This past weekend, Assay Depot co-organized the Lab to Launch workshop with Biotech Acumen and OBR in San Diego, California to motivate and inspire local scientists to take their great ideas and form companies around them. The attendees were primarily scientists still engaged in formal training.
“We wanted to help Scientists understand that in this day and age, when they finish their studies they have many more options than just academia or industry”, said Kevin Lustig, CEO of Assay Depot.
The branch of the Open Science movement that Assay Depot is spearheading provides a viable alternative, making resources available to do research on a (relative) shoestring, with minimal capital investment compared to what once was.
The Lab to Launch workshop brought together a large number of postdoctoral fellows and graduate students from biomedical research powerhouses including UCSD, the Salk Institute, The Scripps Research Institute, and the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. They learned about the realities of drug development: as drugs become more expensive to bring to market, there is a growing research gap between academic research and the point at which big pharma is willing to take a chance on a discovery. Established drug development companies are looking to outsource more of the early drug development, which is causing great upheaval in the industry. While there are fewer jobs available within big pharma, the flip side is that there are expanded opportunities to create your own company. Forget leasing lab space and hiring a team of researchers; now you can do it all from your laptop.
Open science is the movement that will drive their ability to do this. With the amount of information that’s freely available on the Internet, and the large number of specialized CROs that have been brought together on Assay Depot’s marketplace, scientists can really do translational research, seeing a drug through from conception to clinic. The Lab to Launch workshop gave attendees an overview of how to make that happen.
 Biotech Acumen, a biotech training company comprised of leaders in science and business, bringing an integrated perspective in all the training programs they offer. For more info please see http://www.biotechacumen.com/
 OBR is the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable. This is a network of students, academics and professionals from science, business, law and other fields. For more info please see http://www.oxbridgebiotech.com/obr-chapters/san-diego-chapter/