The Importance Of Saving The Bees: Biotech Company Creates Bee Vaccines: Business Trends Hugh Downs
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[ClickPress, Wed Apr 15 2009] The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reported average American beekeepers are losing up to 37% of their hives this year. This number is up 6% from last, when it was at a still shocking 31%. While many bee-fearing people may find this a reason to be excited, the truth is one third of the American food supply could be in danger. Bee colonies are most likely being hit with colony collapse disorder (CCD) which is an unusual syndrome which hills worker bees outside the hive. It has been reported in both the U.S. and in Europe.
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To answer the crisis of the dwindling bee survival rate, Beeologics entered the scene. This Miami biotech startup is creating vaccines for all viruses which likely lead to CCD. Eyal Ben-Chanoch (one of the first Intel Pentium chip designers) and Ilan Sela (an Israeli expert on the genome sequence of bee viruses) have paired together to form this potentially food saving company. “There hasn’t been a lot of support for bee health. Our mission is to fill that void,” stated Ben-Chanoch.
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With a proprietary vaccine (Remebee) in trials with several beekeepers, the company is waiting on FDA approval. Their plan is to add the drug into the sucrose solution bees feed upon and expect commercialization of the vaccine this summer. While the company is offering the vaccine at only $2 per dose (one dose per month), they could easily buzz in revenues from America’s 2.5 million surviving hives.
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