#b#Fast Tracked#/b#

Taxis Pharmaceuticals, 9 Deer Park Drive, Suite J-15, Monmouth Junction 08852. Gregory Mario, CEO. www.taxispharma.com.

Biotech company Taxis Pharmaceuticals has been given a special designation by the FDA to develop a promising treatment for a kind of bacterial infection that resists conventional antibiotics. Researchers are developing a candidate drug that may be effective against methicillin-resistant stapholococcus aureus, better known as MRSA.

MRSA infections often strike in hospitals, nursing homes, prisons, and other locations where patients are likely to have open wounds and weakened immune systems. The “super bug” organism responsible for the infection has become immune to most antibiotics over time due to natural selection, so doctors can only treat it with great difficulty. The CDC says there are about 80,000 MRSA infections and 11,285 deaths every year.

Last month the FDA granted qualified infectious disease product designation to Taxis for its experimental drug, which targets MRSA skin infections. The candidate drug works by inhibiting a bacterial protein that plays a role in cell division. The company says no other drug in use today works this way. The special designation will help the drug through the regulatory approval process, and makes it eligible for “fast track” approval.

“We are delighted with the FDA’s decision to grant TXA709 a qualified infectious disease product designation as we continue to research its potential,” said CEO Gregory Mario. “Pre-clinical data shows TXA709 to be a promising and potentially revolutionary antibiotic.”

#b#New in Town#/b#

Ocea Soft, 250 Phillips Boulevard, Ewing 08618. 609-589-1674. Brian J. Kerslake, general manager, North America. www.oceasoft.com.

Ocea Soft, a company that designs, calibrates, and commercializes wireless sensors, has opened an office on Phillips Boulevard in Ewing. The France-headquartered firm makes sensors that measure physical parameters like temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide levels, and pressure.

#b#Crosstown Moves#/b#

Weblications LLC, 101 College Road East, First Floor, Princeton 08540. 609-799-3022. Robert Weber, president. www.weblications.com.

Weblications, a website design, app development, and social media company, has moved from Vaughn Drive to College Road East.

#b#Name Changes#/b#

Extreme Construction Inc., 20 Nami Lane, Suite 6, Hamilton 08619. 973-817-7750. Daniel Bossi, president. www.extremeci.com.

Premier N.A.M.I. has changed its name to Extreme Construction Inc. The company specializes in the fast construction of high density mid-rise buildings.

#b#Leaving Town#/b#

PPA (Professional Property Appraisers Inc.), 3525 Quakerbridge Road, Hamilton.

The real estate appraising company has moved to Cinnaminson.

#b#Deaths#/b#

Lillian Arnold, 82, on October 3. She earned a journalism degree at Boston University and then worked at the Gallup Poll and the Trenton Times. She later was a recruiter for Russell Sage College and was a fundraiser for the March of Dimes.

Gary Alfred Grainger, 67, on September 8. He was an electrical and instrumentation designer with Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, where he worked on nuclear fusion projects. Services will be held Saturday, October 15, from noon to 2 p.m. at the Saul Colonial Home at 3795 Nottingham Way in Hamilton.

Louise “Lu” Morrissey, 86, on October 6. She worked at Bayer Aspirin in Hamilton for 30 years and owned the Homecrest Inn in Ewing for eight years together with her husband, Paul.

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