“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.” — Carl Sagan
- A blood test to identify Alzheimer's
- Passion, purpose, and community move mountains
- Purdue takes on quantum science
- Omaha and tech transfer
- A way to slow myopia in children
- Fueling the Future
- Name that Flyover City!
September 24, 2020
Eli Lilly and Co. betting on Alzheimer’s blood test
Image by Belova59 from Pixabay
Eli Lilly and Co. scientists are optimistic they’ve found a simple blood test that can identify people with Alzheimer’s disease. In recent studies, the test was accurate at identifying people with Alzheimer’s up to 98% of the time. Current tests, such as tests of memory and thinking skills, are often unreliable; tests of spinal fluid and brain scans are expensive and invasive. So a simple, inexpensive blood test would be a major breakthrough.
Alzheimer’s is a devastating form of dementia that afflicts more than 5 million people in the US. While there are promising remedies in the pipeline, current drugs only treat symptoms and don't stop Alzheimer’s advance. The Lilly study focuses on a protein called p-tau217 that is key to the new blood test but could also one day lead to a cure.
If scientists can demonstrate that p-tau217 is indeed a biomarker for Alzheimer’s, it could also help distinguish Alzheimer’s patients from those with other types of dementia, leading to tailored treatments.
Passion, work, and community can move mountains
The team at Hive Networks understands the benefit of having passion in a mission. And that mission is an important one—bringing patients, parents, clinicians, and researchers together in a working community for better health outcomes.
John Bostick, CEO, originally planned to retire and take some time off after 36 years in IT and Software Development. Ten days into retirement, he met Dr. Peter Margolis, researcher and change agent from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Margolis was devoted to improving outcomes for pediatric and chronic diseases through Learning Health Networks. Bostick knew that software and analytics had the potential to increase the spread of the model Margolis was working on. He was sold.
“It didn’t take me long to come out of retirement to become part of a global movement to provide the quality of life that everyone deserves, help increase the speed of improved outcomes, and make the US healthcare system more affordable,” Bostick said.
Scott Roth, CTO, is also passionate about solving problems in healthcare with technology solutions that truly help people and are developed by a collaborative team. The Hive mission is to provide a technology platform that brings working communities together to improve the quality of care of millions of people.
“The team we have assembled at Hive provides motivation for me to keep pushing forward. Our team lives the mission and is working hard together to provide solutions to enable these Learning Health Networks. Being part of this team is more than just a job,” Roth said. “Providing a safe community for patients to find the information they need, to share their problems or struggles, and be a part of improving their own health is extremely important.”
Click here to learn more about HIVE Networks and their passion driven team.
Purdue takes on AI and quantum science
Purdue University is joining a nationwide effort to develop quantum science technologies. The national push is funded by a $1 billion investment by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Energy. The parties will establish a dozen new AI and quantum science research institutes nationwide.
The Boilermakers will participate through the Quantum Science Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Other research centers include the Argonne, Brookhaven, Fermi, and Lawrence Berkeley national laboratories. The university already has major research efforts underway in topological quantum materials, quantum algorithms, and “the quantum internet.” One aspect of the work involves developing a "quantum workforce" to meet the needs of the burgeoning demand in the fields of AI and quantum science.
Homegrown technology in Nebraska is booming, and commercializing that technology is critical to the state’s economic future.
Universities in the Cornhusker State, including the University of Nebraska at Omaha, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and the University of Nebraska Medical Center, are producing marketable technologies and doing an admirable job of commercializing them. Examples include surgical mini-robots, a medical shield, pharmaceuticals, and bio-mechanics. There’s also a self-pacing treadmill and concussion-detection tech.
“We have an immensely supportive environment in Omaha,” says Joe Runge, associate director of UNeTech, which coordinates the creation of business startups from UNMC and UNO research.
Contact lenses slow myopia in children
If your reaction to that headline was not to marvel that contact lenses could slow myopia but to shake your head in amazement that grownups got kids to wear contact lenses, we are with you. But we found that it's not a problem to fit younger kids in contact lenses.
A study by The Ohio State University and the University of Houston has shown that multifocal contact lenses slowed the progression of myopia (or nearsightedness, which is what you have if you’re wearing your glasses on top of your head while you’re reading this) in children as young as seven. At issue is the tendency for children’s eyes to grow too long from front to back. The multifocal lenses add focusing power to the eyes, which slows the growth that causes myopia. You can check out the full study here.
- Rent Ready, headquartered in Charlotte, has received an investment from Defiance Ventures, a B2B enterprise tech VC firm. Rent Ready offers a make-ready service for apartment communities, including a surface-spraying technology that mitigates COVID-19 risk.
- Ohio Content services provider Hyland is acquiring Alfresco, a Boston-based open source digital business platform. The deal is expected to close in Q4 2020.
- Minority business enterprise BCforward has announced the acquisition of tapQA, a quality assurance firm based in Minneapolis. BCforward is a global IT consulting and staffing company located in Indianapolis. Financial terms were not disclosed.
- Pitchly has completed a $25 million funding round, led by Next Level Ventures, with participation from Great North Labs, Twelve19 Ventures, Wellmark, and Nelnet Venture . The database-driven document generation company is headquartered in Des Moines.
- Indy’s MITO Material Solutions recently closed an oversubscribed $1 million Series Seed funding round, led by Dipalo Ventures and Clean Energy Trust, both based in Chicago. MITO produces polymer modifiers that “enhance product performance.” The company previously received over $1.1 million in R&D grants from the National Science Foundation.
Attend the virtual Vogt Awards Demo Day on Oct. 15
Register now for the virtual Vogt Awards Demo Day on Thursday, Oct. 15.
Meet the six 2020 early-stage companies selected to each receive a $25,000 grant, participation in a 10-week lean startup program, coaching from scalable startup CEOs, industry mentorship, and strategic introductions. With the announcement of these winners, the Community Foundation of Louisville is honored to have supported 84 companies with $3.5 million in Vogt Award grants throughout the program's 20-year history. You don’t want to miss this celebration, register here.
It's time for our favorite trivia game!
Test your Flyover geographic knowledge with these three "stumpers." There are no prizes (except for bragging rights).
- This city holds an annual event called Hash Bash
- Here’s a strange distinction for ya: The pro football stadium in this city broke a record for being the loudest open air stadium.
- In 1977, Elvis Presley stopped at a gas station in this city to break up a fight. What city was it?
Click here for today's answers.
Share stories, offer suggestions, or send comments!