OrganoTherapeutics, a spin-off project from the University of Luxembourg which uses so-called mini-brains to advance treatment options for Parkinson’s disease has won this year’s BioVaria Startup Award.
Every year, BioVaria, Europe’s leading showcasing event for life-science technologies hosts Europe’s top scientists, entrepreneurs, investors and industry representatives. This year, the event was held from the 26-28th April and presented more than 70 licensable technologies and 16 startups originating from public research institutes and universities across Europe.
Like most events this year, BioVaria had to be held virtually. However, this did not dampen the mood and enthusiasm of the 250 life-science innovators and participants. Indeed, this year’s BioVaria had the biggest portfolio of startups and licensable technologies since its inception in 2008.
A totally of 70 research institutes, universities and hospitals from 7 European countries contributed to this portfolio.
Although the participants were stuck behind their screens and strewn across Europe, they were very excited about the virtual Startup Pitch & Partner programme which allowed the life-science and biotech entrepreneurs, founders and startups to show off their work, ideas and pitching skills.
BioVaria’s Startup Pitch & Partner programme consisted of two competitions: the Emerging Startups and the Rising Startups competition. The latter was for startups that were already in the post-seed stage while the former was for the startups that were still in the pre-seed stage.
“It motivates us to improve our organoid model in order to discover new therapies for Parkinson’s disease.”
Having already passed it pre-seed stage, the Luxembourg based OrganoTherapeutics competed against 6 other life-science and biotech startups in the Rising Startups competition and went home with the winning prize of 1000 euros.
While the prize money is unlikely to have a significant impact on OrganoTherapeutics future research, it reaffirms the potential of the startup’s technology and their business model.
“We are delighted to receive this award. It motivates us to improve our organoid model in order to discover new therapies for Parkinson’s disease,” said Professor Jens Schwamborn, cofounder and CEO of OrganoTherapeutics and head of the Developmental and Cellular Biology group at the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB).
OrganoTherapeutics new, organoid approach to developing drugs for Parkinson’s disease is a promising new route that hopes to identify therapeutic agents that can reverse brain-damaging processes. While there is still no definitive cure for Parkinson’s disease, cutting edge research by OrganoTherapeutics hopes to change this.
Both organoid research and the LCSB are still young in age. However, winning a BioVaria startup prize has put OrganoTherapeutics firmly on the map and is another sign that Luxembourg’s rising startup culture is finding success across many industries.