BlueYard × Nucleate Partnership (and Announcing the 2023 Venture Prize Winners)
We are entering a new frontier in life sciences unparalleled in human history, as emerging technologies are changing the biotech industry along a few vectors including decreasing costs in sequencing, synthesis, etc., the ability to program, simulate and iterate in silico and in vivo and entrepreneurial accessibility. BlueYard’s strategy around biology is based on the premise that humankind’s ability to engineer and understand biology will not only fundamentally transform how we diagnose, treat, and manage disease, but also reinvent how we produce new materials and the food required to support human life and sustain our planet. In recognition of these step-function changes, over the last years, we have backed a dozen companies in the space — ranging from cellular reprogramming to combat aging to sustainable materials produced in microbes.
We believe tomorrow’s industry-defining biology companies will be founded by technologists and scientists who are building the interconnected elements that can become the fabric of our future (see our thesis). We are excited about empowering this next generation of founders and have renewed our partnership with Nucleate, the student-led non-profit organization dedicated to empowering the next generation of biotech leaders, aimed at fostering innovation in science at the earliest stages.
This year, Nucleate has expanded in Europe by opening core chapters in Germany and Denmark. Via our partnership, Nucleate has committed a pool of up to $2 million to fund the next generation of founders that have made it through the organization’s six-month Activator Program during 2024. The objective is to back 10 to 20 new teams across the European ecosystem as they migrate from the academic lab to a commercial entity and build the new platforms that re-engineer our society’s biology experiences.
We are also excited to announce the winners of the 2023 Nucleate Venture Prize. In total we awarded $1.45 million in the form of uncapped SAFEs to fund early-stage companies working across synthetic biology, therapeutics and drug delivery:
- Fusix (Technical University of Munich) — Fusogenic oncolytic viruses.
- Nanograb (Imperial College London) — Generating paratopic binders for cell specific delivery using AI
- PanTOx (University of Oxford) — Platform for novel antibody therapeutics targeting the tumor microenvironment
- Dart Biosciences (University of Oxford) — Novel therapeutics platform for monogenic and common diseases
- Jodo Biotech (Cambridge University) — Next-generation legume GMOs
- Eterna Therapeutics (University of Oxford) — Novel RNA-targeting therapeutic platform.
- Hepatic Patch (University College London) — A stem-cell based implantable and ectopic hepatic patch
- ChangeBio (Imperial College London) — An engineerable platform technology to convert methane to higher-value products.
- HarborSite (Harvard University) — Safe editing using engineered recombinases in genomic “safe harbor” loci.
Read more about our partnership with Nucleate here.