New Precision Medicine Program to Study Role of Genomics in Disease

HealthITAnalytics: | February 13, 2020

The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) has announced that it will establish a new precision medicine and genomics program within its Division of Intramural Research. The new program will leverage innovative genomics and informatics tools to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease, as well as develop the next generation of healthcare. Over the last decade, advancements in genomic technologies, computation, and data science have led to the growth of large genomic datasets, containing DNA from hundreds of thousands of participants that is collected and stored in biobanks. These biobanks allow researchers to

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Low in cost and high in diagnostic value with applications that cover nearly every tissue in the human body, medical ultrasound has become one of the most popular imaging exams worldwide – and not just among healthcare professionals. Its lack of ionizing radiation amid gathering public concern about the cancer-causing potential of X-rays, particularly those in CT, makes ultrasound appealing to patients.


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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Radius XR™ Named as the CES 2023 Innovation Award Honoree for Wearable Device That Combines Therapy and Diagnostic Capabilities

Radius XR | November 17, 2022

Today at the CES Unveiled New York event, Radius XR™, a new fashion-forward wearable healthcare technology brand, was named a CES® 2023 Innovation Awards Honoree in both the Digital Health and Virtual & Augmented Reality categories. Radius was selected from among a record number of submissions to this year’s CES Innovation Awards program. The announcement was made ahead of CES 2023, the influential technology event, happening Jan. 5-8 in Las Vegas, NV. Radius XR builds on the therapeutic legacy of IrisVision, a leader in digital vision technologies and itself a 2019 CES Innovation Winner. The Radius proprietary XR assistive device brings together—for the first time—multimodal diagnostics, practice management, and patient engagement. “This is a tremendous honor for our new company. It follows on the success of our IrisVision visual assistive device, which has provided a life-changing solution for thousands of individuals living with legal blindness and low-vision conditions. Radius expands on our commitment to vision health by providing the eyecare industry with an easy-to-use wearable device capable of performing standard perimetry tests. Other exams include color vision, visual acuity, contrast sensitivity—a comprehensive suite of standard vision tests. Development of additional exams is ongoing.” Radius founder and CEO Ammad Khan Radius enables patients to quickly and easily conduct vision tests with minimal guidance or intervention by the staff. The device’s RadiusExam® software and proprietary algorithms provide diagnostic testing results equivalent to current exam gold standards. “By designing our own hardware and software, we’re able to overcome many of the challenges inherent in the off-the-shelf headsets already on the market. Matching visual field strategies, background luminance, stimulus size and dynamic range allows us to mirror the current standards, making it easy and intuitive for clinicians to transition to Radius,” said John Trefethen, Radius Chief Marketing Officer. In addition, the included Business Suite helps clinicians manage everyday aspects critical to their practice's ongoing success. Features like patient education, staff training and clinician onboarding are now possible inline with the Radius platform. Radius is the industry’s lightest wearable device and has the look and feel of a pair of stylish sunglasses. The compact, lightweight design overcomes the challenges of expensive and bulky legacy devices that force patients to sit in uncomfortable positions for testing. With Radius, exams can be conducted anywhere, even in the waiting room, eliminating the need to shuttle patients between machines, which can be challenging for individuals with mobility or vision issues. The CES Innovation Awards program, owned and produced by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®, is an annual competition honoring outstanding design and engineering in 27 consumer technology product categories. Those with the highest rating receive the “Best of Innovation” distinction. An elite panel of industry expert judges, including members of the media, designers, engineers and more, reviewed submissions based on innovation, engineering and functionality, aesthetics, and design. The CES 2023 Innovation Awards honorees, including product descriptions and photos, can be found at CES.tech/innovation. Radius will be on display at the Innovation Awards Showcase at CES 2023 in Las Vegas in January. About Radius XR The Radius XR platform is a portable vision diagnostic and patient engagement system that combines medical-grade diagnostics, business management, and patient education tools in a single wearable XR device. The RadiusExam® and proprietary algorithms provide diagnostic testing results equivalent to current exam gold standards, with the clinical science validated by Deming regression. As the algorithm presents stimuli to patients, it adapts to responses to maximize the algorithm's speed. The total hardware and software system helps medical professionals diagnose patients with accuracy, grow their eyecare practices, enhance patient engagement, and reduce staff workload by enabling patients to perform self-guided vision exams with minimal supervision.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Athlete Training and Health Expands with New Facilities, Team Members

Athlete | September 27, 2022

Whether for active adults or Olympians, Athlete Training and Health (ATH) encourages its athletes to strive for their own personal best. ATH is raising its own bar on community health and performance training once again, with the announcement of two new facilities in the Houston area and the addition of another world-renowned coach to its executive staff. “What we know is that evidence-led training allows everyone to benefit from the science behind the best in health and performance. Expanding and offering this world-class environment and approach will benefit athletes of all ages and abilities. We are pleased to collaborate with healthcare systems, professional sports teams, universities and school districts to continue pursuing a new level of health and performance training for many communities.” Greg Centilli, chief operating officer for ATH and a recent addition to the growing ATH organization Construction has begun on a new ATH sports medicine and human performance facility in Pearland. Located on the Memorial Hermann Pearland Hospital campus at 16100 South Freeway, the roughly 13K-square-foot facility will house unparalleled human performance expertise and opportunities to train in an adult fitness space, a professional sport-style weight room, and on indoor and outdoor turf fields. The facility, a collaboration between ATH, Memorial Hermann and UT Physicians Orthopedics, is expected to open fall 2023. Also in the works is an ATH facility in Cypress, also in collaboration with Memorial Hermann. On the campus of Memorial Hermann Cypress Hospital at 27800 Highway 290, ATH will open and operate a roughly 13K-square-foot facility in 2024. At this location, student, collegiate, professional and adult athletes will find the expertise needed to up their game on their own performance. “We are extremely pleased to welcome Professor Cronin to ATH. His science-based expertise and educational experience, alongside his international standing, will help educate investors and the general markets on the significance and industry importance of ATH-led initiatives,” said Centilli. Cronin serves as professor of strength and conditioning at the Sports Performance Research Institute of New Zealand (SPRINZ) at Auckland University of Technology (AUT). His research interests are in human movement, particularly around strengthening of muscle, injury resistance, return to play and high-performance sports. Cronin’s research has been published in more than 400 peer-reviewed papers. AUT and ATH have a long-standing history. Post-graduate fellows from AUT conduct research at ATH as part of a team involving coaches and select students, as well as collaborate on sport technology development. “I know the organization well, and my research interests and expertise align well with ATH’s interest in sporting performance and allied health, so I’m very excited to be advising ATH about the latest science-based studies and learnings to support their people, programs and products,” Cronin said. Celebrating Wins While its clients celebrate personal victories, ATH celebrates industry wins. Readers of Living Magazine recently voted ATH the “2022 Best Health Club/Gym” winner in McKinney/Allen and in Katy/Fulshear via an annual award competition that allows readers to nominate and then vote for their favorite companies by category and market. ATH also was honored to be named a “2022 Neighborhood Favorite” in NextDoor’s annual celebration of local businesses, and a finalist for “2022 Best Gym/Fitness Center in Houston” by readers of Houston Chronicle in an annual awards competition voted on by Houstonians. “While it’s important for us to acknowledge the hard work of our coaches and staff who make awards like these possible, it’s our job to continuously raise the bar, so we consider this just the beginning,” noted Centilli. “We are excited about what we have accomplished and are even more excited for the developments ahead.” Whether it’s losing the pandemic pounds, living in a healthier body, or even reaching the pinnacle of your sport, the certified, experienced sports performance experts at ATH have the expertise and a program tailored just for you. ABOUT ATHLETE TRAINING AND HEALTH (ATH) ATH is more than a gym. It’s a place of community, inspiration and results. ATH provides award-winning adult fitness and sports performance training for youth, collegiate and professional athletes. ATH utilizes best practices from human performance research to provide a world-class training environment for athletes and adults of all fitness levels collaborating with hospitals, professional sports teams, universities and school districts to set new standards for health and performance training. ATH invests heavily in the post-graduate education of its performance coaches, who in turn develop evidence-led training programs guaranteed to deliver sustainable results. ATH currently operates two training centers in the Houston metro area and one in Allen, north of DFW.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Antengene Announces ATG-101 Granted Orphan Drug Designation by the U.S. FDA

Antengene Corporation Limited | September 19, 2022

Antengene Corporation Limited a leading innovative, commercial-stage global biopharmaceutical company dedicated to discovering, developing and commercializing first-in-class and/or best-in-class medicines for hematology and oncology, announced that ATG-101, the company's in-house developed novel PD-L1/4-1BB bispecific antibody, has been granted an Orphan Drug Designation (ODD) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. This ODD will help Antengene facilitate regulatory communication with the FDA, accelerate the clinical development and the future registration of ATG-101. At present, no PD-L1/4-1BB bispecific antibody has been approved for the treatment of pancreatic cancer worldwide. Orphan Drugs, also known as Rare Disease Drugs, refers to pharmaceutical products developed for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of rare diseases or conditions. Orphan Drug Designations by the U.S. FDA are meant to support the development of drug candidates that could potentially bring substantial therapeutic benefits to patients with rare diseases and to provide incentives to the subsequent development, registration and commercialization to designated drugs. Those incentives include tax credit on expenditures incurred in clinical studies, a waiver of the New Drug Application (NDA) fee, and 7-year market exclusivity in the U.S. regardless of the patent status of the designated drug. Pancreatic cancer is a highly malignant type of gastrointestinal cancer. According to the statistics by the World Health Organization (WHO), pancreatic cancer was ranked 13th and 7th globally by its incidence and mortality rates in 2012. In 2018, the U.S. reported over 55,000 newly- diagnosed pancreatic cancer cases and 44,330 related deaths. Whereas still defined as an orphan disease currently, it is projected that by 2030, pancreatic cancer will become the second most common cause of cancer-related deaths. ATG-101 is a novel PD-L1/4-1BB bispecific antibody that was designed to block the binding of immunosuppressive PD-1/PD-L1 and conditionally induce 4-1BB stimulation, thus activating anti-tumor immune effectors, while delivering enhanced anti-tumor activity, with an improved safety profile. In preclinical studies, ATG-101 demonstrated significant anti-tumor activity in animal models of resistant tumors as well as those that had progressed on anti-PD-1/L1 treatment. Furthermore, ATG-101 has also shown an excellent safety profile in Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) toxicology studies. ATG-101 is the first PD-L1/4-1BB bispecific antibody entering clinical development in Australia and is currently being evaluated in clinical studies in Australia, China, and the U.S. "We are very encouraged by this Orphan Drug Designation from the U.S. FDA and are hopeful that ATG-101 will offer a novel therapeutic to patients with pancreatic cancer. As Antengene's first in-house developed asset with global rights, ATG-101 has already entered clinical development in Australia, China, and the U.S. We will strive to accelerate the global clinical development of ATG-101 in efforts to provide a new treatment option to patients around the world." Dr. Bo Shan, Antengene's Chief Scientific Officer About Antengene Antengene Corporation Limited ("Antengene", SEHK: 6996.HK) is a leading commercial-stage R&D-driven global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development, manufacturing and commercialization of innovative first-in-class/best-in-class therapeutics for the treatment of hematologic malignancies and solid tumors, in realizing its vision of "Treating Patients Beyond Borders". Since 2017, Antengene has built a broad and expanding pipeline of 15 clinical and preclinical assets, of which 10 are global rights assets, and 5 came with rights for Asia Pacific markets including the Greater China region. To date, Antengene has obtained 24 investigational new drug (IND) approvals in the U.S. and Asia, and submitted 6 new drug applications (NDAs) in multiple Asia Pacific markets, with the NDA for XPOVIO® already approved in mainland China, South Korea, Singapore and Australia.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Francisco Partners to Acquire bswift from CVS Health

Francisco Partners | October 04, 2022

Francisco Partners a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology businesses, announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire bswift, a leading provider of benefits technology and services, from CVS Health. Founded in 1996, bswift is a provider of software and services that streamline benefits and human resources administration, offering a cloud-based technology platform with best-in-class service. The company combines its deep expertise and passion for technology innovation with strong customer service and a unique consumer-driven approach. bswift helps its partners and employers simplify administration, manage employee benefits, reduce administrative costs, and connect employees with resources needed to achieve their health ambitions. The company serves millions of employees with a single benefit destination across all life events from hire to retire. bswift will continue to partner with CVS Health and Aetna, a CVS Health company, to provide benefits technology to its employees and client base. “CVS Health and Aetna remain committed to bswift and to the clients, partners and members we support in benefits administration. FP’s deep expertise in technology and proven track record in nurturing and growing technology businesses will enable bswift’s loyal base of employees to continue delivering innovative solutions.” Mark Santos, Vice President, Diversified Commercial Solutions at Aetna Since its launch over 20 years ago, Francisco Partners has invested in over 400 technology companies, making it one of the most active and long-standing investors in the technology industry. Francisco Partners has experience in the healthcare and human capital technology market and its investments have focused on companies that provide the best possible products and service for its customers and partners. Francisco Partners also has extensive experience partnering with corporations to execute divisional carve-outs with transactions such as IBM’s Watson Health business (now Merative) and Discovery Inc.’s Discovery Education business. Justin Chen, Partner at Francisco Partners, said, “We are excited to partner with bswift and help the team continue to grow its robust technology and service offerings across benefits and healthcare. bswift is uniquely positioned as a market leader to help employers navigate the evolving industry trends and opportunities to holistically engage employees through health, wellness and financial benefits.” “We appreciate CVS Health’s work in growing this business and are confident that our partnership will help bswift drive crucial focus in executing on organic and inorganic growth strategies,” said Anders Mikkelsen, Vice President at Francisco Partners. “We look forward to supporting the talented employees and management team.” Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2022, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal advisor and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC served as financial advisor to Francisco Partners. CVS Health engaged Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP and Dechert LLP as legal counsel and Goldman Sachs as exclusive financial advisor. About Francisco Partners Francisco Partners is a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology and technology-enabled businesses. Since its launch over 20 years ago, Francisco Partners has invested in over 400 technology companies, making it one of the most active and longstanding investors in the technology industry. With approximately $45 billion in capital raised to date, the firm invests in opportunities where its deep sectoral knowledge and operational expertise can help companies realize their full potential. About bswift bswift helps customers change the way their employees perceive and engage with their benefits through a proven blend of adaptive technology, service excellence, and compassionate service. Their intuitive, personalized enrollment experience inspires confidence and connects employees to the resources they need to achieve their personal ambitions. Partnering with enterprises nationwide and serving millions of employees, bswift offers cloud-based technology and services for online enrollment, interactive decision support, ACA compliance reporting and employee engagement.

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Spotlight

Low in cost and high in diagnostic value with applications that cover nearly every tissue in the human body, medical ultrasound has become one of the most popular imaging exams worldwide – and not just among healthcare professionals. Its lack of ionizing radiation amid gathering public concern about the cancer-causing potential of X-rays, particularly those in CT, makes ultrasound appealing to patients.

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