Maryland is becoming known for its startups: Just when you think the state has just about every type of business incubator imaginable, along comes Baltimore’s Sinai Hospital with what Secretary of Commerce R. Michael Gill calls “a unique addition to Maryland’s growing network of business incubators that also fills an important niche.”
Sinai Hospital’s Bioincubator, which opened earlier this year, is a state-of-the art laboratory and research center where biotech and life sciences companies work side by side with medical experts and researchers, looking for medical breakthroughs. It is the first bioincubator in the state — and one of only a few in the country — located inside a hospital.
Its purpose, according to Sinai Hospital President Amy Perry, is to “create an environment to nurture and grow ideas. By bringing start-up companies under the same roof as our Sinai researchers and medical teams, we hope to encourage collaboration and spur new discoveries.”
The bioincubator could be a specific boon to the hospital and its patients, she said, as it will bring “innovative testing and treatments to our patients faster than they would have access to them otherwise.”
The bioincubator’s first tenant, Accelivir Diagnostics, moved in this summer and other startups are expected soon. Accelivir looks for ways to detect inactive HIV in the blood in hopes of developing new ways to treat the virus.
Even as it looks for more partners in the bioincubator, Sinai already is looking into creating a separate health care IT incubator. Bioincubator staff also are looking for unique collaboration opportunities throughout the state.