Evotec and Bristol Myers Squibb have launched beLAB1407 with funding of $20 million, to advance drug discovery opportunities and encourage the launch of spinout companies from the Universities of Edinburgh, Birmingham, Dundee and Nottingham.
BeLAB1407, launched by Germany-based Evotec in collaboration with US-based Bristol Myers Squibb, aims to accelerate translational research from the UK’s academic life science ecosystem.
It is the latest of Evotec’s Biomedical Research, Innovation & Development Generation Efficiency (BRIDGE) projects which the company has established across Europe and North America.
“The University of Edinburgh has a long tradition of making a positive impact on the world around us. Being part of the collaboration at beLAB1407 will help develop new solutions to unmet clinical need and continue our influence.
“We are delighted to, once again, be collaborating with multiple partners to create positive impact for all our communities.”
– Professor Peter Mathieson, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh.
EI’s central role
Edinburgh Innovations played a central role in bringing together the academic and commercial partners involved in the beLAB1407 collaboration and led the negotiations and deal closure on behalf of the University partners.
University researchers will be able to access funding from beLAB1407 to work with industrial partners to progress therapeutics research with a view to launching spinout companies. Professor Scott Webster is the academic lead on the programme for the University of Edinburgh.
Supporting spinout creation
Evotec’s BRIDGE collaborations provide a fund and award framework to validate academic projects in collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotechnology partners, with the goal to form new companies.
Since implementing the first academic BRIDGE ‘LAB282’ in Oxford in November 2016, Evotec has continued to evolve similar collaborations with a variety of academic, pharma and venture capital partners across Europe and North America.
With beLAB1407, Evotec links one of Europe’s foremost academic clusters of excellence in the life sciences with Bristol Myers Squibb as a major biopharmaceutical partner dedicated to advancing innovation in therapeutics from academia to patient benefit.
The beLAB1407 collaboration builds on a longstanding relationship between Evotec and Bristol Myers Squibb in drug discovery across several therapeutic areas.
“This innovative collaboration represents the best of academic and industry collaboration. We are delighted to be playing our part in such a high calibre project supporting early stage research become reality.
“The University of Edinburgh already has an impressive track record of drug discovery supported by our world class facilities. This innovative approach gives us even more opportunity to make our ideas work for a better world.”
– Dr George Baxter, CEO, Edinburgh Innovations.
The name beLAB1407 refers to the distance in kilometres between Land’s End in the southwest of Great Britain to its north-easternmost point, John o’ Groats in Scotland.
“We are thrilled to launch beLAB1407 together with our partners at Bristol Myers Squibb with whom we’ve worked on a variety of projects over a period of many years.
“BeLAB1407 provides researchers from the member institutions with a unique way to fast-track their projects, to validate them on our industrial-grade platform and have partnering options including company formations readily available to them.”
– Dr Werner Lanthaler, CEO, Evotec.