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BioRegion Newsmakers: Feb 17, 2009

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Former Executive of Amgen, Immunex Joins Seattle office of Darby and Darby

Michael Kirschner has joined the Seattle office of Darby and Darby as a principal in the law firm’s chemical & life sciences, and litigation & dispute resolution practice groups, with a specialty in biotechnology.

Kirschner joins Darby & Darby from Hillis Clark Martin & Peterson. He has also served as a vice president of Immunex, and as head of Amgen's Seattle law office after the company acquired Immunex.

Kirschner has also held multiple positions with various law firms, and spent three years as a trial attorney in the US Navy, including serving as head prosecutor for the Naval District of Washington, which includes the US Naval Academy, the Pentagon, and the Bethesda Naval Hospital. He currently serves as the Chair of the Legal Affairs Committee of the Washington State Patent Law Association.

He holds a JD from the University of Utah College of Law and a BA in biology from Carleton College.


AURP Bestows Awards of Excellence on Six for Technology Park Achievements

The Association of University Research Parks honored three pioneers of the technology parks industry at its Awards of Excellence breakfast, held during AURP’s recent annual conference in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Vernon George won a special AURP Appreciation Award for playing a crucial role in the creation of the university park industry, as well as working with more than 40 universities and research parks. Most of George's work was undertaken over the past 20 years as a principal of Hammer Siler George Associates of Washington DC, and George Henry George Partners of Virginia. He also has been active in several real estate, academic and economic development groups.

Norma Grace, recently retired director of the New Orleans Research and Technology Park, received AURP’s Career Achievement Award for leading the development of the park from its inception in 1992, when the University of New Orleans acquired 30 acres to establish the park, until 2008, when the park had grown to 600,000 square feet of space. Grace’s tenure included the drying out of the tech park after it was forced to close following Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Grace now is working part time to develop a second research park in Slidell, La. She also has been active in regional and state economic development.

Sherman McCorkle, CEO of the Science & Technology Park Development Corp. in Albuquerque, NM, was honored with AURP’s Community Leadership Award.

Three outgoing board members won Appreciation Awards from AURP — Austin Beggs of Innovation Place in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada; Michael Donovan of Boston University; and Scott Levitan of Forest City New East Baltimore Partnership.


Research Director of Athens, Ga., Reagent Marketer Among Nominees for 2009 Athena Award

Jinx Patel, research director for Athens (Ga.) Research and Technology, a business that specializes in marketing and selling purified human proteins as biomedical research reagents, is among 18 Athens-area nominees for the 2009 Athena Award. Winners are recognized for professional excellence, dedication to community service, active support for other women pursuing career growth and leadership development.

Patel’s volunteer work has included service on the board of the Friends of the Georgia Museum of Art, the Advisory Committee for Biotechnology for Athens Technical College, the Georgia Children’s Chorus, and the Jeannette Rankin Foundation. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce and the board of the Athens-Clarke Economic Development Foundation. She has published a dozen publications in scientific journals and is co-author of a patent.

Athens Research and Technology sells its products to researchers and scientists at universities and laboratories, to distributors, to large pharmaceutical firms and to small biotech companies.


The Scan

Driving Malaria-Carrying Mosquitoes Down

Researchers from the UK and Italy have tested a gene drive for mosquitoes to limit the spread of malaria, NPR reports.

Office Space to Lab Space

The New York Times writes that some empty office spaces are transforming into lab spaces.

Prion Pause to Investigate

Science reports that a moratorium on prion research has been imposed at French public research institutions.

Genome Research Papers on Gut Microbe Antibiotic Response, Single-Cell RNA-Seq Clues to Metabolism, More

In Genome Research this week: gut microbial response to antibiotic treatment, approach to gauge metabolic features from single-cell RNA sequencing, and more.