An Important 15 Minutes (EDITORS NOTE)

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 113 views 

The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) annual international convention — the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry — is expected to bring more than 16,000 people from around the world to San Francisco from June 6-9.

Not surprisingly, that did not initially grab my attention, until I was made aware of a local connection.

Biomedical technology company Boston Mountain Biotech LLC, headquartered at the Arkansas Research and Technology Park in Fayetteville, is one of 50 National Science Foundation-funded startups that’ve been invited to participate at this year’s convention.

Dr. Ellen Brune, a chemical engineer and University of Arkansas graduate, founded BMB five years ago after helping develop a patented method to simplify the production of pharmaceutical proteins used in drugs that treat a variety of diseases and health conditions.

BMB holds the exclusive license to market the trademarked Lotus purification platform.

Brune went to last year’s convention in Philadelphia, but this is the first time to be an attendee invited by the NSF, which awarded a $225,000 Phase I grant to BMB in December.

Brune said her main goal in San Francisco is to identify a contract manufacturer interested in partnering with the company through its Phase II scale-up work.

The intensive networking and partnering opportunities alone are invaluable, but Brune will also be able to give a 15-minute presentation about BMB, a prospect afforded only to select companies.

Considering it’s in front of a captive, global audience, those 15 minutes may one day be recalled as the most important in BMB’s young history.

“I want to convey that we are ready; that this is more than just a lab project,” Brune said. “We know this works very well at the lab scale, and we’re looking for those bigger partners to help us display Lotus’ ability on an actual manufacturing scale. That’s what it was developed for.”

For 15 minutes, you can make almost anyone believe just about anything.

It’s our hope Brune can keep them believing long after that.