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NC Brings Half of Presenting Firms to SEBIO Forum

By Allan Maurer, NC Biotech Writer

North Carolina companies presenting at the 19th annual Southeast BIO Investor & Partnering Forum offer participants access to technologies to treat heart arrhythmias, lung disease, glaucoma, bacterial infections, and addiction.

The companies, hailing from Raleigh, Durham, the Research Triangle Park, Winston-Salem and Charlotte, will pitch their novel medical devices and innovative science to more than 300 investors and potential partners at the event November 14-16 at Pinehurst Resort.

These three NC companies are among the six main stage presenters:

  • Bardy Diagnostics is a Charlotte company addressing a long-standing complaint in cardiac arrhythmia monitoring: that traditional monitors are large, bulky, uncomfortable and record noisy signals. Bardy DX has redesigned an arrhythmia monitor for optimal signal detection, comfort and ease of use.
  • Contego Medical, based in the Research Triangle Park, is a medical device company dedicated to the development of novel embolic protection devices for cardiovascular and peripheral vascular procedures. The company’s platform, which combines embolic protection and treatment onto one device, is designed to simplify catheter-based procedures and improve patient outcomes.
  • Locus Biosciences, also in the RTP, is using CRISPR gene editing to develop new antimicrobials that avoid current antibiotic resistance mechanisms while leaving non-target bacteria unharmed.

Half of the 12 early-stage presenters are from North Carolina. They are:

  • Altis Biosystems, based in Chapel Hill, is a biotechnology research tools company, which has developed a patent-pending stem cell technology that recreates the human intestinal epithelium.
  • BreStem, of Raleigh, has developed a therapy that can isolate and expand a novel source of resident lung progenitors for cell-based lung regeneration with the potential to provide treatments for lung diseases involving fibrosis, degeneration and inflammation.
  • Camras Vision, of RTP, is introducing a device to treat glaucoma that it says can stop the disease’s progression.
  • EncepHeal Therapeutics of Winston-Salem identifies new approaches to addiction treatment, accelerating them through early testing, then out-licensing to a strategic pharmaceutical partner, starting with a first-in-class treatment for cocaine and methamphetamine addictions.
  • Physcient Inc, of Durham, has developed a handheld, battery-powered “differential dissector” that automatically recognizes different tissue types, disrupting on only softer, less-well-organized tissues like fat. That translates to safer, faster exposure of critical anatomy. It has been successfully used by surgeons in a variety of procedures, from pulmonary artery exposure to facelifts.
  • Symberix Inc., also of Durham, is developing drugs that target the human microbiome. Intestinal bacteria play critical roles in digestion, metabolism, tissue repair, immune development, vitamin synthesis and many other key functions. Symberix’s early focus is on two drugs that inhibit a bacterial enzyme responsible for clinically serious side effects of certain pain and cancer medications.

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