Emerging Company Showcase Participants
The Neurotech Investing & Partnering conference will host our Third Annual Emerging Company Showcase as part of the main conference program. This showcase allows neurotechnology companies to pitch their drug, device, diagnostic, or software to an audience of investors, CEOs, and executives in the field.
Aural Analytics is an emerging healthtech company founded by Professors Julie Liss, Ph.D. and Visar Berisha, Ph.D. in 2015 after decades of speech science and speech signal processing research at Arizona State University. Aural Analytics has built proprietary metrics that use speech to capture changes in neurological health. With Aural Analytics’ downloadable apps, any smartphone or tablet becomes a powerful brain health monitor.
Presenter: Visar Berisha, Co-Founder, CSO, Aural Analytics
Dr. Berisha is an assistant professor at Arizona State University (joint appointment in the College of Engineering and College of Health Solutions), a Research Fellow in the department of Neurology at Mayo Clinic, and the Chief Science Officer at Aural Analytics. At ASU, Dr. Berisha directs the Signal Analysis Representation and Perception Lab. With a focus on speech, his research focuses on using technology to better understand neurological disease progression. Dr. Berisha received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Arizona State University in 2007. From 2007 to 2009, he was a member of the technical staff at MIT Lincoln Laboratory, where he worked on fundamental questions related to signal processing and machine learning. Following his appointment at MIT, Berisha worked in industry as Principal Research Engineer. At the university, Dr. Berisha’s research is funded by the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, and Industry. As co-founder of Aural Analytics, Dr. Berisha brings vast speech signal processing and machine learning experience as well as a track record of translating basic technology research to commercial applications in industry
AxoSim’s Nerve-on-a-Chip is the first 3D model of the nervous system to deliver human-relevant data to predict clinical outcomes prior to costly human trials. Employing breakthroughs in biomaterials, tissue engineering, and stem cells, the patent-pending platform replicates living human biology in both form and function. The Nerve-on-a-Chip platform is a more accurate, less expensive, and faster alternative to animal testing, and while working to develop a shippable product, AxoSim is already providing revenue generating services to large pharma customers.
Presenter: Lowry Curley, CEO, AxoSim
J. Lowry Curley, PhD is the CEO of Axosim. Since its inception, he has driven the vision and implementation for product development and industry adoption of AxoSim’s Nerve-on-a-Chip, with the goal of making a significant global impact on healthcare and medicine. AxoSim is pioneering its Nerve-on-a-Chip as a living nerve that recreates human form and function to enable pharma companies a faster, less expensive, and more accurate alternative to animal testing. Lowry received his PhD at Tulane University in biomedical engineering, focusing on tissue engineering and neuroscience. Following several postdocs, including a stint in Belgium working on neural interfacing technology, Lowry realized the only way to translate research breakthroughs outside of the lab was through commercialization, which drove him to return to New Orleans and begin AxoSim’s efforts. Lowry has been named on multiple patents and has received both Phase I and Phase II small business grants from the NIH, NSF, and CASIS.
Brainmarc is redefining brain health. We are building a brain health platform for the aging population by leveraging our proprietary bei (brain engagement index) technology. Brainmarc’s bei derived therapy platform is clinically proven to treat a variety of cognitive deficiency conditions including: Post Stork, TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) and MCI (Mild Cognitive Impairment). We improve clinical outcomes in the clinics and at home!
Presenter: Sefi Epel, CEO, Brainmarc
Mr. Epel is a results driven leader with a passion for driving health care via technology. Mr. Epel brings to BrainMARC unique track record as top performer in leadership positions across multiple disciplines: General management, Managing large scale cross-organization business and process transformations, overall responsibility for P&L, pre-sales, business development, sales and marketing. Mr. Epel was the co-founder of Pulsacool ltd. and of Kiddos ltd., and served in significant roles at Comigo ltd. and at the Israeli Prime Minister Office. Mr. Epel holds B.Sc in Electrical Engineering from the Technion Israeli Institute of Technology.
DEHA is developing a first in class small molecule inhibitor of the water channel protein AQP-4 expressed highly in the brain. Our approach is to find a therapeutic cure for the brain edema occurring in large stroke, traumatic brain injury and sports injury. We aim to get Orphan designation and fast track FDA development status considering the unmet need.
Presenter: Kumar Sripathirathan, CEO, DEHA
Dr. Kumar is the CEO of the DEHA. He received his Ph.D. in Toxicology-Pharmacology program. He has been instrumental in successful execution of the efficacy and toxicology studies for several pharmaceutical companies and multinational organizations.
iBIONICS designs smart implantable bionic solutions that can treat debilitating diseases by stimulating neural tissue. The Diamond EYE retinal implant, uses ground-breaking technology to return sight up to 10 times better than today’s bionic vision. The solution address blindness caused by Dry Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD).
Presenter: Steven Prawer, Director, Cofounder, CTO, iBIONICS
Professor Steven Prawer is the lead inventor of the Diamond Eye™ and Cofounder of iBIONICS. He envisions technology development to benefit health and quality of life by providing a platform to communicate to the brain. Prior to joining iBIONICS, Professor Prawer developed a model to measure research and development return on investment from economic and societal impact perspectives at the National Research Council of Canada. He has also led the Melbourne Materials Institute, a multidisciplinary research initiative using advanced material science and technology to address problems of global significance. Professor Prawer has a worldwide reputation in advanced diamond science and technology, has published more than 300 scientific papers. He has received numerous fellowships and awards and in 2010 was elected to the Australian Academy of Science.
MED-LIFE DISCOVERIES LP
Med-Life Discoveries (MLD) is a life-sciences human health company focused on the early detection, treatment, and prevention of chronic diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis and a rare pediatric condition called Rhizomelic Chondrodysplasia Punctata (RCDP). The company has a strong intellectual property position based on the composition and therapeutic use of synthetic plasmalogen precursor compounds for augmenting plasmalogen levels across various indications. Plasmalogens are a unique class of naturally-occurring phospholipids that are critical for neuronal membrane function, and are deficient among subjects with cognitive impairment and children born with RCDP. MLD has completed a PreIND meeting with the FDA for its lead compound PPI-1040 and is planning a first in human Phase I trial in late 2019.
Presenter: Shawn Ritchie, CEO and CSO, Med-Life Discoveries LP
Dr. Ritchie is currently the CEO and Chief Scientific Officer at Med-Life Discoveries. He obtained his BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Saskatchewan, a degree in Technical Writing and Communications from Simon Fraser University, and a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. Ritchie has over 17 years of commercial metabolomics biomarker discovery experience using high resolution mass spectrometry to investigate metabolic underpinnings of chronic disease. He has patented and played a key role in the development and commercialization of several Health Canada approved blood tests for identifying early risk of disease, and now leads MLD’s development of plasmalogen metabolic replacement therapies for the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, and an orphan disease called Rhizomelic Chondrodysplasia Punctata (RCDP).
Narbis is a hardware/software development company and following the strong trend of consumerizing medical technology, we have brought the power of neurofeedback into the home and out of the clinic. While there are many applications for our platform, we have chosen at first to help children struggling with ADHD. We have our first revenues and our product is being used in pilot programs.
Presenter: Devon Greco, Founder and CEO, Narbis
Devon is patented inventor and entrepreneur passionate about building tools that help people take control of their own health.
Nia Therapeutics is developing closed-loop neurostimulation therapies to treat Alzheimer's disease and memory impairment. Nia's technology was developed at the University of Pennsylvania with funding from DARPA as part of the United States BRAIN Initiative.
Presenter: Dan Rizzuto, CEO, Nia Therapeutics
Dan Rizzuto, PhD, is developing brain stimulation therapies for patients with memory disorders as part of the DARPA RAM project at the University of Pennsylvania and as a Founder at Nia Therapeutics. He previously managed neurotechnology development at the Allen Institute for Brain Science and Northstar Neuroscience. Dan completed his doctorate in systems neuroscience and human memory at Brandeis University, his postdoctoral training in brain-machine interfaces at Caltech, and was the recipient of the 2015 Neurotechnology Researcher of the Year award from Neurotech Reports.
The global quest to find a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease is at an uphill battle, as companies and clinicians struggle to locate pre-symptomatic patients early enough to matter. At RetiSpec, we are developing the means for widespread detection of at-risk individuals years before cognitive decline, so that clinicians could intervene early, when there is still a chance of impacting the disease.
Specifically, RetiSpec is developing a tool for detection of early Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers in the human eye. Our test is non-invasive, simple to take, and inexpensive compared to current practices, paving the way for a widely adopted Alzheimer's Disease screening.
Eliav Shaked, Founder & CEO, RetiSpec
Eliav Shaked, M.Sc, Founder and CEO of RetiSpec is a Biomedical Engineer with a track record of leading medical products from ideation to launch. Eliav holds a B.Sc and a M.Sc in Biomedical Engineering from Tel-Aviv University and is a recent graduate of Singularity University’s flagship Global Solutions Program (NASA/Google).
Vivid Genomics is developing non-invasive, accessible tools to identify underlying neurodegenerative disease pathologies, drug response, progression rate, and tools to facilitate on-target enrollment for clinical trials. Additionally, our machine learning pipeline can identify novel drug target pathways and match existing drugs for repurposing.
Presenter: Julie Collens, CEO, Vivid Genomics
Julie Collens, PhD, is the CEO of Vivid Genomics. She received a BSc from University of Calgary and PhD in evolutionary population genetics from the University of Chicago. Following her academic career, she was a sell-side equity analyst covering life science tools and molecular diagnostics companies at Robert W Baird and was most recently Associate Director of Market Development at Illumina, developing and driving strategies to accelerate the clinical application of genomics in complex diseases, with a particular focus on neurodegenerative disease. At Vivid Genomics, she is leveraging a combined experience in genomics, finance, business development, strategy, and commercialization to identify efficient approaches to improving neurodegenerative drug development.