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GEN News Highlights : Nov 2, 2010

Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project Doles Out More Than $17M

Pain Therapeutics is the front-runner, winning over $2 million to advance research in CNS diseases and oncology.

Over $17 million has been given out to about 32 companies under the Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project, which was created by Congress as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. It provides a tax credit or grant equal to eligible costs and expenses for tax years 2009 and 2010. Each grant is for a maximum amount of $244,479.25.

Only companies that had no more than 250 employees were eligible for the program. Additionally, projects had to show reasonable potential to result in new therapies to treat areas of unmet medical need; prevent, detect, or treat chronic or acute disease and conditions; reduce long-term healthcare costs in the U.S.; or significantly advance the goal of curing cancer within a 30-year period.

In addition, preference was given to projects that showed the greatest potential to create and sustain high-quality, high-paying jobs in the U.S. and advance the country’s competitiveness in the fields of life, biological, and medical sciences.

Thus far Pain Therapeutics seems to have received the most money, reportedly winning more than $2 million to further drug R&D for central nervous system diseases and oncology. Ligand Pharmaceuticals comes in second, with eight development programs winning grant awards totaling over $1.96 million.

The following projects were selected jointly by the Treasury Department and the Department of Health and Human Services:

Advanced Cell Technology received four grants totaling $977,917: the blastomere program, the myoblast program, the RPE program for Stargardt’s disease, and the iPS program.

Adventrx Pharmaceuticals received two grants totaling $488,958.50: ANX-530 (Exelbine™) and ANX-514, emulsion formulations of chemotherapy drugs vinorelbine and docetaxel, respectively. 

Aradigm received three grants totaling $733,437.75: ARD-3100 liposomal ciprofloxacin for cystic fibrosis (CF), ARD-3150 liposomal ciprofloxacin for the non-CF bronchiectasis, and ARD-3100 liposomal ciprofloxacin for non-CF bronchiectasis.

ArQule received four grants totaling $977,917: ARQ 197, ARQ 621, ARQ 736, ARQ 087, which are all anticancer agents.

Biomoda received one grant totaling $244,479.25: CyPath® diagnostic assay for the detection of early-stage lung cancer.

Bionovo received two grants totaling $488,958.50: Menerba and Bezielle programs for menopausal symptom alleviation and the treatment of advanced breast cancer, respectively.

bluebird bio received two grants totaling $488,958.50:  programs for the treatment of childhood cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy and beta-thalassemia/sickle cell anemia.

Catalyst Pharmaceutical Partners received two grants totaling $488,958.50: CPP-109 for the treatment of stimulant dependence and CPP-115 for various forms of epilepsy and stimulant dependence.

Cell Therapeutics received four grants totaling $977,917: pixantrone, OPAXIO, brostallicin, and bisplatinates, which are all focused in the area of oncology.

Curemark received one grant: CM-AT for autism.

CytRx received three grants totaling $733,437.75: INNO-206, tamibarotene, and bafetinib, which are being studied in various cancers.

DARA BioSciences received two grants totaling $488,958.50: KRN5500 for treating neuropathic pain in cancer patients and DB959 for type 2 diabetes.

Durect received three grants totaling $733,437.75: Posidur in postoperative pain relief, Oradur for treating attention deficit disorder, and the biologics program for chronic diseases including cancer, diabetes, and multiple sclerosis.

Exact Sciences received one grant totaling $244,479.25: Cologuard™, an sDNA screening test aimed at detecting both colorectal cancers and precancers.

Genta received two grants totaling $488,958.50: Genasense® Injection for advanced melanoma and Tesetaxel, an oral taxane.

GenVec received one grant totaling  $244,479.25: TNFerade in oncology.

Geron received five grants totaling $1,222,396.25: GRN163L for cancer, GRNVAC1 as a therapeutic vaccine for acute myelogenous leukemia, human embryonic stem cell (hESC) therapy GRNOPC1 for the treatment of spinal cord injury and other neurodegenerative disorders, hESC therapy GRNCM1 for heart disease, and hESC therapy GRNIC1 for diabetes.

Inovio Pharmaceuticals received three grants totaling $733,437.75: VGX-3100, a therapeutic vaccine for cervical dysplasia and cancer; development projects for Syncon™ universal flu and dengue vaccines.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals received eight grants totaling $1,955,834: eight drug development programs.

Micronics received one grant totaling $244,479.25: PanNAT molecular diagnostic platform.

MultiCell Technologies received three grants totaling $733,437.75: MCT-465 and MCT-475 for the treatment of cancer and MCT-125 for fatigue in multiple sclerosis.

Neuralstem received three grants totaling $733,437.75: small molecule treatment for depression, spinal cord stem cells for ALS, and IGF1-expressing neural stem cell therapy.

Oxygen Biotherapeutics received one grant totaling $244,479.25: Oxycyte perfluorocarbon emulsion for traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury.

Pain Therapeutics received multiple grants totaling over $2,000,000: biomedical research for nervous system disorders and oncology.

Pozen received three grants totaling $730,000: Vimovo, a pain-relieving non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug; as well as PA32540 and PA6502 for GI ulcers and other GI complications.

Pressure BioSciences received one grant totaling $244,479.25.

Pro-Pharmaceuticals received two grants totaling $488,958.50: Davanat for colorectal cancer, and GR-Series of antifibrotic cirrhosis compounds.

RXi Pharmaceuticals received four grants totaling $977,917: three programs focused on the development of self-delivering siRNA drugs for fibrotic disease, age-related macular degeneration, and ALS as well as an oral glucose-encapsulated siRNA therapeutic for rheumatoid arthritis.

Vaccinex received three grants: VX15 in oncology and multiple sclerosis, VX5 in autoimmune diseases, and VX35 in oncology.

X-BODY BioSciences received one grant totaling $244,479.25: mAb project targeting metastatic tumor stem cells.

XOMA received four grants totaling $977,917: XOMA 052, an anti-IL-1 beta anti-inflammatory therapeutic mAb; antibotulinum toxin mAb program including XOMA 3AB; mAb therapeutics for metabolic diseases; and mAb therapeutics for oncology.

Zalicus received one grant totaling $244,000: Synavive for immuno-inflammatory diseases.

AgeneBio, CS-Keys, FAST, GRest, Pericardial Access, and SonarMed also reported receiving QTDP grants.