With financial support from IST cube, AWS, the TESS Research Foundation and the Foundation for USP7-related diseases, Neurolentech is well equipped to close in on new therapeutic targets for severe brain disorders
Klosterneuburg, October 13 2021 – More than 100 million people worldwide are affected by developmental brain disorders like autism spectrum disorder and epilepsy. For most of these patients drug treatments are unavailable and novel drug development approaches are needed. Neurolentech GmbH is generating data and tools to inform drug discovery and validate novel drug candidates for these conditions.
At the end of 2020, with financial support from the Austrian promotional bank (AWS), a team of renowned experts founded Neurolentech, a spin-off from IST Austria (Institute of Science and Technology Austria), to improve the lives of patients suffering from debilitating developmental brain disorders. The company is based at IST Park adjacent to IST Austria, where it has access to world-class science and state-of-the-art equipment. Using patient-specific disorder models and advanced genetic, physiological and bioinformatical analyses, Neurolentech develops tools and generates data to categorize patients and accelerate drug development for specific patient groups.
Neurolentech recently announced strategic partnerships with the TESS Research Foundation and the Foundation for USP7 Related Diseases, patient foundations that fully support Neurolentech’s personalized medicine approach for rare neurodevelopmental disorders.
The Neurolentech and IST cube management team (from left to right): Markus Wanko (IST cube), Christoph Bock (CeMM, MedUni Wien), Gaia Novarino (IST Austria), Carsten Pfeffer (Neurolentech), Alexander Schwartz (IST cube), Florian Resch (IST cube)
Neurolentech will use the IST cube investment to automatize processes and scale up its activities. Carsten Pfeffer, CEO and co-founder of Neurolentech: “Autism and epilepsy are a very diverse group of disorders with huge unmet medical needs. This investment will allow us to accelerate our integrated platform development and speed up novel drug discovery approaches. Neurolentech is excited to partner with IST cube who shares our long-term vision to develop novel therapies for neurodevelopmental disorders.”
“Neurodevelopmental disorders, like Autism or Epilepsy, have seen major breakthroughs in understanding of specific molecular pathologies. Larger scale generation of disorder-specific model systems will provide the necessary tools and data for novel treatments of these diverse and complex disorders. We are thrilled to see that basic research is now translated into promising approaches to help these patients,” adds Gaia Novarino, Neurolentech co-founder and Professor for Neuroscience at IST Austria.
Alexander Schwartz, Partner at IST cube, comments: “Neurolentech is a show case example for how insights from basic science can be translated into a company that addresses a large and currently unmet medical need and that will ultimately help patients. It is great to see, how the collaboration between researchers, academic institutions, funding agencies and private investors can enable high potential spin-offs.”
Neurolentech GmbH develops cellular disorder models for drug development and diagnostics focusing on Autism and Epilepsy, neurodevelopmental disorders with a huge unmet medical need and large burden on patients, families and society. Neurolentech’s precision medicine platform approach combines the generation of patient- and disorder-specific models with several molecular and physiological analysis technologies that will allow the directed development and validation of novel drugs and therapeutics. Neurolentech GmbH was founded by Carsten Pfeffer, Gaia Novarino, Christoph Bock, together with IST Austria.
About IST Austria
IST Austria, founded in 2009 and located in Klosterneuburg, Austria, is a PhD granting research institution dedicated to cutting-edge, curiosity-driven research across a broad range of scientific disciplines, including neurosciences. IST Austria faculty are among the world’s leading researchers in their respective fields, with an excellent track record in publications and competitive research grant awards.
About IST Cube
IST cube is a seed fund focusing on deep-tech and science-based start-ups and spin-offs. The fund leads investment rounds in pre-seed and seed stages with the ability for follow-on investments. IST cube supports the portfolio companies with equity, know-how and network. In addition, the fund has a strong partner in the Institute of Science and Technology Austria, which provides access to scientific infrastructure.
IST cube is supported by InnovFin Equity, with the financial backing of the European Union under Horizon 2020 Financial Instruments and the European Fund for Strategic Investments (“EFSI”) set up under the Investment Plan for Europe. The purpose of EFSI is to help support financing and implementing productive investments in the European Union and to ensure increased access to financing.