BioPort 2018 Announces Keynote Speakers
And Explores the Future of Life Sciences in Atlantic Canada
June 21, 2018 – Halifax, NOVA SCOTIA – Health and life sciences innovators, industry leaders, and investors from across North America will come together to attend BioPort 2018, on November 7-8, 2018 at the Halifax Convention Centre. This year’s event will feature keynote speakers Dr. Corrina Lathan, CEO of AnthroTronix, Inc. and William Charnetski, Ontario’s Chief Health Innovation Strategist, who will explore the transformative impact of technology on life sciences companies and health care. The annual event will also feature a business pitch competition and an exciting new program targeting Nova Scotia’s youth.
“BioPort highlights the potential of the health and life sciences sector in Atlantic Canada to tackle the world’s toughest challenges,” said Scott Moffitt, Managing Director of BioNova. “This year our speakers will share how embracing disruptive technologies like robotics, artificial intelligence, and synthetic biology, present opportunities to grow our sector.”
Corinna Lathan, Ph.D., will provide the keynote address on November 7, 2018 at 6:00 pm ADT. Dr. Lathan is a neuroscientist, engineer, and health technology entrepreneur. Her company has successfully developed an FDA-cleared mobile platform for healthcare providers to assess cognitive function. She has also developed robotics for kids with disabilities, and wearable sensors for training surgeons and soldiers. These human-technology innovations have been featured in Forbes and Time magazines, and led to Dr. Lathan being named as MIT Technology Review Magazine’s ‘Top 100 World Innovators’.
On November 8, 2018 at 12:30 pm ADT, William Charnetski, LL.B, will provide a keynote address on how collaboration across the health care system facilitates the adoption of innovative health technologies. Mr. Charnetski is an accomplished national and global executive who has worked in the highest levels of business, law, and government. For over 10 years he was vice president and general counsel for AstraZeneca. He was also a partner at the law firm Torys LLP and served as chief of staff to The Hon. William Graham, P.C., Q.C.
As per previous years, BioPort will feature the BioInnovation Challenge (BIC), an Atlantic Canadian health and life science business pitch competition that gives entrepreneurs a chance to win $25,000 in funding to develop their business idea. New to this year’s program, the conference will also feature BioInnovation Challenge Junior (BIC Junior), for Nova Scotian high school and first year post-secondary students to create health and life science business ideas. The winner will receive a prize of $2,000.
For more information or to register for the event, visit BioPortAtlantic.ca. Complimentary media registration is available to reporters. Follow #BioPort2018 @BioNovaNS for updates.
Since 2002, BioPort has provided a forum to inform and inspire the health and life sciences community to develop their ideas, commercialize their technologies, and build links within the region, nationally and abroad.
BioNova leads, accelerates, and advocates for Nova Scotia’s growing health and life sciences sector. Since 1993, BioNova has been accelerating the growth of its member companies. By hosting networking and educational events, and providing connections to potential funders and business resources, BioNova helps companies succeed. While these companies commercialize life-changing research to improve healthcare, provide healthier food, and develop clean energy solutions, BioNova advocates on behalf of the sector. BioNova champions the sector’s cluster of world-class research facilities, incubator programs, and companies who, together, bring investment and jobs to Nova Scotia.
For more Information, contact:
Marketing Manager, BioNova
See original Entrevestor article here
By Peter Moreira
Pfera, the Fredericton company that helps horse breeders predict when their mares will give birth, won the $45,000 BioInnovation Challenge on Wednesday, its second big competition win this year.
Now in its seventh year, the BIC is the main competition for young life sciences companies in the region, and is a highlight of the annual BioPort Atlantic conference. As well as winning the BIC, Pfera CEO Lisa Pfister earlier this year won the $375,000 first prize at the Breakthru competition, the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation’s biennial startup contest.
“I am really excited about what the future holds for us,” said Pfister after the win. “We really enjoyed the whole process, the mentorship and training were invaluable and we will make good use of our cash and in-kind services to take us to the next level.”
Read Our Report on BioPort 2017
Pfera is developing a suite of products to reduce costs and improve survival rates in the breeding of horses. Horse breeding is now a $10.6 billion business and Pfera has already successfully tested its first product, a patent-pending device and software that tell breeders when their mares will give birth.
There’s now a range of about 50 days of when a mare could go into labour, and someone has to watch the horse 24 hours a day during this time. Pfister said Pfera tested its system on 10 horses in P.E.I. this spring and saw vast improvements.
“We were able to get the notice four days ahead of time,” said Pfister. “We were able to narrow [the predicted delivery time] to within four to eight hours and we’re improving on that all the time.” One of the horses was Pfister’s own mare, and she was able to fly into P.E.I. six hours before the birth because of her technology.
As the winner of the BIC, Pfera will receive a $15,000 seed investment and a package of support services and mentoring valued at more than $30,000.
The company plans to publish the results of its first test at veterinary conferences this year and go into clinical trials early next year. It’s planning a launch in late 2018 or early 2019.
Pfera is also working on a breeding platform for the horse community that contains data on each mare and helps tell when it’s the best time to breed. Pfister added the company is working on a third product, though it is keeping this project under wraps for now.
The BIC event was a big win for the bio-sciences sector in New Brunswick as all three finalists hail from that province. The other two finalists were:
• Tieös Pharmaceuticals Inc., of Moncton, aims to create new paradigms in cancer treatment by targeting several “metabolic pathways” simultaneously to prevent cancer cells from spreading. Arun Anand, CEO, told the audience that cancer is believed to be caused by genetic mutations, but his team believes that the causes are actually metabolic (meaning tumors are created by non-genetic factors). Tieös plans to revolutionize cancer care by taking a number of actions based on this theory to starve cancer cells of their energy and ability to reproduce.
• Zecken Laboratories, of Sackville, is enhancing the diagnosis of Lyme disease. CEO Kami Harris has been studying ticks and Lyme disease for her PhD at Mount Allison University, and now she is transforming her research into a company. She said there are actually 21 types of Lyme disease, but current diagnostic tests only identify one type. That means about 90 percent of the instances of Lyme disease go undetected, which can lead to long-term health problems. Zecken has already identified peptides that show the presence of the affliction and continues to research the disease to identify new strains as they come along.
Originally featured in LINK Magazine
Revolutionizing the way people are repositioned in wheelchairs in homes, hospitals and care facilities around the world.
Nova Scotians working in the healthcare sector have the highest rate of workplace injury compared to any other industry, with musculoskeletal injuries to healthcare workers costing Nova Scotia taxpayers $100 million annually. These injuries are frequently caused by continuing care workers repositioning patients in wheelchairs who are unable to reposition themselves.
MacKenzie Healthcare Technologies, in collaboration with NSCC and Northwood, a leading long-term care facility in Halifax, has developed The Paraglide system to help alleviate this problem. Paraglide is a wheelchair repositioning system that brings mechanical innovation to the currently injury-prone and undignified task of moving someone in a wheelchair from a slouched position to an upright position.
The Paraglide device will be the first of its kind that will allow people who become slouched forward in wheelchairs to reposition themselves at the touch of a button, removing the reliance of a caregiver and giving them dignity and independence. The device will also eliminate the risk of caregiver injury for this task, prevent pressure injuries (bed sores), and save resources in healthcare facilities, nursing homes, homecare, governments and injury-related insurance coverage for both wheelchair users and caregivers alike.
Paraglide, made of lightweight aluminum, contains a motor, gears, and electronics which attach to the back of the wheelchair. The device uses a wireless remote control, rotating and pulling a specially designed fabric sheet along the seat of the wheelchair thereby moving the person automatically. When the button is released the device releases the sheet, allowing enough slack for the individual to make their way forward again, allowing free movement.
Last October, MacKenzie Healthcare Technologies was named the winner of the sixth annual BioInnovation Challenge (Presented by BioNova) chosen by a panel of judges for its adaptability, market pull, and consumer readiness. The prize package valued at more than $30,000, contained a seed investment and a package of advisory services that the company has used to advance its production as it prepares for the market this summer.]]>