Yale Startup is Success Story at Connecticut SBIR Event

Marinus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a startup company that began at Yale and is focused on neurological, psychiatric and pain disorders, will be a featured success story at the Connecticut Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) BioScience Event to be held April 5 at the University of Connecticut Health Center in Farmington.

Emerging entrepreneurs and businesses will hear from leaders and experts from the public sector, private industry and universities about moving innovative ideas into the marketplace. In workshops, panel discussions and lectures, participants will have the opportunity to hear about available funding and effective practices.

The keynote speaker for the event will be Kathleen Shino from the National Institutes of Health. A panel discussion, “University with Pharmas,” will include Carolyn Slayman, Deputy Dean and Professor of Genetics at Yale School of Medicine; Marc LaLande from the University of Connecticut; Gerald Vovis, President and CEO of Vovis Enterprises and former CSO of Genaissance; and Timothy Herpin from Bristol-Myers Squibb. Mitchell Horowitz of Battelle Science and Technology International will moderate.

Vincent Pieribone, associate professor of neurobiology, and cellular & molecular physiology at Yale and associate fellow of the John B. Pierce Laboratory, will present his experience as a Marinus co-founder. He will address the challenges of financing early-stage pharmaceutical development in the current venture climate, while juggling academic and entrepreneurial activities.

In October 2005, Marinus raised a $29.4 million Series-A round of financing through venture capital companies and private investors. Marinus also recently received an SBIR grant by the National Institutes of Health. Pieribone will discuss the process of obtaining funding from various sources, including SBIR grants, ‘angels’ and venture capitalists.

In another part of the event, the Connecticut SBIR Office will award professionally-prepared market feasibility studies to 15 entrepreneurs and small businesses. The “Go/No Go™” analyses, by Providence-based Foresight Science and Technology, will evaluate a technology idea and determine its commercial viability within the bioscience industry. “That document becomes a powerful tool to attract investors,” said Deborah Santy, director of the Connecticut SBIR Office.

There will be an opportunity to network with potential investors including Fairfield-based Connecticut Venture Group (CVG), a voluntary professional organization. They are encouraging qualified small, high-tech companies to exhibit at their Crossroads Venture Fair, the largest technology funding event in the Northeast, on May 2 and 3.

The Connecticut SBIR Office assists small science and technology companies in Connecticut to compete for $100,000 to $750,000 in federal research and innovation grants under its $2 billion SBIR program. Based in East Hartford, The Connecticut SBIR Office is part of the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT) and funded through the Connecticut Office for Workforce Competitiveness. Its services are free.

Online registration for the event is $25 with a University ID and $75 for general admission; it is $100 for any registrant on the day of the event.

More information on the Connecticut SBIR program and a schedule of the SBIR Bioscience Competition & Event is available by contacting Deborah Santy at 860-282-4209 or at dsanty@ccat.us or on the web at http://www.ccat.us/sbir/april5agenda.html .

The Yale University Office of Cooperative Research (YU-OCR) manages intellectual assets created at Yale. Further information on business opportunities or licensing agreements is available through ocr@yale.edu or at http://www.yale.edu/ocr/ online.

Share this with Facebook Share this with Twitter Share this with LinkedIn Share this with Email Print this

Media Contact

Janet Rettig Emanuel: janet.emanuel@yale.edu, 203-432-2157