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News Article | February 28, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Incyte Corporation (Nasdaq:INCY) joins the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD), the European Organization for Rare Diseases (EURODIS) and other rare disease health organizations and advocates in recognizing Rare Disease Day 2017. “ Raising awareness and educating the global community about rare diseases is critical to helping improve the lives of patients and families affected by these conditions,” said Hervé Hoppenot, CEO of Incyte. “ Rare Disease Day provides an opportunity to honor and give a voice to those impacted by rare diseases, including the estimated 200,000 individuals in the U.S. living with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs), a closely related group of rare blood cancers.” MPNs are chronic, progressive blood cancers that can strike anyone at any age. MPNs occur when the bone marrow cells that produce the body's blood cells develop and function abnormally. The three main MPNs are myelofibrosis (MF), polycythemia vera (PV) and essential thrombocythemia (ET). This year, as part of its ongoing MPN educational efforts, Incyte teamed up with ABC’s General Hospital to raise awareness about PV. The storyline and partnership with actress Finola Hughes, whose character on General Hospital was diagnosed with PV, aim to raise awareness and inspire patients and caregivers impacted by these under-recognized blood cancers. To learn more, visit www.VoicesofMPN.com. Finola Hughes commented, “ I am honored to lend my voice on and off the set of General Hospital to help more people understand the impact MPNs, including PV, can have on patients and their families.” Rare Disease Day is an important time to recognize and honor the patients, doctors, caregivers, advocates and organizations that contribute to bringing understanding, compassion and strength to those living with rare disease like MPNs. The MPN Heroes Recognition Program, now in its fifth year, is sponsored by Incyte in collaboration with CURE Media Group, publishers of CURE® magazine. The MPN Heroes® program recognizes individuals and organizations who have contributed to the MPN community by going above and beyond to make a real difference. Nominations for the 2017 MPN Heroes program will be accepted online, by mail or by phone beginning on Rare Disease Day through September, 14, 2017. To learn more about the program or to submit a nomination, visit http://www.mpnheroes.com for more details. On Rare Disease Day, MPN patients, physicians and caregivers are also encouraged to share their stories, show their support and help raise awareness of these rare disorders via the Voices of MPN website and Facebook page. Those impacted by MPNs are invited to join in a ‘Voices of MPN Ask an MPN Expert’ Facebook Live Chat tonight, February 28, 2017 at 8:30 PM Eastern Time, where a medical expert in the field will answer questions about MPNs. Visit the Voices of MPN Facebook page to join in. Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs) are a closely related group of blood cancers in which the bone marrow cells that produce the body’s blood cells develop and function abnormally.1 The three main myeloproliferative neoplasms are myelofibrosis (MF), polycythemia vera (PV) and essential thrombocythemia (ET).1 MPNs are progressive blood cancers that can strike anyone at any age, but they are more common in older adults. Estimates of the prevalence of MPNs vary, but analysis of claims data suggests there may be as many as 200,000 people in the U.S. living with MF, PV or ET.2 Incyte Corporation is a Wilmington, Delaware-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of proprietary therapeutics. For additional information on Incyte, please visit the Company’s website at www.incyte.com. MPN Heroes and Voices of MPN are registered trademarks of Incyte Corporation. 1 MPN Research Foundation. “Understanding MPNs.” Available at: http://www.mpnresearchfoundation.org/overview-page 2 Data on file.


News Article | March 2, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Blocking a protein found on the surface of ovarian cancer cells could prevent or reduce the spread of the disease to other organs, according to new research at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The American Cancer Society estimates that 22,440 women in the U.S. will receive a new diagnosis of ovarian cancer this year. About 15,000 will die from the disease, which ranks fifth in cancer deaths among women and No. 1 among cancers of the female reproductive system. It is often diagnosed in a late stage, after the cancer has spread to other organs, making it incurable to currently available treatment options. "The greatest barrier to our ability to treat cancer in this stage is that we know very little about the molecules that cause the disease to spread," said Maria Barbolina, associate professor of biopharmaceutical sciences and lead researcher of the study. "The goal of our research is to identify key molecules that govern metastasis and use them as targets for the development of new drugs." Barbolina and her colleagues hypothesized that biomolecules successfully targeted with drugs in other cancers might also be targets in metastatic ovarian cancer. In earlier research, Barbolina discovered that a fractalkine receptor -- a protein found on the cell surface -- is expressed in the majority of ovarian cancer cases. It could help the cancer spread to other organs throughout the body when stimulated by another protein that binds to it. In her latest findings, published in the journal Oncogene, Barbolina demonstrated in a mouse model that by lowering production of the fractalkine receptor, tumors did not metastasize to nearby sites of the peritoneal wall, bowel or liver. Nearly a third of all cancer drugs target G protein-coupled receptors, of which fractalkine is one, so "we reasoned that blocking it may prevent or reduce ovarian cancer metastasis, because it's expressed in 64 percent of metastatic ovarian carcinoma specimens," Barbolina said. Symptoms of ovarian cancer include bloating, pelvic or abdominal pain, feeling of fullness, or urinary tract complaints. The cancer mainly develops in older women, after menopause -- about half are 63 or older. A woman's lifetime risk of getting ovarian cancer is about one in 75. The research was funded by the National Cancer Institute (grant number CA160917) and Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation Liz Tilberis Scholar Award. Co-authors of the study include Hilal Gurler Main, Jia Xie and Goda Muralidhar of the UIC College of Pharmacy, and pathologists Osama Elfituri, Haoliang Xu and Andre Kajdacsy-Balla of the UIC College of Medicine.


Breakthrough VR company from Walter Parkes, Kevin Wall and Swiss Research Foundation ARTANIM garners backing from consortium of Industry Heavyweights; Disney Imagineering's Bruce Vaughn Joins as CEO LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - Feb 13, 2017) - Prolific film producer and former studio head Walter Parkes and global live entertainment producer/entrepreneur Kevin Wall today announced the completion of the Series A financing of Dreamscape Immersive. Utilizing ground-breaking technology developed by Swiss researchers Dr. Caecilia Charbonnier and Sylvain Chagué of the Artanim Foundation, Dreamscape untethers its audience members from the computer, and allows them to walk freely with friends within a virtual world, where they see themselves, interact with objects and each other, and experience worlds previously accessible only in their imaginations. Bold Capital Partners led the Series A with investments from Warner Bros., 21st Century Fox, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), IMAX Corporation, Westfield Corporation, and Steven Spielberg. Dreamscape's innovative technology, which is an outgrowth of Artanim's breakthrough work in medical imaging and body mechanics, was debuted earlier this week at the Abundance 360 Conference in Beverly Hills. Peter Diamandis, Co-Founder of Singularity University, described the platform to the audience of CEOs and entrepreneurs as "the future of entertainment." The venture also includes a top-of-field leadership team. Joining Co-Chairmen Parkes and Wall as CEO is Bruce Vaughn, 25-year veteran of Disney Imagineering, who served as its Co-Executive Leader for seven years. As Vaughn notes, "The promise of VR has been greater than the reality...until now. Dreamscape delivers on the promise -- to be actively transported into alternate realities where you have experiences and interact with others as naturally as you would in our physical world." Vaughn and the upper management will be a stellar advisory group that includes: Yves Behar, renowned industrial designer, as Brand and Design Advisor; Hans Zimmer, Music Advisor; Dan Fellman, Past President, Domestic Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures, as Distribution Advisor; and Kevin Ratner, President, Forest City Residential West, Real Estate Advisor. Walter Parkes points out: "The core technologies on which Dreamscape is built are truly game changing -- but as with all such innovations, it's ultimately about content, and the creation of experiences that engage and move people in a way never before imagined. This is why we've assembled a team with years of proven success in the creation and distribution of global entertainment; our goal is to move VR into the mainstream." Dreamscape Immersive is positioned to provide a strategic opportunity for two sectors of the consumer economy which face similar challenges of drawing customers away from home-based digital alternatives: movies and retail shopping malls. On the real estate side, Dreamscape's vision of the VR Multiplex unlocks opportunity within global real estate to reinvigorate the shifting retail landscape by creating unique, irreproducible entertainment experiences that are vivid and compelling enough to bring consumers out of the house and into larger social and retail environments. For motion picture studios and other IP holders, Dreamscape provides another alternative for audiences to enjoy both original experiences and franchised properties. As Kevin Wall explains: "Today, audiences can see movies in theaters in three formats: 2D, 3D, and IMAX. Dreamscape establishes the Fourth Platform -- VR. Now, audiences will have the ability to purchase a ticket, step inside of the story and experience it personally in a way never before imagined." Former President of Control Room and partner in the formation of Dreamscape, Aaron Grosky, will serve as Chief Operating Officer. Joining Vaughn from Imagineering will be his Chief Experience Officer Kevin Rice and Chief Software Designer Chris Purvis. Caecilia Charbonnier, Sylvain Chagué and Ronald Menzel, co-founders of Dreamscape, will serve respectively as co-CTOs and Chief Strategic Officer. Dreamscape Immersive will launch their flagship VR Multiplex in Fall 2017 as part of the reopening of Westfield's Century City Mall. About Walter Parkes Walter Parkes is a motion picture producer, writer and former studio head at DreamWorks Pictures, the motion picture studio that he and his wife and partner Laurie MacDonald ran from the company's inception through 2005. Films produced or executive produced by Parkes include The Men in Black series, Gladiator, Minority Report, Flight, Catch Me If You Can and many others. A three-time Oscar nominee and, as a writer with partner Lawrence Lasker, Parkes largely introduced the tech-thriller genre with the original screenplays for War Games and Sneakers. In total, films produced by Parkes have earned in excess of $7B in worldwide box office. About Kevin Wall Kevin Wall is an Emmy Award-winning producer, activist and new media entrepreneur. Wall has enjoyed more than three decades in producing and distributing live, multi-artist music events, most notably Live 8, a global live event which earned Wall an Emmy Award. He pioneered the platform-agnostic digital media model making entertainment content available on all mediums and devices. His company -- Control Room -- has delivered more than 100 TV specials since 2005, featuring international superstars such as Madonna, Jay-Z, Rihanna, and more, across a variety of networks and platforms in 192 countries around the world. About Bruce Vaughn Bruce Vaughn was Chief Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering for The Walt Disney Company. In this role, he lead the integrated creative teams of Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI), Disney's Creative Entertainment (DCE) and WDI Research and Development to drive excellence in product development and innovation. The scope of Vaughn's responsibilities included theme park attractions and special effects, innovative theater experiences, and new business opportunities that leverage invented and emerging technologies. About the Artanim Foundation: Artanim Foundation is a Swiss research center based in Geneva founded in 2011 by three motion capture specialists: Dr. Caecilia Charbonnier, Clementine Lo and Sylvain Chagué. Artanim conducts research activities in the fields of orthopedics and sport medicine, 3D animation and VR/AR applications. The ground-breaking VR technology created by Caecilia Charbonnier -- former professional tennis player reconverted into a biomechanics and computer graphics researcher -- and Sylvain Chagué -- computer science engineer -- is the result of four years of research at Artanim. The technology was showcased at SIGGRAPH 2015, at the Sundance Film Festival and at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016. More info: www.artanim.ch About BOLD Capital Partners: BOLD Capital Partners ("BOLD"), is a venture capital firm targeting investments in early stage and growth technology companies. BOLD is particularly interested in entrepreneurial leaders that leverage exponential technologies to transform the world and create innovative solutions to humanities' grand challenges. The investment platform leverages the resources of Singularity University (www.su.org) and the Peter Diamandis ecosystem (www.diamandis.com) to actively seek and support world class entrepreneurs. BOLD has offices in Santa Monica and Palo Alto, California.


News Article | February 22, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

Published today in Nature, the discovery has major implications for the study of motivation, decision making, as well as addiction and other disorders CHAPEL HILL, NC - The prefrontal cortex, a large and recently evolved structure that wraps the front of the brain, has powerful "executive" control over behavior, particularly in humans. The details of how it exerts that control have been elusive, but UNC School of Medicine scientists, publishing today in Nature, have now uncovered some of those details, using sophisticated techniques for recording and controlling the activity of neurons in live mice. The UNC scientists, led by Garret Stuber, PhD, associate professor in UNC's departments of psychiatry and cell biology & physiology, examined two distinct populations of prefrontal neurons, each of which project to a different brain region outside the cortex. The researchers found that as mice learn to associate a particular sound with a rewarding sugary drink, one set of prefrontal neurons becomes more active and promotes what researchers call reward-seeking behavior - a sign of greater motivation. By contrast, other prefrontal neurons are silenced in response to the tone, and those neurons act like a brake on reward-seeking. "We've known that there are a lot of differences in how prefrontal neurons respond to stimuli, but nobody has really been able to map these differences onto the intrinsic wiring of the brain," said Stuber, senior author of the study and member of the UNC Neuroscience Center. Stuber and colleagues obtained their findings with the use of three sophisticated and relatively new neuroscience tools: deep-brain two-photon imaging, optogenetics, and genetic techniques for labeling neurons by their projection targets in the brain. The successful combination of these tools heralds their future common use in defining the pathways and functions of many other brain networks to help uncover the roots of both normal and abnormal behavior. The study, conducted by first authors and UNC postdoctoral fellows James Otis, PhD, and Vijay Namboodiri, PhD, focused on the dorsomedial (upper-middle) prefrontal cortex, or dmPFC. "This region is critical for reward processing, decision making, and cognitive flexibility among other things, but how distinct populations of neurons within dmPFC orchestrate such phenomena were unclear," Stuber said. Stuber and colleagues examined how the activity of dmPFC neurons changes during a Pavlovian reward-conditioning process. In this process, mice learn to associate an auditory tone with a taste of sugary liquid until the tone itself is enough to make the animals start licking around their mouths in anticipation. "This simple experiment models a learning phenomenon that occurs in lots of different brain regions," Stuber said. "It is critical for motivation and decision making, and of course it can go awry in drug and food addiction, depression, and other neuropsychiatric disorders." As the mice in the experiment learned to associate the tone with the sweet drink, the researchers found that a subset of the mouse dmPFC neurons became increasingly excited when the tone sounded, whereas another subset went increasingly silent. The researchers were able to observe this phenomenon by using a deep-brain version of two-photon imaging, a technique in which a microscope visualizes hundreds of brain cells simultaneously in mice that are awake and able to perform some ordinary behaviors. The dmPFC is known to output many of its chemical signals to two other brain regions, the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and the paraventricular nucleus of the thalamus (PVT), both of which are considered important for reward-directed behavior. Stuber's team found that the NAc-projecting neurons in the dmPFC were the ones that became increasingly excited by the tone, and the PVT-projecting neurons were the ones that became increasingly suppressed. The two sets of neurons turned out to be physically separate within the dmPFC only by a few hundred micrometers. The team then used optogenetic techniques to artificially drive the activities of these neurons. Optogenetics allows researchers to use beams of light to activate specific populations of neurons. Driving the NAc-projecting neurons caused the mice to anticipate their sweet reward more intensely, with more licks after the tone. By contrast, driving the PVT-projecting neurons muted that anticipatory, reward-seeking behavior. The findings represent a basic demonstration of how the dmPFC has evolved anatomically distinct neuronal populations that have functionally distinct control over behavior, Stuber said. And the discovery points to the existence of similar combinations of control mechanisms elsewhere in the brain. He and his colleagues are now following up with studies of dmPFC neurons that project to other brain regions. Other co-authors were UNC undergraduate students Ana M. Matan and Emily P. Mohorn, visiting graduate student from the university of Utrecht Elisa Voets, UNC MD/PhD student Elliot Robinson, Stuber lab manager Oksana Kosyk, and UNC postdoctoral researchers Jenna A. McHenry, PhD, Shanna L. Resendez, PhD, and Mark A. Rossi, PhD, all of the Stuber lab. Funding was provided by the National Institutes of Health, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, the Children's Tumor Foundation, and the Foundation of Hope.


News Article | February 23, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

PHILADELPHIA -- (Feb. 23, 2017) -- Scientists at The Wistar Institute have shown that an anti-diabetic drug can inhibit the growth of melanoma in older patients by activating an anti-aging gene that in turn inhibits a protein involved in metastatic progression and resistance to targeted therapies for the disease. The study was published online in Clinical Cancer Research. Even more than other types of cancer, melanoma is a disease of aging, with older patients more frequently diagnosed with the disease and having a worse prognosis. Targeted therapies have brought benefits in terms of overall survival compared to chemotherapy but they are limited by intrinsic or acquired resistance. Wistar scientists have previously shown that age-related changes in the tumor microenvironment -- or the surrounding area where tumor cells crosstalk with normal and immune cells -- can drive melanoma progression and therapy resistance. They have also discovered that a protein named Wnt5A promotes metastatic progression, resistance to therapy and poorer prognosis, and one of the ways in which it is regulated is by the anti-aging protein Klotho. The new study shows that treating mice with a drug that promotes Klotho expression reduces the levels of Wnt5A and decreases the growth of therapy-resistant melanoma in aged mice but, importantly, not in young mice. "We have already shown that age-related changes in the tumor microenvironment are accountable for the higher metastatic potential of melanoma in older patients," said Ashani Weeraratna, Ph.D., Ira Brind Associate Professor and program leader of the Tumor Microenvironment and Metastasis Program at Wistar and lead author of the paper. "Our new study indicates that a differential therapeutic approach can be beneficial for older patients in melanoma and suggests that age should be taken into account to design better treatments for certain cohorts of patients." Weeraratna's team used an artificial skin reconstruct model to recreate the interactions of melanoma cells with either a young or aged tumor microenvironment. They observed an intricate reciprocal regulation between Klotho, Wnt5A, melanoma cells, and the tumor microenvironment. They also showed that they could manipulate Klotho expression pharmacologically using the anti-diabetic drug rosiglitazone, which resulted in decreased levels of Wnt5A. Importantly, while using rosiglitazone in conjunction with targeted therapy reduced tumor growth in both young and aged pre-clinical models, using rosiglitazone alone accelerated tumor growth in young models, while inhibiting it in aged ones. "We believe that there is a threshold effect whereby the levels of Klotho, dictated mostly by the age of the patients, are crucial in determining whether they will benefit from this treatment or not," said Reeti Behera, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher in the Weeraratna lab and first author of the study. "Previous studies had tested the use of rosiglitazone for cancer treatment, but the outcome was not encouraging. I think they may have been missing a piece of the puzzle, by not considering aging and the tumor microenvironment." This research lays the foundation for the development of promising adjuvant therapy for older melanoma patients. More studies will be needed to confirm the benefits in human subjects. Klotho is a secreted protein that can be measured in the serum of patients and this can help in determining which patients would benefit from rosiglitazone therapy and would be eligible for further studies. This work was supported by National Institutes of Health grants RO1 CA174746-01, P01 CA 114046-06, T32 CA 9171-36, P50 CA174523-01and R01-CA1826635; grants from the Melanoma Research Foundation, the American Cancer Society, and the Miriam and Sheldon Adelson Research Foundation. Weeraratna is supported by the Ira Brind Associate Professorship. Core support for The Wistar Institute was provided by the Cancer Center Support Grant CA010815. Co-authors of this study from The Wistar Institute include: Amanpreet Kaur, Marie R. Webster, Suyeon Kim, Abibatou Ndoye, Curtis H. Kugel III, Gretchen M. Alicea, Joshua Wang, Sofia Lisanti, Katie Marchbank, Vanessa Dang, Kanad Ghosh, Meenhard Herlyn, Cecilia Caino, and Dario C. Altieri. Other co-authors include: Phil Cheng, Mitchell Levesque, and Reinhard Dummer from University of Zurich, Switzerland; Xiaowei Xu from University of Pennsylvania; Andrew E. Aplin from Thomas Jefferson University; and Alexander Roesch from University Duesburg-Essen, Essen, Germany. The Wistar Institute is an international leader in biomedical research with special expertise in cancer research and vaccine development. Founded in 1892 as the first independent nonprofit biomedical research institute in the United States, Wistar has held the prestigious Cancer Center designation from the National Cancer Institute since 1972. The Institute works actively to ensure that research advances move from the laboratory to the clinic as quickly as possible. wistar.org.


News Article | February 27, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

La Jolla, Calif., Feb. 27, 2016 -- Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) have identified a new regulator of the innate immune response--the immediate, natural immune response to foreign invaders. The study, published recently in Nature Microbiology, suggests that therapeutics that modulate the regulator--an immune checkpoint--may represent the next generation of antiviral drugs, vaccine adjuvants, cancer immunotherapies, and treatments for autoimmune disease. "We discovered that a protein called K-homology splicing regulatory protein (KHSRP) weakens the immune response to viral RNA," says Sumit Chanda, Ph.D., director of the Immunity and Pathogenesis Program at SBP, and senior author of the study. "Depleting KHSRP improved immune signaling and reduced viral replication in cell culture and in vivo, suggesting that drugs inhibiting the protein may have therapeutic value." The innate immune response is the first line of defense against pathogens--a one-size-fits-all attack on viruses, bacteria, and pretty much anything that looks like an invader. But innate immunity must be carefully regulated. If the response is too slow or too weak, infections can run rampant, and if the trigger is too sensitive or the response is too strong, excessive inflammation or autoimmune diseases can arise. "That's where KHSRP comes in," explains Chanda. "It physically interacts with a protein called retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I) to apply the brakes to the innate immune response." RIG-I receptors initiate antiviral immunity by detecting viral RNA in the cytoplasm of cells. When they bind viral RNA, they turn on signaling that leads to the production of interferon, a strong inflammatory signal that helps kill viruses, as well as the induction of other antiviral responses. RIG-I receptors also coordinate signaling with other immune factors to modulate the adaptive immune response--the acquired, specialized response that develops after the innate response and provides long-term immunity. "We identified KHSRP by systematically testing every human proteins to identify those that impact RIG-I signaling," says Stephen Soonthornvacharin, a recent Ph.D. graduate from the Chanda lab. "We found about 240 proteins, but we focused on KHSRP because it was the only one of the 240 that was found to inhibit the very early steps of RIG-I signaling." "Molecules that block KHSRP's actions could serve as adjuvants--components that heighten the immune response--to vaccines against influenza or hepatitis C, as antiviral drugs, or even next-generation cancer immunotherapies," Soonthornvacharin adds. "Also, among the 240 RIG-I regulators we identified, 125 appear to activate RIG-I, so finding drugs that inhibit these proteins may be a way to treat autoimmune conditions involving too much interferon, like type 1 diabetes or lupus. Figuring out which ones are promising requires further investigation." "We think KHSRP protects against autoimmunity," adds Chanda. "RIG-I normally recognizes RNA molecules that arise during viral infections, but it can also mistakenly sense RNA present in normal cells. Without KHSRP, the innate immune response could be erroneously turned on when there's no virus. Increasing the activity of KHSRP might therefore be a way to treat autoimmunity." "Next, we plan to figure out more of the details of how KHSRP regulates RIG-I," says Sunnie Yoh, Ph.D., staff scientist in the Chanda lab and a key contributor to the research. "That's the information that will move us in the direction of developing therapies." This research was performed in collaboration with scientists at the Novartis Research Foundation, the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Oregon State University Corvallis, the Paul Ehrlich Institute in Langen, Germany, and the University of California San Francisco. Financial support was provided by the National Institutes of Health and the James B. Pendleton Charitable Trust. Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) is an independent nonprofit medical research organization that conducts world-class, collaborative, biological research and translates its discoveries for the benefit of patients. SBP focuses its research on cancer, immunity, neurodegeneration, metabolic disorders and rare children's diseases. The Institute invests in talent, technology and partnerships to accelerate the translation of laboratory discoveries that will have the greatest impact on patients. Recognized for its world-class NCI-designated Cancer Center and the Conrad Prebys Center for Chemical Genomics, SBP employs about 1,100 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at SBPdiscovery.org or on Facebook at facebook.com/SBPdiscovery and on Twitter @SBPdiscovery.


News Article | February 8, 2017
Site: globenewswire.com

West Lafayette, Ind., Feb. 08, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A high-definition mobile virtual reality 3-D motion-tracking technology for fast, accurate and easy-to-use 3-D user interface can advance to the next level thanks to $100,000 in funding from investors. AccuPS LLC, a Purdue-affiliated startup, has developed the AeroWand™, an add-on 3-D motion-tracking controller that provides a way for mobile virtual reality (VR) users to interact in the VR space. The technology includes a head-tracking device, hand controller and transmitting antenna that plug into the user’s smartphone to enable the tracking signals. “A good analogy to what we are doing is providing a mouse to PC owners – without a mouse you can just see and watch, however with a mouse you are able to engage, take action and the overall experience is more exciting, useable and fun. That’s what the AeroWand aims to do,” said Byunghoo Jung, CEO and founder of AccuPS. “The benefit of our technology is that there is minimal set up with no wires or cameras to install. The device has a low-cost, inbuilt microprocessor that can locally compute the elegant and smart algorithms we developed, and it is very simple and easy to use.” Jung said the startup is pleased with the success of the first round of investment funding. “We’re very excited to receive these funds because it represents a vote of confidence from investors who are saying they believe in our product and its potential for success,” he said. “We had a lot of great interest in our product and the money we received motivates and inspires us to continue producing an elegant, high-tech product because we know it has the potential to provide a unique, exciting experience to mobile VR users.” AccuPS recently started a second round of investment funding, after beginning the first phase in spring 2016. The investments will put the group one closer to realization of the product. “With the money we raise our first priority is to make a commercial grade prototype that meets all the required and best proponent specs,” Jung said. “This will helps us present an actual product to potential customers so they can see how it actually works and line us up for potential partnerships or additional investments in the future.” AccuPS previously received a NSF STTR grant for $225,000. The company also received a $20,000 Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund Black Award in 2015. Technology used by AccuPS has been licensed through the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization. The company is located in the Purdue Research Park of West Lafayette. AccuPS is a tech startup providing high definition 3D interaction solutions. The first product, AeroWand, is a 3D controller for virtual reality (VR) applications. The easy-to-use yet powerful 3D controller will make VR available to everyone at a low cost. The Purdue Research Foundation is a private, nonprofit foundation created to advance the mission of Purdue University. Established in 1930, the foundation accepts gifts; administers trusts; funds scholarships and grants; acquires property; protects Purdue's intellectual property; and promotes entrepreneurial activities on behalf of Purdue. The foundation manages the Purdue Foundry, Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization, Purdue Research Park and Purdue Technology Centers. The foundation received the 2016 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Award for Innovation from the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org. The Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization operates one of the most comprehensive technology transfer programs among leading research universities in the U.S. Services provided by this office support the economic development initiatives of Purdue University and benefit the university's academic activities. The office is managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, which received the 2016 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Award for Innovation from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org. For more information on licensing a Purdue innovation, contact the Office of Technology Commercialization at innovation@prf.org.


People often experience symptoms of PTSD such as anxiety, stress, and fear from traumatic life events. Physician researchers (funded by the ONE Research Foundation) conducted a study on Neuro Emotional Technique (NET), a mind-body therapy, at The Marcus Institute of Integrative Health at Thomas Jefferson University. The study found NET effectively and rapidly reduced symptoms of traumatic stress events in patients who had experienced life-threatening medical issues. “The results of this study were really quite dramatic,” said principal investigator Daniel Monti, M.D., MBA, and Director of the Marcus Institute. “In just four to five brief sessions, patients who received NET reported much less distress, their overall emotional state improved significantly and the way their brains reacted to stress cues normalized.” The study focused on 23 patients who experienced traumatic stress symptoms that lasted for at least six months as a result of distressing cancer-related events. A select number of patients received NET and the rest were waitlisted to a control group. The treatment group received a functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) while listening to the self reported story of their distressing memory before and after NET. After receiving NET, the treated patients saw reduced stimulation in a number of brain structures associated with the perception of emotional traumas. As an example, the parahippocampus is known to be activated by various types of traumatic stress, such as post-traumatic stress disorder in war veterans and victims of sexual assault. In the image attached, the parahippocampus is no longer active after the patient had received NET (right). “This is the first study, that our team is aware of, that assessed the combined neurophysiological and clinical effects of an intervention for traumatic stress symptoms, and most importantly, offers a demonstrable solution,” Dr. Monti said. Study participant Elizabeth Koniz, a breast cancer survivor, described high anxiety prior to receiving NET. “I was fairly skeptical and [now] feel like I am living proof this works,” she said. Researchers attribute the success of the intervention to the combination of exposure techniques with nervous system feedback, which uniquely allows therapists to gauge the patient’s subjective distress and how the body is reacting to it. “This provides extra information that is not usually part of standard interventions and, potentially, is what makes NET an especially efficient and efficacious therapeutic solution for traumatic stress symptoms,” Dr. Monti said. Citation: Monti, D.A., Tobia, A., Stoner, M. et al. “Neuro emotional technique effects on brain physiology in cancer patients with traumatic stress symptoms: preliminary findings.” J Cancer Surviv (2017). doi:10.1007/s11764-017-0601-8. Cushman Jr., John H. (2012, February 24). New Study Gives Scope and Cost of Combat-Related Conditions Among Veterans. Retrieved from http://www.marketwatch.com/story/what-ptsd-costs-families-2014-04-04 This study was fully funded by the ONE Research Foundation.


Receive press releases from ONE Research Foundation: By Email PTSD Treatments Can Cost Up to $7,000 a Year, But a Group of NET-Trained Practitioners Treated Patients Effectively and Quickly for a Fraction of the Cost Los Angeles, CA, February 28, 2017 --( “The results of this study were really quite dramatic,” said principal investigator Daniel Monti, M.D., MBA, and Director of the Marcus Institute. “In just four to five brief sessions, patients who received NET reported much less distress, their overall emotional state improved significantly and the way their brains reacted to stress cues normalized.” The study focused on 23 patients who experienced traumatic stress symptoms that lasted for at least six months as a result of distressing cancer-related events. A select number of patients received NET and the rest were waitlisted to a control group. The treatment group received a functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) while listening to the self reported story of their distressing memory before and after NET. After receiving NET, the treated patients saw reduced stimulation in a number of brain structures associated with the perception of emotional traumas. As an example, the parahippocampus is known to be activated by various types of traumatic stress, such as post-traumatic stress disorder in war veterans and victims of sexual assault. In the image, the parahippocampus is no longer active after the patient had received NET (right). “This is the first study, that our team is aware of, that assessed the combined neurophysiological and clinical effects of an intervention for traumatic stress symptoms, and most importantly, offers a demonstrable solution,” Dr. Monti said. Study participant Elizabeth Koniz, a breast cancer survivor, described high anxiety prior to receiving NET. “I was fairly skeptical and [now] feel like I am living proof this works,” she said. Researchers attribute the success of the intervention to the combination of exposure techniques with nervous system feedback, which uniquely allows therapists to gauge the patient’s subjective distress and how the body is reacting to it. “This provides extra information that is not usually part of standard interventions and, potentially, is what makes NET an especially efficient and efficacious therapeutic solution for traumatic stress symptoms,” Dr. Monti said. Citation: Monti, D.A., Tobia, A., Stoner, M. et al. “Neuro emotional technique effects on brain physiology in cancer patients with traumatic stress symptoms: preliminary findings.” J Cancer Surviv (2017). doi:10.1007/s11764-017-0601-8. Cushman Jr., John H. (2012, February 24). New Study Gives Scope and Cost of Combat-Related Conditions Among Veterans. Retrieved from https://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/24/ new-study-gives-scope-and-cost-of-combat-related-conditions-among-veterans/?_r=0 This study was fully funded by the ONE Research Foundation. Los Angeles, CA, February 28, 2017 --( PR.com )-- People often experience symptoms of PTSD such as anxiety, stress, and fear from traumatic life events. Physician researchers (funded by the ONE Research Foundation) conducted a study on Neuro Emotional Technique (NET), a mind-body therapy, at The Marcus Institute of Integrative Health at Thomas Jefferson University. The study found NET effectively and rapidly reduced symptoms of traumatic stress events in patients who had experienced life-threatening medical issues.“The results of this study were really quite dramatic,” said principal investigator Daniel Monti, M.D., MBA, and Director of the Marcus Institute. “In just four to five brief sessions, patients who received NET reported much less distress, their overall emotional state improved significantly and the way their brains reacted to stress cues normalized.”The study focused on 23 patients who experienced traumatic stress symptoms that lasted for at least six months as a result of distressing cancer-related events. A select number of patients received NET and the rest were waitlisted to a control group.The treatment group received a functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) while listening to the self reported story of their distressing memory before and after NET. After receiving NET, the treated patients saw reduced stimulation in a number of brain structures associated with the perception of emotional traumas.As an example, the parahippocampus is known to be activated by various types of traumatic stress, such as post-traumatic stress disorder in war veterans and victims of sexual assault. In the image, the parahippocampus is no longer active after the patient had received NET (right).“This is the first study, that our team is aware of, that assessed the combined neurophysiological and clinical effects of an intervention for traumatic stress symptoms, and most importantly, offers a demonstrable solution,” Dr. Monti said.Study participant Elizabeth Koniz, a breast cancer survivor, described high anxiety prior to receiving NET. “I was fairly skeptical and [now] feel like I am living proof this works,” she said.Researchers attribute the success of the intervention to the combination of exposure techniques with nervous system feedback, which uniquely allows therapists to gauge the patient’s subjective distress and how the body is reacting to it.“This provides extra information that is not usually part of standard interventions and, potentially, is what makes NET an especially efficient and efficacious therapeutic solution for traumatic stress symptoms,” Dr. Monti said.Citation: Monti, D.A., Tobia, A., Stoner, M. et al. “Neuro emotional technique effects on brain physiology in cancer patients with traumatic stress symptoms: preliminary findings.” J Cancer Surviv (2017). doi:10.1007/s11764-017-0601-8. Cushman Jr., John H. (2012, February 24). New Study Gives Scope and Cost of Combat-Related Conditions Among Veterans. Retrieved from https://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/24/ new-study-gives-scope-and-cost-of-combat-related-conditions-among-veterans/?_r=0This study was fully funded by the ONE Research Foundation. Click here to view the list of recent Press Releases from ONE Research Foundation


Tefferi A.,Mayo Medical School | Barbui T.,Research Foundation
Leukemia | Year: 2013

The World Health Organization (WHO) classification system has recently strengthened the diagnostic criteria for essential thrombocythemia (ET) by lowering the threshold platelet count, underscoring its morphological distinction from early/prefibrotic myelofibrosis (MF) and incorporating molecular markers of clonality. The International Working Group for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms Research and Treatment (IWG-MRT) examined the clinical relevance of this process in 1104 cases of locally diagnosed 'ET' and showed worse overall, leukemia-free and fibrosis-free survival, and a higher risk of bleeding in early/prefibrotic MF (n=180) vs WHO-defined ET (n=891). The risk of thrombosis was similar between the two entities and, in WHO-defined ET, was predicted by thrombosis history, older age, cardiovascular risk factors and JAK2V617F. A prognostic model based on these risk factors identified patient groups in ET with residual risk of thrombosis, despite treatment with conventional therapy. The main objectives of the current perspective are to underscore the prognostic importance of morphological confirmation in the diagnosis of ET and provide management recommendations, in both WHO-defined ET and early/prefibrotic MF, based on observations from the aforementioned IWG-MRT and other studies. In so doing, we are fully cognizant and sympathetic of the fact that some of our recommendations need to be tested in prospective controlled studies. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

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