Enrico Rossi, President of the Tuscany Region, visited Toscana Life Sciences (TLS) (www.toscanalifesciences.org) to meet the companies and the research groups that have located their activities in the spaces offered by the TLS bioincubator.
It was an important opportunity to show Rossi the main areas the companies are working on, their most recent achievements and perspectives.
At the end of the meeting, Rossi confirmed the interest of Tuscany Region to supporting TLS activities and announced the Region’s intention to establish in TLS the regional reference centre for the patenting in the Life Science sector.
Together with LDS, the following companies and research groups also participated to the event: VisMederi, Diesse, Kedrion, T4All, Pharma Integration, Polo GGB, Fondazione Umberto Di Mario, Externautics, Epigen Therapeutics, Fondazione NIBIT, Istituto Toscano Tumori, CNR.
During the meeting, Laura Maccari, LDS Project Manager, gave an overview of LDS activities, including both services in drug discovery and the development of internal research projects. LDS is the only PMI working in the Medicinal Chemistry area currently hosted at TLS.
LDS won the “Novartis Oncology” prize at the sixth edition of BioInItaly Investment Forum 2015 & Intesa Sanpaolo StartUp Initiative, the yearly investment forum open to established biotech and healthcare companies, start-ups and projects from Italy but also from other European countries seeking for financial resources and strategic partnerships. The event – in partnership with Assobiotec, Fondazione Filarete and Assobiomedica – was held in Milan on April 21-22, at Palazzo Besana, Piazza Belgioioso.
In a unique end-to-end program, the applicants benefit from coaching, networking and direct contact with international investors through a series of focused events. The initiative is aimed to provide the applicants with the competences, connections and access to potential Investors they need to go to market and scale.
During the event The Novartis Award was assigned to Lead Discovery Siena as the most promising oncology research project and start-up, as evaluated by Novartis Oncology Italy among all applicants. In particular, the project presented by LDS focused on the development of new drug for the treatment of Glioblastma Multiforme, a rare brain tumor. The award entailed a trip to Basel Campus, one of Novartis’ leading worldwide oncology research center, with coverage of travel and accommodation expenses.
Start Cup Tuscany is a competition that rewards the best entrepreneurial initiatives with high technological content coming from the research community, and offers the possibility to develop an idea into business by providing support to training activities, business plan production, and prize money. The competition is organized by Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna in Pisa in collaboration with other Tuscan Universities and the support from Tuscany Region. Start Cup Tuscany represents the regional phase of the National Award for Innovation, which is the most important Italian competition for business projects developed by students and researchers in academia.
In 2009, Lead Discovery Siena participated to the competition as an entrepreneurial idea to be developed into a reality and won the first prize of Stat Cup Toscana. LDS presented a business plan about the constitution of an academic spin off providing research services for drug discovery, also aimed at identifying, developing and patenting new drugs, their synthesis and the computational models used for their design.
The idea was considered to be original, feasible, ambitious, with great potentialities in terms of development with respect to the relevant market area, and to be supported by a competent and appropriate management team. The overall plan was appropriately presented and supported.