Innovation Campus welcomes new partner to Biotech Connector

Nebraska Innovation Campus

Tiffany Lee, March 6, 2017 | View original publication

Innovation Campus welcomes new partner to Biotech Connector

Nebraska Innovation Campus has announced a new partner. Dan Duncan, NIC’s executive director, said Adjuvance Technologies Inc. will move into Biotech Connector space on the campus this summer.

Adjuvance, a privately held biopharmaceutical company, empowers health through fundamental breakthroughs in vaccine adjuvant design and manufacturing. Adjuvants are critical components that are added to many vaccines to improve the immune response.

Dr. Tyler Martin, a Hebron native, Silicon Valley veteran and the CEO of Adjuvance, recently received a $1.5 million Phase 2 NIH SBIR grant. This grant will allow the Adjuvance team to complete the testing needed to move their products into clinical trials.

Martin said expanding the footprint of Adjuvance to include space in the Biotech Connector is critical to the company’s success. Without the wet lab facilities in the Biotech Connector, Martin would have looked outside of Lincoln for expansion.

“Our company started at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and we are pleased to open new lab space at NIC to advance our projects in a cost-effective manner,” Martin said.

The Biotech Connector at NIC provides a solution to many of the challenges that startup and small biotech companies currently face in Nebraska, Duncan said.

“These challenges include wet lab space and programming,” he said.

The Biotech Connector is a collaboration between Nebraska Innovation Campus, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Invest Nebraska, Nebraska Department of Economic Development and Bio Nebraska. The space features vertically and horizontally integrated programs designed to provide budding innovators and entrepreneurs with access to the physical resources and soft skills training needed to spark additional biotechnology firm progress in the state.

Phil Kozera, executive director of Bio Nebraska Life Sciences Association, said the state’s biotech community offers a variety of well-paying jobs and leverages the state’s expertise in agriculture, health and renewable sectors.

“Today’s announcement is significant and a wonderful example of a Nebraskan returning home to positively impact our industry and state,” Kozera said. “These types of collaborations are critical to growing Nebraska’s biotech community and are a result of shared resources and vision for what’s possible for the state’s 21st century economy.”

Courtney Dentlinger, Nebraska Department of Economic Development department director, said the project is “an outstanding example of how working with our partners in the Biotech Connector can help grow the State’s economy through innovation that leads to high-wage, high-skill jobs.”

NIC is a research campus designed to facilitate new and in-depth partnerships between the university and private-sector businesses. At full build-out, NIC will be a 2.2-million square-foot campus with uniquely designed buildings and amenities that inspire creative activity and engagement, transforming ideas into global innovation. Tetrad Property Group is the private-sector development partner for NIC. Tetrad provides a full range of development services for the campus, including master planning, construction management, leasing and property management.

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