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REF NO.: 211
SUBJECT: North Atlantic Biopharma Inc. graduates from Genesis Centre
DATE: March 1,2006
Today the Genesis Centre, Memorial University's support network for technology-based businesses, held a graduation ceremony for North Atlantic Biopharma Inc. (NABI), its 16th graduate company. NABI now re-locates from the Genesis Centre facility to Genesis Biolabs on Mount Scio Road, where the ceremony was held.
With seven employees, NABI develops pharmaceuticals derived from marine biological materials of the North Atlantic Ocean. The marquee pharmaceutical product being developed is a unique seal-oil-based lipid emulsion. This product is used in the feeding of patients (trauma or post surgical) who have difficulty digesting essential nutrients.
NABI’s graduation comes as a result of the company signing a licensing contract with a large Chinese pharmaceutical manufacturer. This agreement allows Guangzeng Pharmaceutical Group the exclusive right to the technology. Under the contract, the two companies will work jointly to conduct necessary pre-clinical and clinical trials. While NABI is conducting some of the pre-clinical studies at Memorial, the Chinese company is aiming to invest about $8-10 million to complete tests and set up manufacturing facilities in China.
The company received financial assistance from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation (CCFI), International Trade Canada, and the provincial government’s Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development (DITRD). The National Research Council’s Industrial
Research Assistance Program NRC-(IRAP) provided technical and financial assistance throughout various phases of the project. Local companies including the Barry Group Inc. and Caboto Seafood Ltd. have contributed by providing their seal oil for the project. The School of Pharmacy and the Faculty of Science at MUN have also supported North Atlantic Biopharma in their research efforts.
Dr. Axel Meisen, president of Memorial, and Emad Rizkalla, chair, GENESIS Group board of directors, congratulated the company on its achievement.
Dr. Meisen said: "We are proud of North Atlantic Biopharma’s success. The company was founded by faculty members in the School of Pharmacy, based on research done at the university. The management team was joined by a member of the Faculty of Science. The intellectual property was patented with the support of Genesis Research, and the company was developed with the support of the Genesis Centre."
Dr. Lili Wang, vice-president of NABI, said, “Before we joined the centre, we had ideas and we wanted to do business. But we didn’t really know how to do it. The Genesis Centre has done a wonderful job in helping us transform our ideas into a business.”
The Genesis Centre is a division of GENESIS Group Inc., the technology commercialization arm of Memorial University. The Genesis Centre has helped its clients secure private investment in excess of $4.5 million.
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