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Hemoshear awarded $4.3 million grant to develop drug database

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Charlottesville-based HemoShear LLC has been awarded a grant of up to $4.3 million from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The grant will fund work by the biotechnology research company profiling the effects of 50 drugs on the human blood vessel system using HemoShear’s vascular surrogate system. Company officials say the resulting database will be valuable in predicting the safety and efficacy of potential new drugs.

HemoShear will use proprietary bioinformatics methods to develop a vascular gene signature that can be used to score new drug compounds for safety risk.

The grant is a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant award from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the NIH. This is the third SBIR grant HemoShear has received from NIH in two years.

“The importance and power of the HemoShear technology is only beginning to be understood,” Robert Ruffolo Jr., a HemoShear Scientific Advisory Board member, said in a statement. He is the former president of research and development at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. “We already know that the technology can play a role identifying and validating new molecular targets in the vascular system for which new drugs can be designed. We now believe the technology will be able to play an important role in predicting both vascular efficacy and side-effects of drug candidates earlier in the drug discovery process and thereby reduce te risk of failure in pharmaceutical research and development.”

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