Around 60 aspiring entrepreneurs from across Scotland’s Universities are now through to the next stage of Converge, Scotland’s leading academic enterprise programme. Five projects from the University of Dundee, two from the School, have been selected for this stage of the Challenge. The projects from researchers based in Life Sciences are Ten Biotech and In4Derm.
Michael Conneely and Dr. Robyn Hickerson have created a patented, human skin culture system that mimics living skin. This real human skin system will allow pharmaceutical and cosmetics companies to fill the unmet need for systems that mimic intact, living skin, providing an alternative for many experiments currently only performed on animals.
In4Derm, created by Dr. Andrew Woodland, creates topical soft drugs to treat unmet medical needs in dermatology. The company develops topical drugs which the body’s natural process can detect and destroy. The drugs are applied as creams, and once they have treated the disease, the body is able to safely remove them.
These semi-finalists will now be invited to attend three days of intensive, hands-on, business training which has been designed specifically to best prepare academic entrepreneurs in both start-up and spin-out companies. In the next phase of the programme, semi-finalists will submit a business plan with the best ideas going forward to the Converge 2019 final at the V&A Dundee on 25 September. Winners of the final will receive part of the 230k prize fund, which includes business training and support for their idea.
Last year, spin-out Platinum Informatics from the School made the final of the competition.