Autobahn Labs Announces Key Licensing Milestones in Alliances with Early University Partners

Autobahn Labs Logo

PALO ALTO, CA, USA, November 14, 2023 – Autobahn Labs, an early-stage drug discovery incubator, announced today that it had executed exclusive license agreements to foundational technologies in its collaborations with the Los Angeles and San Francisco campuses of the University of California. The objective of Autobahn’s collaborations with its academic partners is to identify academic research programs targeting important unmet medical needs and to advance their commercialization in companies it launches.

Autobahn Labs’ first two university partners were UCLA and UCSF, followed by UCSD, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Boston Children’s Hospital, the University of Pennsylvania, and most recently the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. A feature of Autobahn Labs’ investment model is pre-negotiated institutional agreements with startups it forms to commercialize university technologies. This enables it to rapidly trigger exclusive licenses to key institutional IP as the foundational basis of virtual startups it launches to accelerate academic research towards the clinic. The two exclusive licenses that Autobahn announced today buttress the startups from Autobahn’s first two partner institutions and represent an important milestone for these translational programs on their path towards preclinical candidate nomination.

“I’m thrilled to see our early partnerships bearing fruit,” said Thomas Novak, Chief Scientific Officer of Autobahn Labs. “Each of these startups – in which we have already invested considerable effort and funding – is now the beneficiary of an exclusive license to key university background IP. This adds a proprietary edge to the cutting-edge research on which these companies are based,” he added.

Regarding its exclusive license grant relating to a potential best-in-class antifibrinolytic drug to reduce blood loss during lengthy surgeries, Mark A. Wisniewski, Senior Director, Biopharmaceuticals in the UCLA Technology Development Group said, “Autobahn Labs has been a valued partner since the beginning of this collaboration. This important therapeutic program was discovered through their dedicated endeavors to engage and build faculty relationships.”

Foundational IP exclusively licensed from UCSF, is focused on molecules selected to activate a receptor involved in mucosal healing in patients who suffer from inflammatory bowel disease. “Significant unmet need remains for effective treatments for IBD,” said Peter Kotsonis, Interim Vice Chancellor of Business Development, Innovation and Partnerships at UCSF. “We’re very pleased to see this innovative research form the basis for a startup built upon foundational IP licensed from the university”, he added.

Backed by Samsara BioCapitalEvotec SE, and KCK Ltd, Autobahn Labs invests earlier than traditional venture financing models, providing intellectual, financial and human capital to efficiently and effectively advance new scientific discoveries from novel concept to preclinical drug candidate selection. Autobahn’s partner institutions benefit from its strategic and operational support, as well as the industry-leading drug discovery and development capabilities of Evotec. Autobahn Labs creates jointly owned companies with its academic partners and invests up to $5M per project, provides operational and scientific expertise to guide drug development, and applies Evotec’s powerful integrated multimodality discovery platform, designed to accelerate the translation of scientific ideas into novel therapeutics.

Autobahn Labs has collaborations with the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), University of California San Francisco (UCSF), University of California San Diego (UCSD), Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the University of Pennsylvania, Boston Children’s Hospital and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.