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Archive for Thursday, July 14, 2011

Kansas Bioscience Authority recommends funding for KU Cancer Center, Deciphera

July 14, 2011

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Kansas Bioscience Authority’s investment committee recommended several new investments to the authority’s full board Wednesday, including a proposal to spend just over $1 million on a new recruit for the KU Cancer Center and new funding for a Lawrence pharmaceutical company.

Bill Sanford, vice chairman of the investment committee, said the investment would be made through the KBA’s Rising Star program.

“This individual would be involved in Cancer Center activities and would be critical not only for the day-to-day operations, but also would play an important part of the overall proposal for (National Cancer Institute) designation,” Sanford said.

The investment committee reviewed the credentials of the recruit, who was not identified, and found them to be “outstanding,” Sanford said.

The committee also recommended that Lawrence-based Deciphera Pharmaceuticals receive a nearly $1.6 million research and development grant to fund drug development programs.

In many cases with the investments announced Wednesday, the committee released few details on the projects because of proprietary business matters.

Other recommendations made by the investment committee on Wednesday included:

• A $98,980 proof-of-concept investment with Phlogistics, a Lenexa-based company that is developing products that would help with the treatment of traumatic brain injuries.

• A $140,000 proof-of-concept investment with Green Dot Holdings, a Cottonwood Falls company that is conducting research into bioplastics that would have potential connections with other projects in the state, Sanford said.

• A $600,000 equity investment with Novita Therapeutics, an Olathe-based company that is developing medical devices

• A $400,000 expansion and attraction proposal with an unspecified company looking to locate in the state. Kansas is in competition with two other geographic locations to attract the company, Sanford said. The company “fits very well within the mission of the KBA,” he said.

Each of the proposed investments still must be approved by the KBA’s full board, except the proof-of-concept investments.

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