ENTREVESTOR: The BIC Semi-Finalists

By | News | No Comments

See original story here

Eight companies have been chosen to compete in this year’s BioInnovation Challenge, a regional health and life sciences business competition hosted by BioNova.

The competition will go down on Nov. 7 at BioPort 2018, BioNova’s annual conference for the life-science industry at the Halifax Convention Centre.

The BIC is one of the longest running business competitions in the Atlantic region. Since 2011, over 50 companies have gone through the program.

Past winners of the BIC include New Brunswick-based Pfera Inc. as well as Spring Loaded TechnologyABK BioMedical and Covina Biomedical from Nova Scotia.

“A strong and vibrant economy in our region requires continuous innovation and BIC has become a key program to support that,” said Scott Moffitt the Managing Director of BioNova in a statement.

“Many of the companies coming out of the program have gone on to raise millions to grow and scale.”

This year’s semi-finalists will receive training and sessions with expert pitching coach Linda Plano, who has over 10 years of experience mentoring entrepreneurs with startups in life sciences.

The winner of the competition will also receive $25,000 in funding to develop their business idea as well as a package of support services and mentoring valued at more than $30,000.

The BioPort 2018 conference is set to be the biggest yet. A Keynote address will be given by Corrina Lathan, CEO of AnthroTronix in Maryland. BioPort 2018 will also be the inaugural year for a new program for Nova Scotia’s youth.

The eight BIC semi-finalists are:

Coloursmith Labs – Direct-to-consumer contact lenses that work as the world’s first practical solution to colour blindness. Read Entrevestor’s coverage of Coloursmith here.

Unified Health – New models designed to ease the strain on the emergency system while reducing healthcare costs and bringing better patient outcomes. The company plans to set up wellness clinics that merge traditional and alternative care practices.

Talem Health Analytics – A Software-as-a-Service company for healthcare professionals to track, analyze and predict treatment regimens for people who have been in motor vehicle accidents. It draws on data from physiotherapy clinics and can help insurers assess how the patient will rehab. Talem was one of the five winners that took home $25,000 at the last Volta Cohort.

Picomole – A painless, accurate, and versatile diagnostic breath test to detect early stage lung cancer. This Moncton-based company is testing its device with the Horizon Health Network in New Brunswick. Read Entrevestor’s story on Picomole here.

BioHuntress – A Saint John company develping a natural treatment for blood cancer that brings a better patient experience.

Neuro Amel Technologies – This Halifax-based company is building a frameless, automated brace that uses electrical stimulation to improve mobility for stroke patients. Neuro Amel recently graduated from Dalhousie University’s LaunchPad program. Read Entrevestor’s story on the early development of the project here

Macro Movements – A company that is building a software that gives feedback on your movement to prevent injury.

3F Waste Recovery – Turns waste in the fishery, farming and forestry industries into profitable solutions. The company is in the business of “turning garbage into gold,” for the cosmetics industry.

BioNova Names 2018 BioInnovation Challenge (BIC) Semi-Finalists

By | News | No Comments

NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BioNova Names 2018 BioInnovation Challenge (BIC) Semi-Finalists

August 29, 2018 – Halifax, Nova Scotia – Eight (8) semi-finalists have been chosen to compete in the BioInnovation Challenge (BIC), BioNova’s regional health and life sciences business competition, which will be held in Halifax on November 7th during BioPort 2018 at the Halifax Convention Centre.

BIC is one of the longest running business competitions in the region with over 50 companies having gone through the program since 2011. The competition has supported the growth and innovation of past winners such as New Brunswick-based Pfera Inc., along with Spring Loaded Technology, ABK BioMedical and Covina Biomedical from Nova Scotia.

“A strong and vibrant economy in our region requires continuous innovation and BIC has become a key program to support that,” said Scott Moffitt, Managing Director of BioNova. “Many of the companies coming out of the program have gone on to raise millions to grow and scale.”

This year’s semi-finalists will receive significant training to be positioned for business growth, including sessions with expert pitch training coach Linda Plano, who has over ten years of experience mentoring entrepreneurs with start-ups in life sciences. This year’s winner will receive $25,000 in funding to develop their business idea as well as a package of support services and mentoring valued at more than $30,000.

Read more about the eight (8) semi-finalists below:

Coloursmith Labs – Direct-to-consumer contact lenses that work as the world’s first practical solution to colour blindness.

Unified Health – New models designed to ease the strain on the emergency system while reducing healthcare costs and bringing better patient outcomes.

Talem Health Analytics – Software for healthcare professionals to track, analyze and predict treatment regimens for people in motor vehicle accidents.

Picomole – A painless, accurate, and versatile diagnostic breath test to detect early stage lung cancer.

BioHuntress – A natural treatment for blood cancer that brings a better patient experience.

Neuro Amel Technologies – A frameless, automated brace that uses electrical stimulation to improve mobility for stroke patients.

Macro Movements – Software that gives feedback on movement to prevent injury.

3F Waste Recovery – Turns waste problems in the fishery, farming and forestry industries into profitable solutions.

BIC 2018 is presented by BioNova in partnership with the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, BioNB, Emergence, DalhousieUniversity Industry Liaison and Innovation, Springboard Atlantic, Jennifer Cameron PR, PWC, Cox & Palmer, Bereskin & Parr, Archway Insurance, and Grant Thornton.

BIC 2018 will take place over two days in November. The eight (8) semi-finalists will present to a panel of judges and the conference audience at BioPort, BioNova’s annual conference, on November 7th. The top three presenters will then pitch the following morning.  The winner will be announced at the close of BioPort 2018 on the afternoon of November 8th.

About BioNova:
BioNova leads, accelerates, and advocates for Nova Scotia’s growing health and life sciences sector. Since 1993, BioNova has been accelerating the growth of its member companies. By hosting networking and educational events, and providing connections to potential funders and business resources, BioNova helps companies succeed.  While these companies commercialize life-changing research to improve healthcare, provide healthier food, and develop sustainable solutions, BioNova advocates on behalf of the sector. BioNova champions the sector’s cluster of world-class research facilities, incubator programs, and companies who, together, bring investment and jobs to Nova Scotia.

About BioPort 2018:
BioPort 2018 will take place at the Halifax Convention Centre on November 7 and 8. BioPort provides a forum to educate, inform and inspire the health and life sciences community to develop their ideas, commercialize their technologies and build links within the region and with guests brought in from the U.S. and from around the world.
-30-

For further information, media may contact:

Shana Cristoferi
Marketing Manager, BioNova
902-421-5705
scristoferi@bionova.ca

Click here to download the BIC, BioPort, and BioNova Logos.

Health Technology Pioneer Dr. Corinna Lathan Keynotes BioPort 2018

By | News | No Comments

Untitled design (82)Dr. Corinna Lathan, CEO of AnthroTronix, Inc., will provide an evening keynote address to health and life sciences innovators, industry leaders, and investors from across North America during BioPort 2018, on November 7-8, at the Halifax Convention Centre. Dr. Lathan’s keynote address will explore the transformative impact of technology on life sciences companies and health care.

Dr. Lathan is a neuroscientist, engineer, and health technology entrepreneur. Her company has successfully developed an FDA-cleared mobile platform for healthcare providers to assess cognitive function. She has also developed robotics for kids with disabilities, virtual reality technology for the Space Station (NASA), and wearable sensors for training surgeons and soldiers. These human-technology innovations have been featured in Forbes and Time magazines and led to Dr. Lathan being named as MIT Technology Review Magazine’s ‘Top 100 World Innovators’.

Since 1999, Dr. Lathan has served as the founder, CEO, and Board Chair of AnthroTronix Inc., a biomedical engineering research and development company creating diverse human-centered products in digital health, wearable technology, robotics, and augmented reality.  The company recently developed FDA-cleared, mobile digital health software platform DANA™. This work lead Dr. Lathan to be named ‘2017 Woman to Watch’ by Disruptive Women in Health Care.

Dr. Lathan is an advocate for STEM educational outreach programs and started her own in 1992 called Keys to Empowering Youth. She has also coached for the FIRST and VEX robotics program and advised the Smithsonian Institute’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. Dr. Lathan sits on the boards of many innovative organizations such as the KID Museum Makerspace and Engineering World Health.

Dr. Lathan will be speaking at BioPort 2018, Nova Scotia’s premiere Health and Life Sciences event hosted by BioNova, on November 7th, at 6pm ADT at the Halifax Convention Centre.

 

ACOA: Covina Biomedical Inc. Solidifying Place in the Bone Cement Industry

By | News | No Comments

Government of Canada supports prototype development, regulatory approvals and research commercialization

August 7, 2018 – Halifax, NS – Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Great innovation happening here in Atlantic Canada is growing our economy, creating well-paying jobs, and improving the lives of Canadians. That is why the Government of Canada is supporting Covina Biomedical Inc. as it advances a proprietary bone cement used in the repair of knee implants, the single biggest problem in orthopedics today.

Andy Fillmore, Parliamentary Secretary for the Minister of Democratic Institutions and Member of Parliament for Halifax, announced a $500,000 repayable investment in Covina Biomedical on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA).

The assistance will help Covina Biomedical prove the effectiveness of its injectable bone cement for orthopedic patient care. Customer feedback and validation will prepare the company for clinical trials and develop a roadmap to obtain regulatory approval in Canada and the United States. Together, these initiatives will position Covina to scale-up, creating new economic benefits for Atlantic Canada.

Intellectual property for Covina’s injectable bone cement that prevents invasive surgery is the result of an earlier ACOA project with Dalhousie University. The product is being developed and commercialized in Nova Scotia, creating up to six new full-time, highly skilled positions and maintaining two others.

This contribution is being made through ACOA’s Business Development Program, which works with small and medium-sized companies to improve competitiveness in export markets.

The investment builds on the commitments made by the Government of Canada and the four Atlantic Provinces to drive economic growth in Atlantic Canada through the Atlantic Growth Strategy. The Strategy supports targeted investments in initiatives that build on the region’s competitive advantages, such as its strong export potential and skilled labour to expand business activities between the region and international markets.

 

Quotes

“Covina represents the benefits of collaboration between academia and industry. Commercializing research out of our universities and into the real world where it will help Canadians is one of the markers that will distinguish Canada as a world-leading economy now and for the long-term. This will help to create growing, innovative businesses with global reach, good jobs, and a thriving middle class.”

–       The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for ACOA 

“It’s very exciting to see the outcome of local research and development result in a product that can be commercialized and exported globally. Covina Biomedical has tremendous potential to assist patients suffering from osteoarthritis or failed knee implants, and to contribute to the local, flourishing life sciences community.”

–       Andy Fillmore, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Democratic Institutions and Member of Parliament for Halifax 

“Our company was founded on the passion to improve patient outcomes amidst a growing healthcare crisis of rising costs and wait times, and to do it here, in Atlantic Canada. The continued support of ACOA is helping to make this exciting opportunity possible, by supporting first, the transition of this high-quality research from Dalhousie University, and now, the continued development of our novel technology and growth of our company in the region.”

–       Dr. Caitlin Pierlot, CEO, Covina Biomedical Inc.

“The support of ACOA through the AIF program which funded the initial research at Dalhousie was instrumental. As the largest research intensive University in Atlantic Canada, Dal is a knowledge-generating institution and the ideal environment to pursue discoveries. We are proud to have partnered the technology with Covina and look forward to assisting them as they grow as a company. This is a great example of a bold research discovery that will have far reaching patient impact.”

–     Stephen Hartlen, Executive Director of Industry Liaison and Innovation and Assistant Vice-President of Industry Relations, Dalhousie University

Quick facts

  • The orthopaedic market is forecasted to exceed $45 billion in the United States by 2021.
  • Knee replacements are the single biggest problem in orthopaedics today with the global market worth over $8.4 billion (USD).
  • Age and BMI are key risk factors in the onset and progression of musculoskeletal conditions of the hip and knee, resulting in significant risk of requiring one or more joint implants in a lifetime.

    – In 2016, more than 1.9 billion adults were overweight, and of these, 650 million were obese

    – By 2050, nearly 20 per cent of the global population will be over the age of 65

  • The number of knee joint implants is expected to rise to 185,000 procedures per year in the US by 2025.
  • Average total cost of care of a single knee joint implant procedure in the US was estimated at $100,000 in 2014.

Contacts

Alex Smith
Director of Communications & Outreach
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Phone: (902-426-9417 | 902-830-3939 (cell)
Email: alex.smith@canada.ca

Caitlin Pierlot
Chief Executive Officer
Covina Biomedical Inc.
Phone: (902) 442-4014 | 902-495-9008 (cell)
Email: cpierlot@covinabiomedical.com

Michèle Charlton
Communications Advisor, Research
Dalhousie University
Phone: 902-494-4148
Email: michele.charlton@dal.ca