Scion Pharmaceuticals Inc.
This article was originally published in Start Up
David Farb, PhD never realized that his invention of automating the electrophysiology (EP) assay would become the basis for founding a new company. He engineered High-Throughput Electrophysiology (HTEP) purely for academic pursuits, but the patent caught the attention of Boston University's Community Technology Fund, Mark Carthy of Oxford Bioscience Partners, and Pravin Chaturvedi, PhD. After just three months of discussions, Farb, Carthy, and Chaturvedi decided that HTEP was an academic tool with industrial applications, so they founded Scion Pharmaceuticals Inc. in September 2001.
You may also be interested in...
Historically ion channels have been among the most attractive targets for therapeutic intervention. But discovery of new ion channel drugs has come to a halt because ion channels are difficult to assay, require specialized tools and skills to study adequately, and have historically been impossible to study directly in high-throughput mode-the preferred style of the last decade. Now, a variety of automated assay technologies are coming on the market that should increase throughput, and some drug discovery companies have developed proprietary high-throughput methods for in-house use. With industry now interested more than ever in applying higher-throughput technologies to precedented targets, in a sense, ion channel discovery may become a beneficiary of the failures of genomics, combinatorial chemistry, and high-throughput screening.
Every venture capitalist is anxious to use the latest IPO window to get his companies liquid. But some firms are more successful than others. At the top of the list there were few surprises--JP Morgan Partners and Alta Partners, with six biotech IPOs each, and MPM Capital with five. But the next group down contained some newer names.