BTEC hosts AIM-Bio Symposium

Published Nov. 17, 2022

Group shot of AIM-Bio Symposiium attendees
Over 80 attendees enjoyed distinguished speakers, lightning talks, poster sessions and open houses at the third annual Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing Symposium.

AIM-Bio — a five-year, $27 million collaborative project between NC State, BTEC, and the Technical University of Denmark — held its third annual Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing Symposium Nov. 9–11 at NC State. In addition to faculty and staff from both NC State and the Technical University of Denmark, symposium participants included members of the AIM-Bio External Advisory Board, the Novo Nordisk Foundation, and industry professionals. Highlights of the three-day event included several keynote speeches and moderated interview sessions.

Keynote addresses were given by the following:

  • Laura Niklason, PhD, MD, who spoke on “Bioengineering Human Tissue Replacements, from Scratch.” Dr. Niklason is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of Humacyte, located in Durham.
  • Charles Houston Jones, PhD, who presented “Unlocking the Power of mRNA through Innovation.” Dr. Jones is senior director of mRNA Commercial Strategy & Innovation for Pfizer.
  • Juan Torres, PhD, who addressed “Innovation Trends in the Quality Oversight of Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing.” Dr. Torres served as the chief quality officer at Biogen until his retirement in 2021 and now serves as president of the non-profit organization Ingenuitas. He also holds the position of Senior Fellow with NIIMBL, the National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals.

Moderated interview sessions were conducted with the following:

  • Sean Neally, director of Production Support, Novo Nordisk, Clayton, N.C.;
  • Deenesh Babi, senior project manager, Novo Nordisk, Copenhagen;
  • Ke Cheng, PhD, Randall B. Terry, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Regenerative Medicine at NC State University.
  • Michael Guerrero, PhD, head of Technical Development, BridgeBio, Raleigh; and
  • Carol Hall, PhD, Worley H. Clark, Jr. Distinguished University Professor in Engineering in NC State’s Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.

In addition, the symposium included lightning talks and posters from researchers and course developers, open houses at the BTEC facility and several AIM-Bio research labs, ideation sessions, and other activities.

While this was the third annual symposium, it was the first to be held in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The attendees enjoyed the opportunity to network, learn about AIM-Bio, and explore opportunities for continued collaboration. The 2023 AIM-Bio Symposium will be held in Denmark.