Colorado BioScience Association Recaps Growth Year for State’s Life Science Sector

Investments and Grants, Regulatory Successes and Partnerships Contributed to Dynamic 2016

DENVER--()--Colorado’s life science sector wraps up a year marked by an expanded presence for a global biologics manufacturer, notable regulatory successes for companies developing breakthrough biologics, drugs and medical devices, significant partnerships created to draw on the state’s collaborative spirit and commitment to innovation and notable grant-making and fundraising activities.

Success of State-Funded Grant Programs

New numbers from Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) show the long-term impact of investment in bioscience. In 2016, OEDIT provided $8.68 Million to Colorado bioscience companies through the Advanced Industries (AI) Grant Program. Since inception, this industry-critical program supporting the bioscience sector in Colorado has awarded $45.9 Million in grants, and continues to make an economic impact in the state, creating:

  • 56 new companies
  • 597 direct jobs
  • $530 Million in additional investment

April Giles, President and CEO of Colorado BioScience Association says:

“From the long-term success of the AI grant program, to innovative start-ups achieving critical financing and regulatory goals, to a major global manufacturer choosing Colorado for continued expansion, our state’s life science industry will look back on 2016 as milestone year. Colorado is recognized as an epicenter for big ideas and major breakthroughs, with a collaborative and supportive community of people committed to improving human health and quality of life.”

Many Colorado bioscience organizations met significant business and regulatory milestones, raised funds and received grants. Notable examples of the 2016 successes achieved by CBSA members include:


Colorado companies raised hundreds of millions of dollars to invest in research and development and support commercialization. Examples include:


Array BioPharma – Initiated $115 million stock sale to fund R&D.

Cerapedics – Completed $11 million in Series D Financing.


Aytu BioScience – Issued a $8.6 million public offering of stock and warrants; $10.5 million common stock purchase agreement.

JustRight Surgical – Closed $4.2 million in series B financing.


Bio2 Medical – Raised $10 million in a Series D stock offering.

MBio Diagnostics – Pursued private stock placement, raising $2.3 million.


Biodesix – Raised $22 million via a Series F sale of preferred stock and securities to support general corporate functions and new product development.

PanTheryx – Entered into a $53 million financing with Pegasus Capital Advisors.


CardioNXT – Secured an additional $1.5 million in equity funding from Solas BioVentures and existing investors.

Prima-Temp – Closed on a $1.64 million funding round.


SomaLogic – Raised up to $60.5 million from Visium Healthcare Partners to support strategic growth initiatives.

Grants, Donations and Awards

Innovators at all stages of development received grants, donations and awards from individuals, government entities and industry organizations. Access to these sources of non-dilutive funding is critical to support research and continued industry growth.


Colorado State University – Received a $53.3 million donation from alumni Walter Scott Junior, the largest gift in the school’s history.

JustRight Surgical – Won $50,000 for its second generation surgical 5mm stapler scaled for a wider range of pediatric surgical procedures.


Colorado State University and the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus – Received $1.2 million to participate in a National Institutes of Health initiative called Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO).

Matrix Analytics – Received $50,000 in the Prime Health Challenge for its work to optimize care of patients with lung cancer through data collection.


dBMEDx – Won the $75,000 top prize at the Prime Health Technology Challenge for its BBS Revolution bladder scanner.

Membrane Protective Technologies, Inc. – Received a $600,000 Phase II USDA SBIR grant to pursue its technology.


High Precision Devices, Inc. – Received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant for $225,000 for R&D.

Terumo BCT – Awarded $17.4 million in initial funding from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to initiate a clinical trial using the Mirasol® Pathogen Reduction Technology (PRT) System.


Green Sun Medical – Won a $200,000 MedTech Innovator Award as part of a global competition and received a $25,000 Johnson&Johnson JLABS award for its tech-enabled spinal brace.

The University of Colorado-Boulder – Received a $1.1 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop next-generation vaccines.


New and Expanded Facilities

AstraZeneca, a global biologics manufacturer expanded its Colorado presence through the acquisition of a second Colorado site. The company purchased the former Amgen, Inc. biologics manufacturing property in Longmont to support operations at its Boulder site, acquired in 2015.

Regulatory Approvals

Colorado companies received at least ten FDA approvals or clearances on biologics, medical devices and drugs. Additionally, the FDA accepted several New Drug Applications (NDAs) and granted one Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) to companies based in our state. Additionally, at least five companies were granted U.S. patents or European CE marks.

Mergers & Acquisitions

Four Colorado companies announced mergers and acquisitions in 2016. miRagen and Signal Genetics, Inc. (Nasdaq: SGNL) entered into a definitive merger agreement to form miRagen Therapeutics, Inc., allowing miRagen to become a public company, trading under the Nasdaq ticker symbol MGEN when the transaction becomes final.

Additionally, Schryver Medical Sales and Marketing, LLC acquired Professional Clinical Laboratory, Inc. (“ProLab”) to bolster its presence in the Texas market; Venaxis Inc. (Nasdaq: APPY) acquired Boulder-based BiOptix Diagnostics, Inc.; and Sartorius acquired ViroCyt to expand the lab products and services offered by Sartorius.

Innovation Center Launches and Partnerships for Health

Colorado’s reputation as an epicenter for big ideas and a collaborative culture attracted new centers focused on innovation and partnerships created to tackle major healthcare challenges.

Catalyst HTI – The industry integrator focused on health tech innovation, scheduled to open in early 2018, announced several anchor tenants, including University of Colorado Anschutz, Terumo BCT, American Diabetes Association and Hitachi Consulting.

StartUp Health – Launched its Rocky Mountain innovation hub, StartUp Health Colorado in partnership with Children’s Hospital Colorado, University of Colorado Anschutz and UCHealth to support healthcare entrepreneurs from around the world.

Catholic Health Initiatives and Dignity Health – Created the Precision Medicine Alliance to offer patients of both healthcare systems faster and more accurate diagnostic and treatment protocols based on their genetic and molecular profile information.

PharmaJet – Announced a multi-year partnership as part of the World Health Organization’s focus on eradicating polio, using the Colorado company’s Tropis device to administer medication through the skin without needles.

Colorado’s almost 725 life science organizations range from those moving from early-stage research and development, through clinical trials and into full-fledged commercialization. Those companies are responsible for close to 600 commercial products developed in Colorado.

Connect with CBSA: Twitter @COBioscience, Facebook and LinkedIn

About the Colorado BioScience Association

Colorado BioScience Association champions life science. We serve as the hub of Colorado’s thriving bioscience sector by connecting innovators to funding, infrastructure, research and talent. From promising young companies to established corporations and institutions, we provide opportunities for networking, education and professional development. We grow the bioscience workforce and lead business expansion policies to advance the industry in our state. CBSA represents more than 350 member organizations, including biotechnology, pharmaceutical, medical device, diagnostic, ag bio and mobile digital health companies, research and academic institutions and service providers. Learn more about us at


Primavera Group for Colorado BioScience Association
Sheliah Reynolds, 720-289-4739

Release Summary

Colorado BioScience Association highlights growth year for state's life science sector.


Primavera Group for Colorado BioScience Association
Sheliah Reynolds, 720-289-4739