Merck Biopharma Innovation Cup 2017

MerckMerck, a leading science and technology company, announced the winners of its seventh Biopharma Innovation Cup. The winning team received €20,000 for its innovative idea around the role of Natural Killer (NK) cells in cancer immunology. The Biopharma Innovation Cup is designed to support the professional development of post-graduate students and to foster innovation from a promising new generation of academic talent. It showcases Merck's deep commitment to leverage innovation, curiosity and collaboration. With more than 1,400 applications from 60 countries, this year's Biopharma Innovation Cup achieved a new record of popularity. Thirty-three participants worked hand in hand with experienced Merck researchers and managers in the biopharma field on developing business plans. For 6 days, bright minds came together at the Innovation Camp near Frankfurt, Germany, and jointly developed novel ideas into innovative project plans for drug discovery.

The winning team "Immuno-Oncology" inspired the audience with their outstanding project proposal on how to translate NK cell biology into a drug discovery project.

The team consisted of:

  • Alex Kertser (Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel)
  • Franklin Zhong (A*STAR, Singapore)
  • Kelly Moynihan (MIT, USA)
  • Patrik Andersson (Karolinska Institute, Sweden)
  • Simone Mori (The Scripps Research Institute, USA)
  • Arne Sutter (team coach)

As runner-up receiving €5,000, the team "Medicinal Chemistry" was chosen with an innovative proposal on DNA-encoded libraries.

The team consisted of:

  • Adam McCallum (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Anna Rydzik (LMU Munich, Germany)
  • Josua Jordi (Harvard, USA)
  • Rüdiger Borrmann (ETH Zürich, Switzerland)
  • Wilian Cortopassi (UCSF, USA)
  • Henning Böttcher (team coach)

The initiative has won several innovation awards over the years, including the Edison Award 2017, Stevie Gold Award 2017, German Industry Innovation Award 2015 and the German Idea Award 2014. More detailed information on the Biopharma Innovation Cup can be found at Biopharma Open Innovation Portal.

"The Biopharma Innovation Cup is getting increasingly popular at innovation hotspots all over the world from year to year. We are happy to offer young talents this development opportunity," said Dr Ulrich Betz, Vice President of Innovation & Entrepreneurship Incubator at the Healthcare business of Merck and initiator and manager of the Innovation Cup.

On the occasion of their 350th anniversary in 2018, Merck will conduct a special anniversary edition of the Innovation Cup, covering topics in Life Science and Performance Materials in addition to Healthcare. Applications to participate in the 2018 edition of the cup can be submitted starting October 01, 2017, here: http://innovationcup.merckgroup.com

About Merck
Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life - from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. The company holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.

Most Popular Now

Pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine o…

Researchers from the University of Oxford's Department of Zoology have demonstrated pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine in a new paper published in Nature Co...

Imfinzi is the first immunotherapy to demonstrate …

AstraZeneca and MedImmune, its global biologics research and development arm, have presented data on overall survival (OS) in the Phase III PACIFIC trial of Imfinzi durin...

Sandoz Healthcare Access Challenge #SandozHACk ret…

Sandoz, the Novartis generics and biosimilars division, today announces the launch of the second Sandoz Healthcare Access Challenge (HACk). The #SandozHACk is a global co...

Global survey reveals that physicians need more in…

Results from a new global survey revealed that more than one-third (36%) of the 310 physicians surveyed do not think they have sufficient information required to make inf...

In clinical trials, new antibody therapy controls …

Thanks to improvements in antiretroviral therapy, HIV is now a manageable condition. Yet even the best drugs do not entirely eliminate the virus, which latently lingers i...

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2018 was…

Cancer kills millions of people every year and is one of humanity's greatest health challenges. By stimulating the inherent ability of our immune system to attack tumor c...

Novartis licenses three novel anti-infective progr…

Novartis announced today that it has entered into a licensing and equity agreement with Boston Pharmaceuticals for the development of three novel anti-infective drug cand...

Pfizer to award more than $3 million in grants to …

Pfizer Inc. today announced the recipients of the Advancing Science through Pfizer Investigator Research Exchange (ASPIRE) Breast Cancer Research Awards. Four grants tota...

FDA approves first treatment for advanced form of …

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved Libtayo (cemiplimab-rwlc) injection for intravenous use for the treatment of patients with metastatic cutaneous squam...

DNA islands effective as 'anti-bacterial drones'

Genomic "islands" that evolved from viruses can be converted into "drones" that disable Staphylococcus aureus, bacteria that are often resistant to antibiotics and pose a...

FDA awards 12 grants to fund new clinical trials t…

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today announced that it has awarded 12 new clinical trial research grants totaling more than $18 million over the next four years to...

Addressing social and cultural drivers of type 2 d…

New research shows healthcare services and public health strategies aimed at reducing the burden of type 2 diabetes may prove ineffective, unless they address social and ...