The first cohort for the Venture Leaders Biotech roadshow revealed

The ten selected startups for the premier Venture Leaders program dedicated to the biotech sector will participate in a business development program to meet international investors and industry leaders. They will also get access to industry-specific expertise and networks to grow their companies.

The Venture leaders teams have continually demonstrated the quality and potential of Swiss startups around the globe for the past 16 years. Building on this success, Venturelab and its partner Swissnex and supporters, including EPF Lausanne, ETH Zurich, VISCHER, and the Canton of Zurich, launched a new vertical dedicated to biotech startups –  Venture Leader Biotech. Previously, biotech startups participated in the Venture Leaders Life Sciences program.

The selection committee comprising professional investors and biotech experts reviewed almost 70 applications to choose ten startups for the first cohort that will participate in an international roadshow from October 18 - 24, 2021. The selected startups improve disease prevention, diagnostics, and treatment through innovative solutions covering areas such as RNA-sequencing, precision medicine, gene editing, and gene therapy. The international investor roadshow to take place in the fall aims to accelerate the startups’ expansion and sets the base for their global business networks.

The Swiss National team Biotech comprises the following startups

Acthera Therapeutics | Carlo Bertozzi | Basel – develops an innovative targeted drug-release technology platform that addresses one of the most important challenges in medicine: optimising the therapeutic effect while minimising the side effects.

Alithea Genomics | Riccardo Dainese | Cossonay – brings the power of RNA-sequencing to drug biomarker discovery for better healthcare and faster cures.

Avrion Therapeutics | Maximilien Murone | Allschwil – developed a new precision gene therapy platform to tackle neurodegenerative diseases. The primary focus lies on amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

cellvie | Alexander Schueller | Matzingen – is seeking to bring about a new category of medicines, leveraging the therapeutic potential of mitochondria, the powerhouses of the cell. The company is targeting ischemia-reperfusion injury in kidney transplantation as the first indication.

deepCDR Biologics | Simon Friedensohn | Basel – combines machine learning with advances in gene editing and deep sequencing to drastically reduce drug development timelines. The company aims to bring to the market superior therapeutic antibodies that are safer and more effective at treating disease.

Gnubiotics Sciences | Yemi Adesokan | Epalinges – is developing a platform to commercialise microbiome modulating products for the functional and medical nutrition markets with a new category of complex molecules: glycans.  

HexagonFab | Christoph v. Bieberstein | Zurich – provides analytical tools for interaction analysis of new compounds. These tools help to shorten development timelines and ensure that drugs can be produced efficiently.

Nemosia | Awa Diagne | Zurich – aims to raise public awareness of neurological disorders and promote a culture where brain scans would be part of regular health check routines. The company develops highly selective imaging tracers for early detection, therapy monitoring, drug development, and effective patient recruitment.

NextImmune | Rajesh Jayachandran | Basel – focuses on the research and development of a novel class of immunosuppressive therapies for autoimmune-inflammatory diseases and organ transplantation.

STALICLA | Lynn Durham | Geneva – is a Swiss clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company leading omics-based precision medicine drug development for patients with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs).

(Press release/RAN)