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The Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse Adds to Its Investment Portfolio

PLSG Invests More Than $.5 million in Three Companies

PITTSBURGH, Sept. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse (PLSG), the private/public partnership putting the region's life sciences industry on a fast track for growth, announced that the PLSG has invested a total of $570,000 in three companies; Biosafe, Inc., MedRespond, LLC, and Blue Belt Technologies.

"We are very excited to be able to continue seeding our region's growing life sciences technologies," said John W. Manzetti, PLSG's President and CEO. Mr. Manzetti continued, "The PLSG Concept to Commercialization(TM) model and our deep understanding of the process, challenges and economic potential of life sciences innovations allows us to move our regional technologies into the marketplace. We are happy to add MedRespond as a new PLSG investment portfolio company and we are also pleased to continue our support of the Biosafe and Blue Belt with follow-on investments. The investments we have made over the last 2 months have totaled $1.7 million."

The PLSG's $150,000 investment in Biosafe will help with the completion of three new development projects aimed at introducing new products to market: antimicrobial glass fillers for plastics; antimicrobial wipes or spray for health care facilities and preliminary data for therapeutic applications: anti-HIV gel and wound healing. Biosafe's antimicrobial HM-4100 provides peace-of-mind protection and real world product defense against threatening microorganisms. Bacteria, fungi (mold and mildew), yeast, viruses and algae will not grow or live on a HM-4100 treated surface. It is designed to dovetail directly into many common manufacturing processes such as plastic molding, liquid formulating, spray finishing and metal coating for permanent protection.

The PLSG's $200,000 investment in Blue Belt Technologies will enable the company to continue development of its Precision Freehand Sculpting(TM) (PFS) system, a solution that reintroduces robotics into the operating room to enable safer, faster and more accurate treatment of osteoarthritis and other bone related conditions. PFS will address the challenges of minimally invasive surgery, with the goal of improving patient outcomes and lowering healthcare costs. The PFS's first target procedure is spinal laminectomy. It is anticipated that in 2008 there will be 146,000 laminectomies done in the U.S., the largest age group 65+. The surgeon's need for accuracy, safety and a reduction in procedural time, coupled with the patient's desire for a minimally invasive procedure, combine to make this procedure ideal for the Blue Belt PFS.

The PLSG's $220,000 investment in MedRespond will help with market and sales positioning and pipeline development to drive product sales. MedRespond was established to commercialize a Carnegie Mellon University patented "search" technology known as the Synthetic Interview (SI)(TM) (now rebranded as the Custom Conversation(TM)) for exclusive use within healthcare to drive more efficient and effective dissemination of health related information by pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers, non-profit organizations and government agencies.

SI's have been identified by Business Week as one of the "21 top technologies for the 21st century." The technology provides an interactive information exchange that simulates one-to-one conversation and MedRespond has built robust commercial tools around it. Custom Conversation(TM) gives MedRespond clients the opportunity to offer an engaging, compelling Web presence, featuring user-driven video interaction with experts relevant to the informational needs of targeted users.

About the Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse (PLSG)

The PLSG invests in and supports the growth of biosciences companies in southwestern Pennsylvania. The PLSG has investment and business growth programs to increase the linkage between research, technology and commercialization; nurture and develop entrepreneurial biosciences enterprises; grow the region's talent pool in the life sciences; and help biosciences firms locate, expand or start-up in the Greater Pittsburgh region.

About Biosafe Inc.

BIOSAFE(TM) Antimicrobial is a biostatic polymer. It is added into or coated onto materials to impart protection from harmful affects of bacteria, mold, mildew, fungi and even certain viruses. Plastics, Fiberglass, metals, glass, wood, ceramics, stone, natural materials and composites can all become permanently protected from microbes. BIOSAFE(TM) antimicrobial is broad spectrum and non-leaching. Target markets include: Medical Devices, Healthcare, Personal Care Products, Commercial Resins, Department of Defense, Homeland Defense and First Response, Building Construction Materials and Industrial Surfaces.

About Blue Belt Technologies

Blue Belt Technologies, Inc., a Carnegie Mellon University spin-off company, was formed in 2003 to commercialize novel device solutions for medical interventions. Blue Belt draws from the extensive experience of its research team to develop devices in computer-assisted surgery and diagnosis. Their mission is to develop new components for the MIS (minimally-invasive surgery) toolbox of the future through collaboration with leading research institutions, technology licensing, and our own research and development. Blue Belt's tools provide new supporting technologies to enhance planning, localization, visualization and surgical action.

About MedRespond LLC

MedRespond is an online healthcare communications provider, leveraging advanced Web-based interactive video and content management technology to inform and educate healthcare providers and patients. The company has developed, and is now actively marketing, a next-generation online service that allows pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers and nonprofit health and disease associations to establish and nurture deeper, more robust bonds with their various constituencies. The service is built on patented technology -- originally called "synthetic interview" and now termed "Custom Conversations(TM)" -- that is exclusively licensed by MedRespond from Carnegie Mellon University for use in the healthcare arena.

SOURCE The Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse
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