$1.5 million awarded in Biotech loans, grants

Aug. 01, 2014 @ 05:10 PM

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center awarded more than $1.5 million to institutions and organizations across the state between April-June 2014.

The center’s loan recipients brought in $77 million in outside funding during this time. According to a release, every dollar NCBiotech loans is met with $117 in additional funding to those firms from disease philanthropy and government grants, angel and venture investment and other financial support, and every grant dollar is met with $28 in additional funding.

Some of the grants include: $160,283 to Duke University for a workstation to maximize use of DNA sequencing equipment; $50,000 to North Carolina State University to develop and demonstrate a method for editing DNA in selected genes; and $34,340 to UNC-Chapel Hill to develop a diagnostic blood test to identify cardiac surgery patients for whom surgery would increase the risk of acute kidney injury.

The center gave out $549,226 in five research loans to small businesses, four of which are operating out of Research Triangle Park.

NCBiotech also loaned $250,000 for strategic growth to bioMASON, which has developed a manufacturing process to produce masonry products from microorganisms and recycled materials in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save natural resources.

For the entire year, NCBiotech awarded 78 loans and grants totaling $6,308,186.


Art grant applications now open: The Durham Arts Council’s emerging artist grant applications for 2014-2015 are now available.

The project grant provides funding to a project “pivotal to the advancement” of an artist’s career.

The grant defines emerging artists as an artist who has mastered the basic techniques of his or her craft and who is attempting to launch a professional career. The grant can also be used by an established artist who wants to take his or her career in a new direction.

Applications are due by Sept. 26 and the maximum amount an applicant can request is $1,500.

The application categories include: painting/drawing, photography, installation, film/video, drama, literature, printmaking/mixed media, craft, sculpture, dance and music.


Durham gym adds CrossFit: Velocity Fitness, 5319 N. Roxboro St., is launching a new CrossFit program.

“Most CrossFit is just the program,” Velocity owner Steve Dickinson said.

But with the new program, he said, customers get free child care in the evenings and weekend and receive a free fitness club membership with unlimited attendance.

“We decided the fitness club needed a little more diversification,” Dickinson said. “ Now we offer new cardio equipment, group fitness classes, circuit training equipment, free weight equipment, tanning, CrossFit, a smoothie bar and free child care.”

Dickinson said the program is open to all fitness levels, and that two instructors are former Marines.


Second quarter financials: Square 1 Financial, United Therapeutics, and Quintiles recently announced second quarter financial results, all reporting increased revenue since the same time last year.

For Square 1, net income per diluted common share increased from $.21 to $.29 since Q2 2013. For United Therapeutics, net income per diluted common share decreased from $2.38 to $2.30. And Quintiles diluted earnings per share increased from $.30 to $.64.

“In June we marked a major milestone for the organization as Quintiles was named to the Fortune 500,” said Quintiles CEO Tom Pike in a release.

United Therapeutics, which develops products to treat patients with chronic conditions, has attributed the revenue growth to its medicines targeting pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Square 1 Financial specializes in providing entrepreneurs and venture capitalists with financial services. CEO and President Douglas H. Bowers said in a release solid loan and deposit growth boosted profitability.


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