FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Breakthrough technology plays significant role in fight against Zika virus
Chicago, IL— Valent BioSciences (VBC) of Libertyville, IL has been named a winner of the 16th annual Chicago Innovation Awards for the combined impact of VectoBac®WDG and the company’s proprietary Wide Area Larvicide Sprays (WALS™) application platform in the global fight against Zika virus.
The winners were announced at an event held at Chicago’s Harris Theater on Monday, October 30, with nearly 1500 business and civic leaders, and supporters of innovation in attendance. Celebrating its 16th year, the awards program is the Chicago region’s foremost recognition of the most innovative new products or services brought to market or to public service each year.
Developed through more than 20 years of global research, WALS leverages VBC’s advanced Bacillus thuringiensisspp. israelensisStrain AM65-52 (Bti) technology and establishes a breakthrough method for delivering biorational larvicides into the hard-to-reach areas where Zika-transmitting Aedesmosquitoes breed. In 2016, when the first locally acquired cases of Zika in the U.S. were detected in Florida, VectoBac and WALS helped Miami-Dade public health officials become the first mosquito control district ever to break the transmission cycle of the devastating disease.
“This prestigious award highlights the combined abilities of our team in areas ranging from research, formulation science, manufacturing, field operationsand marketing,” said Ted Melnik, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of VBC. “The active role that our products and technologies play in protecting human potential is something that we take great pride in.”
Over 530 organizations were nominated for this year’s awards, and as a group generated record totals in economic output along with the creation of over 15,000 new jobs. Winning organizations receive a variety of honors including the opportunity to ring the NASDAQ Bell in New York City, and meetings with the Mayor, Governor and Cook County President.
The WALS platform has global reach and is being implemented successfully by VBC and affiliates in Latin America and SE Asia to combat Zika and other Aedes-vectored diseases including dengue fever. VBC Director of Global Health Steve Krause, who accepted the award, said that the company’s commitment to global health and sustainable development is a key driver its business.
“Success stories like WALS and the fight against Zika are a testament not only to what we can accomplish as a company, but to the importance that public and private partnerships play in responding to global health threats,” said Krause. “By working closely with federal and local governments, VBC helps address these needs by providing research, technology development, and the field level support necessary to bring these technologies to communities in need. It is a collaborative approach that brings together some of the most experienced minds in Public Health, which in turn result in key innovations like WALS and VectoBac WDG.”
The complete list of this year’s Chicago Innovation Award winners can be found at www.chicagoinnovation.com.
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About Valent BioSciences Corporation
Headquartered in Libertyville, IL, Valent BioSciences is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sumitomo Chemical Company and is the worldwide leader in the development, manufacturing and commercialization of biorationalproducts with sales in 95 countries around the world. Valent BioSciences is an ISO 9001:2008 Certified Company. For additional information, visit the company’s website at www.valentbiosciences.com