SoCalBio Weekly Update
January 31, 2014

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Public Policy
Obamacare Champion Rep. Henry Waxman to Retire

Congressman Waxman who represents Congressional District 33 on the Westside of Los Angeles County has been very influential in many healthcare reform initiatives in Congress. Among other things, he helped craft the Affordable Care Act, the Safe Medical Device Act, and the Hatch-Waxman Generic Drug Law .... Read more at the LA Times 
Legislative Day in DC
Join SoCalBio at the BIO Legislative Day in DC
April 8 and 9
Join SoCalBio's team and other biotechnology executives from across the country who will go to D.C. for a day and a half of legislative briefings and advocacy on Capitol Hill. This fly-in is organized by the Biotechnology Industry Organization to give you the opportunity to meet with your congressional representative and other legislators to educate them about the importance of the biotech industry for job and wealth creation.
Contact SoCalBio, if you are a bioscience industry executive interested in participation and located in Los Angeles, Orange County, the Inland Empire and the communities of the Gold Coast of Ventura and Santa Barbara. Send email to:
The List
pills.jpgThe Top 100 Selling Drugs in 2013

Otsuka Pharmaceutical's antipsychotic drug Abilify, or aripiprazole, was the best-selling drug in the U.S. last year, according to (based on three quarters of sale stats). AstraZeneca's proton pump inhibitor Nexium, or esomeprazole, ranked second, followed by Lilly's Cymbalta, AbbVei's Humira and AstraZeneca's Crestor... See the list
Cholesterol Drug
Amgen Outpaces its Rivals in the Race for a Blockbuster Cholesrterol Drug

According to FierceBioetech, "Amgen is batting 1.000 in its ambitious clinical program for the promising PCSK9 cholesterol drug evolocumab AMG 145, unveiling a 5th successful Phase III study as it prepares for an FDA application that could give it first-mover status in a blockbuster field" ... Read more
SoCalBio Leadership

SoCalBio Elects Veteran Life Sciences Investor Joseph A. Boystak to Board of Directors


The Southern California Biomedical Council (SoCalBio) has elected life sciences investor Joseph (Joe) A. Boystak to its board of directors. The election was held during SoCalBio's board meeting on January 23rd. 


"Joe brings decades of experience in corporate finance and life sciences investing, and he knows how to help guide SoCalBio's efforts to improve how local emerging companies access sources of funding" said Robert Greenberg, MD, PhD, SoCalBio Board Chairman and President & CEO of Sylmar-based Second Sight Products Corporation.


Upon his election, Mr. Boystak said, "I am delighted to join the SoCalBio board and to help the organization expand its role as an advocate and conduit for everything necessary to accelerate growth of the L.A. region's biomedical industry. I look forward to working with SoCalBio to improve access to capital resources, including novel and innovative funding opportunities." .... Click here to read press release

Moving In
NeuroSigma Recruits Former Allergan Marketing Executive Gregory F. Brooks

The Westwood-based NeuroSigma -- a medical device  company focused on commerecializing its non-invasive Monarch eTNS System for the treatment of neurologic and neuropsychiatric disorders --  announced the appointment of Gregory F. Brooks (photo right) as Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. Mr. Brooks brings more than 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical, biologic and medical device industries to NeuroSigma ... Read more



 Kathryn Tunstall Joins STAAR Surgical's 

Board of Directors


On January 30, 2014, the Board of Directors of the Monrovia-based STAAR Surgical Company elected Kathryn Tunstall (photo right) to serve in a newly created seat pursuant to an increase in size of the Board from six to seven members. From 2000 to 2013, Ms. Tunstall served as Chairman of Conceptus, Inc., a developer, maker, and marketer of medical devices for women. Ms. Tunstall served as Conceptus' first President and Chief Executive Officer from 1993-2000. In 2013 Conceptus was acquired by Bayer AG for $1.1 billion. Prior to joining Conceptus in 2000, Ms. Tunstall served for seven years in executive leadership roles with Baxter International, most recently as President of the Company's Edwards Less Invasive Surgery Division. Read more 

Event Announcement


Join SoCalBio at MD&M for a unique breakout session on
Building Talent to Build Medical Devices
Wednesday, February 12th from 12:30-1:00 pm 
Tech Theater, Booth 3541, Between Halls B and C
Click Here to Register and Attend the MD&M Conference
February 11 - 13 in Anaheim

Recognizing the impending skills gap in medical device manufacturing, industry and academic experts from SoCalBio are teaming up with national and regional initiatives to prepare the American workforce specifically for the medical device industry. Get a progress update and learn what these initiatives promise in terms of skills development for engineering, manufacturing, and quality assurance, and find out how you can access this new talent pool to help build your expert team.

  • Ahmed Enany, President & CEO, SoCalBio
  • A. Stephen Dahms, Consultant, Workforce Development, SoCalBio
  • John Milburn, Director, Employment Training Institute, College of the Canyons
  • William Pratt, VP of Operations and Director of Creative Design, Kinamed Inc.

CE Mark
Irvine-Based Masimo Receives CE Mark
for its Oxygen Monitor 

According to MassDevice "the O3 connects to Masimo's Root patient monitoring system, allowing for up to 4 sensors to be used at one time and using near-infrared spectroscopy to measure tissue oxygen saturation and arterial blood oxygenation" ... Read more
Amgen to Shed 200 Jobs in Colorado

The Thousand Oaks-based biotech will cut 200 jobs from its US facilities in Colorado involved in manufacturing the anaemia drug Epogen (epoetin alpha). Spokeswoman Peggy Krause noted that the decision was "based on the market. It is based on product demand and resources to meet those demands." ... Read more
Jobs ... Jobs ... jobs 
About SoCalBio 
SoCalBio membership links you to partners, contract manufacturers, regulatory and legal experts, and policy makers. The organization's programs help emerging biotech and medical device companies grow. Membership is affordable -- as low as $500 -- and offers access to networking opportunities, advocacy, discounts through our group purchasing program group purchasing program and other benefits you simply can't find elsewhere ... Join SoCalBio
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