Newsletter – April 2018

 

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April 2018 Newsletter



NEWSWORTHY

ViewPoint Therapeutics Raises $35 Million in Series B Financing to Treat Cataracts


ViewPoint Therapeutics, Inc., a company at MBC BioLabs San Francisco, is pioneering the development of crystallin stabilizers to prevent and treat cataracts and presbyopia, today announced the closing of a $35 million Series B financing.

“Cataracts remain the world’s leading cause of blindness, and this financing will meaningfully advance our efforts to develop and commercialize a groundbreaking treatment,” commented Leah Makley, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of ViewPoint.  Full Press Release

Model of VP1-001 in its binding site in the alpha-crystallin dimer, based on PDB ID 2WJ7, as described in Science 06 Nov 2015: Vol. 350, Issue 6261, pp. 674-677

Wild Type Raises $3.5M to Reinvent Meat for the 21st Century


Wild Type Inc., raised a $3.5 million seed round led by Spark Capital, with participation from Mission Bay Capital. The company’s name comes from the phenotypic term in biology describing the common state of an allele, but it also evokes animals living in their natural habitats. Wild Type started life as a single “Hot Bench” company at MBC BioLabs San Francisco, but has since grown to several benches and employees.

Wild Type’s mission is to develop a platform and set of technologies that allow any meant to be cultured in the lab using well-defined procedures. The two founders, Justin Kolbeck and Aryé Elfenbein, are stealthy around their technology, which is still in development. But the essential concept is to multiply animal cells in the lab to effectively culture meat. This means that the meat is fundamentally “meat,” and not a meat-substitute composed of plant or other materials.  Full Press Release

MBC BioLabs Grand Opening in San Carlos


In just over four years, the MBC BioLabs Dogpatch site has been home to 102 companies, 45 of which are current residents. These companies have been wildly-successful – they have raised $1.8 billion. Our one significant challenge has been the limited amount of space. We receive 6-10 applications per month, but as we are always full, we can only accept 1 or 2 companies. Many of the companies that we have to turn away are very promising, but we simply don’t have the space. To redress this problem, we are launching 42,000 square feet of new lab and office space in San Carlos. This will come in three phases, the first of these sites, 733 Industrial Road, will come online in April 16, 2018; and the largest, 26,000 sf at 930 Brittan Avenue, will come online in Q2 2019. Together these sites will allow us to grow our community to ~120 startups. Please stay tuned for a grand opening party this summer where all will be welcome!

GRADUATION


Congratulations to Asilomar Bio with their success and growth to their own space in Emeryville!

A field of corn is one of the most complex systems in Nature. Individual plants are constantly sensing the environment and adjusting how to use the water and nutrients in the soil. Building on breakthrough discoveries in chemistry and plant science, we are developing products to enable crops to yield more when conditions are good, and to better survive tough weather.

Asilomar started in 2013 with a radical idea: that we could use chemistry to ‘rewire’ how plants work at the molecular level, leading to a better bottom line on the farm. With some hard work and a little luck, we have built a pipeline of promising technology that performs in the field. We are working to bring these ideas to farmers with a dedicated team and fantastic partners.

UPCOMING EVENTS


Lunch Seminar: April 17, 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Learn more about AbbVie, its West Coast R&D efforts in Oncology and its Corporate Ventures Arm

RSVP


Scott C. Brun, MD
Vice President, Corporate Strategy Office and Head of AbbVie Ventures

Scott Brun, M.D., is AbbVie’s Vice President, Chief Strategy Office and Head of AbbVie Ventures, where he works closely with the Chief Strategy Officer and executive management team to identify and execute on strategic venture investments that are closely aligned with AbbVie’s overall R&D and corporate strategy. Scott also serves as AbbVie’s Vice President, Scientific Affairs.

Prior to this role, Scott led Pharmaceutical Development at AbbVie and was responsible for advancing a broad pipeline across several therapeutic areas. In his 20+ year career at Abbott/AbbVie, he held roles of increasing responsibility across the research and development organization.

Scott earned his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He earned his medical degree from The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and completed ophthalmology training at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary/Harvard Medical School.
 


Thomas Hudson, MD
Vice President, Head of Oncology Discovery and Early Development

Thomas Hudson, M.D., is AbbVie’s Vice President, Head of Oncology Discovery and Early Development, and is based in Redwood City, California.

Prior to his time at AbbVie, he was the President and Scientific Director of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, where he led the institute’s work in translational research for the prevention, detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

Internationally renowned for his work in genomics and human genome variation, his past positions include leadership roles as Founder and Director of the McGill University and Genome Quebec Innovation Centre and Assistant Director of the Whitehead/MIT Center for Genome Research. Dr. Hudson has served as a scientific advisor to many public organizations, including Genome England, the National Human Genome Research Institute (NIH) and the STARR Cancer Foundation.
 


KT Moortgat, PhD
Director, AbbVie Ventures

KT Moortgat, Ph.D., joined AbbVie Ventures in 2017 to build the west coast investment efforts. She is an enabler of technology translation, through startup incubation, investment, and partnering.

Prior to joining AbbVie, she was CEO of a microbiome therapeutics company through the funding and launch of a multi-site Phase 2b study of its lead product candidate, and held other leadership positions in venture-backed life science companies.

Previously, KT was a partner at the venture capital firm Mohr Davidow Ventures (MDV) for six years. She also founded and led the hub of entrepreneurship at QB3 and the University of California San Francisco. KT earned her bachelor’s degree from University of California, Berkeley. She earned her doctorate degree at the Salk Institute.

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