Ben Franklin Awards $1,750,000 to Regional Companies

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 24, 2003 (PRIMEZONE) -- Seven southeastern Pennsylvania technology companies have been awarded $1,750,000 for prototype and product development by Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania (BFTP/SEP). Company profiles and investment information are outlined below. These companies now join Ben Franklin's portfolio of approximately 130 companies, representing more than $19 million currently invested in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Acuity Pharmaceuticals Inc., Philadelphia County - $500,000

Using pioneering small interfering RNA (siRNA) compounds and technology licensed from the University of Pennsylvania, Acuity develops treatments to arrest and potentially reverse vision loss caused by age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. BFTP/SEP's investment will assist in the pre-clinical studies of a siRNA therapeutic.

Appligent Inc., Delaware County - $250,000

Appligent Inc is a provider of server-based tools for the on-demand customization, manipulation, and delivery of dynamically generated electronic documents. BFTP/SEP's investment will result in an application including a server-based redaction engine incorporating natural language processing, and a secure client-side editing station to demonstrate the capabilities of the system.

Health Market Science, Montgomery County - $200,000

Health Market Science, Inc.'s mission is to leverage proprietary technology to create customer information that enables clients to more effectively deploy limited marketing resources. This project will result in the creation of tools that can rapidly construct an interactive web site allowing users to search, review, validate, add, and edit data. BFTP/SEP previously invested $300,000 in the company.

Immune Control, Montgomery County - $500,000

Immune Control develops proprietary compounds for multiple myeloma, transplant rejection, and autoimmune diseases as well as using serotonin antagonists that have been previously approved by the FDA for other applications. The investment will assist the company in IND filing, hiring personnel, research and development, raising funds, and establishing a corporate headquarters.

ScentSational Technologies, LLC, Montgomery County - $100,000

ScentSational adds FDA approved food grade FEMA-GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) flavors to plastic closures, containers, fitments, bags, trays, cups, bottles and other forms of packaging, during injection, blow, extrusion and other methods of molding and manufacturing. BFTP/SEP's investment will result in the development of olfactory packaging technologies for food and beverage applications to enhance the consumers taste experience.

TruTek Inc., Chester County - $100,000

TruTek, Inc. develops, manufactures, and markets thermometry products that use infrared sensing. BFTP/SEP's investment will result in the manufacturing and distribution of an FDA approved working "oral" thermometer. BFTP/SEP previously invested $89,000 in TruTek.

Xcelis Communications, LLC, Chester County - $100,000

Xcelis Communications develops integrated telecommunications solutions for existing global markets. Xcelis' Pantheon device integrates landline and cellular phones across a single platform for residential and business users. The investment will result in a pilot production of two thousand devices, the establishment of a communication link with all Bluetooth(r) enabled cellular phones and other electronics devices, and enable access to data stored on personal computers and the Internet.

Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania (BFTP/SEP) is dedicated to growing the region through science, technology and entrepreneurship. Now commemorating 20 years of innovation excellence, Ben Franklin provides entrepreneurs and established businesses the capital, talent, and expertise they need to compete. Like its namesake, Ben Franklin invests in, builds upon and delivers solutions that grow communities and create new wealth by supporting today's technological ideas and tomorrow's scientific discovery.

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