Six new teams have been admitted to UiO´s innovation programme SPARK Norway. They will develop their ideas within health-related life sciences for the benefit of patients and society.
The UiO:Life Science board admitted six new teams to the innovation programme SPARK Norway 27 January.The project leaders from left to right: Henry Hoyle, Hanne Winther-Larsen, Rahmad Akbar, Jerome Ruzzin, Yunjie Wu and Audun Kvalvaag.
The new teams:
- DUCT chip – An artificial bile duct on a chip recapitulating immune functions
Project leader: Henry Hoyle, Division of Surgery, Inflammatory Diseases and Transplantation, Oslo University Hospital
Team members: Anna Katharina Frank, Espen Melum, Stefan Krauss, Mathias Busek, Aleksandra Aizenshtadt and Kayoko Shoji
- Novel vaccine platform for animal health
Project leader: Hanne Winther-Larsen, Institute of Pharmacy, UiO
Team members: Saranya Subramani and Aina Rengmark
- Experimental-computational platform for antibody-target design
Project leader: Rahmad Akbar, Institute of Clinical Medicine, Dept. of Immunology, UiO
Team members: Professor Victor Greiff, Professor Jan Terje Andersen, Dr. Fridtjof Lund-Johansen
- Novel treatment for skeletal muscle atrophy
Project leader: Jerome Ruzzin, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, UiO
Team members: Sophie Bresson, Sissel Eikvar, Katja Mjøs and Gerbrand Koster
- FGF-engineered cytotoxic nano-vesicles as therapy for glioblastoma
Project leader: Yunjie Wu, Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Clinical Medicine, Dept. of Pharmacology, UiO
Team members: Linlin Song, Jørgen Wesche and Marit Inngjerdingen
- Personalized Rapid Ex vivo Determination of Immunotherapeutic Cancer Treatment (PREDICT)
Project leader: Audun Kvalvaag, Institute for Cancer Research, Oslo University Hospital
Team members: Dr. Ieva Ailte and Professor Harald Stenmark
- SPARK Norway now has a portfolio 18 active teams – so-called SPARKees
Mentors and milestone plans next
UiO:Life Science received 17 applications in the sixth open call for SPARK Norway fall 2022.
Each of the admitted projects is now assigned a mentor, advisors and project coordinator who is responsible for following up individual projects. The projects start with setting up milestone plans that respond to the challenges identified by the evaluation committee.
Facts SPARK Norway
- a two-year innovation programme to further develop ideas within health-related life sciences for the benefit of patients and society
- the aim of the programme is to get more innovation out of basic research
- researchers from UiO and affiliated research groups at OUS or Ahus can apply UiO:Life Science to be included in the programme through annual calls
- researchers who are admitted to the SPARK Norway programme receives mentoring from seasoned experts from academia, hospital, industry and venture capital funds, milestone-based funding, guidance and education
- established in the fall 2017 and funded and managed by UiO:Life Science
- based on the prestigious Stanford SPARK programme
- supported by UiO's top management, Inven2 and OUS. Representatives from the clusters Oslo Cancer Cluster, The Life Science Cluster, Nansen Neuroscience Network and Norway Health Tech, as well as the Association of Pharmaceutical Industry in Norway (LMI), Centre for Digital Life Norway, Aleap, Sharelab and Norwegian Medicines Agency.
- the initiative to establish the SPARK programme in Norway originally came from Oslo Cancer Cluster and the Norwegian Inflammation Network. The other two European SPARK programmes – SPARK Berlin and SPARK Finland – were closely involved when UiO:Life Science established the programme at UiO.
- Read more on uio.no/life-science/spark
The applications were evaluated by a committee based on the criteria in the call
- Unmet medical need/need in the market
- Novelty/uniqueness of the new solution
- Strength of Proof-of-Principles
- Market potential and fit
- IP strategy
- Strength and motivation of the team
- Fit with SPARK Norway