Friday| May 21 2021
CEO MESSAGE
After what has been an action-packed week and as we start to look ahead towards the long weekend, we wanted to share with you a few highlights of the last week. We have continued to actively work to profile the sector through meetings with Government, Life Sciences leaders and the media. A few which we would like to draw your attention to are the following:

  • Tyler Orton’s article for Business in Vancouver gave what I consider a great example of how well the BC life sciences ecosystem pivoted during the pandemic. He also interviewed Acuitas co-founder Dr Pieter Cullis about the company’s lipid nanoparticle technology that is now safely delivering mRNA vaccines into the arms of people all over the world.  As I said in the article, the collaboration of Acuitas, BioNTech & Pfizer—a wonderful illustration showing how well the ecosystem works when all players collaborate to combine technology, innovation and scale. 
  • I was honoured to be a guest of Stuart McNish and his Conversations That Matter series which was published in last week’s Vancouver Sun and on the Conversations That Matter website.  We discussed how the importance of the Life Sciences sector, BC’s global leadership, and the incredible opportunity the Life Sciences sector is for both the province’s economic growth and how critical Life Sciences innovation is to the long-term sustainability of the health system.  
  • On Tuesday, Ryan and I were delighted to meet with Ambassador Darius Skusevicius and Deputy Head of Mission Inga Miskinyte of the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania. In addition to celebrating 30 years of Canada and Lithuania relations, we discussed strategies for closer cooperation between BC's & Lithuania's life science sectors.  There may be an opportunity for BC Life Sciences companies to participate in the virtual Baltic Life Sciences conference in the fall which we will share more information about as it becomes available.  

  • Yesterday, we hosted a conference titled Canada and UK: Foundations for Innovation with leading industry experts exploring the processes and policies around bringing innovative medicines into Canada. A high point was Canadian-born Sir John Bell, Regius Professor, Medicine, Oxford University, presented the UK’s overarching Life Sciences strategy. It was incredibly interesting, insightful and has clearly been impactful for the UK. Many of us took away excitement and optimism of how we could emulate a strategy such as that in BC/Canada. We’ll post a link to the recording in next week’s BioLinks
 
Looking ahead over the next few weeks, we are leading and or engaged in several activities that may be of interest to you:  

  • Canada – EU Tech Conference, May 27th - I will be representing the Life Sciences sector along with colleagues from CleanTech and AgriTech.    

  • BIO Digital – Similar to previous years, Life Sciences BC is leading the BC delegation to BIO (Digital).   We will be hosting a virtual booth within the Canadian pavilion and, on June 9th,  hosting the BC Showcase webinar which will feature seven companies presenting on their priorities for the conference.  If you are planning on attending the conference, please contact Ryan Butt, Director Partnerships and Events at rbutt@lifesciencesbc.ca 

Big congratulations to Karimah Es Sabar,  CEO & Partner of Quark, who is the runner-up in the BC Business Women of the Year Awards: Corporate Leader category.  It is wonderful to see Karimah’s leadership and contributions to the Life Sciences sector recognized. Congratulations! 

We hope you have a wonderful, relaxing long weekend,  

The LSBC Team  
Platinum Sponsors
CALGARY, AB, May 17, 2021 /CNW/ - adMare BioInnovations ("adMare") and AazeinTx Inc. ("AazeinTx") have closed a global exclusive licensing transaction for a promising acute asthma treatment.Under the agreement, AazeinTx has acquired all rights to NEO6860, a clinical-stage TRPV1 antagonist in adMare's technology portfolio. A team at the University of Calgary led by Dr. Richard Wilson (AazeinTx's Chief Scientific Officer) discovered a novel neural pathway causing bronchoconstriction during acute asthma. READ MORE
VANCOUVER, B.C. − May 19, 2021 – Acuitas Therapeutics announced the publication of research results in the prestigious journal Nature, from the company’s work as part of a collaboration with Verve Therapeutics, Inc. to develop non-viral lipid nanoparticle (LNP) delivery technologies for single-course in vivo, liver-targeted gene-editing treatments for cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death worldwide.
Nine BC research teams are receiving funding to rapidly address critical questions around COVID-19 vaccine research, thanks to a partnership between our LSBC members MSFHRGenome BC, and the BCCDC Foundation. Rather than duplicating efforts, this partnership coordinates resources and funding to support researchers in generating the evidence and data to inform decision-making for the benefit of British Columbians and their communities.
Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. announces a supportive interim analysis of its AURORA 2 continuation study to be presented at the upcoming European Alliance of Associations for Rheumatology (EULAR) 2021 Congress June 2-5, 2021. READ MORE
The federal government today announced a $200-million investment to help a Mississauga, Ont.-based company build a plant that can churn out millions of mRNA vaccines. Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne said the money will be used to expand an existing site owned by Resilience Biotechnologies Inc. to provide "made-in-Canada solutions such as vaccines and treatments for future pandemics
More Canadians suffer from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) than anywhere else in the world, yet current treatments often have debilitating side effects and are not always effective. GlycoNet researchers from the University of British Columbia, BC Children's Hospital, and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, are challenging the status quo as they develop a technology that they termed "GlycoCage." This technology is aimed to improve the efficacy of IBD drugs by refining the method of drug delivery to patients. READ MORE
Canada's first homegrown vaccine for COVID-19 is showing promising antibody results in hundreds of participants in a Phase 2 trial and could be ready for a final authorization request this summer, the drugmaker says. READ MORE 
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Silver Sponsors
PERSPECTIVES ON GLOBAL HEALTHCARE INNOVATION
What’s driving innovation in life science and healthcare? SVB is committed to serving the ecosystem by providing industry-leading reports featuring proprietary analysis and targeted outlooks to help companies and investors achieve their goals. Twice a year we publish deep-dive analyses describing fundraising, investment, M&A and IPO activity of private, venture-backed biopharma, medical device and diagnostic/tools companies. Our deep relationships with top life science and healthcare entrepreneurs and investors inform our insights and give us a vantage point unlike any other bank. To find out more about Silicon Valley Bank click here
Bronze Sponsors
Posting A JOB on the LSBC Website
LSBC Membership Discounts on Job Postings
 
As an LSBC member, your first five job postings EARNS a free repost on BioTalent Canada's The Petri Dish After your first five reposts, you will also receive 25% off all job postings on The Petri Dish. Want more info? CONTACT: Peter McLoughlin - talent@lifesciencesbc.ca