Bio Studio project: Henriette Svarre Nielsen
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The Bio Studio Program supports entrepreneurial academic researchers in translating their science into innovative products and solutions.
The Bio Studio program is a newly established program with the ambition to build and run a leading life science company creation facility in Europe. Through this program, BII will host 15-20 top-level entrepreneurial scientists from across the world to translate their science into new solutions. Bio Studio is anchored in our Innovation department.
The Bio Studio Program projects will join BII and establish a team that will work in BII’s office and lab space alongside other Bio Studio projects and start-ups in other BII programs. Bio Studio projects will be supported by a tailored program to develop the teams’ entrepreneurial and commercial competencies and by dedicated BII anchors to help guide project progression.
Bio Studio is a successor to our former Faculty program.
BII is excited to invite entrepreneurial scientists to submit an Expression of Interest for our Bio Studio program. Bio Studio is a newly established program specifically designed to support leading academic Principal Investigators (PIs) from universities, hospitals and/or research institutions in translating research into innovative products and solutions.
Interested in learning more? Please find more information below about our current expression of interest calls.
Our programs support life science start-ups operating within therapeutics, bioindustrials and health tech.
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Bio Studio supports ambitious translational projects that address major challenges with substantial societal and health impact and target a significant current or future market need.
The goal of each Bio Studio project is to create a viable startup by the end of the program that can raise seed or Series A financing.
As part of the Bio Studio program, you will receive help with scientific maturation, development of IP, entrepreneurial training, extensive in-kind partner services and preparation for fundraising.
Established PIs with at least three years of experience of leading an independent research group from across the world with a strong academic track record and demonstrated experience in translating research and/or commercialization.
Bio Studio projects are expected to run for up to 3 years and the funding is awarded in sequential 1-year in-kind grants of up to DKK 5M pending on annual approval of extension based on the milestone plan.
Funded projects will be incubated at BII’s state-of-the-art facilities in central Copenhagen. PIs themselves are not expected to relocate to BII and will remain at their host institution. Any IP generated during the Bio Studio project will remain with the PI’s host institution or with the inventors depending on appropriate legislation.
PI Henriette Svarre Nielsen
Henriette Svarre Nielsen is a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology and an expert in reproduction and recurrent pregnancy loss. Parallel to her clinical and academic career focusing on pathophysiology in reproduction and women’s health, Henriette Svarre Nielsen has successfully founded and chaired Maternity Foundation and co-founded OvaCure. Maternity Foundation aims to save lives in childbirth, develops evidence‐based solutions, and is a strong actor within the emerging health tech field. The Safe Delivery App developed by the Foundation has successfully instructed over 160,000 health care workers in Sub‐Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia.
PI Karsten Kristiansen
Karsten Kristiansen has worked in molecular biology since the late 70s. He is a Professor at the Laboratory of Genomics and Molecular Biomedicine in the Department of Biology at the University of Copenhagen. Karsten has served as a member of Scientific Advisory Boards in several life science companies such as Evolva and research institutions worldwide such as The National Institute of Nutrition and Seafood Research in Norway. In 2001, he co-founded the start-up BioLigands.
In the Bio Studio project, his team is working on designing consortia of bacteria – termed collaboromes – able to prevent or diminish attacks by pathogens causing significant annual losses of crops. The project will establish a comprehensive catalog of genes, species, and collaboromes characterizing the microbiota in fields with a high or low incidence of diseases due to fungal or bacterial pathogens.
PI Jay Keasling
Jay Keasling is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and a visiting professor at the Technical University of Denmark. Jay Keasling is an expert in engineering microorganisms to produce chemicals such as pharmaceuticals, specialty and commodity chemicals, and biofuels. He has authored over 450 peer‐reviewed publications, is the inventor of over 50 issued US patents, and is the co‐founder of eight biotechnology companies. As principal investigator, Jay Keasling leads the overall scientific and business development efforts.
In his Bio Studio project, his team focuses on Monoterpenoid indole alkaloids (MIAs), plant-derived natural products with remarkable structural diversity, and a myriad of applications as therapeutics, nutraceuticals, pest control agents, and materials precursors.
PI Thomas Lars Andresen
Thomas Lars Andresen has a background in biomaterial and biological engineering. He has started several companies, such as Nanovi in 2012, Monta Biosciences in 2014, and the Boston-based Torque Therapeutics in 2015. Academically, Thomas has received multiple research prizes, including the Elite Research Prize from the Danish Ministry of Science, published more than 160 research articles, and filed approximately 40 patent applications. He spent more than two years in Boston as full-time CSO of Torque Therapeutics, and he was instrumental in merging the company with Cogen to form Repertoire Immune Medicines. He was the lead on three IND filings in the US and one in Europe and led four distinct technologies into clinical trials, one of which is now commercialized in Europe.
In the Bio Studio program, his team aims to develop a technology platform for localized gene therapy where the first technological objective is to generate a transfection system for pro-inflammatory cytokines that uses the cellular machinery within tumors to generate the cytokine in situ over a defined time period. Local cytokine secretion will induce a pro-inflammatory condition in the tumor that will aid the immune system in recognizing and eradicating cancer cells.
PI Anja Boisen
Anja Boisen has more than 20 years of experience in sensor development and has managed several larger national and international projects. She is heading the IDUN center of Excellence and has co-founded four spinout companies from DTU. Anja is, among others, the vice-chair of Innovation Fund Denmark, which supports entrepreneurs, researchers, and businesses to develop innovative and viable solutions to society’s challenges.
In the Bio Studio program, her team is developing a miniaturized tabletop device that can perform therapeutic drug monitoring on a single drop of blood in a matter of minutes. The research group will work on a solution available at the point of care without needing specialized personnel and at a fraction of the currently available cost.
Group Leader and Head of the Metabolomics Core Facility at EMBL
Theodore Alexandrov is a Group Leader at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg and the head of the EMBL Metabolomics Core Facility. He is also an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the Skaggs School of Pharmacy, University of California San Diego. The overarching aim of the Alexandrov team is to develop tools for computational biology to picture metabolism in time and space across spatial scales from organism to tissues to single cells.
Professor and Research Director for Biomedical Materials at Imperial College London
Molly Stevens is a Professor and Research Director for Biomedical Materials at Imperial College London. The main goal of the ASAI project is to deliver a transformative approach to early diagnostics and monitoring of diseases. The cost-effective diagnostic platform will provide artificial intelligence (AI)-based evaluation of molecular fingerprints to inform clinical decisions to help slow disease progression and improve treatment plans.
EMBL, Europe’s flagship laboratory for life sciences, is an intergovernmental organization established in 1974 and supported by 27 member states, two prospective member states, and an associate member state. EMBL performs fundamental research in molecular biology, studying the story of life. It offers services to the scientific community, trains the next generation of scientists, and helps integrate the life sciences across Europe.
Rigshospitalet is the University Hospital of Copenhagen with specialized treatment, research, and education at the highest international level. Through a strong focus on innovation and developing new treatments, services, and solutions for better healthcare, the hospital seeks to benefit patients across the world by being a global pioneer in future healthcare.
The hospital has established a structured process for innovation support, where clinicians receive help from a dedicated team of innovation consultants to convert their research into new medical solutions. The aim is to help design and develop future healthcare solutions with startups and the industry that can bring products to market and scale to make a global impact.
Bispebjerg Hospital is one of the hospitals in the Capital Region of Denmark. Along with several other hospitals and the University of Copenhagen (the Faculty of Health Sciences), Bispebjerg Hospital forms part of the Copenhagen University Hospital.
The University of Copenhagen was founded in 1479 by the Danish king Christian 1, and today has 37,500 students and 9,000 employees – of whom some 5,000 are researchers – and revenues of DKK 9.1 billion. The University of Copenhagen consistently ranks as the top university in Denmark and Scandinavia. The quality of the University of Copenhagen is underlined by the fact that its researchers have received nine Nobel Prizes.
Aarhus University (AU) is one of Denmark’s largest research and teaching hubs, with its main campus in downtown Aarhus. Rooted in strong disciplines, researchers and students have been generating new knowledge here for over 90 years. Aarhus University has 38,000 students, five faculties, research activities all over the country, and campuses in Aarhus, Herning, and Emdrup.
Research and education of the highest international quality are at the core of our mission, and strong partnerships with our society are at the heart of our activities. Thanks to its size and reputation as a leading research-intensive university, Aarhus University has a strong impact and influence across the entire spectrum of disciplines, locally, nationally, and globally.
Among more than 17,000 universities worldwide, Aarhus University is in the top 100 on several international rankings. With its recently launched business collaboration and innovation initiative, Aarhus University will create even more tangible value for society.