Thursday, February 24, 2011

Clean Urban Energy to Develop U of Colo. Energy Efficiency Technology


Company will use CU-developed software tool to optimize energy control systems and electric grid integration in large commercial buildings.




BOULDER, Colo., February 24, 2011 – Clean Urban Energy (CUE), a Chicago, IL-based company developing building efficiency software, has completed an exclusive licensing agreement with the University of Colorado (CU), granting the company the exclusive right to commercialize a software tool developed at CU’s Boulder campus through a collaborative research program put in place by the University and CUE.

The software, jointly created by CU-Boulder architectural engineering professor Gregor Henze and CUE, is part of a software as a service (SaaS) platform that monitors the performance and electric demand of a building’s heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system in relation to its thermal mass (the mass in and of the building, such as concrete, furniture, and books). Once the software has “learned” how energy is stored and released by the building’s thermal mass, it implements strategies that optimize the building’s HVAC operations as a function of electricity prices, hourly temperatures, humidity, solar radiation and carbon emissions. Ultimately, CUE uses the thermal mass of these buildings as large-scale thermal energy storage for urban smart grids. This storage capacity introduces demand flexibility into electric grids, positively impacting reliability of the grids themselves.

“Through this collaboration with Dr. Henze and the University, we have created, and will sustain industry and research leadership in clean energy,” said Vince Cushing, Chief Technology Officer at CUE.

“We are very fortunate to have this partnership with Clean Urban Energy,” added Kate Tallman, Director of Technology Transfer for CU-Boulder. “CUE provides Dr. Henze’s technology with access to a real world test bed in Chicago and a ready path to market.”

CUE demonstrated its technology in fifty large commercial buildings in the Chicago area in 2009, and in 2010, the company used this software to optimize two office buildings in the Chicago Loop totaling 1.94M square feet. CUE plans for full launch of its SaaS platform for the 2011 cooling season. CUE recently closed with Elan Management on a seed financing round that will propel the company to market.

About Clean Urban Energy:
CUE delivers comprehensive energy-efficiency solutions that optimize the performance of building owners and managers, utilities, grid operators and energy service providers. By integrating building operations with energy markets, CUE’s proprietary software leverages a building’s thermal mass, environmental data, carbon emissions and electric market prices to reduce HVAC energy use and expense (up to 30 percent), to improve electric generation efficiency and environmental performance, and to introduce demand elasticity into grid markets. www.cleanurbanenergy.com

Friday, February 18, 2011

February 2011 Newsletter Now Available

Top stories from TTO's February newsletter:

Taligen Therapeutics Acquired by Alexion Pharma in $111M Buyout
Taligen Therapeutics, a licensee of the University of Colorado, was acquired recently by Cheshire, CT-based Alexion Pharmaceuticals for $111 million and contingent payments. Taligen, headquartered in Cambridge, MA, has been focused on the discovery and development of novel protein therapeutics. Taligen was founded in March 2004 and was a recipient of CU's first round of proof-of-concept investments in 2005.The company's most recent funding was a Series B funding round lead by Clarus Ventures, Alta Partners, Sanderling Ventures and Colorado-based High Country Venture.

Soligenix Executes Exclusive License with CU for Vaccine Thermostabilization Technology
Soligenix, Inc., a late-stage biopharmaceutical company, announced that it has entered into a definitive license agreement with CU for novel technology for use in the development of subunit vaccines with long-term stability, including stability at elevated temperatures. Soligenix has been developing this stabilization technology under an option-to-license agreement from CU that was initiated to support the technology development efforts funded by a $9.4 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

AmideBio Licenses CU Alzheimer's Disease Treatment
TTO and AmideBio, LLC have completed an agreement giving AmideBio exclusive rights to commercialize drug candidates for Alzheimer's disease discovered at CU's Boulder campus. A CU research group has recently discovered a novel molecular target that is disrupted and degraded very early in the disease; the team believes that strategies to prevent the disruption and degradation of this target could prove critical in effectively treating the disease at an early stage.

Read the full newsletter, or sign up to receive a monthly email update.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Event: Entrepreneurship Under the Microscope

Hosted annually by TTO and the Leeds School of Business' Deming Center for Entrepreneurship, this luncheon recognizes and celebrates innovation and commercialization on the CU campus and beyond. Meet and network with researchers, administration and business community members, and hear from today's movers and change-makers in a ten-minute "TED-talk" format about big ideas in today's most interesting and exciting sectors:
  • Larry Gold, CU-Boulder professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology; founder, SomaLogic
  • Amy Cosper, editor-in-chief of Entrepreneur.com
  • Charles R. (Chas) Eggert, President & CEO of OPX Biotechnologies, a venture-backed CU-Boulder spinoff company making renewable bio-based chemicals and fuels.
The event will also include a poster session highlighting CU-Boulder technologies ready to take the next step toward commercialization.

When: Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Where: Stadium Club at Folsom Field, Boulder
Registration: online. (There is no cost for CU faculty, staff and grad students - CU attendees ONLY may register here.)

Click the image at right for a printable flyer.

AmideBio Licenses CU Alzheimer's Disease Treatment






BOULDER, Colo., February 17, 2011 – The University of Colorado and AmideBio, LLC have completed an agreement giving AmideBio exclusive rights to commercialize drug candidates for Alzheimer’s disease discovered at CU’s Boulder campus.

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common cause of dementia in the U.S., and the fifth-leading cause of death for those aged 65 and older. An estimated 5.3 million Americans of all ages have AD.1 The disease typically begins with gradual memory loss; people with advanced AD are often unable to perform basic activities such as dressing and eating without assistance. In the final stages, patients are unable to communicate or recognize family members, and require constant care. The disease is ultimately fatal, often by causing pneumonia.

Current treatments address the symptoms of AD, but do not target the underlying disease. A CU research group led by Michael Stowell, Ph.D. (an associate professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology) has recently discovered a novel molecular target that is disrupted and degraded very early in the disease; the team believes that strategies to prevent the disruption and degradation of this target could prove critical in effectively treating the disease at an early stage. Stowell’s group is currently pursuing a new class of drugs that will prevent the disruption and degradation of this target and hopes to begin testing efficacy in the coming year.

“We are happy to execute this second licensing agreement with CU,”’ said Dr. Misha Plam, AmideBio's President and CEO. “The novel approach to treating Alzheimer’s disease discovered by Dr. Stowell’s group has great potential, and we are proud to become part of the community working to understand this disease and searching for its cure.”

AmideBio has also licensed a method developed by Stowell for manufacturing recombinant proteins and peptides (molecules which are similar to proteins but smaller); AmideBio and CU have an ongoing research collaboration in this area. “We are excited about the prospects for AmideBio,” said Tom Smerdon, Director of Licensing and New Business Development at CU’s Technology Transfer Office. “The company combines a top scientific mind and an accomplished entrepreneur, two important ingredients for success.”

1. 2010 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures. Alzheimer’s Association, 2010.

About AmideBio:
AmideBio based in Boulder, CO is a biotechnology company focused on providing recombinant peptide research and clinical products for a diverse array of disease research and disease targets. AmideBio maintains a proprietary platform vector technology that addresses the challenges of historically difficult to manufacture peptides by providing products that are reliable (BioPure™), economical and incorporate environmentally sustainable practices. For more information, please visit www.amidebio.com.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Podcast: Dr. Lauren Constantini, Business Advisor of the Year

W3W3 radio spoke with TTO 2010 Business Advisor of the Year Lauren Constantini about her work with bioscience technologies developed at CU.
TTO has done a spectacular job of helping identify the technologies within the university that are important. Helping those technologies mature is not just taking something from the bench and telling those investigators what may help move them through, but also connecting those investigators with people in the VC world or even the pharmaceutical world, or key opinion leaders.
Listen to the podcast, or view an archive of all TTO podcasts. 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tech Spotlight: Peptides for Modulating T-Cell Activity, for Treatment of Inflammation and Autoimmune Disease

A major concern for modern medicine is how to control aseptic, chronic inflammation (ACI) such as that which occurs during autoimmune diseases. ACI leads to tissue degeneration and eventual loss of function of major organs; it is not limited to a single disease, but is instrumental in numerous autoimmune diseases.

A University of Colorado research group led by Dr. David Wagner has developed a novel method for modulating inflammation, and in particular, inflammation that arises as a result of an autoimmune disease (type 1 diabetes in particular). This group has discovered that a unique subset of T-cells, which express CD40 protein and thus are referred to as Th40 cells, is instrumental in autoimmune inflammation. Moreover, involvement of Th40 cells in the autoimmune process is dependent on the interaction between cell-surface bound CD40 protein on the T cell and CD154 protein.Dr. Wagner has developed small peptides that interact with the CD40 protein at the site where the CD154 protein would normally bind, thus blocking their interaction. In mouse models of type 1 diabetes these peptides significantly delay disease onset and in 80% of test cases reverse new onset disease.

To read a non-confidential summary of this technology, including links to relevant publications and patent documents, please click the image above. For more CU technologies available for licensing, please visit our Tech Explorer site.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Taligen Therapeutics Acquired by Alexion Pharma in $111M Buyout

DENVER, Colo. – February 4, 2011 – Taligen Therapeutics, a licensee of the University of Colorado, was acquired recently by Cheshire, CT-based Alexion Pharmaceuticals for $111 million and contingent payments. Taligen, headquartered in Cambridge, MA, has been focused on the discovery and development of novel protein therapeutics.

Taligen’s portfolio includes monoclonal antibodies and recombinant fusion proteins that target key factors in the alternative pathway of the complement system, which Taligen's founders, including CU Professor V. Michael Holers, M.D., of the University of Colorado School of Medicine (Anschutz Medical Campus) have validated as an important amplification loop in the inflammation process. Former Taligen CEO Abbie Celniker, Ph.D., will head up Alexion’s new Translational Medicine Group, which will accelerate development of Taligen’s pre-clinical product candidates.

Taligen was founded in March 2004 and was a recipient of CU’s first round of proof-of-concept investments in 2005. In 2008 Taligen received the University of Colorado Technology Transfer Office bioscience company of the year award. The company’s most recent funding was a Series B funding round lead by Clarus Ventures, Alta Partners, Sanderling Ventures and Colorado-based High Country Venture.

Read the press release from Alexion Pharma.