DNAtrix Licenses Myxoma Virus for New Immunotherapy Platform (PipelineReview)

UF startup DNAtrix, a clinical stage biotechnology company developing virus-driven immunotherapies for cancer, announced it has entered into an exclusive license agreement with the University of Florida to develop a novel oncolytic virus platform.  The platform is based on myxoma virus, a poxvirus that has been shown to have beneficial features for treating cancers.

A major advantage of the myxoma virus is its ability to attach to T lymphocytes and other white blood cells, which are then delivered to the patient to trigger tumor cell killing and antitumor immunity.  Myxoma virus can be armed with multiple immune stimulatory genes, a feature shared by other large DNA viruses such as herpes simplex and adenovirus.

Optym Partners with Amadeus to Optimize Airlines (BroadWayWorld)

Airline flight network planners are responsible for creating flight schedules that consider crews, aircraft, gates, competition, potential disruption and customer demand in a way that maximizes profitability and is operationally feasible. Building such a schedule is a challenging and time consuming prospect for any airline network planner. Amadeus and UF startup Optym have begun a long-term partnership to solve that challenge. Their new suite of network planning solutions is based on sophisticated algorithms that give airlines a fully optimized schedule based on accurate forecasts in just a few hours, not days or weeks. This is the only technology on the market that can create a schedule from scratch, giving the airline more strategic flexibility and opening new scheduling opportunities that may have previously gone undiscovered.

First Patients Treated in DNAtrix Phase 2 Trial (Pharmiweb)

UF startup DNAtrix, a clinical stage biotechnology company developing virus-driven immunotherapies for cancer, announced that the first patients have been treated in a multicenter Phase 2 trial investigating its oncolytic adenovirus, DNX-2401, in combination with KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab), Merck’s anti-PD-1 therapy, in patients with recurrent glioblastoma.

The CAPTIVE trial is evaluating the potential effect of DNX-2401 and KEYTRUDA in patients with recurrent glioblastoma, a disease for which there is neither a cure nor adequate treatment. Leading medical centers in the United States and Canada are participating.

SharpSpring Awarded Best CRM Software (MarketWired)

CrowdReviews.com, a platform for reviewing and ranking CRM companies, has announced UF startup SharpSpring as the best customer relationship management software based on user reviews and experiences. SharpSpring has achieved the top spot due to customer reviews posted publicly on their profile. Providers of CRM solutions are invited to ask their customers to leave reviews detailing their own experiences.

The rankings on CrowdReviews.com are determined based on a transparent algorithm. This algorithm takes into consideration several elements including 5 primary factors which providers can improve to improve their placement in the rankings. These five factors include review strength, engagement strength, sentiment strength, profile strength, and verified status.

Biotech Innovator Morphogenesis, Inc. Launches Hi-Tech Digital Stock Offering to Fight Cancer (Yahoo! Sports)

UF startup Morphogenesis, Inc., a biotechnology company, plans to raise up to $20 million from the sale of its common stock to accredited investors. The company is not only embracing new securities industry rules, it is launching what it hopes to be a uniquely efficient capital raising process made possible by the confluence of social and technological changes.

Morphogenesis, a privately-held biotechnology company specializing in cell and gene therapies, has developed multi-indication immunotherapies which educates the patient’s own immune system to attack tumor cells throughout the body without damaging normal cells or tissues.

SharpSpring Integrates With PieSync to Provide Easy Two-Way Contact Syncing (EconoTimes)

UF startup SharpSpring, Inc., a global provider of cloud-based marketing technologies, announced the launch of its native integration with PieSync, a B2B connection service that allows users to perform two-way contact syncing between their favorite cloud apps in real time.

Using PieSync’s point-and-click interface, SharpSpring customers can build connections with dozens of other cloud-based platforms — such as Google Contacts, Zoho, Zendesk, Pipedrive, and SugarCRM — without the need for a developer. The automatic contact syncing feature eliminates the need for manual imports and exports, which helps reduce duplicate contacts and other errors.

AGTC Files Investigational New Drug Application for the Treatment of Achromatopsia (Yahoo! Finance)

UF startup Applied Genetic Technologies Corporation (AGTC), a biotechnology company conducting human clinical trials of adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based gene therapies for the treatment of rare diseases, has filed an Investigational New Drug application (IND) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to conduct a Phase I/II clinical trial of the company’s gene therapy product candidate for the treatment of achromatopsia caused by mutations in the CNGA3 gene. AGTC previously initiated a Phase I/II clinical trial of its gene therapy product for the treatment of achromatopsia caused by mutations in the CNGB3 gene.

This program will be the fourth ophthalmic gene therapy candidate AGTC has advanced to human trials.

Sharklet’s Microtexture Earns FLEXcon Product of the Year Award (BusinessWire)

The 2016 Specialty Graphic Imaging Association recognized FLEXcon in its Product of the Year Competition for the company’s FLEXmark® V240 R Clear Sharklet finishing product. Sharklet™, designed by UF startup Sharklet Technologies, is the world’s first microtexture that inhibits microorganism attachment and growth. FLEXcon has mimicked the texture in an overlaminating film that is now available to the imaging market. The material features 2.4 mil vinyl coated with a permanent adhesive and backed with a polyester overlaminating liner.

The texture of shark skin makes it difficult for bacteria to attach and multiply. The texture of Sharklet™ textured film is similar, making it an environmentally-friendly approach to bacterial control. FLEXcon’s product limits the growth of bacteria on high-touch surfaces by covering graphics with Sharklet™.

Sun BioPharma Starts Fourth Cohort in Pancreatic Cancer Drug Trials (EconoTimes)

UF startup Sun BioPharma, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing disruptive therapeutics for the treatment of patients with pancreatic diseases, announced that the Data Safety Monitoring Board has completed its safety review of the data from the dosing of the third cohort of patients. As a result of this positive review by the DSMB, Sun BioPharma has initiated the fourth patient cohort in the SBP-101 dose escalation phase of the study. The molecule has been shown to be highly effective in human pancreatic cancer models, demonstrating superior activity to existing FDA approved chemotherapy agents.

SharpSpring, Convrrt Partner to Turn Visitors into Sales (Digital Journal)

UF startup SharpSpring, Inc., a global provider of cloud-based marketing automation solutions, has partnered with Arizona start-up Convrrt, Inc. to accelerate the development of a next-generation landing page builder. This unique tool allows marketers to build web pages that capture leads using an intuitive interface that doesn’t require the user to write code. The user can simply choose a layout, update components, add a form and launch a landing page in minutes.

To accelerate the landing page builder’s latest feature enhancements, Convrrt partnered with SharpSpring’s development team to enhance its user interface and experience while also integrating the tool into the SharpSpring marketing automation platform.