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Noteworthy

Please find below news in brief from Ascenion, its partners and the technology transfer sector:

08.04.2019

Gramibactin is Leibniz Compound of the Year 2019

Gramibactin is an iron-binding molecule of the siderophore family. It occurs naturally in certain plant-associated bacteria where it helps secure the iron supply of both the microorganisms and their host plants. It captures iron(III) from the environment through N nitroso-hydroxylamine groups that have not been observed in any other natural iron transporter so far. This unique binding motif not only fixes iron with high affinity but also serves as a nitric oxide (NO) donor.

These findings may contribute to improving plant growth and crop yield in a natural way. In plants, iron is essential for chlorophyll production, and NO is involved in several regulatory processes. Gramibactin was discovered by Christian Hertweck and his team at the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology – Hans Knöll Institute (HKI).

Due to the strong potential it holds for cereal production, it was named ‘Leibniz Compound of the Year’. The compound is available for licencing or co-development through Ascenion, the HKI’s technology transfer partner.

Further information:

07.04.2019

ISAR Bioscience Translational R&D project competition: Call for proposals

ISAR Bioscience is sponsor of BioVaria 2019, Europe’s leading showcasing event for life science technologies. ISAR is committed to translational R&D in the field of applied stem cell and regenerative medicine research. ISAR invites scientists and R&D organizations to submit early-stage or more advanced translational R&D project proposals for recognition, support & funding. All areas of applied biomedical and therapeutic research are welcome but R&D project proposals must encompass ISAR key technologies such as for instance hiPSC and cell differentiation, genome engineering, next generation disease models for therapeutic discovery and regenerative medicine, cell-based models for industrial biotechnology applications, 3D spheroid/organoid tissue models, microfluidics, or laboratory automation. Confidentiality is guaranteed and all proposals will be internally evaluated. Select applicants will be invited to pitch their translational R&D project to the ISAR jury in a confidential ISAR satellite session at BioVaria 2019. The winning ISAR R&D proposal will be announced and honored with € 2,000 at the ISAR award ceremony held at BioVaria 2019 and will be further evaluated whether it is eligible for ISAR support and funding. R&D project proposals must be submitted no later than April 12th 2019.

Further information and application instructions see competition website.

06.04.2019

Join ASTP-Proton’s 20th Annual Conference on 21 – 23 May 2019 in Dublin

Get ready for Europe’s largest event for knowledge and technology transfer (KTT): ASTP-Proton’s Annual Conference is taking place in Dublin on 21 – 23 May 2019. The meeting attracts hundreds of KTT professionals from across the world as well as major stakeholders from industry, SMEs, finance and government. Two interactive days offer multiple opportunities for learning and networking. The program includes inspiring key notes from international top speakers, e.g. from Israel and Saudi Arabia, and workshops and panel discussions on hot topics such as artificial intelligence. In addition, participants can arrange for one-on-one meetings with representatives from EU projects, KTT-offices or industry to share experience and identify opportunities for collaboration.

Arrive on 21 May in the morning and join the pre-conference program which includes two free training workshops, a visit to the Guinness Enterprise Centre, and walking tour of Dublin!

For further information on programme and registration please visit the conference website.

04.04.2019

EIT Health Accelerator: Dedicated support for Europe’s top entrepreneurs

This is an exciting opportunity for European healthcare entrepreneurs, start-ups and SMEs: EIT Health invites you to apply for participation in the EIT Health Accelerator, a EU-backed programme providing dedicated support at every stage of the business development process, from ideation to scale-up. Supportive actions break down into three key sections: INCUBATE, VALIDATE and SCALE. Choose the programme that best suits your venture’s development stage:

  • INCUBATE targets academics working on ideas in medtech, biotech or digital health. It offers access to dedicated Bootcamp programmes, which are designed to help start-ups develop and validate their business idea, and prepare to launch across the European market.
  • VALIDATE is for start-ups and SMEs that want to test and improve their products. It includes access to test labs, mentoring, funding and training, e.g. in the fields of regulatory and marketing. 
  • SCALE focuses on more mature start-ups and SMEs. It provides access to advanced tools and networks for financing and market expansion.


Don’t miss the opportunity to benefit from the EU’s vibrant start-up ecosystem.

  • Learn more about the EIT Accelerator.
  • If you are located in the DACH region also explore the slack group for start-ups where information about upcoming deadlines and opportunities is published regularly.

12.03.2019

Ascenion supports negotiations for licence agreement between HZI and InvivoGen

Ascenion GmbH, the technology transfer partner of the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), has supported the negotiations for a licence agreement between the institute and InvivoGen, a global provider of life-science research products. Under the terms of the agreement the company obtains the right to commercialise c-di-AMP as a vaccine adjuvant for research projects. The compound is a second messenger in bacteria, where it plays a crucial role in the coordination of growth and the establishment of bacterial infection. HZI researchers have shown that it can boost cellular immune response when co-administered with vaccines via various routes, including mucosal applications. This makes it an attractive adjuvant for all approaches aiming to establish effective immune protection, involving the mucosa as point of entrance.

The compound is available at preclinical grade from InvivoGen at 
www.invivogen.com/cdiamp-vaccigrade.

22.02.2019

HZI and Evotec to collaborate for novel antibiotics

Ascenion GmbH, the technology transfer partner of the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), has supported the negotiations for a collaboration agreement between the institute and Evotec. The partners will combine their platforms and expertise to develop antibiotics against resistant pathogens that pose an increasing threat to public health. They will first focus on cystobactamids, a promising group of natural antibiotic agents active against the most dangerous gram-negative bacteria on the WHO priority list.

The project will benefit from the partners’ complementary technology and know-how. The HZI provides access to its unique collection of natural products and in-vitro and in-vivo models of bacterial infection, while Evotec contributes its leading drug discovery platform, medicinal chemistry and pharmacology expertise and its world-leading collection of bacterial pathogens. The collaboration will initially run for three years.

Further information: See press release
 

20.02.2019

In cooperation with TechnologieAllianz: Ascenion offers training courses

TechnologieAllianz is the German association for knowledge and technology transfer (KTT) and brings together universities, national research institutions and transfer service providers in a nationwide network. TechnologieAllianz is promoting the development and recognition of the KTT profession in Germany and is also striving towards sharing best practice among their members as well as with other international KTT institutions and networks worldwide. Additionally, TechnologieAllianz organises KTT training, workshops and conferences.

As a member of TechnologieAllianz, Ascenion will conduct a further-education training course on the topic of equity management. 

Learn more.

19.02.2019

Welcome to the team!

End of last year, Dr Claus Schulte joined Ascenion’s team in Munich as Project and Start-up Manager. He draws on many years’ experience in the life-sciences industry, in technology transfer and the start-up scene. He led various business development and licensing departments and gained experience in founding and managing start-up companies.

Claus holds a degree in biology from Münster University and a PhD in Neurodevelopmental Biology from Cambridge University, UK.

18.02.2019

Behind the scenes of technology transfer

At the end of January, 19 technology transfer specialists representing Ascenion’s partner institutions in Germany and Austria gathered in Munich for the company’s dedicated TT-workshop. The workshop represents a unique platform for Ascenion’s partners to share experiences from the various research organizations and expand their TT-know-how in a cooperative und trusting atmosphere. This year’s key topics were artificial intelligence in medicine, patenting of computer-implemented inventions as well as participation of academic research organizations in start-ups and the structuring of related agreements. These were presented by experts from Ascenion and external speakers including an IP-expert from the European Patent Office, a data scientist from the Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems (IAIS) and a Strategic Alliance Manager from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) who provided intriguing insights into the institute’s industry collaborations. Participants went home inspired with lots of valuable information and new contacts and an eagerness for next year’s workshop.

12.02.2019

Early bird deadline for TechnologieAllianz’ Annual Meeting has been extended to February 15, 2019

This year’s Annual Meeting of TechnologieAllianz, Germany’s association for knowledge and technology transfer (KTT) will take place on 20-21 March 2019 in Frankfurt, Germany. For the first time, it has been extended to two days providing extra dedicated time for international networking and program highlights.

  • Gain valuable insights from keynotes, workshops and panel discussions presented by leading experts from across Europe and the US.
  • Learn about key trends and topics in the field including the development of the European KTT landscape, measuring and evaluating KTT, funding tools, industry cooperation, open innovation, transfer of IT, and innovative licensing models.
  • Share experience and network with leaders in KTT from academia and industry.
  • Shape the future of KTT.

Secure your early bird ticket here.

28.01.2019

Save the date: Next BioVaria on 8-9 May 2019 in Munich

BioVaria is organised by Ascenion and several other technology transfer organisations from all across Europe. The conference brings together Europe’s top scientists and technology transfer professionals with potential licensees and investors from the international biopharmaceutical industry. Top-tier academic institutions and universities from all over Europe will present over 60 attractive partnering and investment opportunities in the life-science field – each one selected for BioVaria in a peer-review process.

Selected pre- and post-seed startups from all life-science areas (pharma, diagnostics, medtech, digital health) will have the chance to pitch their companies during the two-day Startup Pitch & Partner program. During one-to-one Speed Dating, they will have the opportunity to connect directly with potential investors and receive individual advice from industry experts in the dedicated mentoring sessions. Application deadline is March 1, 2019 - secure your place!

BioVaria offers a unique opportunity to learn about many exceptionally attractive and innovative projects and discuss them directly with the scientists during two days.

Don’t miss BioVaria 2019 if you are a scout, business developer or investor! Register now!

Apply here for the Startup Pitch & Partner program!

25.01.2019

Early bird registration for TechnologieAllianz’ Annual Meeting ends on 31 January 2019

This year’s Annual Meeting of TechnologieAllianz, Germany’s association for knowledge and technology transfer (KTT), will take place on 20-21 March 2019 in Frankfurt, Germany. For the first time, it has been extended to two days providing extra dedicated time for international networking and program highlights.

  • Gain valuable insights from keynotes, workshops and panel discussions presented by leading experts from across Europe and the US.
  • Learn about key trends and topics in the field including the development of the European KTT landscape, measuring and evaluating KTT, funding tools, industry cooperation, open innovation, transfer of IT, and innovative licensing models.
  • Share experience and network with leaders in KTT from academia and industry.
  • Shape the future of KTT.

Don’t miss the chance to save over 100 EUR by registering before end of January! For registration and program details please visit the TechnologieAllianz’ website.

18.12.2018

Ascenion’s portfolio company iThera extends its Series C financing to a total of EUR 9 million

Three months following the first closing of its Series C financing, iThera Medical completed a second closing with Occident Ventures, BayBG and Falk Strascheg Holding raising the total volume of Series C by EUR 2 million to a total of EUR 9 million. Investors of the first closing include FLUXUNIT, the corporate venture capital arm of OSRAM, the Wachstumsfonds Bayern managed by Bayern Kapital, BayBG and Extorel. iThera will use the proceeds to accelerate and expand the clinical development of its breakthrough imaging technology, MSOT (multispectral optoacoustic tomography). The technology has the unique capability of visualizing optical contrast at high resolution (down to 10 µm) in deep tissue (up to 3 cm) and displaying the image in real time. It is already in use for preclinical and clinical research around the globe and under further development for diagnostic applications.

For further information see iThera’s website.

11.12.2018

Merry Christmas!

We would like to thank all our clients, colleagues and partners in technology transfer, research and industry for the enjoyable and productive collaboration over the past year.

Instead of sending Christmas cards, we have decided to make a donation to the Förderverein Kinderpalliativzentrum München e. V. (www.fvkp.de). This charity supports the work of the Palliative Care Centre for Children in Munich by financing additional services, professional training and innovative research projects.

We wish you all a merry Christmas, peaceful holidays and much happiness and success in 2019!

Your Ascenion Team 

04.12.2018

Fate Therapeutics Secures Exclusive Option to Novel anti-BCMA CAR Constructs for Development of iPSC-derived Cell Products

Agreement with Max Delbrück Center Provides Access to Broad Intellectual Property Portfolio of Unique Humanized Antibody Fragments and Antigen-Binding Domains Targeting BCMA.

Ascenion GmbH, technology transfer partner of the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC), has negotiated an agreement between the MDC and Fate Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the development of programmed cellular immunotherapies for cancer and immune disorders. The company has secured an exclusive option to an intellectual property portfolio owned by the MDC covering novel chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) constructs that specifically bind B-cell Maturation Antigen (BCMA). Under the agreement with MDC, Fate Therapeutics holds an exclusive option to exclusively license the portfolio for all cell products, including CAR NK- and T-cell products, derived from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

Further information:
See Fate’s press release