Aerpio Therapeutics closes $22M financing led by OrbiMed

Posted by BioOhio on Apr. 23, 2014

AerpioBioOhio member Aerpio Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on advancing innovative therapies for vascular diseases, today announced that it closed a $22M financing round led by new investor OrbiMed, with existing investors Novartis Venture Funds, Satter Investment Management, Kearny Venture Partners, Venture Investors, Triathlon Medical Ventures and Athenian Venture Partners.

Proceeds will support expanded development of AKB-9778, a small molecule activator of Tie2, currently in a Phase 2 trial for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME), and the advancement of AKB-4924, a small-molecule HIF1 activator, into clinical development for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

“OrbiMed has an impressive track record of supporting both public and private companies as they bring innovative new medicines to market, and we are excited to have them join our investor syndicate,” stated Joseph Gardner, PhD, President and CEO of Aerpio.

Aerpio recently initiated a Phase 2 study designed to assess the safety and efficacy of AKB-9778 administered over three months as monotherapy and as an adjunct with ranibizumab in subjects with DME. With this financing, Aerpio will also progress a second pipeline candidate, AKB-4924, and activator of HIF1, into clinical development.

Read the full press release from Aerpio here (pdf download)

8th Annual BioOhio Career Fairs a strong combination of talent and opportunity

Posted by BioOhio on Apr. 21, 2014
Jen Goldsberry

Jen Goldsberry
Manager, Member
Services & Events

For the 8th consecutive year, BioOhio hosted two career fairs this month to connect bioscience-focused companies to bioscience-focused job seekers.

Of the 15 exhibitors who participated, more than 225 jobs were on tap. Some companies were also promoting internship and co-op opportunities. Between the two events, 255 job seekers attended. Exhibitors made consistent comments about the caliber of candidates, and how impressed they were with credentials. BioOhio currently hosts these regional events once a year, with locations determined by company demand.

Mason Career FairJob seekers were equally grateful for this unique event, and appreciated the opportunity to get in front of hiring companies. One of the goals of these events is to keep Ohio talent in Ohio, and we look forward to tracking progress with both candidates and exhibitors to determine how many matches were made. A perfect testimonial to the connections made at these job fairs, one of the representatives interviewing candidates was actually hired at last year’s BioOhio Career Fair!

Exhibitors this year included Aerotek Scientific, AtriCure, Alkermes, Assurex Health, Avecia, Boehringer Ingeleheim Roxane Laboratories, Columbus State Community College, GFS Chemicals, Medpace, Mound Laser & Photonics Center, NAMSA, PharmaForce, Quidel, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hosptial, and WIL Research. We’d like to thank the City of Mason and TechColumbus for their assistance with venues. (more…)

BioOhio BioBulletin, April 2014

Posted by BioOhio on Apr. 21, 2014


         John Lewis

Welcome to the 4th edition of the BioOhio BioBulletin.

Trivia: Did you know Ohio is the leading producer of greenhouse and nursery plants in the USA? You’ll notice a theme throughout the remainder of the year from BioOhio around seeds and flowers, roots and trees. With a strong foundation, Ohio’s bioscience industry continues to grow. Stay tuned for ways you too can help nurture bioscience in Ohio.

This BioBulletin edition is focused on events. Mark your calendars, share with colleagues, and we look forward to seeing you! Event sponsorships are available at various levels, so commit early for more visibility. My advice continues: Engage, Bring It!

May 12BioOhio Unplugged: CEOs & Leadership Series – Transforming Healthcare


Research Day at OSU Wexner Medical Center showcases amazing talent in Ohio

Posted by BioOhio on Apr. 16, 2014
Annette Ratcliff

Annette Ratcliff

BioOhio is pleased to present a new contributor to micrOHscope! Annette Ratcliff, Ph.D. is a Pelotonia Postdoctoral Fellow at the Jesse Kwiek Lab, The Ohio State University. Annette is helping to lead the formation of the Ohio State Postdoctoral Association.

On April 10, over 425 trainees, including members of the new Postdoctoral Association, presented their work at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center’s Research Day. Members of both U.S. House of Representatives and State of Ohio Representatives attended the event which showcased outstanding work being done by students and trainees in the areas of cancer research, infectious diseases, neuroscience, and basic cell biology. Some of the finest research in the country is being right here in Columbus!

“The impressive array of posters and presentations from trainees and students showcases the amazing scientific and medical research underway at the Wexner Medical Center.” said Caroline Whitacre, Ph.D., Vice President for Research at The Ohio State University.

“This research promises to translate into improvements in medical care for thousands of patients worldwide. Even more, this event emphasizes the tremendous talent in our future biomedical workforce and the value of their Ohio State experience.”

OSUWMCResearch Day is an annual event featuring the biomedical research of trainees within the OSU Medical Center. Held each spring, Research Day features posters from hundreds of trainees, a trainee speaker series, and a keynote address by a world-renowned researcher in the field of biomedical science. Faculty members judge poster presentations throughout the day, and travel awards are given to the highest-scoring trainees.

This year, the keynote was delivered by Jeffrey A. Whitsett, MD, chief of the Section of Neonatology, Perinatal and Pulmonary Biology with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

The Ohio Academy of Science, connecting students and research around the state

Posted by BioOhio on Apr. 15, 2014
Stephen McConoughey

Stephen McConoughey

BioOhio is pleased to present a new contributor to micrOHscope! Stephen McConoughey is CEO of the Ohio Academy of Science, a non-profit organization that strives to foster curiosity, discovery, and innovation in students as well as adults.

The Ohio Academy of Science held its 123rd Annual Meeting on Saturday April 5th with close to 200 scientific posters as well as four podium sessions presented throughout the day. This year’s meeting was hosted by Walsh University, home to nearly 3,000 students in North Canton. The theme of the 2014 meeting was of Encouraging Tomorrow’s Innovators, and the day was highlighted by the keynote address, “Entrepreneurship in Science”, given by Dr. Joseph A. Bauer, a Walsh graduate, 20 year veteran in the science/business world, and CSO of BioOhio member company BNOAT Oncology.

OAS PostersNext, the Academy will be conducting the 66th State Science Day, which is hosted by The Ohio State University on May 10th. This event will bring close to 1,200 of the top students (grades 5-12) from across Ohio to Columbus to display their scientific research.

BioOhio’s President & CEO, John F. Lewis, Jr. will be with us for his 12th year as lead judge for the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Biotechnology & Biomedical Technologies.

More than 4.5 million dollars in scholarships and awards will be given out to the top projects at State Science Day. The public is welcome to view the student projects after the judging is completed on May 10th.

OASIf you are interested in sponsoring events or student awards, volunteering, or have questions regarding the Academy and its programs please contact Stepen at

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University of Toledo Medical Center’s new $36M simulator makes training nearly real | Toledo Blade, April 23, 2014

Aerpio Therapeutics closes $22M financing led by OrbiMed (pdf) | Aerpio Therapeutics, April 23, 2014

CTI Clinical Trial & Consulting Services continues to grow with promotions and new hires |, April 22, 2014

Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron presenting two FDA events in one day, April 29 | Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron, April 22, 2014

OSU collaboration with California’s Oakbio awarded $500k from Canada’s CCEMC to develop biofuels | PR Newswire, April 22, 2014

OSU students’ non-polluting KAir battery wins $100K from US DOE | Columbus Business First, April 22, 2014

The Medical Imaging Technology Partnering Forum part of Cleveland’s medical imaging strength |, April 22, 2014

Akebia Therapeutics stock rose 55% last week, from below $17 to above $26 | Cincinnati Business Courier, April 21, 2014

The Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron working with Nottingham Spirk, a Cleveland-based design firm | Akron Beacon Journal, April 21, 2014

CincyTech discusses recent funding for Assurex Health & Sirrus (Bioformix) | Cincinnati Business Courier, April 21, 2014

Akron Children’s joins with Cincinnati Children’s to offer access to new cancer treatments | Akron Beacon Journal, April 20, 2014

OSU Biomedical Engineering students and OncoFilter partners Kinshuk Mitra and Brett Geiger featured on 10TV Columbus | WBNS 10TV Columbus, April 19, 2014

Case Western Reserve University event emphasizes a constellation of research (slideshow) |, April 19, 2014

Airway Therapeutics granted orphan designation for its product to prevent BPD by European regulatory authority |, April 19, 2014

Assurex Health and Sirrus (Bioformix) lead 2014 Q1 funding rounds |, April 18, 2014

PhRMA Annual Meeting keynote speakers available on YouTube | PhRMA, April 18, 2014

Alkermes CEO Richard Pops speaks with Xconomy about building the business |, April 18, 2014

Case Western Reserve University scientists discuss a portable malaria detector (video) | Inside Science TV, April 18, 2014

Ashland University Schar Nursing College starts Doctor of Nursing Program | WMFD Mansfield, April 18, 2014

Kent State Researchers discover new liquid crystal structure | Kent State University, April 17, 2014