Two Biotherapeutic Companies Receive Lab Space and Other Benefits to Further Advance Innovative Science at Bay Area Life Sciences Incubator

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SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) and MBC BioLabs today announced that BigHat Biosciences and Trilo Therapeutics have each been awarded an Amgen Golden Ticket to MBC BioLabs. The companies will receive priority admission or renewal for one year of lab bench space with access to core facilities at the MBC BioLabs life sciences incubator, including access to Amgen’s scientific experts and business leaders to help advance their scientific programs. Amgen is a proud sponsor of MBC BioLabs, assisting high-potential and innovative early-stage life science and biotech companies accelerating development of new therapies to improve human health.

The 2020 Amgen Golden Ticket winners were chosen by a team of scientific leaders who evaluated the strength and novelty of their scientific rationale, subject matter expertise, and business plan viability.

“Amgen addresses important scientific questions to advance care and improve the lives of patients with serious diseases, including oncology, inflammation and cardiometabolic diseases, among others,” said Flavius Martin, vice president of Oncology, Inflammation and Site Head at Amgen South San Francisco. “BigHat Biosciences and Trilo Therapeutics are working on promising early-stage innovation that address serious illnesses such as cancer, autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, and others, which is why funding these companies and providing them the necessary lab space to move their science forward is so important. We are happy to support their scientific efforts as they tackle complex research challenges that potentially address critical unmet medical needs for patients. Congratulations to both companies and their scientific entrepreneurs.”

BigHat Biosciences:
BigHat Biosciences is an early-stage Bay Area startup reimagining antibody discovery and engineering to create better antibodies faster and undertake novel designs far beyond what’s possible today. BigHat designs antibodies using an agile, multi-objective, and data-driven platform that integrates a high-speed wet lab with AI and machine learning.

“We are grateful to receive Amgen’s Golden Ticket Award,” said Mark DePristo, chief executive officer of BigHat Biosciences. “Amgen’s support for our facility at MBC BioLabs’ and access to their biologics R&D group will help accelerate our mission to radically improve antibody design using the latest techniques in machine learning and synthetic biology.”

Trilo Therapeutics:
Trilo Therapeutics is focused on the discovery of novel inhibitors of protein-protein interactions for therapeutic purposes. Our Trilomer® platform of peptidomimetic binders allows for the targeted inhibition of disease-causing proteins, for the treatment of cancer, autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, and others. In a revolution of therapeutic approaches, Trilomer® peptidomimetic binders combine the cell permeability and degradation resistance of small molecules with the large surface area of antibodies, allowing them to target both intracellular and extracellular targets. Due to their fully synthetic modular building blocks, affinity optimization and structure-activity relationships (SAR) can be performed much more rapidly than either traditional medicinal chemistry or targeted mutagenesis of biologics. Our Degradomer® class of targeted protein degraders expands on the Trilomer® concept, allowing highly specific degradation of disease-causing proteins.

“We are very excited to have won Amgen’s Golden Ticket,” said Keith Wilson, chief executive officer, Trilo Therapeutics. “Amgen’s interest in our approach provides important additional validation for our work to develop novel therapeutics to currently undruggable targets. We look forward to interacting with Amgen’s scientific and therapeutic experts to help move Trilomer® therapies into the clinic. MBC BioLabs’ facilities and support will be instrumental in fostering Trilo’s rapid research progression.”

“Amgen continues to be a steadfast and integral partner in supporting entrepreneurial scientists at MBC BioLabs. Now with their fifth round of Golden Ticket awards, Amgen has helped propel 10 promising companies forward,” said Doug Crawford, General Manager at MBC BioLabs. “When Amgen first partnered with us in 2015, MBC BioLabs was a single site in San Francisco hosting 40 companies. With their support and the support of our other partners, we have now grown MBC BioLabs to three sites serving over 90 companies. By the end of the year that number will swell to over 100. We and the companies we host are deeply appreciative of Amgen’s commitment and leadership in early innovation.”

About Amgen
Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology.

Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people’s lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world’s leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.

For more information, please visit us at or follow us on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, and YouTube.

About MBC BioLabs
MBC BioLabs is dedicated to helping life-science startups succeed. By renting space as small as a single bench and providing entrepreneurial scientists with access to millions of dollars of equipment, we allow companies to be fast, focused, and frugal. We now have three sites: one in the Dogpatch neighborhood in San Francisco and two campuses in San Carlos. Each site has a complete molecular biology core facility that allows companies to do experiments on day one, not year one. We have partnerships with leading pharmaceutical and life-science companies as well as a built-in venture capital firm, Mission BioCapital. These partnerships provide our entrepreneurs with valuable insights about where to focus their efforts and accelerates the innovation pipeline. Our labs have truly enabled awesome: since our opening in 2013 we have helped launch and grow 194 companies. These companies have brought 53 programs to the clinic, produced 13 approved diagnostics, and raised over $4.5 billion. For more information, visit

Jessica Akopyan