Six ventures will compete in the Global Impact Award finals on Monday, October 23rd. Up to $50,000 will be awarded to one or more ventures.
Since the announcement of the 2017 finalists in April, all finalists have been paired up with industry mentors and have been polishing their pitches and Opportunity Summaries. Starting today, each week leading up to the finals in October, we will introduce one finalist team individually. Check back each Monday for a new profile!
This week is all about…
Total Number of Employees: 5
When They Formed: July 2016
Total Funding (as of September 2017): $125,500
What problem are you solving?
Viosera Therapeutics is developing a new therapy for Americans with Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bloodstream infections. They are in desperate need of new therapies that are less toxic and more effective. Every year there are ~81,000 cases of bloodstream MRSA infections with > ~11,000 deaths in the US alone.
How do you solve the problem?
Our lead product VT1 kills MRSA by simultaneously targeting multiple resistance mechanisms. It is composed of three off-patent FDA approved antibiotics that cannot currently be combined by physicians or hospitals.
About the Founding Team Members:
I direct human and capital resources to develop VT1 and further our drug development pipeline.
Nicholas received a BS in Biochemistry from Wisconsin Lutheran College in 2014. He is currently receiving a PhD in Molecular Cell Biology from Washington University in St. Louis.
I form partnerships with drug development experts and research organizations to develop novel therapeutics.
Christopher received a BA in Molecular Biology from Vanderbilt University in 2014. He is currently receiving a PhD in Molecular Genetics and Genomics from Washington University in St. Louis.
Director of Scientific Advisory Board
I recruit and collaborate with key opinion leaders to further the scientific and clinical interests of Viosera.
Gautam received a BA in Biology and Chemistry from Macalester College in 2000 and a PhD in Biochemistry from University of Washington Seattle in 2005.
Aki Yoneda Kau
Chief Scientific Officer
Aki received a BS in Biological Sciences from Japan Women’s University in 2002 and a PhD in Molecular Microbiology from Washington University in St. Louis in 2009.
What is your favorite part about being an entrepreneur?
Nicholas Goldner (NG): The uncertainty and risk inherent in building something new is exciting to me. Furthermore, the reward of succeeding in creating something that is not only beneficial to many people, but is the direct result of my hard work and dedication, is unique to being an entrepreneur in this field.
Christopher Bulow (CB): I like working efficiently and swiftly in an environment where every resource is precious.
Gautam Dantas (GD): Bringing new technology from basic science discoveries to the average American.
What is the most challenging part about being an entrepreneur?
NG: My favorite part about being an entrepreneur is also the most challenging part: there is uncertainty at every stage of this project. The continual risk mitigation associated with forging an entirely new path is a major challenge, and one that requires constant vigilance on all of our parts.
CB: The pressure to find the best path forward and the creativity required to accomplish goals with given resources.
What is your #1 tip for building a strong team?
NG: Find people that you trust unequivocally, even if you do not necessarily agree with them. They will show you new ways to approach every problem.
CB: Establish a vision people can buy into and feel part of.
GD: Focus on identifying people that can mesh well together and build off one another’s success.
What is your must-read book?
NG: Oh, the Places You’ll Go and Dune
CB: My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry
GD: Watership Down and Ender’s Game
What is your favorite entrepreneurial news source?
Like what you see? Follow along Viosera’s journey:
Check back for our next finalist profile!