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Deals & Dealmakers

Alexandria welcomes science startups

The urban office REIT Alexandria Real Estate Equities has opened its Alexandria LaunchLabs at the Alexandria Center for Life Science on East 29th Street.

LaunchLabs is a startup platform created to provide turn-key office and laboratory space as well as access to risk capital and seed money for life science companies, many of which have spun out of NYC’s academic medical institutions.

The platform is intentionally designed to accelerate both the commercialization of translational research and the growth of life science companies in NYC.

It has already attracted entrepreneurs developing novel therapeutics, drug discovery platforms and biomedical technologies.
Current members are focused on everything from 3D Printing of Personalized Living Tissues to Gene Therapy-Based Cancer Vaccines, Overcoming Immunotherapy Drug Resistance to Synthetic Genome Engineering.

“We are providing new life science companies with a one-of-a-kind solution and an unmatched opportunity to be located at the Alexandria Center, NYC’s first and only life science campus,” said Blake L. Stevens, Ph.D., general manager of Alexandria LaunchLabs.

To date, 13 initial member companies have been accepted to Alexandria LaunchLabs from a pool of over 115 applicants. Each member company is vetted and accepted based on the quality of its technology, foundational IP, business strategy, financing plan and management team.

The member companies can apply for seed funding through the Alexandria Seed Capital Platform, which is led by Alexandria Venture Investments and backed by an advisory board of biopharma and venture capital executives.

Jenna Foger, senior principal of science and technology of Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. and Alexandria Venture Investments. “Through Alexandria LaunchLabs and our Seed Capital Platform, we will help catalyze the next generation of life science companies in NYC to develop biomedical breakthroughs that will treat and cure so many otherwise life-threatening diseases.”

In celebration of the opening of LaunchLabs, Neochromosome was selected as the winner of the inaugural $100,000 Alexandria LaunchLabs Entrepreneurship Prize by a group of strategic partners from the NYC biopharma and venture capital community.
Neochromosome was founded by Jef Boeke, Ph.D., director of New York University Langone’s Institute for Systems Genetics, and Joel Bader, Ph.D., interim director of the High Throughput Biology Center at Johns Hopkins University.

The company’s mission is to address an array of applications that cannot be met using gene-at-a-time engineering.

Neochromosome designs, builds and optimizes entire synthetic chromosomes that augment a host cell’s genetic information, analogous to upgrading a computer’s operating system.

Dr. Boeke said, “It’s a great reward to see that scientific advances made in our research labs could lead to products and medical advances that will change the world.”

Dr. Bader added, “Alexandria LaunchLabs fills a crucial need for lab space at the intersection of high tech and biotech. We are excited to build our new projects on LaunchLabs’ foundation and to join the LaunchLabs community.”

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