COLUMBIA, S.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--SCRA's Technology Ventures' SC Launch program presented a "big check" investment last night to Senex Biotechnology during the Center for Entrepreneurial and Technological Innovation (CETi) at USC Start! Innovation Series networking event. The Start! Innovation Series invites aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators to connect, learn and grow their ventures.
Senex Biotechnology, located in Columbia, is a drug discovery company with technology that targets a signaling pathway which is activated by cellular damage and is involved in cell senescence, or aging. This Cyclin-dependent Kinase Inhibitor (CKI) pathway plays an important role in cancer and a range of diseases associated with the aging process, such as Alzheimer's disease, renal disease, atherosclerosis and arthritis. This pathway has also been implicated in viral diseases, including HIV.
Leading the company as CEO is Lawrence T. Friedhoff, MD, PhD, FACP. Dr. Friedhoff also serves as President and CEO of Pharmaceutical Special Projects Group, LLC. Dr. Friedhoff has a history of six successful drug approvals over his 25 year career in the pharmaceutical industry, one approximately every four years. Drugs developed by Dr. Friedhoff and his team have cumulative sales of over $50 billion.
Igor Roninson, Ph.D. is the Founder and President of Senex Biotechnology, and serves as an Endowed Chair at the South Carolina College of Pharmacy through the South Carolina SmartState Program. He is a winner of the 1994 C.P. Rhoads Award for Meritorious Achievement in Cancer Research. Dr. Roninson's study on the effects of CKI protein p21 was recognized in 2000 by the first annual Life Extension Prize from the Regenerative Medicine Secretariat. Dr. Roninson has authored over 160 articles and book chapters and is an inventor of 41 issued US patents.
"We are delighted to recognize Senex Biotechnology during this CETi event. Senex continues to make great strides in improving our understanding and treatment of multiple diseases," said SCRA CEO Bill Mahoney. "Dr. Roninson and Dr. Friedhoff continue to show great leadership in innovation, and to demonstrate how the SmartState Endowed Chairs generate intellectual property, and then partner with SCRA to expand the Knowledge Economy in South Carolina."
SCRA Technology Ventures helps innovative companies grow and develop new technologies, creating jobs and advancing the Knowledge Economy throughout South Carolina. This SCRA business sector provides support and mentoring program to early stage, start-up technology companies through its flagship SC Launch. Since 2006, SCRA has deployed over $79 million in funding and infrastructure to support over 280 high-tech, early-stage enterprises and has directly invested nearly $18 million in South Carolina start-ups, attracting over $260 million in private investment. SCRA Technology Ventures also supports commercialization and growth by facilitating the transfer of intellectual property and accelerating the transition of inventions to the marketplace.
Multiple economic impact studies show SCRA's cumulative output on South Carolina's economy to be over $15.3 billion, and that the company has helped create approximately 15,000 technology-related jobs in the state, with annual wages averaging between $55,000 and $77,000. Follow us on Twitter at @SCRAInnovation.