ChromaDex banner
ChromaDex banner

VC and drug developer scale-up their incubator model

Collaboration set to establish new ventures for drug discovery and development and advance UCSF discoveries to patients.

Autobahn Labs has announced a strategic collaboration with the University of California San Francisco (UCSF). The organisations will partner to identify promising early science with significant therapeutic potential, forming jointly owned ventures to accelerate the translation of scientific ideas to novel therapeutics.

Longevity.Technology: UCSF is where the small molecule cognitive enhancer ISRIB, which reverses age-related memory and is now licensed by Calico, was developed and the UCSF Memory and Aging Center is researching therapies to treat and prevent age-related neurodegenerative disorders. UCSF’s strategic collaboration with Autobahn, a virtual incubator that partners with academic and research institutions to catalyse early-stage drug discovery and development, could really progress Longevity therapies out of the lab and down the pipeline. So few compounds reach the human trial stage and even fewer reach the shelves, that platforms that foster innovation in drug discovery could prove vital in the development of antiaging therapies – we’ve seen the model, and it’s looking good.

Autobahn was created by Samsara BioCapital, a life sciences venture capital firm, Evotec, a global leader in drug discovery research which provides Autobahn Labs’ partner companies with access to more than 3,000 scientists globally, and KCK Ltd, a family investment fund.

“UCSF combines world-class medicine, cutting-edge research, and a strong track record of innovation in drug discovery,” said Thomas Novak, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer of Autobahn Labs. “We’re excited to partner their great science with Autobahn Labs’ resources and capabilities to spark the development of meaningful new therapies for patients.”

 


 

“Partnering with Autobahn Labs will allow us to bridge our extensive scientific expertise with their experience in drug development to get the best therapies out there quickly for patient benefit.”

 


 

“The goal of Innovation Ventures is to help UCSF faculty and students transition their innovations from the lab to the marketplace, where they can do the most good,” said Barry Selick, PhD, VC for business development, innovation and partnerships. “Partnering with Autobahn Labs will allow us to bridge our extensive scientific expertise with their experience in drug development to get the best therapies out there quickly for patient benefit.”

Expanding the reach of the partnership between Samsara BioCapital and Evotec, the collaboration with UCSF is the second partnership announced by Autobahn Labs since the organisation’s launch in June 2020. The investment model of systematically identifying and building investible companies based on cutting-edge academic discoveries, was Samsara’s brainchild, and the firm found a partner in Evotec, a company with an established track record of translating early-stage academic research to drug discovery and development through its “BRIDGE” (Biomedical Research, Innovation & Development Generation Efficiency) programme. Evotec has also announced this week a partnership with Alloy Therapeutics to expand its antibody discovery platform.

 


 

The investment model of systematically identifying and building investible companies based on cutting-edge academic discoveries, was Samsara’s brainchild, and the firm found a partner in Evotec.

 


 

The Autobahn Labs model provides Principal Investigators with scientific and operational strategy, access to Evotec’s drug discovery and development technologies and capabilities, and an investor syndicate with therapeutic expertise.

“As a virtual incubator for academic life science projects, Autobahn Labs is all about innovation efficiency,” said Dr Werner Lanthaler, CEO of Evotec SE. “With UCSF we welcome another top-tier academic institution to Autobahn Labs. By providing direct access to both our leading drug discovery and development platform as well as substantial funding, we are confident that Autobahn Labs will kick start early-stage innovation out of academia through jointly owned new ventures.”

“We are thrilled to have this opportunity to bring UCSF’s renowned faculty together with Evotec’s sophisticated drug discovery infrastructure and expertise as well as an experienced network of drug developers and investors. UCSF has a wealth of compelling early-stage programs that we look forward to developing in close collaboration with their researchers,” said Michelle Kim-Danely, PhD, SVP of Operations for Autobahn Labs.

Image by RAEng_Publications from Pixabay

Eleanor Garth
Deputy Editor Now a science and medicine journalist, Eleanor worked as a consultant for university spin-out companies and provided research support at Imperial College London and various London hospitals in a former life.
ChromaDex TruNiagen
lumen
ChromaDex TruNiagen
lumen

Latest articles