Seven potential cancer therapies, six medical devices, five autoimmune diseases therapies, four drug delivery platforms, three diabetes treatments and two neuropathic pain targets are among 100 innovations UniQuest will be marketing on behalf of Australian universities in Washington DC at this year’s BIO Convention, the largest annual biotechnology event in the world.

BIO 2011 will run from June 27-30, with more than 15,000 industry leaders from 65 countries expected to attend.

“We will be talking to a wide range of representatives from major international biotech and pharmaceutical companies about licensing university-based technologies and about working with our researchers to find cures and better health management strategies,” said UniQuest Managing Director, David Henderson.

“University of Queensland innovations are now generating annual sales of more than A$3 billion globally, from vaccines like Gardasil to high-tech MRI machines and telehealth systems.

“BIO is a key meeting place not only for all kinds of industries involved with life sciences but also for venture capital and private equity firms looking to invest in ground-breaking technologies. It’s one of the most important events we attend every year.”

Between meetings the UniQuest team will man booth #2537 in the Australia Pavilion, where the innovation portfolio will be showcased on a flat screen and in the latest edition of UniQuest’s technology newsletter, The Deal Sheet. Visitors to the booth will be offered a souvenir novelty flash drive loaded up with summaries of a range of university research projects.

UniQuest has helped to launch several Australian life sciences innovations onto the global market since 1984:

  • UniQuest was involved with the early commercialisation of the HPV technology discovered by Dr Ian Frazer and his late research partner Dr Jian Zhou, which has contributed to the development of a vaccine for cervical cancer. Pharmaceutical company Merck has distributed 65 million doses of Gardasil® since the vaccine’s global launch in 2006. It is now approved in 123 countries.
  • UniQuest bio-pharmaceutical start-up QRxPharma Limited  listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in May 2007 and made history as Australia’s biggest biotechnology float. QRxPharma recently announced its successful completion of Phase 3 trials of its patented pain management product.
  • Another UniQuest start-up, ImpediMed Ltd, closed oversubscribed when it listed on the ASX and as a publicly-listed company in September 2007. It recently became the first company to offer FDA, CE and TGA cleared L-Dex devices for simple point of care, standardised and objective metrics to aid in the clinical assessment of lymphoedema.
  • Spinifex Pharmaceuticals Pty Limited  attracted $10.5M last year in an expanded “Tranche 2” Series B capital raising for developing its neuropathic pain therapies. UniQuest established Spinifex in 2005 with a pre-seed investment from Uniseed.These three companies and other UniQuest start-ups are among the 1000+ Australian biotechnology and medical technology ventures contributing to the industry’s global growth. Of the 151 healthcare and biotech public life science companies listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, 27 are capitalised at greater than A$100 million.

    More information about Queensland’s biotechnology industry will be presented at a Media Conference hosted by the Premier of Queensland, Ms Anna Bligh, on Monday, June 27, at 12:00 pm in Room 208B.

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