Tech news in brief:

  • A poliovirus therapy from Duke University receives “breakthrough” status from the FDA
  • Lenovo and SAP unveil their first joint products and solutions
  • Duke Energy wins approval for two solar projects
  • PPD wins clinical research award

The details:

  • A poliovirus therapy from Duke University receives “breakthrough” status from the FDA

Source: Duke University

The recombinant poliovirus therapy developed at the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke Health has been granted “breakthrough therapy designation” from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The designation will expedite research into the poliovirus therapy, but it does not mean the investigational drug has been approved for clinical use. It is currently being tested in a clinical trial for adults with advanced glioblastoma brain tumors. To receive breakthrough status, preliminary evidence must indicate that the treatment may offer substantial improvement over available standard therapy.

“Breakthrough status means that we can work with the highest levels in the FDA to develop the most efficient clinical trial and pathway to fully evaluate the safety and efficacy of the genetically modified poliovirus for treating recurrent glioblastoma,” said Darell Bigner, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke. “Ultimately, we hope the therapy will one day obtain FDA approval.”
Duke’s poliovirus therapy is an immunotherapy developed in the laboratory of Matthias Gromeier, M.D., a professor in the departments of Neurosurgery, Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, and Medicine at Duke University School of Medicine.

  • Lenovo and SAP unveil their first joint products and solutions

Source: Lenovo

Lenovo [on Wednesday] marked several important milestones in its deepening alliance with SAP, which was announced by the two companies in January. 

Data Warehousing and Memory Innovations:

A new, smart data-tiering solution for SAP Business Warehouse on SAP HANA that manages “warm” data. The new solution enables assignment of an extension node, which allows customers to add more systems to their clusters and gain cost-effective access to larger amounts of data, thereby driving improved analytics performance.

Expanded memory support for solutions running on SAP HANA using systems with next-generation Intel processors. This advanced capability will provide 33 percent more memory for SAP S/4HANA solutions. Lenovo intends to support up to eight-socket, 8TB configurations with new systems integrating Intel next-generation processors and SAP HANA SPS12. This innovation will enable customers to expand their SAP S/4HANA footprint and deliver the faster, more responsive data access needed to drive their digital enterprises.

SAP, Lenovo and Samsung highlighted a forward-looking vision of in-memory systems that will leverage 128GB memory technology to unleash further performance advancements, as well as new levels of scalability and optimal in-memory solutions. These types of systems will be particularly productive for large transactional and data-driven workloads.

  • Duke Energy wins approval for two solar projects

Source: Duke Energy

Duke Energy [has] received regulatory approval from the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) to construct solar facilities in Davie and Union counties.

  • The 60-megawatt (MW) Monroe Solar Facility on 2272 S. Rocky River Road near Monroe in Union County will be located on a 400-acre site. Strata Solar in Chapel Hill will design and build the project.
  • The 15.4-MW Mocksville Solar Facility in Davie County will use about 110 acres of land. The project will be located at 197 Crawford Road in Mocksville. Crowder Construction in Charlotte will serve as the project engineering, procurement and construction lead.

“These projects are part of our planned expansion of solar in North Carolina,” said Rob Caldwell, senior vice president, Distributed Energy Resources. “With the state third in the nation for installed solar power, we are committed to growing renewable energy in a sustainable way that benefits all customers.”

Both projects will be owned and operated by Duke Energy Carolinas and will help meet North Carolina’s Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard.

  • PPD wins clinical research award

Source: PPD

Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC (PPD) today announced that PPD researchers earned the PharmaTimes International Clinical Team of the Year honor in the 2016 competition.

The award, presented at the International Clinical Researcher of the Year Awards in London on May 12, was a culmination of a demanding series of challenges, including presentations before a panel of experienced industry judges.

The industry recognition demonstrates the high caliber of PPD’s clinical research associates and clinical team managers, and PPD’s award-winning training and development programs, such as the Virtual Clinical Foundations Program 2.0, which help to prepare research professionals for successful clinical trial monitoring and to deliver performance, quality and value to clients and their studies.

“PPD’s clinical researchers embody the utmost professionalism and competence to achieve this industry recognition,” said Roger Newbery, senior vice president of clinical management for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for PPD. “We congratulate them on this achievement and recognize the talent, success and dedication our clinical researchers bring to all of our clients and their research programs.”

The PPD researchers were selected as the top performing team from among finalists in a rigorous, three-stage competition. The event was created in 1999 to provide clinical research professionals an opportunity to benchmark their professional skills against their peers in a program of competency-based exercises developed through cross-industry collaboration.