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Did Curiosity At The Water Fountain Lead to Millions? Viewed 154,871 timesBy: Chris Tew
Published for Logan, Utah (Area-Info.net Jun. 25, 2012)
As I arrived at the water fountain I saw a man bent over getting a drink. He was in a white lab coat. When he stood up I noticed a shock of frazzled hair and bushy eyebrows. I looked at the man and remarked, “You look like a scientist.” The man replied, “I am a scientist.” His name, I learned, was Dr. John Lawson.
One thing led to another. I asked what he was working on. He suggested I step into his lab to learn something about his research. A few hours later I stepped out of his lab with my eyes open to a new opportunity. I was amazed at what I’d seen and heard. It seemed that he had discovered a new poly-receptor form of morphine that was non-addictive, didn’t cause respiratory depression, and didn’t cause constipation. It had been tested in primates and showed very promising results. These results were likely to correspond to the results one might expect to see in humans. It seemed too good to be true. If it was true, it could be an answer for millions of people who are addicted or will become addicted to prescription drugs in the United States and elsewhere (see: http://www.drugfree.org/join-together/addiction/cdc-report-on-prescription-painkiller-overdose-is-a-call-to-action). Just imagine if I had stumbled upon a potentially multi-billion-dollar drug at the water fountain. Just imagine if Dr. Lawson had discovered a safe alternative to dangerous opioids.
John’s story, the story of his company, Phoenix PharmaLabs, Inc., and the story of his new family of poly-receptor opiates can be found in more detail at http://www.phoenixpharmalabs.com/.
My role from that point on was to help bring resources to John that could fund the ongoing research, drug development and operating costs of the company. I introduced him to Timmy Chou, a capable, knowledgeable CFO for hire and serial entrepreneur who knows how to raise private money and wring the most out of a dollar. I also introduced him to some of my other friends and relatives who stepped up to contribute money to the effort by way of investment. Matt Chugg, a friend, businessman and successful entrepreneur made a significant investment in the company and introduced us to a group of his friends, most of who also invested.
The NIH, NIDA, and the SBA also provided small grants along the way and continued to do so. (see for recent grant information: //www.google.com/search?q=Phoenix+PharmaLabs%2C+Inc.+%24200%2C000&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a) This vote of confidence from the government and its experts, and from courageous angel investors has helped our small enterprise to advance its research and drug development.
In 2010 the company signed a licensing agreement with Aoxing Pharma, a public company traded on the NY Stock Exchange that is headquartered in China. (see this article for more details: http://www.pipelinereview.com/index.php/2010060334669/Small-Molecules/Aoxing-Pharmaceutical-Company-and-Phoenix-PharmaLabs-Inc.-Announce-Strategic-Alliance-to-Co-Develop-a-Novel-Class-of-Molecules-in-Pain-and-Drug-Addiction-Therapeutics.html). This relationship lead to a series of press releases that brought Phoenix PharmaLabs, Inc. (PPL) to the attention of global pharma giants.
We were also able to attract a capable and experienced president as word got out about PPL’s technology. William Crossman joined us just as the company began to get attention. William Crossman is a senior management professional with international and domestic experience as CEO, COO, and CFO of enterprises ranging from entrepreneurial start-ups to Fortune 100 level companies.
As a result of the press attention, the company and its drugs have, beginning in 2011 and continuing into 2012, been evaluated by an impressive array of big pharma pain treatment companies, animal science companies, and big pharma drug addiction treatment companies. Several of these evaluations may lead to licensing agreements, option agreements, and/or some other type of joint ventures. The company has attracted attention at a very early stage. It is unusual for big pharma companies to invest in such an early stage company. However, as big pharma drug development pipelines run dry they are looking further and further up stream at small, early stage development companies like PPL that have developed promising drug analogs.
The company continues to pursue other avenues of funding, but anticipates that it may engage with a big pharma partner to ensure the final development of one or more of its drugs. The stakes are high, and the potential benefits to anyone needing a safe pain treatment are huge.
Had I not been curious at the water fountain that day I may have missed a great opportunity to be involved with PPL. The experience has been interesting and it may yet be profitable. Although it is too early to tell whether or not anything will come of the curiosity expressed by various companies in our technology, it is still an exciting venture to be a part of. There are many highly educated, extremely credible, and very experienced PhD’s and others who are now involved with and believe in PPL and its family of drugs. Their belief gives me confidence that this company has spawned something important. It’s technology raises eyebrows and demands investigation.
I have always had my antennae up when it comes to opportunity, new ventures, disruptive technology, and profit potential. Over the years, being aware of opportunity has helped me to find success in medical devices, pharmaceuticals, real estate and other areas. You never know where your curiosity might take you. It pays to be interested, to ask questions, and to invest some time and/or money when you find something with real promise.
Investing in stocks, real estate, and precious metals is risky and could result in losing money. I am offering ideas for your consideration and education. I am not offering financial advice. Nor am I offering to sell stock, real estate, or precious metals. Please do your own due diligence. I am not an investment adviser. Precious metals and other investments discussed in my articles are not for everyone. I promote precious metals through American Gold Reserve. You should do your own due diligence when making investment decisions of any kind. You should consult your own financial advisers before making any investment decision. I make no guarantees that by following any advice or suggestion I might make that you will realize any return. Beware, all commodity markets and other markets carry risk of loss.
Chris Tew received his degree from BYU. He has worked for over thirty years in promoting various disruptive medical and pharmaceutical technologies. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Phoenix PharmaLabs, Inc, a pharmaceutical development company developing a family of safe narcotics. He is an active real estate investor and developer. Chris is the owner of Multi-Channel Marketing, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in revenue improvement.
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