The Essence of Problem Solving

Dr Andreas Laustsen was a GapSummit 2016 Leader of Tomorrow. He was kind enough to provide a mini masterclass on generating novel entrepreneurial ideas to this year's cohort of Leaders of Tomorrow, and we thought the lessons he had to share could also help the wider GBR community as we head into GapSummit 2017. Andreas is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Technical University of Denmark. He has founded two biotech startups: Biosyntia, which uses synthetic biology and engineering to create biocatalysts for sustainable manufacturing and VenomAb, a startup that's developing replacements for…Read more

Leader of Tomorrow’s Novartis BioCamp Experience

Adam was a Leader of Tomorrow at GapSummit 2016 and has continued to Grow, Connect and Challenge through global events. He shared with us his recent experience attending the Novartis International Biotechnology Leadership Camp (BioCamp), a 3-day event that gives 60 select students an in-depth look inside the company. I am always looking for ways in which I can acquire more knowledge on the inner workings of the biotech industry being an aspiring biotech leader myself. After I arrived in the UK for my Masters, I was lucky to be chosen to attend…Read more

LifeImmune – Leaders of Tomorrow turn their Idea into a Business

Innovation challenges like the Voices of Tomorrow Competition can be the start of great things. This year's finalists can take some inspiration from LifeImmune: LifeImmune is a medical device company set up to disrupt the field of allergen testing. Our goal is to provide point-of-care diagnosis of antibiotic allergies from a single finger prick. To this end, we are developing an in-house whole blood immunologic assay using microfluidic technology. We are first tackling antibiotic allergies because there is an urgent unmet need for medical staff at hospitals and emergency rooms to verify these…Read more

Discovering antibiotics is the easy bit – Why new antibiotics never come to market

Marooned at the bottom of Lake Michigan, around 15 feet below the surface, lies the 167 year old wreck of a cargo ship called the James McBride. The McBride sank in December 1848 on the way back from a voyage transporting salt from the islands off Canada’s Atlantic Coast to Chicago. Like most of the estimated 1500 shipwrecks dotted somewhere among the twenty two and a half thousand square miles spanned by Michigan, little is known about the circumstances which eventually condemned it to its current watery grave. But more than a century…Read more

Synthetic Biology Continues to Grow in the U.S., Raising More than $0.5B in 2015

In the past year, industrial applications for synthetic biology have simply exploded. Just in 2015, SynBio companies in the United States have raised more than half a billion dollars to advance fields as diverse as personalized medicine and next-generation textiles. The dramatic increase in synbio investment is primarily concentrated in two transcostal hubs: the greater San Francisco and Boston areas. Companies in San Francisco have benefitted from a very supportive startup culture, taking advantage of infrastructure laid down from years of Silicon Valley endeavours. The startup process has been streamlined in the area…Read more

What are the key factors to let Synthetic Biotechnology flourish in the UK?

The excitement in the synthetic biology community in the UK is palpable. It’s apparent in the buzz at SynBio meetings and conferences, but also evident by the sector’s rapid growth in the UK in the last five years. Thanks to the UK government’s pro-active mindset towards the industry - having identified SynBio as one of its seven key enabling technologies, it is perhaps the only country to have a coordinated and cohesive SynBio plan in place (in the form of the Synthetic Biology Roadmap). SynBio companies that set up shop in the UK…Read more

People Gap – Skills young scientists need to learn early

I believe that education is key in shaping the conduct of research and innovation, and thus our future economy. Investment into education, as described by the Nobel Prize winner Jim Heckman, results in a more capable and productive workforce. Unfortunately, the current educational systems have not yet adapted to meet the real needs of modern knowledge economy. True, they have increased their capacity enormously, and more young people than ever are achieving a degree in higher education nowadays. Yet their careers often depend on skills that are seldom taught at school or university, such…Read more