J&J hosts drug delivery implant maker at its new Houston JLABS incubator

Personalized Molecular Drug-delivery System (top left)--Courtesy of NanoMedical Systems

Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) is hosting nanotechnology specialist NanoMedical Systems at its new JLABS life science incubator in Houston, signaling that it has interest in the company's drug delivery implant and injectable antitumor particles.

The Austin, TX-based company makes the Personalized Molecular Drug-delivery System. The quarter-sized implant contains a chip from which the molecules diffuse into the body. According to the company website, the chip achieves "constant release" of the selected drug thanks to its so-called nanochannels, which are about the size of a specific drug molecule.

Meanwhile, NanoMedical Systems' Multi-Stage nanoVector Drug Delivery System consists of a disc-shaped nanoporous silicon particle that transports drug payloads to cancerous tumors while protecting them from enzymatic degradation and the immune system.

And the company's diagnostic chip can apparently separate "relatively large and abundant serum proteins and other matter that have little clinical significance from circulating peptides and protein fragments (possible biomarkers) that provide diagnostic potential."

Selection as a JLABS company does not entail a formal alliance with J&J. NanoMedical Systems is one of 21 resident drug and device companies at the Houston incubator, making it the company's fifth incubator. The 34,000-square-foot building contains shared lab space with the latest equipment, private offices, and value-added business services, J&J says. It can host up to 50 startups.

"We're thrilled to expand our JLABS initiative into Houston," Dr. Paul Stoffels, the chief scientific officer and worldwide Chairman of J&J's pharma unit, said in a statement. "The city's rich research, academic, and investment communities provide a robust ecosystem of early stage innovation, and present a unique opportunity to collaborate with Texas startups to deliver much-needed therapeutics, medical devices, and consumer health solutions to patients and consumers more quickly."

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