Arizona Bioscience Overview
Arizona is home to one of the fastest growing bioscience industries in the U.S. Watch the video to see how a statewide collaboration built the research infrastructure and attracted a growing talent base of thought leaders committed to making Arizona a leading bioscience state.
The Greener Side of Bio
AZBio Board Chair and Co-Founder of Algae Biosciences, Glen Galster , moderates this panel discussion on the state of Arizona's green bio industry amd whwere it's going with Leif P. Christoffersen , Director of Biomass Integration, Yulex Corporation . Leif is responsible for advancing Yulex’s energy, efficiency and biomass initiatives. Prior to Yulex, Christoffersen played a key role in establishing the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation (EOWBF) with whom he maintains an active advisory role. He also spent over five years at the Diversa Corporation (Verenium Corporation and BP Biofuels), where he managed bioprospecting collaborations, as well as managed Diversa’s grants program, coordinated their scientific advisory board, and supported their international business development efforts. Christoffersen has also served as a climate change adviser to the Executive Director of UNEP at COP1 and COP2 of the Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC). At the start of his career, he worked with subsistence farmers in Costa Rica and Kenya to support and promote agroforestry practices, which included setting up exportation of organic produce. Christoffersen holds a degree from Hobart College (BA, Economics) and the University of California, San Diego (MBA, Rady School of Management). Ben Cloud , President and CEO, Phyco Biosciences, Inc ., brings over 30 years of experience as a farmer and farmland developer with operations in Arizona and Southern California. His significant experience in production agriculture including drip-micro irrigation systems and design, cropping systems, processing and marketing have contributed to the development of the Phyco production platform and business approach (To learn more, click here .) and Josh Hottenstein of the Cleantech Open
2012 Fast Lane Award Winner - the Critical Path Institute
With both drug development costs and healthcare costs at record heights, how can we drive innovation and lifesaving discoveries down the path faster. That is the question the team at the Critical Path Institute (C-Path) asks every day. Critical Path Institute , a healthcare change agent and leading center of excellence for collaborative scientific innovation, was formed with visionary support from the State of Arizona, UA, Science Foundation Arizona, FDA and the community at large. Its mission: to improve human health and well-being by developing new technologies and methods to accelerate the development and review of medical products. There is no other entity in the country that does what C-Path does. C-Path Milestones and “firsts” include: 1st preclinical safety biomarkers (7) qualified by FDA and its counterparts in Europe and Japan – biomarkers used to detect drug-induced kidney injury earlier and more precisely. 1st CDISC (Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium) therapeutic area data standard enables aggregating and easier FDA review of Alzheimer’s clinical trial data. 1st and largest open database of CDISC aggregated Alzheimer’s clinical trial data (6,100 patients, 22 clinical trials) enabling scientists to look for means to detect disease earlier and understand disease progression based on age, sex, genotypes. 1st drug-disease trial model and clinical trial simulation tool submitted/under review by FDA – model enables scientists to better design Alzheimer’s clinical trials. 1st imaging biomarker for trial enrichment qualified by EMA – biomarker used to select patients in very early stages of Alzheimer’s for inclusion in clinical trials. C-Path brings together stakeholders to create what no one company, university, or government agency could do alone: 6 global consortia with 1,000 scientists, 41 companies, government agencies, patient groups, and academia to collaborate on “tools” to help drug development and focus on drug safety, drug effectiveness, diseases of the brain, developing new imaging biomarkers, and testing drug combinations. C-Path’s collaborative work is just beginning to translate knowledge of disease and human physiology into safe and effective therapies.
2012 AZBio Fast Lane Award Winner - Ulthera
Beauty and Growth – Ulthera, Inc Ulthera’s mission is to work with physicians to provide therapeutic ultrasound to improve the appearance and health of patients worldwide. The company is not only defined by its proprietary technology, but also its people. Ulthera’s team consists of experts in their respective fields who are aligned by the strength of the company’s mission and its leadership. Ulthera was founded in 2004 to leverage seven years of prior scientific research in therapeutic ultrasound for aesthetic and medical applications. In 2009, the Ulthera® System received FDA approval in the United States and is the first and only energy-based device to receive FDA clearance for a non-invasive aesthetic lift indication. The first application for Ultherapy® – the procedure enabled by the System – is a non-invasive treatment of the face to achieve a brow lift. Ulthera’s robust scientific foundation and relentless pursuit of superior clinical outcomes have resulted in the rapid global uptake of the Ulthera platform. As Ulthera continues to develop and provide more applications for its platform, the company also remains committed to bringing value to physicians and their patients. In 2006, Matt Likens was hired as President and CEO of Ulthera by founder and owner Michael Slayton, Ph. D, with the expectation of obtaining FDA approval for Ulthera’s product and service (known as Ultherapy) within three months. Less than two years into his tenure at Ulthera, Matt found himself navigating this venture capital backed start-up though the worst economic downtown since the Great Depression. The Company also found itself facing an increasing skeptical and less commercially friendly US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regime. With both of these risks significantly threatening the Company’s viability, Matt decided to change the Company’s regulatory pathway and focus by obtaining CE Mark from the European Union prior to obtaining FDA clearance. If this bet paid off, Ulthera’s regulatory runway would be significantly reduced and the Company would be able to generate sales in the European market. These revenues would also allow the Company to lessen the need to obtain additional venture capital financing thus reducing additional dilution to the Company’s current shareholders. While risky, the core of this decision was based on the multinational experience Likens attained at Baxter and his general entrepreneurial nature. The bet ultimately paid off. Today, Ulthera is a global, growth-stage medical device company pioneering aesthetic and medical applications using its therapeutic ultrasound platform technology. More than 1,000 Ulthera Systems have been sold globally while treatments performed using the System have surpassed 100,000.