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21 researchers and companies have been selected to join the 2023 Accelerator for Cancer Therapeutics.

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21 researchers and companies have been selected to join the 2023 Accelerator for Cancer Therapeutics. Launched in 2021, the nine-month program – funded by the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) and partnered with the Gulf Coast Consortia and the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) – supports investigators and early-stage biotechnology companies spearheading groundbreaking work in the area of cancer therapeutics. Throughout the program, participants will be mentored by a world-class group of scientific, business, and innovation leaders to ultimately be positioned to apply for grants and pitch to investors and corporate partners to further the development of their innovative cancer solutions.

“For this third cohort, we focused on a strategic and extensive recruitment process, including the evaluation of 1,679 cancer research projects. From 56 applications, we selected 21 participants that will gain access to valuable resources, integrated training and mentorship to prepare for clinical trials,” said Ahmed AlRawi, Program Manager, Accelerator for Cancer Therapeutics. “Our 2023 cohort represents our most diverse cohort to date, including eight companies led by women entrepreneurs. We are excited to continue the momentum and build off the successes of our previous years.”

Since its launch, 45 participants have gone through the accelerator program. Collectively, the entrepreneurs have raised more than $90M in funding (from NIH, CPIRT, and venture capital) and three projects are in the clinic. 2023 cohort participants are focused on a wide range of therapeutic assets, including small molecule (38%), antibody (28%), peptide/protein (19%), cell therapy (14%) and other (15%). The 2023 cohort kicks off their nine-month program in January.

The participants include:

  • Amit K. Tripathi – UNT-Health Science Center
  • Darshan Gandhi (ImproveBio, LLC)
  • Frank McKeon (Tract Pharmaceutical) – University of Houston
  • Hemanta Baruah (Aakha Biologics)
  • Joshua Gruber – UT-Southwestern
  • Kyoji Tsuchikama – UT Health Science Center-Houston
  • Michael Buszczak – UT-Southwestern
  • Nadezhda (Nadia) German -Texas Tech-Lubbock
  • Parsa Modareszadeh (HemePro Therapeutics) – UT-Dallas
  • Robert Kruse (HydroGene Therapeutics)
  • Xiang Zhang – Baylor College of Medicine
  • Youngwook Won (Singular Immune, Inc.)
  • Zhi-Ping Liu (Raphael Pharmaceutical LLC) – UT-Southwestern
  • Jonathan Arambula (InnovoTEX Inc.)
  • Isaac Chan – UT-Southwestern
  • Ruptakine Inc. – UT Health Science Center-Houston
  • Jim Song (Tranquility Biodesign) – Texas A&M-College Station
  • Rosa Selenia Guerra-Resendez (Quetzal Bio, LLC) – Rice University
  • Cassian Yee (Mongoose Bio, LLC) – UT-MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Manjeet Rao (Niragen, Inc.) – UT Health Science Center-San Antonio
  • Guillermo Vela (NeuScience)
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