Biosensor Startup Monod Secures $25M Seed Financing

Monod Bio, a life sciences company developing custom diagnostic biosensors that emit light to detect specific biomolecules of interest, today announced it has raised a $25M seed financing round. The round was led by Matrix Capital, with participation from the Global Health Investment Corporation, Cercano Management, The Washington Research Foundation, Boom Capital Ventures, Sahsen Ventures, and Pack Ventures. Monod is…
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Bladder Cancer Patient-Derived Organoids and Avatars for Personalized Cancer Discovery

Prediction of treatment response has attracted growing attention in cancer research to improve clinical outcomes via individualized treatment regimens. Patient-derived organoids and xenografts are novel preclinical model systems that recapitulate the genetic and phenotypic features of parental tumors for this purpose. Organoid culture has been successfully established in multiple cancers and used for assessment of drug and immunotherapy responses. Patient-derived…
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Seattle startup HDT Bio will develop a nasal spray designed to counteract a wide range of respiratory viruses with a nearly $1.8 million grant from the U.S. Army. “We hope to address not only disease progression, but transmission,” chief operating officer Christopher Pirie told GeekWire. HDT Bio’s platform involves a proprietary nanoparticle that delivers an attached RNA into cells. The technology is being harnessed…
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Celebrating Our Ten-Year Anniversary

This week the Institute for Protein Design celebrated its 10-year anniversary. Current members, advisors, supporters, and old friends all came together on campus to share memories and forge new friendships. It was a night to remember. A lot has changed in the past decade. At our founding, the concept of protein design was largely unproven. We believed that a new…
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The authors report a new high-affinity aptamer that binds to the transferrin receptor, also called CD71. Aptamers are oligonucleotides that fold into tertiary structures and can bind with high affinity to targets such as proteins. CD71 is overexpressed in rapidly growing cells, including many malignant cells. They show that the aptamer can be used to remove circulating malignant cells in the blood, improving the safety of cell therapy manufacturing practices.  They also collaborate with a team of biochemists from City College of New York to understand how the aptamer binds to CD71.
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Breath of Fresh Air: Towards Unraveling the Molecular Underpinnings of Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is an important risk factor for multiple diseases (1). 425 million adults aged 30 – 69 are estimated to have severe OSA, including 65 million in the most affected country China (2). Positive airway pressure, the primary treatment for OSA, has relatively low adherence (3), emphasizing a continued need for more personalized treatments. OSA and related…
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Meet the Researcher: Ayokunle Olanrewaju

Ayokunle (Ayo) Olanrewaju is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering and of Bioengineering. His research applies 3D microfabrication, autonomous microfluidics and molecular assays to address medical challenges in treating infectious and chronic diseases, such as HIV, tuberculosis and cancer. He develops technologies for rapid and user-friendly monitoring of medications on an on-going basis to help patients adhere to drug dosing…
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UW Bioengineering Ph.D. student, Julien Bloch, was named the 2022 recipient of the Center for Neurotechnology (CNT) Best Paper Award for Neurotechnology Advancement. The award acknowledges and promotes technical papers written by students affiliated with CNT that make identifiable contributions in neurotechnology or human-machine interaction. Julien’s paper titled Network structure mediates functional reorganization induced by optogenetic stimulation of non-human primate sensorimotor cortex was…
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Scientists have constructed the most complete and detailed single-cell map of embryo development in any animal to date, using the fruit fly as a model organism. Published August 5 in Science, the study, co-led by BBI Scientific Director Dr. Jay Shendure and Dr. Eileen Furlong of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), harnesses data from over one million embryonic cells spanning all stages…
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The goal: Improve survival rates for lung cancer patients. The question researchers want to answer: Are there new ways to determine the best treatment for these patients?  This is what UW Medicine researchers hope to discover through a five-year, $2.7 million grant from the National Cancer Institute.  “Diagnostic tests have known error rates,” said Dr. Farhood Farjah, associate professor of surgery, Division…
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