitalgesellschaften innovative Ansätze zur Entwicklung neuer pharmazeutischer Produkte zügig vorantreibt. Wir sind weltweit tätig und bieten unseren Kunden qualitativ hochwertige, unabhängige und integrierte Lösungen im Bereich der Wirkstoffforschung an. Dabei decken wir alle Aktivitäten vom Target bis zur klinischen Entwicklung ab, um dem Bedarf der Branche an Innovation und Effizienz in der Wirkstoffforschung begegnen zu können (EVT Execute). Durch das Zusammenführen von erstklassigen Wissenschaftlern, modernsten Technologien sowie umfangreicher Erfahrung und Expertise in wichtigen Indikationsgebieten wie zum Beispiel Neurowissenschaften, Diabetes und Diabetesfolgeerkrankungen, Schmerz und Entzündungskrankheiten, Onkologie und Infektionskrankheiten ist Evotec heute einzigartig positioniert. Auf dieser Grundlage hat Evotec ihre Pipeline bestehend aus mehr als 70 verpartnerten Programmen in klinischen, präklinischen und Forschungsphasen aufgebaut (EVT Innovate). Evotec arbeitet in langjährigen Forschungsallianzen mit Partnern wie Bayer, CHDI, Sanofi oder UCB zusammen. Darüber hinaus verfügt das Unternehmen über Entwicklungspartnerschaften u. a. mit Janssen Pharmaceuticals im Bereich der Alzheimer'schen Erkrankung, mit Sanofi im Bereich Diabetes, mit Pfizer auf dem Gebiet Organfibrose und mit Celgene im Bereich neurodegenerative Erkrankungen.. Weitere Informationen finden Sie auf unserer Homepage. www.evotec.com.


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: www.prweb.com

Atlantic Health System’s Annual Heart Failure Awareness Week Symposium will highlight the latest research, programs, and clinical advances in heart failure. The 6th annual, day-long scientific symposium, to be held on February 17, during National Heart Failure Awareness Week, will feature ten Atlantic Health System clinicians presenting on topics including: Claire G. Boccia Liang, MD, FACC, Director of the Women’s Heart Program at Atlantic Health System, will present a keynote on congenital heart disease. “As a nationally recognized leader in cardiology, Atlantic Health System is committed to ensuring that its medical teams have access to the latest research, technology, and care delivery models so patients with heart failure receive optimal treatment that will both prolong and improve the quality of life,” said Linda Gillam, MD, MPH, chair, Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Atlantic Health System. “The Annual Heart Failure Awareness Week Symposium also affords attendees a chance for discussion and healthy debate among multi-disciplinary care teams.” Atlantic Health System, headquartered in Morristown, New Jersey, is a leading non-profit health care delivery system in New Jersey. Our network includes Morristown Medical Center in Morristown, NJ; Overlook Medical Center in Summit, NJ; Newton Medical Center in Newton, NJ; Chilton Medical Center in Pompton Plains, NJ; Hackettstown Medical Center in Hackettstown, NJ; and Goryeb Children’s Hospital in Morristown, NJ, as well as Atlantic Rehabilitation, and Atlantic Home Care and Hospice. It also includes its subsidiary, Atlantic Ambulance Corporation. Atlantic Health System comprises 1,747 licensed beds, more than 14,000 employees and more than 4,000 physicians. Atlantic Health System has a medical school affiliation with the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University; is part of Atlantic Accountable Care Organization, one of the largest ACOs in the nation, and is a member of AllSpire Health Partners.

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