BRIDGE – a new paradigm to translate early-stage drug discovery from Academia to Pharma

  • We are pursuing a new project incubation paradigm to accelerate research and early development
  • We are placing technological validation of a novel therapeutic approach in the centre of the value proposition
  • We are developing an integrated framework from academic research to clinical Proof of Concept involving all key partners
  • We have defined a new formula for fast-track early-stage drug development
  • BRIDGE (Biomedical Research, Innovation & Development Generation Efficiency) is an integrated fund and award framework to tap into exciting academic science to generate partnerships with Pharma and biotech

Autobahn Labs

In June 2020, Evotec announced the launch of “Autobahn Labs”, a novel virtual incubator, together with Samsara BioCapital, a leading life sciences investment firm and KCK Ltd., a family investment fund. Based out of the San Francisco Bay Area, Autobahn Labs will be partnering with top academic and research institutions to catalyse early-stage drug discovery and development.

Also in June 2020, Autobahn Labs announced a first-in-kind strategic collaboration with UCLA Technology Development Group (“UCLA TDG”) to identify and advance the most promising areas of scientific research with the greatest potential for patient therapies.


In October 2019, Evotec announced the inauguration of "LAB555", an academic BRIDGE partnership with Integra Holdings and Yissum, the Technology Transfer Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The partnership aims to expedite drug discovery and development by providing efficient translation of early stage Hebrew University research.

LAB555 leverages the innovation expertise of Integra Holdings, an investment company focused on delivering breakthrough research from the Hebrew University’s life sciences, and Yissum, leaders in technology transfer, with access to Evotec’s leading industrial drug development platform. The LAB555 partnership endeavours to accelerate multiple academic research projects to value inflection points that will allow the creation of company spin-outs focused on the development of first-in-class therapeutics.



In June 2019, Evotec announced the formation of “LAB10x” together with the British clinical AI technology company Sensyne Health plc, the University of Oxford, Oxford University Innovation Ltd (the university's research commercialisation company), and Oxford Sciences Innovation (the world's largest IP investment company dedicated to a single university).

The partnership brings together Evotec’s leading drug discovery and development expertise with Sensyne’s strength in clinical AI and digital health to leverage the world-class science at Oxford. The technologies developed by LAB10x will be applied to generate and analyse anonymised patient datasets to improve patient outcomes and accelerate medical research as well as pharmaceutical R&D.



In October 2018, Evotec announced the formation of “LAB031” together with Sanofi to accelerate drug discovery across multiple therapeutic areas with high unmed medical need.

The companies plan to generate and advance multiple small molecule programmes through the lead optimisation. Evotec will apply its industry-leading discovery technologies to these projects to facilitate rapid and efficient drug discovery and development. For each project, Sanofi has the option to assume development responsibility upon the achievement of pre-agreed milestone criteria.



In May 2018, Evotec announced the formation of “LAB591” together with partners Arix Bioscience plc (“Arix”) and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (“Fred Hutch”). LAB591 aims to accelerate research discoveries at Fred Hutch and leverage these discoveries to form new companies focused on cancer and infectious disease drug development.

Evotec, Arix and Fred Hutch plan to jointly select promising LAB591 research projects from the Fred Hutch labs. After developing a research validation plan, Evotec will conduct research in collaboration with the Fred Hutch faculty which will be seed funded by Arix. Once completed, and subject to the results, Evotec and Arix have a pre-agreed option to form a new company.

You can find further information on the LAB591 website and in Fred Hutch's news release.



In September 2017, Evotec and Toronto Innovation Acceleration Partners ("TIAP", formerly MaRS Innovation) announced the launch of "LAB150". This transformational Toronto-based partnership will give Canadian academic institutions and teaching hospitals access to the world-class infrastructure and drug discovery expertise of Evotec and pair it with cutting-edge drug discovery projects emerging from the 15 member institutions of TIAP.

A crucial lack of the funding, specialised infrastructure and drug development expertise necessary to translate disease-related biological pathways into focused drug discovery programmes has been a persistent hindrance for promising biomedical research to reach clinical development and the marketplace in Canada and globally. LAB150 addresses precisely this challenge. The goal of this new partnership is to significantly shorten the drug discovery timeline and to generate viable start-up companies with high potential for success.

TIAP will identify projects and build technical and business cases from scientific concepts that focus on first-in-class and disease-related novel biological pathways. Evotec will contribute infrastructure and pre-clinical drug development expertise to translate such discoveries into potential medicines.

After identifying the first discovery project in February 2018 already, in October 2018 TIAP announced the identification of a second project to be developed under the LAB150 partnership. In a release from February 2019, TIAP announced that two more LAB150 projects were identified. A fifth and sixth project were announced in releases from June 2019, and December 2019, respectively.

For further information, visit the LAB150 website or read this article on the results and experiences of the first 18 months since the inception of the BRIDGE partnership.


In November 2016, Evotec announced a novel strategic partnership with the University of Oxford, Oxford University Innovation Ltd, OUI (the university's research commercialisation company) and Oxford Sciences Innovation, OSI (the world's largest IP investment company dedicated to a single university) aimed at accelerating the translation of basic biomedical research from Oxford into new therapeutics. Projects will be sourced exclusively from Oxford University researchers via OUI across any therapeutic area and for any therapeutic modality and will be aided by a drug discovery expert in residence seconded by Evotec to the LAB282 initiative and embedded in the university.

"LAB282" will be supported by a fund of ₤ 13 m (over EUR 14 m) led by OSI for an initial period of three years. The goal is to accelerate the achievement of pre-clinical proof of concept for new drugs and to generate new spin-out companies. The development of new treatments and cures for serious and debilitating diseases will help patients live longer and better lives as well as reduce the burden on global healthcare systems.

Evotec will exclusively contribute its drug discovery expertise and platforms to select projects and develop them further. Evotec will be entitled to equity in new LAB282 spin-out companies together with Oxford University and its academic researchers and together with OSI will have the right to co-invest in seed financing rounds.

Here you can find more information about Lab282

Contact us

Dr Thomas Hanke

EVP, Head of Academic Partnerships

T +49 (0)17 13 55 43 74 F +49 (0)40 56 08 12 22 vCard