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Mtech TAP Company CosmosID Wins Best Life Sciences Company in the Maryland Incubator Company of the Year Awards
CosmosID, a company in the Mtech Technology Advancement Program (TAP) incubator developing comprehensive pathogen identification technologies, was named company of the year in the life sciences company category during the 2011 Maryland Incubator Company of the Year Awards.
In all, eight Mtech-affiliated companies were finalists for the awards. Three additional TAP incubator companies and one in TAP's fast-track, early admission program, called VentureAccelerator, were finalists. WellDoc Inc., a company that used Mtech Maryland Industrial Partnerships (MIPS) funding to develop its next generation of technology solutions to support chronic disease management, won the graduate company of the year award. Two additional MIPS funding recipients, Plant Sensory Systems and Emerald Sky Technologies, were also finalists.
Companies were recognized at a ceremony held June 2 at The Center Club in Baltimore, Md.
"We are honored to be recognized among the very exciting technology startups in Maryland," said Distinguished University of Maryland Professor Rita Colwell, who founded CosmosID. "I am pleased to have the support of Tom Cebula, our chief technical officer, and Doug Brenner, our chief executive officer, who are both playing significant roles in developing CosmosID to be a leading company in pathogen diagnostics. We hope to continue the tradition of successful companies, including Martek Biosciences and Digene Corporation, that have emerged from TAP."
CosmosID has developed patent-pending software called GENIUS (Genomics Identification Universal System) that drives its end-to-end, metagenomics process, Cloud Sequencing, for identifying pathogens present in clinical (medical), environmental (water, soil, biofuel or food), or other research (laboratory) samples. Cloud Sequencing is a single, rapid and accurate test that is universal for all types of pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi.
CosmosID's technology employs a proprietary approach based on fundamentals of bioinformatics and computational biology, combined with genomics, microbiology, and mathematical algorithms, and serves organizations and companies whose missions include medical diagnosis, public health (food and water safety), biosecurity, bioforensics, force protection and force health protection, according to Colwell.
CosmosID's strong pipeline of government grants, as well as private funding, has fueled its product development since 2007. That pipeline includes funding from the Department of Homeland Security, the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center (NBACC), and the Edgewood Chemical Biological Center.
Additional TAP and VentureAccelerator finalists included:
Six TAP companies have won Maryland Incubator Company of the Year awards in the past four years. Last year, FlexEl won the technology transfer category. Lurn Inc. won the technology service category in 2009. In 2008, AccuStrata Inc. won the best new incubator company category; TRX Systems won the homeland security company category and Zymetis Inc. won the best technology transfer company category.
TAP winners in previous years also include Martek Biosciences, Digene Corporation and DataStream Content Solutions.
Sponsored by the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED), the Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO), RSM McGladrey Inc. and Saul Ewing LLP, the Maryland Incubator Company of the Year Awards are selected by a committee of regional industry leaders and early-stage investors.
Winners were selected based on a company's goals and its success in achieving its objectives. Judges also considered factors such as technology or product development, intellectual property, increase in employees, growth in revenue or earnings, engagement of significant customers and strategic partners, receipt of awards or grants, attraction of outside investors, innovation, self-sufficiency, impact on the region and usage of incubator services.
About the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) (www.mtech.umd.edu)
June 6, 2011