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The New Jersey Life Sciences Vendors Alliance (NJLSVA) is a coalition of businesses, individuals and academia who provide goods and services to New Jersey’s life sciences companies.

The NJLSVA was founded to educate suppliers on trends in industry procurement and public policy that affects the life sciences industry.

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Monthly Archives: February 2015

NJ Human Services Commissioner Jennifer Velez Stepping Down After Eight Years

Trenton, NJ, February 17, 2015 ― Susan K. Livio this afternoon reports in The Star-Ledger that Governor Chris Christie’s office today confirmed that Human Services Commissioner Jennifer Velez, who runs the largest and most expensive department in state government, is resigning at the end of the month.

Velez, 49, New Jersey’s longest-serving Human Services Commissioner, is leaving after eight years in what widely regarded is as the most challenging job in state government.

She will become Senior Vice President for Strategy and Planning at Barnabas Health, the largest hospital network in New Jersey. Continue reading

Medical Innovation: Can 3-D Printing of Living Tissue Speed Up Drug Development?

New York, NY, February 17, 2015 ― Caitlin McCabe reports in The Wall Street Journal that each year, the pharmaceutical industry spends more than $50 billion on research and development.  But the path to drug approval by the Food and Drug Administration is laden with abrupt failures in late-phase testing.  Only one in 5,000 drugs will make it to market, according to one estimate.

One small biology company believes it has a solution to the pipeline problem: 3-D printing.

McCabe reports that at San Diego-based Organovo Holdings Inc., the idea is to predict the toxicity of a drug in its earliest days by testing it on real, living human liver tissue—created at the click of a button with a 3-D printer. Continue reading

Rutgers Research: Ingredient in Olive Oil Looks Promising in Fight Against Cancer

New Brunswick, NJ, February 17, 2015 ― Ken Branson reports that a Rutgers nutritional scientist and two cancer biologists at New York City’s Hunter College have found that an ingredient in extra-virgin olive oil kills a variety of human cancer cells without harming healthy cells.

The ingredient is oleocanthal, a compound that ruptures a part of the cancerous cell, releasing enzymes that cause cell death.

Paul Breslin, professor of nutritional sciences in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, and David Foster and Onica LeGendre of Hunter College, report that oleocanthal kills cancerous cells in the laboratory by rupturing vesicles that store the cell’s waste.   Continue reading

Forbes: New Study Looks at the Price and ROIs of New Drugs

New York, NJ, February 13, 2015 ― Arlene Weintraub reports in Forbes that if you any pharmaceutical executive to justify the high price tags attached to most new drugs, you’re likely to hear a common refrain: Drug companies must charge lofty prices so they can make a sufficient return on investment, which they can then pour into research meant to yield new breakthrough products.

Now, Weintraub writes, those industry executives can point to a new study to back up that viewpoint.

The journal Health Affairs has published a paper titled “Decline in Economic Returns from New Drugs Raises Questions about Sustaining Innovations.”  Continue reading

Life Sciences Incubator Opens on Kean University Campus

Somerset, NJ, February 13, 2015 ― Andrew Sheldon reports in NJBIZ that the Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship has announced the launch of its new life sciences incubator located in the state-of-the-art New Jersey Center for Science, Technology and Mathematics.

The NJCSTM is located on the Union campus of Kean University, which is a founding member of the ILSE. Continue reading

Rutgers Announces New Heads of Medicine and Translational Science at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

New Brunswick, NJ, February 12, 2015 ― Rutgers has announced appointments at its Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

Fredric E. Wondisford, M.D., has been named professor of medicine and chair of medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and chief of the department of medicine at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital.

In addition, Sally Radovick, M.D., has been named professor of pediatrics and senior associate dean for clinical and translational research at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Continue reading

New Report: Full Enrollment Under ACA Could Bring Huge Benefits to New Jersey

Trenton, NJ, February 11, 2015 ― Beth Fitzgerald reports in NJBIZ that with the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) open enrollment period closing on February 15, reaching full enrollment would secure health coverage for 1.2 million New Jerseyans while pumping more than $5 billion in federal funds a year into the Garden State.

That finding is according to a report from New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP). Continue reading

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Doubles Commitment to Helping Children Grow Up at a Healthy Weight

Princeton, NJ, February 10, 2015 ― Recognizing that obesity remains one of the biggest threats to the health of our children, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has announced it will commit $500 million over the next ten years to expand efforts to ensure that all children in the United States — no matter who they are or where they live ― can grow up at a healthy weight.

Building on a $500 million commitment made in 2007, the nation’s largest health philanthropy will have dedicated more than $1 billion to reversing the childhood obesity epidemic.   Continue reading

Rutgers Wants to Partner More with Private Sector, Says Research and Development SVP

Bridgewater, NJ, February 10, 2015 ― Mike Deak reported on MyCentralJersey.com that Rutgers University is making it easier for businesses to develop and sustain a relationship with the university, which as a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU) is ranked among the top academic research institutions in the country.

That was the message Christopher Molloy, Ph.D., R.Ph., Rutgers senior vice president for research and economic development, gave on January 30 at the Fifth Friday Friars Public Policy Luncheon sponsored by the Somerset County Business Partnership.

Dr. Molloy said that, while universities traditionally have not enjoyed a close working relationship with the private sector, Rutgers is changing that.  “We’re making it easier to work with Rutgers,” he told attendees.  “We’re very much business-oriented.” Continue reading

HHS Reports Almost 6.5 Million Consumers Qualify for Average Tax Credit of $268 Per Month Through Obamacare Marketplaces

Washington, DC, February 9, 2015 ― The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released today a report outlining the impact of advanced premium tax credits on premiums in the Health Insurance Marketplaces.

Almost 6.5 million individuals in the 37 states using the HealthCare.gov platform are estimated to qualify for an average of $268 per person/month in advanced premium tax credits.

Among consumers who are signed up for 2015 coverage to date in the 37 HealthCare.gov states, 8 in 10 could choose a plan with a premium of $100 or less after tax credits, based on available options. Continue reading