“MassBioDrive is a great educational program that helped us address many lingering questions from intellectual property protection to fundraising strategies and presentation skills. The panel discussions with the mentors of diverse expertise in the biotech industry strengthened our business and development strategies.”Shoutian Zhu, Ph.D., CEO of PhenoTarget Biosciences, Spring 2022 Cohort
MassBioDrive is an accelerator designed to advance breakthrough science while providing opportunities to innovators from all parts of the life sciences ecosystem.
Twice a year, we support a small group of groundbreaking scientists by connecting them with business fundamental curriculum, mentorship, industry connections, and equity-free prizes – without taking anything in return. Delve into the stories and feedback from our past Drive cohorts.
Announcing the Fall 2023 Cohort
MassBio is proud to announce its Fall 2023 (F23) cohort of groundbreaking scientists and founders.
Based in New Haven, CT
Cloverleaf Bio has developed a new type of RNA therapeutics, based on tRNAs. Its engineered tRNAs have a broad range of applications including oncology, viral infection, and neurodegenerative disorders. Cloverleaf’s patented tRNAs target core components of the cellular translation machinery—tRNA modifying enzymes—that are essential for disease progression.
Based in Boston, MA
Eascra Biotech is an early-stage nanomedicine start-up launched in Nov 2021. Its proprietary therapeutic delivery platform can deliver RNA, gene editing, and other therapeutic options to hard-to-penetrate tissues such as cartilage, kidney, brain, and some solid tumors. Eascra is partnering with NASA to advance its science here on earth.
Based in Cambridge, MA
Externa is a platform technology company from the Church and Collins labs that combines synthetic biology, chemistry, and machine learning to bring the power of medicinal chemistry to protein therapeutics with synthetic amino acids. These new-to-nature amino acids give proteins new capabilities, such as irreversible binding, longer stability, or pH-dependent activity.
Based in Watertown, MA
PathCision Medicine is harnessing tissue pathology insights to develop new targeted therapies. Built using a translational lens with a multi-omics approach, its proprietary discovery platform uncovers novel therapeutic avenues previously unavailable to patients with complex diseases. PathCision’s leading program is focused on developing a biologic modality for metastasis-selective delivery for multiple indications.
Based in New Haven, CT
Tezcat Biosciences is developing a portfolio of protein-drug conjugates to provide therapeutic options for patients harboring mutant RAS cancers. Tezcat’s current portfolio consists of conjugates combining its proprietary protein carrier with established drug payloads. To-date, Tezcat’s drug development has been supported by academic collaborations and government awards.
Meet our MassBioDrive 2023 Partners
2023 Review Board
2023 Curriculum Experts
Business Plan and Commercialization Strategy
From seed stage businesses to public companies —as you make history, J.P. Morgan will be with you every step of the way. Our bankers and specialists focus on solutions for life sciences companies at all stages—from startups to established businesses, pre-clinical through commercialization. We have decades of experience in the sector and understand the complex financial and regulatory challenges you face. We bring a wealth of expertise and insights to the venture capital space, and we’re ready to help you stay positioned for innovation and growth. We know no two life sciences companies are the same. That’s why our team goes below the surface to support the unique needs of industry subsectors, including biotechnology, biopharmaceuticals, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, medical tools and diagnostics, and CROs, CDMOs and CMOs. Our clients also gain access to vital industry insights from the annual J.P. Morgan Health Conference, along with the rich analysis and research of J.P. Morgan Markets.
Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (NYSE: TMO) is the world leader in serving science, with annual revenue of approximately $40 billion. Our Mission is to enable our customers to make the world healthier, cleaner and safer. Whether our customers are accelerating life sciences research, solving complex analytical challenges, improving patient diagnostics and therapies or increasing productivity in their laboratories, we are here to support them. Our global team of more than 100,000 colleagues delivers an unrivaled combination of innovative technologies, purchasing convenience and pharmaceutical services through our industry-leading brands, including Thermo Scientific, Applied Biosystems, Invitrogen, Fisher Scientific, Unity Lab Services, Patheon and PPD.
IP and Legal
Wilson Sonsini’s Boston office is home to one of the leading life sciences law practices in both the city and New England. The firm focuses on providing practical, business-savvy advice to entrepreneurs and investors as they build tomorrow’s companies. Wilson Sonsini’s Boston office keeps the team in close proximity to the many extraordinary growth enterprises and innovative scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and universities in and around the area. The firm’s team frequently represents companies that are significant influencers in the life sciences, technology, energy, and financial industries, among other sectors. The firm’s clients range from early-stage start-ups to public companies, as well as their board and management teams, and also represents leading venture capital and private equity firms, along with other investor institutions.
New regulatory requirements, a flurry of M&A activity, fierce competition, declining margins and rapidly emerging technologies create new complexities for medical device, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical companies. Further, there is growing scrutiny on drug prices along with lengthy and costly R&D cycles. Many life sciences companies are taking new approaches to achieve growth and improve performance, all while focusing on managing risk and maintaining compliance. At KPMG, we have a long track record of helping life sciences organizations define and implement practical solutions to their most complex challenges.
Based in Boston, MA, Xontogeny seeks to accelerate the development of life science technologies by providing entrepreneurs with funding options as well as the leadership, strategic guidance and operational support necessary to increase the probability of success in early drug and technology development. Through a differentiated approach, the Xontogeny team partners with founding scientists and entrepreneurs to support their vision while allowing a more efficient development model that benefits company founders and early equity holders.
People Strategy and Operations
Marsh McLennan Agency (MMA) provides business insurance, employee health & benefits, retirement, and private client insurance solutions to organizations and individuals seeking limitless possibilities. With over 8,000 colleagues and 160 offices across the United States and Canada, MMA combines the personalized service model of a local consultant with the global resources and expertise of the world’s leading professional services firm, Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC). MMA generates more than $2 billion in annualized revenue, making it one of the largest brokerage operations in North America.
2023 Premier Sponsors
During each hybrid eight-week program, we connect you with:
- Six industry-specific curriculum modules led by experts
- A small, dedicated group of industry mentors tailored to fit your needs
- Networking opportunities and industry connections:
- End-of-program Demo Day, where you’ll present your company to a curated group who can take your company to the next level.
- 1:1 targeted partnering opportunities meeting(s) with life sciences leaders
- An equity-free stipend from Bristol Myers Squibb
- Access to and/or resources from MassBioDrive partners including Bristol Myers Squibb, Evaluate, and Google Cloud
Key Application Dates
- May 30: F23 Cohort Application Open
- June 30 @ Noon ET: Deadline to apply for F23 Cohort
- September 11 – November 17: MBD F23 Program
- October 11: F23 Cohort Mixer
- November 16: F23 Demo Day
MassBioDrive does not take any equity from the companies we support and our program is free to all participants.
You’re eligible to apply for MassBioDrive if:
- You have a therapeutic, biologic, or platform technology that you believe can become the next big biotech startup
- Your startup has access to the intellectual property for your science or technology, either through a license agreement or through an option agreement to negotiate a license agreement
- Your startup has raised less than $1 million in equity-based funding
- You will be able to participate in all cornerstone components of the program (curriculum, weekly mentoring sessions, and networking events)
Please note that this is a non-confidential program. Accordingly, do not include any confidential information or any information that could be harmful to your startup should it be disclosed in your application. To learn more about MassBioDrive’s approach to confidentiality, please review our Participant Agreement.
Underscoring MassBio’s commitment to building a diverse, equitable, and inclusive life sciences ecosystem, MassBioDrive is committed to supporting and advancing innovators from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds. Learn more about MassBioDrive’s Code of Conduct.
Interested in supporting Drive startups? Learn more ways to get involved.