Welcome to the latest edition of the  BioLines Weekender...

We hope you are staying safe and well in this difficult time.  As news and information about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve, BioNJ remains dedicated to sharing updates on an ongoing basis with our community. We are proud of the unwavering commitment and tireless work being done by New Jersey's life sciences ecosystem to bring forward antiviral therapies and vaccines to combat the virus.

We thank Governor Murphy, his Administration and the Legislature for their partnership and responsiveness to supporting the needs of our great State. We are inspired at the proactive and thoughtful approach being taken. Please visit  www.covid19.nj.gov for a comprehensive FAQ developed for businesses. 
For BioNJ's COVID-19 Toolbox featuring a number of resources, tools and articles, please click here. We are making updates on a daily basis. So, please check on a regular basis.  

Meanwhile, during this time of social distancing and perhaps the feeling of isolation, we invite our Members to connect in BioNJ's Members-Only LinkedIn Group. It's the perfect way to network, share information and request advice on challenges affecting your organizations. BioNJ Members, please click here to join!

Wishing everyone the very best of health.

Because Patients Can't Wait®,
The BioNJ Team

BioNJ Calendar


BioNJ's 10th Annual BioPartnering Conference
Somerset, NJ
October 6, 2020
Putting Patients First: The Value of Medical Innovation

Medical innovation enables longer and better quality lives and, in turn, reduces the costs of health care. Share with our community how your medical innovation is improving lives and impacting health care costs. Send us your Patient and related stories to BioNJ@BioNJ.org. Plus, click here for valuable tools and resources on the Value of Medical Innovation.

The federal government requires pharmaceutical companies to prove that their drugs are both safe and effective before putting them on the market. Before 1962, companies needed to prove only safety. While there is some appeal to this two-hurdle approach, evidence suggests that there is only a slight benefit and a tremendous cost. With the Covid-19 pandemic sweeping the world, there has never been a better time to revoke the Food and Drug Administration's efficacy requirement. The thinking behind the FDA's two-hurdle approach is that ineffective drugs cost money and impose an opportunity cost: While the ineffective drug is being used, potentially effective ones are not. 

FDA regulators have approved over 600 new medicines since the turn of the century. And more treatments are on the way. Scientists are currently developing over 7,000 experimental drugs.  Unfortunately, one self-styled healthcare "watchdog" could significantly slow this research. The non-profit Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, better known as ICER, routinely analyzes the cost-effectiveness of new drugs. But ICER uses a flawed methodology that often finds cutting-edge, lifesaving medicines aren't worth the price.

The improved science underpinning 'precision medicine' is not a new phenomenon, but the ability to recognise differences between disease mechanisms and patient populations via the dissemination of (and access to) sophisticated new diagnostic and therapeutic technology means that this rapidly evolving field has implications for all aspects of the health care and medical research ecosystem. Physicians today have more limitations on their time with patients and struggle not only to keep up to date with these new technologies and the large amounts of data, but also to explain new and complex treatment concepts to patients and their families.

According to the most recent estimates from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)  Office of the Actuary, health care spending is projected to reach almost 20 percent of gross domestic product by 2027. Although national health expenditures have steadily increased for decades, there is mounting public consensus that U.S. health spending growth has become unsustainable and unaffordable.  In response to rising health spending, new value-based assessment programs have been introduced  to help health care decision makers assess the value of prescription drugs, medical devices and innovative services entering the market. 

BioNJ in the News

NJ Company News

Princeton-based BioNJ Member Soligenix, Inc. announced that its ongoing collaboration with the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is being expanded to assess potential coronavirus vaccines (including COVID-19). Under the company's Public Health Solutions business segment, ongoing collaborations with Axel Lehrer, Ph.D. of the Department of Tropical Medicine, Medical Microbiology and Pharmacology, John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM), UH Mānoa have demonstrated the feasibility of developing heat stable subunit filovirus vaccines, including Ebola virus disease caused by either Zaire or Sudan ebolavirus variants, as well as Marburg virus disease, with both monovalent and bivalent vaccine combinations. 

Princeton-based BioNJ Member Soligenix, Inc. announced positive preliminary top-line results for its pivotal Phase 3 FLASH (Fluorescent Light Activated Synthetic Hypericin) trial evaluating SGX301 (Synthetic Hypericin) in the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). The study enrolled 169 patients randomized 2:1 to receive either SGX301 or placebo, demonstrating statistically significant treatment response (p=0.04) in the Composite Assessment of Index Lesion Score (CAILS) primary endpoint assessment at 8 weeks for Cycle 1. 

Cranbury-based BioNJ Member Rafael Pharmaceuticals, Inc.  announced that it has enrolled more than 75% of the 500 patients needed for its pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial for metastatic pancreatic cancer (AVENGER 500), which is evaluating the efficacy and safety of Rafael's lead compound CPI-613®️ (devimistat) in combination with modified FOLFIRINOX (mFFX) as first-line therapy. "We are continuing to enroll patients ahead of schedule, as the patients in our trials suffer from life-threatening diseases and are in dire need of treatment; patient safety is our top priority," said Sanjeev Luther, President and CEO of Rafael Pharmaceuticals. 

Jersey City-based BioNJ Member Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma America, Inc. (MTPA) announced the presentation of a new post-hoc analysis assessing its Phase 3 edaravone study reviewing functional changes in both bulbar and limb onset patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This post-hoc analysis assessed edaravone on the rate of loss of physical function among bulbar (n=30) and limb onset (n=107) patients vs. placebo, as measured by the ALS Functional Rating Scale-Revised (ALSFRS-R), a validated rating instrument that measures progression of disability in patients with ALS.

Princeton-based BioNJ Member Bristol-Myers Squibb said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its multiple sclerosis (MS) treatment, Zeposia, but the launch would be delayed due to the coronavirus outbreak. The drug, also known as ozanimod, was added to the U.S. drugmaker's portfolio through its $74 billion acquisition of Celgene last year and its approval was one of the three conditions set for a potentially higher payout for Celgene investors.

Princeton-based BioNJ Member Bristol-Myers Squibb and Acceleron Pharma Inc. announced that the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) has published results from BELIEVE, the pivotal Phase 3 study evaluating the safety and efficacy of Reblozyl (luspatercept-aamt) for the treatment of anemia in adults with beta thalassemia who require regular red blood cell (RBC) transfusions. In the BELIEVE trial, a significantly higher proportion of patients achieved a >33% reduction in RBC transfusion burden from baseline (with a reduction of at least two units) during weeks 13-24 when treated with Reblozyl compared to placebo, meeting the study's primary endpoint.

Bridgewater-based BioNJ Member Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.  announced they have started a clinical program evaluating Kevzara® (sarilumab) in patients hospitalized with severe COVID-19 infection. Kevzara is a fully-human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the interleukin-6 (IL-6) pathway by binding and blocking the IL-6 receptor. IL-6 may play a role in driving the overactive inflammatory response in the lungs of patients who are severely or critically ill with COVID-19. The role of IL-6 is supported by preliminary data from a single-arm study in  China  using another IL-6 receptor antibody.

Parsippany-based BioNJ Member Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. announced the immediate donation of more than 6 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets through wholesalers to hospitals across the U.S. to meet the urgent demand for the medicine as an investigational target to treat COVID-19. The company is also looking at additional ways to address the global need. "We are committed to helping to supply as many tablets as possible as demand for this treatment accelerates at no cost," said Brendan O'Grady, Teva Executive Vice President, North America Commercial."

East Hanover-based BioNJ Member Novartis announced its commitment to donate up to 130 million doses of generic hydroxychloroquine to support the global COVID-19 pandemic response. Hydroxychloroquine and a related drug, chloroquine, are currently under evaluation in clinical trials for the treatment of COVID-19. Novartis is supporting ongoing clinical trial efforts, and will evaluate needs for additional clinical trials. When supported for use in COVID-19 infected patients by regulatory authorities, Novartis intends to donate up to 130 million 200 mg doses by the end of May, including its current stock of 50 million 200 mg doses.

East Hanover-based BioNJ Member Novartis announced a broad set of measures to support the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These measures include the creation of a global fund to support communities around the world impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the company's decision to join two key cross-industry R&D initiatives. The Novartis COVID-19 Response Fund will provide USD 20 million in grants to support public health initiatives designed to help communities manage challenges posed by the pandemic. The company has established an accelerated global review process that will allow for quick approval and disbursement of individual grants of up to USD 1 million.

East Hanover-based BioNJ Member Novartis the publication of three pivotal Phase III clinical trials for inclisiran, a potential first-in-class small interfering RNA (siRNA) investigational agent for hyperlipidemia in adults. The findings were published in The New England Journal of MedicineThe primary endpoints were achieved in all three trials. Namely, percentage change in LDL-C from baseline to 17 months and time-adjusted percentage change in LDL-C from baseline from 3 through 18 months. 

East Hanover-based BioNJ Member AveXis, a Novartis company, announced that new data from the Phase 1/2 STRONG study demonstrated a one-time intrathecal (IT) administration of AVXS-101 in patients ≥2 years and <5 years old with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) Type 2 who received Dose B (1.2 x 1014 vg) met the primary efficacy endpoint, achieving a remarkable mean increase from baseline of 6.0 points in the Hammersmith Functional Motor Scale-Expanded (HFMSE), twice the clinically meaningful threshold established in previous SMA studies and reflecting improvement in three to six skills.

East Hanover-based BioNJ Member AveXis, a Novartis company, announced a one-time infusion of Zolgensma® (onasemnogene abeparvovec-xioi) showed rapid, significant and clinically meaningful therapeutic benefit in patients with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) across a range of studies, including in patients treated presymptomatically, and sustained durability in patients now up to five years post-dosing and some patients more than five years of age. 

Princeton-based BioNJ Member  Sandoz Inc.  announced it acquired the distribution rights in the United States for daptomycin 500 mg injection and fosaprepitant 150 mg for injection from BE Pharmaceuticals AG.  The move reinforces the company's strategy to grow its injectables portfolio and overall offerings in the hospital setting. Daptomycin is a naturally-occurring lipopeptide antibiotic used in the treatment of infections caused by gram-positive bacteria and is the generic version of Cubicin. 

Raritan-based BioNJ Member The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson announced that Health Canada has approved CABENUVA™ (cabotegravir and rilpivirine extended release injectable suspensions), the first and only once-monthly, long-acting regimen for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults. CABENUVA™ is indicated as a complete regimen for the treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults to replace the current antiretroviral regimen in patients who are virologically stable and suppressed (HIV-1 RNA less than 50 copies per milliliter [mL]).

New Brunswick-based BioNJ Member Johnson & Johnson announced that its Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies have entered a collaboration with the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) to support the development of a preventive vaccine candidate for COVID-19. The parties have commenced preclinical testing of multiple vaccine prospects, with the aim to identify by the end of the month a COVID-19 vaccine candidate for clinical trials. Janssen is optimistic that, in collaboration with multiple global strategic partners, it can initiate a Phase 1 clinical study of a potential vaccine candidate by the end of the year.

Kenilworth-based BioNJ Member  Merck & Co. announced that it is donating 300,000 masks to New Jersey's Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness as well as 500,000 masks for use in New York City"At Merck, we recognize that our global mission to save and improve lives starts in New Jersey, home of our global headquarters and thousands of our employees," said Kenneth C. Frazier, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Merck. "We extend our deepest appreciation to the many healthcare providers and volunteers here and around the world who are doing so much to help affected patients and communities, and to our own employees.

Kenilworth-based BioNJ Member  Merck & Co. announced top-line efficacy results from two ongoing pivotal Phase 3 trials (COUGH-1 and COUGH-2) evaluating the efficacy and safety of gefapixant (MK-7264), an investigational, orally administered, selective P2X3 receptor antagonist, for the treatment of refractory or unexplained chronic cough. In these studies, the primary efficacy endpoints were met for the gefapixant 45 mg twice daily treatment arms - demonstrating a statistically significant decrease in 24-hour coughs per hour (average hourly cough frequency based on 24-hour sound recordings) versus placebo at 12 (COUGH-1) and 24 weeks (COUGH-2). 

BioNJ Member  Pfizer, with offices in PeaPack, issued a five-point plan calling on the biopharmaceutical industry to join the company in committing to unprecedented collaboration to combat COVID-19.  Dr. Albert Bourla, Chairman and CEO, made the following statement:  "In this troubling time, Pfizer is committed to doing all we can to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many companies, including Pfizer, are working to develop antiviral therapies to help infected patients fight this emerging virus as well as new vaccines to prevent infection and halt the further spread of this disease. Pfizer is working to advance our own potential antiviral therapies and is engaged with BioNTech on a potential mRNA coronavirus vaccine. We are committed to work as one team across the industry to harness our scientific expertise, technical skills and manufacturing capabilities to combat this evolving crisis."

BioNJ Member Pfizer Inc., with offices in Peapack, and BioNTech SE announced that the companies have agreed to a letter of intent regarding the co-development and distribution (excluding China) of a potential mRNA-based coronavirus vaccine aimed at preventing COVID-19 infection. The companies have executed a Material Transfer and Collaboration Agreement to enable the parties to immediately start working together. The collaboration aims to accelerate development of BioNTech's potential first-in-class COVID-19 mRNA vaccine program, BNT162, which is expected to enter clinical testing by the end of April 2020. 

BioNJ Member Pfizer Inc., with offices in Peapack, announced top-line results from one of its Phase 3 studies (NCT03760146), which evaluated the safety and immunogenicity of its 20-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (20vPnC) candidate in adults 18 years of age or older not previously vaccinated against pneumococcal disease. "We are encouraged by the results from this study and remain on track to file the adult 20vPnC indication with the FDA by the end of 2020," said Kathrin U. Jansen, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Head of Vaccine Research & Development, Pfizer. 

Bridgewater-based BioNJ Member  Eli Lilly and Company and  AbCellera announced they have entered into an agreement to co-develop antibody products for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus. The collaboration will leverage AbCellera's rapid pandemic response platform, developed under the DARPA Pandemic Prevention Platform (P3) Program, and Lilly's global capabilities for rapid development, manufacturing and distribution of therapeutic antibodies. 

Bridgewater-based BioNJ Member  Eli Lilly and Company  announced its scientists are partnering with the  Indiana State Department of Health  (ISDH), with support from the  Food and Drug Administration  (FDA), to accelerate testing in  Indiana  for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. " Lilly  is bringing the full force of our scientific and medical expertise to attack the coronavirus pandemic around the world," said  David A. Ricks Lilly 's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. 

Bridgewater-based BioNJ Member  Eli Lilly and Company  announced that the  U.S. Food and Drug Administration  (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to baricitinib for the treatment of alopecia areata (AA), an autoimmune disorder that can cause unpredictable hair loss on the scalp, face and other areas of the body. The Breakthrough Therapy designation aims to expedite the development and review of drugs that are intended to treat a serious condition when preliminary clinical evidence indicates that the drug may demonstrate substantial improvement over already available therapies on a clinically significant endpoint(s).  

Bridgewater-based  Amneal Pharmaceuticals Inc.  announced that it is responding to the national COVID-19 health emergency by building on its existing supply of hydroxychloroquine sulfate.  Amneal is ramping up production of hydroxychloroquine sulfate at several of its manufacturing sites and expects to produce approximately 20 million tablets between now and mid-April. Those tablets will be made available nationwide through Amneal's existing retail and wholesale customers, as well as through direct sales to larger institutions in need.

Warren-based Bellerophon Therapeutics, Inc.  announced that the  U.S. Food and Drug Administration  (FDA) has granted emergency expanded access allowing its proprietary inhaled nitric oxide (iNO) delivery system, INOpulse®, to immediately be used for the treatment of COVID-19. NO is a naturally produced molecule that is critical to the immune response against pathogens and infections. In vitro studies have shown that NO inhibits the replication of severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and improves survival for cells infected with SARS-CoV.

Basking Ridge-based  Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited announced the approval of ENHERTU® (trastuzumab deruxtecan), a HER2 directed antibody drug conjugate (ADC), in Japan for the treatment of patients with HER2 positive unresectable or recurrent breast cancer after prior chemotherapy (limit the use to patients who are refractory or intolerant to standard treatments). Approval of ENHERTU® by Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare (MHLW) is based on the results of the open-label, single-arm, pivotal phase 2 DESTINY-Breast01 trial of ENHERTU® (5.4 mg/kg) monotherapy in 184 female patients (including 30 Japanese women) with HER2 positive metastatic breast cancer.

Bedminster-based  Mallinckrodt plc  commented that it is currently evaluating the limited published evidence suggesting a potential role for inhaled nitric oxide ("iNO") as a supportive measure in treating those patients infected with coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and having associated pulmonary complications. The company has engaged with the  U.S. Food and Drug Administration  (FDA), the  National Institutes of Health  (NIH) and the  Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority  (BARDA) on this matter; however, the safety and efficacy of iNO for pulmonary complications associated with coronavirus have not been established.

Franklin Lakes-based BD and BioGX Inc. submitted Emergency Use Authorization requests to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for new diagnostic tests that, if authorized, would increase the potential capacity to screen for COVID-19 by thousands of tests per day.  The tests will be run on the BD MAX Molecular Diagnostic Platform, which is already in use in nearly every state across the U.S. at hundreds of laboratories, with each unit capable of analyzing hundreds of samples per day. The system is fully automated, reducing the opportunity for human error and increasing the speed to result.

Princeton-based  WCG this week launched "The WCG Insights Program: Supporting best practices in a global pandemic."  This evolving initiative is designed to share time-sensitive, critical information with the clinical research community in a collaborative effort to navigate the impacts of COVID-19 on ongoing and upcoming clinical trials. Informed by WCG's expansive view across the clinical trials ecosystem, the program will feature a dynamic weekly webinar series led by WCG experts and guest panelists.

Angel Medical Systems Inc., a health care equipment and supply company, has expanded its lease in Eatontown.  The lease, located at 40 Christopher Way, increased from 8,839 square feet to 21,320 square feet.  The expansion was needed due to Angel's recent development of the world first implantable cardiac monitor and patient alerting system for acute coronary syndromes.  The multistory property is located within close access to Route 35, Exit 105 of the Garden State Parkway and Route 18.

People in the News

Princeton-based BioNJ Member Bristol-Myers Squibb announced that Elizabeth Mily has been appointed Executive Vice President, Strategy & Business Development. In this role, Ms. Mily will oversee company strategy and all business development activities, including strategic partnerships, mergers and acquisitions as well as other strategic initiatives. Ms. Mily joins Bristol Myers Squibb from Barclays, where she was the Managing Director and Chair of the Global Life Sciences group in the global healthcare unit. During her career she has executed over $200 billion in completed M&A advisory assignments and has advised on an extensive amount of debt, equity and equity-linked financings.

Bridgewater-based BioNJ Member  Eli Lilly and Company  announced that  Kathryn Beiser  will join the company on  April 6, 2020  as Vice President, Global Communications. In this role, Ms. Beiser will oversee all aspects of the company's corporate communications strategy, including internal and external corporate communications, media relations, crisis management, executive communications, digital and social media and corporate brand and reputation management. Ms. Beiser brings a strong background in health care communications to  Lilly , most recently serving as Senior Vice President and Chief Communications Officer for  Kaiser Permanente .

Princeton-based  KBP Bioscience  announced it has appointed Nick Hart as Chief Financial Officer. Mr.  Hart, who has more than 30 years of experience in financial and operational leadership within the health care sector, most recently serving as the CFO at Temptime Corp. "Nick's impressive record and breadth of financial leadership experience, which includes work at both public and private companies, makes him an extremely valuable addition to the KBP team at a pivotal juncture for the Company," Thijs Spoor, CEO of KBP Biosciences, said.

Institution and Education News

The  National Institute on Aging announced it has extended its biobanking contract with the  Coriell Institute for Medical Research.  The Coriell Institute is based in Camden and focuses on curing diseases through biomedical research. The $8.6 million, five-year extension will keep Coriell as the steward of a collection of cell and DNA samples and includes the addition of new products to expand it. NIA's Aging Cell Repository was established at Coriell in 1974 and since then, Coriell has managed it. The repository contains a collection of human and animal cell line and DNA samples, representing aged human populations, age-related diseases and animal models of aging.

Rutgers University  announced it has established a new center that will help coordinate research and outreach efforts to combat COVID-19.  "Given our expertise and the health needs at the state and national levels, we are excited to announce the establishment of the center for COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness to address SARS CoV-2, the causative pathogen of COVID-19, and other emerging pathogen threats," Brian Strom, chancellor of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences and Executive Vice President for Health Affairs, said.

Rutgers researchers have discovered the origins of the protein structures responsible for metabolism: simple molecules that powered early life on Earth and serve as chemical signals that NASA could use to search for life on other planets. Their study, which predicts what the earliest proteins looked like 3.5 billion to 2.5 billion years ago, is published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of SciencesThe scientists retraced, like a many thousand piece puzzle, the evolution of enzymes (proteins) from the present to the deep past. The solution to the puzzle required two missing pieces, and life on Earth could not exist without them.

Rutgers University's  Center for Health Services Research announced it has been provided $525,000 in funding to study the treatment of opioid use disorder in primary care settings in New Jersey.  The  Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts , a national grant-making foundation focused on addressing the opioid crisis, provided backing for the project. Stephen Crystal, Center Director, said FORE's funding will "enable the organization to broaden its ongoing research around the opioid crisis to identify successful provider and payer strategies and disseminate best practices for increasing access to and retention in life-saving treatment."

Engineers have created a tiny device that can rapidly detect harmful bacteria in blood, allowing health care professionals to pinpoint the cause of potentially deadly infections and fight them with drugs.  The Rutgers coauthored study, led by researchers at Rochester Institute of Technology, is  published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces Drug-resistant bacteria, or super-bugs, are a major public health concern. Globally, at least 700,000 people die each year as a result of drug-resistant infections, including 230,000 deaths from multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. 

Hackensack Meridian Health announced that a rapid test for COVID-19 created by its labs at the Center for Discovery and Innovation (CDI) has been licensed to T2 Biosystems, a Massachusetts-based leader of in-vitro diagnostics.  The wider deployment of the COVID-19 test, already in use in the Hackensack Meridian Health network, will meet a crucial need amid the disease's continuing spread. "Our scientists at the CDI have given our health network a crucial tool to treat New Jersey patients in real-time," said Robert Garrett, Chief Executive Officer of Hackensack Meridian Health, in a statement. "Now their innovation will help others at this time of urgent need."

In response to numerous requests about how people can help Cooper University Health Care, George E. Norcross, III, Cooper Board Chairman, and Philip A. Norcross, Cooper Foundation Chairman, announced that The Cooper Foundation has established a COVID-19 Assistance Fund. George and his children, Lexie and Alex, along with Phil and Carole Norcross have made $10,000 contributions to the new fund. Those wishing to support Cooper have a number of options from donating meals for health system workers, to donating excess personal protective equipment. The Foundation website will also give members of the community an opportunity to submit a thank you note to health care professionals.

Cooper University Health Care announced that it now has the ability to both collect specimens and run tests all conducted by Cooper personnel.  "We are pleased to announce that Cooper will be able to test more of our patients as well as our team of tremendous doctors and nurses more quickly to slow the spread of COVID-19," said George Norcross III, Chairman of Cooper's board of trustees.  Cooper's trained team will begin running tests on its hospitalized patients -- or inpatients -- immediately.

Funding News

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) Board approved a suite of new programs designed to support businesses and workers facing economic hardship due to the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus COVID-19. The package of initiatives includes a grant program for small businesses, a zero-interest loan program for mid-size companies, support for private-sector lenders and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), funding for entrepreneurs, and a variety of resources providing technical support and marketplace information. Taken together, they will provide more than $75 million of State and private financial support, with the opportunity to grow to more than $100 million if additional philanthropic, State, and federal resources become available. 

State and federal help is starting to arrive for businesses and employees impacted by COVID-19.  The Murphy Administration launched a one-stop jobs portal to match job-seekers with immediate openings at businesses serving on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic. Companies across New Jersey are hiring for thousands of positions. 
The job portal is found at  jobs.covid19.nj.govJob-seekers are advised to check the site frequently, as new information and additional features are being added daily. 

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to New Jersey small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Philip D. Murphy on March 17, 2020.

The NIH is deeply concerned for the health and safety of people involved in NIH research, and about the effects on the biomedical enterprise in the areas affected by the  HHS declared public health emergency for COVID-19. This is a rapidly evolving situation, and we are aware that many institutions are taking a variety of "social distancing" measures, including switching to telework and cancelling or postponing classes and non-essential meetings Due to the potential exceptional impact of the declared public health emergency, we want to assure our recipient community that NIH will be doing our part to help you continue your research. Our website on Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Information for NIH Applicants and Recipients has a list of available resources. 

Special Programs from Our Partners for BioNJ Members

April 26-28, 2020 | Virtual

This interactive workshop is designed as an introductory course covering all aspects of drug discovery for neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Frontotemporal Degeneration and Multiple Sclerosis. Delegates are drawn from academia, industry, associations/societies, government and media. The event attracts about 150-170 attendees allowing for a higher degree of interactivity and networking. Contact RBromberg@BioNJ.org for the BioNJ Member 20% discount registration code.

June 8-11, 2020 | San Diego

The BIO International Convention is hosted by the  Biotechnology Innovation Organization  (BIO). BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. The BIO International Convention offers a range of opportunities to increase your brand exposure and connect with a global audience of 17,000+ attendees from 65+ countries. 

June 16, 2020 | Morristown

Students 2 Science is delighted to invite you to S2S: The Salon, a community gathering in celebration of S2S' 10-year anniversary. It will be a wonderful event with key influencers in the State of New Jersey representing both public and private sectors, including corporate leaders, educators, administrators and policy officials.  A panel discussion, led by BioNJ President and CEO Debbie Hart will engage participants in a dialogue on the urgent and important topics of equity and diversity in STEM education: "How Do We Encourage a Ready and Diversified Workforce in STEM?" For more information on tickets and sponsorship contact S2S@students2science.org. 

BioNJ Member Services Provider Directory

BioNJ recognizes the vital role that our Service Provider Members play in the growth of New Jersey's robust life sciences ecosystem. For this reason, we are delighted to remind our community about BioNJ's Member Service Provider Directory, a categorical listing of BioNJ Members by service sector. By working with fellow BioNJ Member organizations, you are not only supporting our community, but benefiting from a wide variety of high quality organizations.  To learn how you can become a Member and be featured on this resource tool, please contact Kim Minton at KMinton@BioNJ.org, or 609-890-3185. Find providers in these categories:

The NJBAC is a state agency offering free and confidential assistance to help your business grow. As a "one-stop shop," NJBAC can help businesses of all sizes and types manage the state's regulatory processes, boost exports, gain access to financial resources where applicable and tackle other obstacles along the way. You can download the NJBAC guide by clicking here or contact their business advocates at 1-800 JERSEY 7.

Please contact BioNJ at BioNJ@BioNJ.org or call 609-890-3185 
with any questions.