Nicotine may harm human embryos at the single-cell level

Medical Xpress | February 28, 2019

Nicotine induces widespread adverse effects on human embryonic development at the level of individual cells, researchers report February 28th in the journal Stem Cell Reports. Single-cell RNA sequencing of human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived embryoid bodies revealed that 3 weeks of nicotine exposure disrupts cell-to-cell communication, decreases cell survival, and alters the expression of genes that regulate critical functions such as heart muscle-cell contractions. The authors say this stem-cell model offers new insights into the effects of nicotine on individual organs and cells within the developing fetus and can be used to optimize drug and environmental toxicity screening.
"These results are especially important in that they provide a scientific basis for educating the public, especially young women, to keep away from smoking when they are pregnant or considering having a family," says senior author Joseph C. Wu of the Stanford University School of Medicine. "Nicotine found in products such as tobacco, e-cigarettes, and nicotine gums may have wide-ranging, harmful effects on different organs of a developing embryo during pregnancy."

Spotlight

The cell and gene therapy space is a rapidly emerging medical market that is driving an increased number of health care shipments around the world. Given the extreme sensitivity of these shipments, transporting treatments from labs to patients has historically been a difficult task—until now. The combination of SAVSU technology with United Airlines’ global network has made it easier than ever to bring cell and gene therapies to destinations beyond major markets.

Spotlight

The cell and gene therapy space is a rapidly emerging medical market that is driving an increased number of health care shipments around the world. Given the extreme sensitivity of these shipments, transporting treatments from labs to patients has historically been a difficult task—until now. The combination of SAVSU technology with United Airlines’ global network has made it easier than ever to bring cell and gene therapies to destinations beyond major markets.

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MEDICAL

Genelux and Newsoara Announce Collaboration and License Agreement for Oncolytic Immunotherapies

Genelux Corporation | September 29, 2021

Genelux Corporation, a clinical-stage immunotherapy company, and Newsoara BioPharma Co., Ltd., announced a collaboration and exclusive license for the development and commercialization of Olvi-Vec and other oncolytic viruses. According to the terms of the agreement, Newsoara shall have exclusive rights in Greater China (mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) to Olvi-Vec for which Genelux currently is planning a U.S. based Phase 3 registration trial in platinum resistant/refractory ovarian cancer. Newsoara also shall have exclusive rights in Greater China to Genelux's proprietary oncolytic virus platform, and the parties will collaborate on the development of novel oncolytic immunotherapeutics. Newsoara, at its cost and expense, will be responsible for development and commercialization and will have the future right to manufacture licensed products in Greater China. The parties also will collaborate on a Phase 2 clinical trial for the intravenous delivery of Olvi-Vec in a new indication using clinical sites in China and the U.S. Newsoara will be responsible for all trial costs. Under terms of the agreement, Genelux will receive up-front and near-term payments totaling $11 million and will be eligible to receive additional per-product payments of up to $160.5 million, contingent on certain development, regulatory and commercial milestones, plus tiered royalties on net sales ranging from mid-single-digit to mid-double-digit percentages. Genelux shall have an exclusive license outside of Greater China to oncolytic virus products derived by Newsoara and will pay Newsoara milestones and royalties on sales of any such products which Genelux elects to develop. We are delighted to be working with Newsoara on developing Olvi-Vec, as well as on our broader collaboration. It is a dynamic organization with a commitment to advancing cutting-edge therapeutics, whose strength in research, development and manufacturing in China is a perfect complement to our focus on the discovery and clinical development of novel virotherapies. Together we look forward to accelerating the development of Olvi-Vec and to strengthening and broadening our pipeline of next-generation oncolytic viral immunotherapies. - Thomas Zindrick, J.D., President and CEO of Genelux. About Olvimulogene Nanivacirepvec (Olvi-Vec) Olvi-Vec is a proprietary, non-pathogenic oncolytic vaccinia virus, modified to increase its safety, tumor selectivity and therapeutic potential. Virus-mediated oncolysis results in immunogenic cell death and triggers immune activation and memory for long-term immunotherapy against cancer. Olvi-Vec has been administered to more than 150 patients in clinical studies. In these studies, Olvi-Vec was generally well tolerated and the data provided evidence of clinical benefit. About Newsoara Newsoara is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company with the mission to develop and commercialize life changing medicines for the treatment of patients with cancer, autoimmune, metabolic and other major diseases in China and around the world. With fully integrated drug discovery, CMC and clinical development capabilities, Newsoara has built a robust and broad pipeline for treating major diseases with unmet needs. Newsoara has assembled a world-class management team with extensive experience in novel drug development that is motivated to improve and impact human health worldwide. About Genelux Corporation Genelux is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing a pipeline of next-generation oncolytic immunotherapies for patients suffering from aggressive and/or difficult-to-treat solid tumor types. The Company's most advanced product candidate, Olvi-Vec (olvimulogene nanivacirepvec), is a proprietary, modified strain of the vaccinia virus (VACV), a stable DNA virus with a large engineering capacity. The core of Genelux's discovery and development efforts revolves around the company's proprietary CHOICE™ platform from which the Company has developed an extensive library of isolated and engineered oncolytic vaccinia virus immunotherapeutic product candidates, including Olvi-Vec.

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INDUSTRIAL IMPACT

AMYRIS TO ACQUIRE MENOLABS FOR MENOPAUSE WELLNESS ACCELERATING GROWTH OF CONSUMER BUSINESS

Amyris, Inc. | January 25, 2022

Amyris, Inc. a leading synthetic biotechnology company accelerating the world's transition to sustainable consumption through its Lab-to-Market™ operating platform announces that it has agreed to exclusive terms to acquire the assets of MenoLabs, LLC, a women-founded company to treat menopause symptoms, drive research for women's health and improve society's understanding of menopause. Amyris previously communicated its intention of launching a new consumer brand to provide science-backed, wellness and personal care products for the high growth menopause market in 2022. The acquisition of MenoLabs will serve as a catalyst to accelerate growth and establish a leadership position in the fast-growing menopause market. MenoLabs, a growing women's wellness brand is focused on addressing perimenopause and menopause symptoms. MenoLabs is one of few companies offering research-backed all-natural treatments of menopause symptoms. Over the past two years, MenoLabs has developed and launched eight products, including its lead product, MenoFit, an all-natural menopause relief supplement. MenoLabs generates a subscription-based, recurring revenue stream via its website, in addition to the Subscribe & Save option offered via the Amazon channel. The company is further expanding its omnichannel by penetrating retail channels in 2022. Additionally, MenoLabs launched MenoLife, a highly rated perimenopause and menopause health tracker app which helps users track and analyze more than 40 menopause-related symptoms. MenoLife also has created an online forum where users can comment and react to posts. Menopause symptoms impact the lives of approximately 25 million women per year and 6,000 women in the U.S. enter perimenopause every day (2.2 million each year). By 2025, there will be over one billion people experiencing menopause in the world or around 12% of the entire world population. Stigma, lack of open discussion, and a small product offering at an affordable price are barriers to care for women. The menopause market was valued at around $15 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach approximately $23 billion by 2028. "We are very impressed with the MenoLabs offering which is synergistic with our science-based approach to real-world health and wellness issues. We are committed to empowering women and creating a platform to support them with our leading science and wellness technology platform. Women deserve products and solutions that work during this period in their lives. Our acquisition of the products and app that the MenoLabs team has built accelerates Amyris' entry into the menopause market. We expect the combination of MenoLabs and the previously announced menopause brand with Naomi Watts to have the potential to deliver an estimated $30 million in revenue in their first year and expect significant growth potential in the years ahead. We continue to execute on our growth strategy diversifying our consumer offering in Clean Beauty, Health and Wellness end-markets, continuing the strong growth momentum from 2021 into the current quarter." John Melo, President and Chief Executive Officer of Amyris About Amyris Amyris is a leading synthetic biotechnology company, transitioning the Clean Health & Beauty and Flavors & Fragrances markets to sustainable ingredients through fermentation and the company's proprietary Lab-to-Market™ operating platform. This Amyris platform leverages state-of-the-art machine learning, robotics and artificial intelligence, enabling the company to rapidly bring new innovation to market at commercial scale. Amyris ingredients are included in over 20,000 products from the world's top brands, reaching more than 300 million consumers. Amyris also owns and operates a family of consumer brands that is constantly evolving to meet the growing demand for sustainable, effective and accessible products. About MenoLabs MenoLabs was founded to fundamentally change how menopause is addressed. The brand's mission is to provide options to treat menopause symptoms, drive research for women's health and change how society approaches, views and educates around the topic of menopause. MenoLabs has developed a line of all natural, proprietary supplements focused on treating perimenopause and menopause symptoms, in addition to MenoLife, a leading menopause health tracker app that provides women a voice and community. MenoLife also provides symptom tracking to further fuel research and advancements in women's health.

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MEDICAL

TGen Selects MemVerge to Accelerate Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Research Discovery with Big Memory Technology

MemVerge | March 21, 2022

MemVerge™, the pioneers of Big Memory software, today announced that TGen, the Translational Genomics Research Institute, an affiliate of City of Hope, has selected MemVerge Memory Machine Big Memory virtualization software to accelerate time to discovery for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF), a disease which affects 100,000 people annually in the U.S. Using MemVerge technology, TGen is able to dramatically speed analytical processing by nearly 36% for single-cell RNA sequencing. As a nonprofit medical research institute, TGen researchers process single-cell RNA sequences to characterize cell transcriptomic profiles. The process can take up to six and a half hours to analyze a matrix of 30,000 genes by 114,000 cells. With consistently growing datasets, this processing time was preventing a desired time to discovery. The data required for analysis was simply too large to retain in traditional memory, and scaling capacity with dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) was too costly. TGen has instead deployed memory virtualization technology from MemVerge which virtualizes both DRAM and PMem (persistent memory) memory technologies, to increase the memory pool available for processing without requiring more high-cost DRAM. The solution further speeds TGen's genomics sequencing analysis with Memory Machine ZeroIO in-memory snapshots which capture multi-terabyte data sets at any point for rapid reloads at each stage of processing. The ZeroIO snapshot service is 1,000 times faster than the fastest storage snapshot to SSD and enables TGen to run processing workflows in parallel. This ensures that in the event of a system crash, in-memory snapshots are available to instantly re-start long running jobs without lengthy reloading. By utilizing the snapshotting and cloning capabilities of Memory Machine, we were able to parallelize the processing workflow, As a result, we can now save nearly 36% of computational time while also taking advantage of the big memory nodes. This will save a lot of time in downstream analysis." Glen Otero, Ph.D., Vice President of Scientific Computing at TGen. MemVerge Memory Machine has quickly resulted in research value for TGen, We have removed performance barriers from their research process so that they are able to perform vital, life-saving, research faster than ever possible. Now TGen is expanding the use of Big Memory technology across other research use cases where results and discoveries can produce findings for a healthier tomorrow." Jonathan Jiang, COO of MemVerge. MemVerge Memory Machine makes 100% use of available memory capacity while providing new operational capabilities to memory-centric workloads. Memory Machine answers the need for a modern in-memory computing model to support emerging applications that require real-time analytics, true in-memory computing, and fault-tolerant memory persistence to speed massive processing workloads. About MemVerge MemVerge is pioneering Big Memory Computing and Big Memory Cloud technology for the memory-centric and multi-cloud future. MemVerge® Memory Machine™ is the industry's first software to virtualize memory hardware for fine-grained provisioning of capacity, performance, availability, and mobility. On top of the transparent memory service, Memory Machine provides another industry first, ZeroIO™ in-memory snapshots which can encapsulate terabytes of application state within seconds and enable data management at the speed of memory. The breakthrough capabilities of Big Memory Computing and Big Memory Cloud Technology are opening the door to cloud agility and flexibility for thousands of Big Memory applications.

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