Posts Tagged ‘Northeast Ohio’

Ohio Third Frontier approves biomedical project, investing grants

May 27, 2010

The Ohio Third Frontier Commission on Wednesday approved $20 million in Wright Project grants, including nearly $9 million for three biomedical projects.

During their first meeting since voters approved an extension and expansion of the Ohio Third Frontier through fiscal 2015, commissioners also approved $11 million in entrepreneurial support and pre-seed investment fund grants, as well as a fiscal 2011 budget between $125 million and $143 million.

Third Frontier is the 10-year, $1.35 billion program to re-energize Ohio’s economy by investing in projects in five industry clusters, including biomedical. Early this month, voters added $700 million in bond proceeds and four years to the program.

The five commissioners who attended Wednesday’s meeting voted unanimously to fund seven Wright Project grant proposals, including:
Cleveland Clinic: $3 million for its Clinically Applied Rehabilitation Engineering project, which aims at developing, testing, manufacturing and commercializing advanced, rehabilitative medical products for patients suffering from cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, metabolic and musculoskeletal diseases. Collaborators: Parker Hannifin Corp., Bertec Corp., Case Western Reserve University and the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center.

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland: $2.1 million for its Development of a Quantitative Analysis System for Stem Cells project, which focuses on research commercialization of non-embryonic stem cells from umbilical cord blood as part of a Food and Drug Administration-licensed therapy to help some transplant patients and for testing. Collaborators: Center for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cleveland Cord Blood Center, BioInVision, Athersys (NASDAQ: ATHX), PerkinElmer, Thermogenesis (NASDAQ: KOOL), GE Healthcare (NYSE: GE), Hospira and Lakeland Community College.

University of Cincinnati: $3 million for its project, The Ohio Center for Microfluidic Innovation — New Products and Competitive Manufacturing of Emerging Biomedical Applications. The project wants to study, make and commercialize microfluidics technology, which could generate more valuable test results from a much smaller fluid sample than current technology. National Academies reviewers suggested the project be scaled back to just its biomedical applications. Collaborators: Siloam Biosciences, Gamma Dynamics, Sun Chemical and EnMonT.

Third Frontier advisers and commissioners spent a lot of time Wednesday debating “continuity” issues among entrepreneurial support and pre-seed investment funds that already have received grants. Facing state budget challenges, the program limited awards to only organizations that have received past money:

Cleveland Clinic was awarded $2 million for its Ohio BioValidation Fund III, which will invest in promising early stage biomedical companies.

JumpStart Inc., the venture development organization in Cleveland that has invested in several biomedical and healthcare companies, will receive $4 million for operations and investments. JumpStart gets an additional $1.8 million for its bioscience and entrepreneurial network, which will provide entrepreneurial services to bioscience start-ups in the Northeast Ohio region. Collaborators: BioEnterprise, Great Lakes Innovation and Development Enterprise and the Akron Global Business Accelerator.

North Coast Angel Fund II in Mayfield Heights is getting $2 million to invest in high-potential, early stage technology companies.

Ohio TechAngel Fund III in Columbus was awarded $825,000 to invest in early stage Ohio-based technology companies, with a strong emphasis on healthcare innovations and information technology.

TechColumbus is getting $500,000 to continue investing in early-to-late-stage technologystart-ups in Central Ohio. Focus areas of the fund are bioscience, information technology and advanced materials.

Third Frontier commissioners put off votes on three more entrepreneurial support and pre-seed fund grant proposals, asking for more information with plans to vote on those proposals in June.

As for next year’s fiscal budget, the commissioners plan to award $20 million to entrepreneurial support and pre-seed funds, as well as $7 million to both biomedical and medical imaging grant-seekers. The commissioners also budgeted $8 million for a new Wright Center Success Fund, which will invest operating dollars in existing centers of innovation.

Cleveland ranked 16 on Real Simple’s Top Time-Saving Cities in America List

April 7, 2010

The report, in the magazine’s April issue, highlighted urban areas across the nation that offer convenient, timesaving services to residents.

To learn more and review Clevelands scorecard visit us at CWRUmedicine.org

The Survey
Takeout on every corner. Easy access to a doctor. Timed traffic lights. These conveniences can ease even the most chaotic days. To assess which places help you make the most of your precious hours, we sorted through reams of data on dozens of large American cities, ranked each on various criteria in five categories (see below) on a scale of 1 to 5, and added up those categories to get an overall score.

Category 1 :: Getting Around
Includes average commute, walkability, traffic congestion, airport on-time performance.

Category 2 :: Health and Safety
Includes average wait to get a doctor’s appointment, physicians per capita, response times of emergency medical services.

Category 3 :: Information and Technology
Includes broadband and wireless availability, bookstores and libraries per capita, helpful resources such as 311 hotlines.

Category 4 :: Green Time-Savers
Includes recycling access and cost, number of farmers’ markets and community gardens, bike friendliness.

Category 5 :: Lifestyle
Includes number of personal trainers and organizers, restaurants offering takeout per capita, miscellaneous time-saving services.

Learn more at CWRUmedicine.org

Dr James Fang discusses the VAD Approach

March 24, 2010

An alternative one-on-one, patient-oriented approach to  heart disease and heart failure

According to James C. Fang, MD, Medical Director, Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Center and Professor, Case Western Reserve University Department of Medicine, “The mission of the Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Center is to provide the latest and most effective therapies to patients in Northeast Ohio and surrounding regions in a personalized one-on-one, patient-centered approach.”

With a high level of expertise in treating heart failure, performing heart transplants, and implanting VADs (also known as heart pumps), the Center offers another sophisticated site in Ohio for patients to consider for their heart and vascular health. One of the most important services provided by the physicians at the Center is their ability to review a patient’s current medical and device therapies and then to provide other treatment options to improve their prognosis and quality of life. “At University Hospitals Case Medical Center, we offer many options and a very personalized approach. We are proud of the fact that we offer very individualized care,” says Dr. Fang. “Many patients don’t recognize that they are suffering needlessly.”

The VAD Option
Patients seen at the Center have refractory congestive heart failure and continue to be short of breath despite medications, device therapy (such as biventricular pacemakers) and heart surgery. These patients find that even doing simple activities like taking a shower or sitting in a chair are difficult. In addition, they cannot stay out of the hospital for very long – they are often regularly admitted for shortness of breath and fluid buildup in the legs. Such patients may be candidates for heart transplantation or a VAD.

VADs are sophisticated, miniaturized pumps that help the heart to provide sufficient blood flow throughout the patient’s body. “VADs are the newest form of a mechanical heart,” says Dr. Fang. A healthy heart can normally pump about 5 L of blood per minute around the body at rest. If, for example, a patient’s heart can pump only 1 L of blood per minute, the VAD will pump an additional 4 L, for a total of 5 L of blood per minute. “The heart pump helps,” notes Dr. Fang, “without entirely taking over the function of the heart.”

Typically, heart pumps are used temporarily while a patient awaits a heart transplant. Current first generation VADs, such as the Thoratec Heartmate XVE, are also used as a “destination” therapy – a permanent solution for heart failure. These devices can function for 12 to 18 months before they must be replaced. It is anticipated that a new, second generation of heart pumps, now undergoing investigational study, will increase the duration of ventricular assistance to two to four years. Nationwide about 2,500 heart transplant operations are performed annually and the Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Center’s heart surgeons have collectively performed hundreds of heart transplants.

Learn more about VADs at CWRUmedicine.org