Two high-tech companies based on research done at The Ohio State University have been named among the “Best University Startups” of 2016. One of them was launched within the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.
Neurxstem Inc. and 3Bar Biologics Inc. are two of the 36 startup companies from across the country to be honored by the National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer, an association of university startup officers.
Representatives of the two companies will participate in University Startups Demo Day in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 20. There they will meet with members of Congress and potential investors to showcase their innovative technologies.
The 36 companies participating were selected from more than 200 companies that applied for the recognition.
“We’re proud that two startups developed through research done at Ohio State have received this national honor,” said Matt McNair, vice president of economic and corporate engagement at Ohio State.
“Companies like Neurxstem and 3Bar Biologics demonstrate the promise of cutting-edge technology that will be instrumental for the future of our state and nation.”
Both of the companies were able to get off the ground partly through state funding received from the Ohio Third Frontier’s Technology Validation and Start-up Fund.
“Ohio is investing in the problem-solvers and businesses that are building a new Ohio,” said David Goodman, director of the Ohio Development Services Agency and chair of the Ohio Third Frontier Commission.
“These technology companies will change the way we work and live.”
3Bar Biologics has developed a unique delivery system for beneficial microbes that provides farmers a natural, biological way to increase their crop yields while potentially lowering costs and improving sustainability of the land.
The company was co-founded by CEO Bruce Caldwell and Brian Gardener, a former professor of plant pathology at Ohio State who helped lead development of the technology.
Neurxstem has developed a proprietary process to grow synthetic neural organoids, engineered from adult human skin cells of patients. The organoid is essentially a model of the human central nervous system that researchers can use to study debilitating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, autism and brain cancer, as well as to discover and study the safety and efficacy of potential drugs.
The founder and CEO of the company is Rene Anand, professor of biological chemistry and pharmacology at Ohio State.