News Article | May 23, 2017
Elizabeth Iorns, Ph.D., Founder and CEO of Science Exchange will present the Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwired - May 23, 2017) - Science Exchange, the world's leading marketplace for outsourced research & development, today announced that Elizabeth Iorns, Ph.D., Founder and CEO of Science Exchange has been invited to present at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research (NIBR) Seminar. She will present on the Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology, hosted by Jay Bradner, President of NIBR. The weekly series is an academic seminar series open to the public and externals. Invited speakers are primarily external scientists from academic institutions. Elizabeth Iorns will share her thoughts and recent discoveries on the Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology on Wednesday, May 31, 2017 from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. at the NIBR headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This session will explore the project and initial results, and attendees are invited to join the discussion on whether replication studies could be utilized more frequently as a mechanism to identify qualified targets for further in-house assessment. The Reproducibility Project: Cancer Biology is a collaboration between Science Exchange and the Center for Open Science (COS) to independently replicate key experiments from high-impact published cancer biology studies. The project was initiated in response to multiple reports published from the pharmaceutical industry indicating that more than 70% of published findings could not be reproduced. Science Exchange sourced and project managed the replication experiments for the project which is published in eLife: https://elifesciences.org/collections/reproducibility-project-cancer-biology. "I am honored to speak at NIBR and explore the disruptive topic of reproducibility in our industry," said Dr. Elizabeth Iorns. "Science Exchange and NIBR share a vision to promote the development of science, research and innovation as well as advocate how entrepreneurs can bring about change in this industry." For more information about the event and NIBR Weekly Seminar Series 2017, please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/reproducibility-project-cancer-biology-tickets-34259041716 About Science Exchange Science Exchange is the world's leading marketplace for outsourced research. Science Exchange provides an efficient procure-to-pay platform for ordering services from the world's largest network of scientific service providers. Through Science Exchange, clients gain access to 3000+ qualified service providers, all with pre-established contracts in place that protect client intellectual property and confidentiality. This increases scientists access to innovation and significantly improves their productivity because they are freed up from the administrative tasks and delays associated with sourcing, establishing and managing supplier contracts. At an organizational level, the Science Exchange enterprise program enables organizations to consolidate the long tail of research outsourcing spend into a single strategic supplier relationship driving significant efficiency and cost savings. To date, Science Exchange has raised over $30 million from Maverick Capital Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Index Ventures, OATV, the YC Continuity Fund, and others. For more information visit www.scienceexchange.com.
News Article | April 24, 2017
Elizabeth Iorns, Ph.D., Founder and CEO of Science Exchange, joins panel to discuss how today's young entrepreneurs are reshaping the biopharma business model
News Article | June 7, 2017
"Drug discovery requires a wide range of expertise, from medicinal chemistry and pharmacology to project management and regulatory affairs," said Lauren Friedman, Ph.D., ADDF ACCESS program director. "Researchers don't always have the interdisciplinary teams needed to develop a drug. We created the new ACCESS website with Science Exchange to connect researchers with high-quality CROs and provide guidance and resources to help successfully advance their drug programs." "Early-stage drug research is the engine that drives progress in treating Alzheimer's and CNS diseases," said Dr. Howard Fillit, M.D., executive director and chief science officer of the ADDF. "We are excited to provide a resource specifically designed to facilitate connections that fuel this engine. Every scientific discovery gets us closer to finding a treatment." "Eliminating the laborious, resource-intensive process of finding and negotiating with CROs and other service providers helps researchers focus on their important work, and that's what Science Exchange is all about," said Elizabeth Iorns, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder of Science Exchange. "We are thrilled to partner with the ADDF on this new ACCESS website that will give scientists specializing in CNS diseases the tools and services they need to bring important, potentially life-saving drugs to market faster." About the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) Founded in 1998 by Leonard A. and Ronald S. Lauder, the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is dedicated to rapidly accelerating the discovery of drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer's disease. The ADDF is the only public charity solely focused on funding the development of drugs for Alzheimer's, employing a venture philanthropy model to support research in academia and the biotech industry. Through the generosity of its donors, the ADDF has awarded over $100 million to fund more than 500 Alzheimer's drug discovery programs and clinical trials in 18 countries. To learn more, please visit: http://www.alzdiscovery.org/. About Science Exchange Science Exchange is the world's leading marketplace for outsourced research. Science Exchange provides an efficient procure-to-pay platform for ordering services from the world's largest network of scientific service providers. Through Science Exchange, clients gain access to over 2,400 qualified service providers, all with pre-established contracts in place that protect client intellectual property and confidentiality. This increases scientists access to innovation and significantly improves their productivity because they are freed up from the administrative tasks and delays associated with sourcing, establishing and managing service provider contracts. At an organizational level, the Science Exchange enterprise program enables organizations to consolidate the long tail of research outsourcing spend into a single strategic relationship driving significant efficiency and cost savings. To date, Science Exchange has raised over $30 million from Maverick Capital Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Index Ventures, OATV, the YC Continuity Fund, and others. For more information, visit www.scienceexchange.com. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/the-alzheimers-drug-discovery-foundation-and-science-exchange-launch-addf-access-to-advance-cns-research-300470325.html
News Article | June 29, 2017
Funding led by Norwest Venture Partners with participation from Union Square Ventures, Maverick Capital and Collaborative Fund PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwired - Jun 29, 2017) - As further evidence of its position as the world's leading platform for outsourced research and development (R&D), Science Exchange today announced it has raised $28 million in Series C funding. Founded in response to the global growth in outsourced R&D services, the company has raised more than $58 million since its inception in 2011. Norwest Venture Partners led the latest round with participation from existing investors Union Square Ventures, Maverick Capital, and Collaborative Fund. "In the last decade, outsourcing of R&D has become a core strategy for improving efficiency and providing access to innovation for top companies globally. Forty percent of R&D spend is now outsourced and this trend continues to grow," explained Science Exchange CEO Elizabeth Iorns, Ph.D., a research scientist who co-founded the company. "At the same time, businesses are challenged to manage their outsourced R&D. They need to track progress and provider performance across what could be hundreds of service provider relationships, impacting the cost, quality and timeliness of research projects. The Science Exchange platform solves this by removing barriers in the outsourcing process -- providing companies with instant access to a network of pre-qualified service providers, as well as contracting, project management and reporting tools." As part of the Series C, Casper de Clercq, General Partner at Norwest and veteran of the life sciences industry with more than 20 years of commercialization and operating experience, will join the company's board. "Science Exchange has developed an outsourcing platform that is enjoying tremendous momentum as many of the world's largest pharma and biotech companies have signed up," said Casper de Clercq, General Partner at Norwest. "They are well-positioned as the leader in a large and expanding market. We are excited to help Science Exchange become the world's largest platform for outsourced R&D." "We're thrilled to be partnering with such prestigious investors to help us grow our business at such a critical time in the evolution of R&D outsourcing," commented Iorns. "This investor confidence confirms our business strategy and potential for continued growth." Through the Science Exchange platform, researchers have easy and secure access to more than 2,500 of the world's premier outsourced R&D service providers -- qualified contract research organizations (CROs), contract manufacturers (CMOs), academic labs, and government facilities. Thousands of scientists have used the platform to support their pursuit of breakthrough scientific discoveries, including those from 10 of the top 20 biopharma companies. In fact, the company has grown its enterprise-wide strategic sourcing agreements with leading pharmaceutical companies by more than 2,000 percent since 2015. Science Exchange plans to use the funding to continue its expansion beyond biopharma into other industries where scientists are faced with R&D outsourcing challenges -- including agrosciences, cosmetics, aerospace and industrial chemicals. The company will strategically hire across product, engineering, sales, marketing, and customer success. About Science Exchange Science Exchange is the world's leading platform for outsourced research, providing an efficient procure-to-pay platform for ordering services from a network of more than 2,500 qualified scientific service providers, all with pre-established contracts in place that protect client intellectual property and confidentiality. The platform increases scientists' access to innovation and improves productivity, freeing them up from the administrative tasks and delays associated with sourcing, establishing and managing service provider contracts. Additionally, the Science Exchange enterprise program enables organizations to consolidate research R&D outsourcing spend into a single strategic relationship, driving efficiency and cost savings. Since being founded in 2011, Science Exchange has raised more than $58 million from Norwest Venture Partners, Maverick Capital Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Collaborative Fund, Index Ventures, OATV, the YC Continuity Fund, and others. For more information, visit http://www.scienceexchange.com. Follow the company on Twitter @ScienceExchange. About Norwest Venture Partners Norwest Venture Partners is a leading Silicon-Valley based venture capital and growth equity investment firm managing more than $6 billion in capital. Since our inception, we have invested in more than 600 companies. The firm invests in early to late stage companies across a wide range of sectors with a focus on consumer, enterprise, and healthcare. We offer a deep network of connections, operating experience, and a wide range of impactful services to help CEOs and founders advance on their journey. Norwest has offices in Palo Alto and San Francisco, with subsidiaries in Mumbai and Bengaluru, India and Herzelia, Israel. For more information, please visit http://www.nvp.com. Follow Norwest on Twitter @NorwestVP.
News Article | July 10, 2017
PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Science Exchange, the world’s leading platform for outsourced research and development (R&D), today announced a strategic partnership with IndieBio, the world’s largest seed biotech accelerator. IndieBio-backed companies will now have exclusive access to a customized Science Exchange-powered marketplace, where they can instantly order R&D services from a network of more than 2,500 qualified scientific service providers. “We are always looking for the right mix of resources to support the success of our biotech companies. The Science Exchange platform will give them access to a premier set of research services, along with contracting support to protect companies’ intellectual property and confidentiality,” said Jun Axup, Ph.D. and science director of IndieBio. “We want our biotech companies to succeed, and at the same time see the industry as a whole move faster and discover cures to more diseases. With Science Exchange, the companies in our program now have access to wide range of services, such as comparative data, chemical synthesis and next-gen sequencing, which will help them move their projects ahead more quickly and cost-effectively.” IndieBio is best known for its investments in innovative startups with a focus on biology as a technology. Companies from all over the world apply to be part of IndieBio’s four-month acceleration program, which includes funding, dedicated mentorship and 24/7 access to a co-working space and bio-safety labs. IndieBio companies solve problems across a wide range of industries, such as the future of food, biopharma and healthcare, agtech, regenerative medicine, neurotech and biomaterials. This partnership addresses the unique needs of IndieBio’s R&D-focused startups, leveling the playing field with Science Exchange’s established global pharmaceutical and biotechnology clients by giving IndieBio’s startups ready access to the expertise and infrastructure found within the Science Exchange network of service providers. "Science Exchange offers scientists and researchers efficient access to a network of highly qualified service providers," said Dr. Elizabeth Iorns, Founder & CEO of Science Exchange. “IndieBio’s companies are working at a rapid pace, and the key to advancing leading-edge research is eliminating roadblocks to innovation. We are thrilled to serve as an innovation catalyst for IndioBio’s biotech companies, to help them discover and bring products to market more quickly and efficiently.” The Science Exchange platform will help IndieBio-supported companies: IndieBio joins more than 30 enterprise clients that are efficiently managing their outsourced R&D with Science Exchange-powered marketplaces. About IndieBio IndieBio is the world’s largest life sciences accelerator, having funded 67 biotech startups since starting in March 2015. Companies from all over the world apply to be part of a four-month acceleration program which includes $250,000 funding, dedicated mentorship, and 24/7 access to a co-working space and bio-safety level 1 & 2 labs. During the program, teams are focused on turning science into product, closing customers, and raising follow-on investment. With a focus on biology as a technology, IndieBio companies solve problems in a huge range of industries such as the future of food, biopharma and healthcare, agtech, regenerative medicine, neurotech, biomaterials and more. Notable alums include, Memphis Meats, Koniku, SyntheX Therapeutics, Catalog, Ava Winery, and Qidni Labs. For more information or to apply for their next program visit http://indiebio.co/apply/. About Science Exchange Science Exchange is the world's leading platform for outsourced research, providing an efficient procure-to-pay platform for ordering services from a network of more than 2,500 qualified scientific service providers, all with pre-established contracts in place that protect client intellectual property and confidentiality. The platform increases scientists' access to innovation and improves productivity, freeing them up from the administrative tasks and delays associated with sourcing, establishing and managing service provider contracts. Additionally, the Science Exchange enterprise program enables R&D organizations to consolidate research outsourcing spend into a single strategic relationship, driving efficiency and cost savings. Since being founded in 2011, Science Exchange has raised more than $58 million from Norwest Venture Partners, Maverick Capital Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Collaborative Fund, Index Ventures, OATV, the YC Continuity Fund, and others. For more information, visit http://www.scienceexchange.com. Follow the company on Twitter @ScienceExchange.
News Article | February 23, 2017
PALO ALTO, Calif. and LANCASTER, Pa., Feb. 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Science Exchange and Eurofins are excited to announce that Eurofins Central Laboratory is now a service provider listed on the Science Exchange marketplace for outsourced research services. This means that pharmaceutical a...
News Article | March 23, 2016
Research marketplace Science Exchange is now $25 million richer. The startup hooking researchers up with service providers just added the Series B funding round to its coffers, putting its total raised at $30.5 million. Maverick Capital led the round, with participation from Union Square Ventures, Index Ventures, OATV, Collaborative Fund, YC Continuity Fund, TEDMED CEO Jose Suarez, Sam Altman, Steve Case, Paul Buchheit, and other angel investors. Science Exchange came out of Y Combinator in 2011 to help academic and government researchers find the right lab services. The idea is similar to Emerald Cloud Therapeutics or another YC company, Transcriptic in that customers can order services needed through an online platform. However, Science Exchange is more of a marketplace and both Emerald and Transcriptic would be considered cloud-based service providers for the needed lab research. The startup claims to work with more than 2,500 of these types of institutions now on the demand side. Many research institutions don’t have the full resources to conduct research needed and research is often costly and takes a long time to get results. Science Exchange offers a marketplace of outsourcing services to conduct the research for these institutions and in theory lower the cost and time it takes. But most of this was for smaller organizations held within government and academia. Science Exchange started moving beyond smaller academic research institutions and into big pharma over the last year, including work with the France-based pharmaceutical conglomerate Sanofi. According to Science Exchange, the foray into larger organizations has helped the startup grow by 500 percent in the last year – it now claims eight out of the top 10 pharmaceutical companies use the startup for outsourced research. Larger pharmaceutical companies are also helping to spur the growth with a higher volume of more complex orders compared to academic and government institutions. “And so the dollar value of those types of orders are much bigger, almost an order of magnitude than other users,” Science Exchange co-founder Dan Knox told TechCrunch. Researchers from Harvard or Stanford might order research costing around $3,000 to 5,000 on average, whereas a big pharmaceutical company will be spending 10 times that for multiple tests, for example. The startup plans to use the new funding to hire in several areas including product, engineering, sales, marketing, and customer success. Knox also told us Science Exchange plans to expand to more of the top research institutions in the U.S. and Europe and that it would like to get into food tech and cosmetics research in the future.
News Article | February 22, 2017
PALO ALTO, Calif. and FARMERS BRANCH, Texas, Feb. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Science Exchange and Apollo Laboratories are excited to announce that drug development services from Apollo Laboratories will now be available from the Science Exchange marketplace. As a result, pharmaceutical and...
News Article | November 9, 2016
What is there to stop someone publishing scientific research that is based on no actual research or uses fake evidence to support their claims? If the risk to reputation and all that follows isn’t enough to deter someone from such scientific fraud, then what other steps can science take to maintain the integrity of any published research? The criminal prosecution of Dr Caroline Barwood should serve as a warning to researchers who might be tempted to engage in such actions. She was convicted last month of fraudulently applying for research grants. The criminal charges for fraud and attempted fraud that were brought against Barwood were based mainly on her attempts to obtain funding for research investigating a treatment for Parkinson’s disease. The research was allegedly conducted with Professor Bruce Murdoch through the Centre for Neurogenic Communication Disorders Research at the University of Queensland. In 2012, an unidentified whistleblower contacted the University of Queensland about Murdoch and Barwood’s Parkinson’s study. After an internal investigation the university discovered multiple irregularities, no primary data from the research and no evidence that the research had actually been conducted. Publications based on the research had appeared in several prominent journals. The university informed the journals and four papers have now been retracted. Both Barwood and Murdoch resigned from the university. But the university referred the matter to Queensland’s Crime and Corruption Commission. After a lengthy investigation, the Commission recommended that criminal charges be laid against both researchers. In March 2016 Murdoch pleaded guilty to 17 fraud-related charges. He was given a two year suspended sentence. The sentencing magistrate found that there was no evidence Murdoch had conducted the clinical trials on which his findings, and some of his publications, were allegedly based. A critical feature of the prosecution was that both public and private research money had funded the research. Barwood’s conviction followed later in 2016. She was convicted of five charges and sentenced to two years imprisonment, also suspended. She may face a further trial because the jury couldn’t reach agreement on another two charges. These cases may be rare but mark a willingness to use criminal prosecutions to deal with researchers who engage in fraud. But is hitting researchers for fraud over their applications for funds enough to deter the scientific fraud itself? In a hard-hitting editorial in 2013, the journal Nature said: Several prominent commentators, including a former editor of the British Medical Journal have joined the call for scientific fraud to be recognised as a criminal offence. The re-framing of some forms of scientific misconduct as criminal fraud recognises that scientific fraud involving the fabrication of research and/or results in circumstances where private or public funding has been sought or obtained is similar to other forms of fraud. It involves dishonesty and deception for the purpose of obtaining money or other financial advantage. It is immaterial that the benefit may not have been for the direct, personal benefit of the researcher. It also recognizes that like other forms of fraud, scientific fraud requires careful, detailed investigation and the obtaining of evidence. Police and other prosecuting authorities (such as the Crime and Corruption Commission) are best able to conduct this sort of investigation and gather this information. The first prosecution for scientific fraud appears to have been in the United States in 2006. Eric Poehlman was found guilty of fraud and sentenced to prison for a year and a day after he falsified results from his obesity research. Poehlman had received significant amounts of research funding. Perhaps the most famous case in recent years involved Dong-Pyou Han, a biomedical scientist at Iowa State University. Han falsified the results of several experiments involving the development of a vaccine for HIV. He eventually pleaded guilty to making false statements to obtain research grants. He was sentenced to 57 months in prison and ordered to pay back $7.2 million in grant funds that he had fraudulently obtained. All these cases involved intentional deception. They were not simply lapses in scientific standards or based on disputes about appropriate methodology or analysis. A further troubling feature is that many cases involved eminent or promising researchers from leading institutions and universities, including now the University of Queensland. Run them out of town Criminal prosecutions for academic fraud are rare. A researcher who is found to have engaged in fraud will more likely lose their job, suffer reputational damage, be de-registered (if they are a registered health care professional), have publications retracted and find it difficult to obtain further research funding. But these traditional strategies for dealing with scientific fraud have significant limitations. The potential lack of institutional integrity is foremost. Universities and other institutions are sometimes more concerned with protecting their own reputations rather than properly investigating potential fraud. That said, the decisive action taken by the University of Queensland demonstrates a commitment to high research standards. The retraction of published papers based on fraudulent research is fraught with problems. In an editorial published in 2013 the journal Nature Medicine noted a lack of co-operation by the researcher’s institution in investigating cases of alleged fraud and threats of legal action by the suspect researcher made retractions difficult. It said: There are now promising alternatives to criminal prosecution and traditional sanctions. They have potentially broader impact because they are not restricted to research which has been funded and they come from within the scientific community itself. These initiatives include some journals now requiring authors to submit their raw data before publication is considered, and the website Retraction Watch which monitors fraud by identifying scientific articles that have been retracted. Also, a reproducibility initiative by Science Exchange encourages researchers to submit their experiments and results and have them replicated by independent researchers. This provides another means for ensuring research integrity. Criminal prosecutions are certainly an appropriate strategy for dealing with some forms of scientific fraud. But they are not a panacea. At best, they function as an additional mechanism for pursuing egregious cases where researchers have obtained, or tried to obtain, research funding based on non-existent studies or results that has been altered. In these cases the scientific fraud clearly constitutes criminal conduct and should be prosecuted as such. But in many instances the traditional regulatory mechanisms and sanctions, in conjunction with newer initiatives to more closely monitor research, will still be the primary mechanisms for ensuring the integrity of scientific research. This article was originally published on The Conversation and written by Marilyn McMahon, associate professor in Law, Deakin University.
News Article | December 15, 2015
Experimental results that don’t hold up to replication have caused consternation among scientists for years, especially in the life and social sciences (SN: 1/24/15, p. 20). In 2015 several research groups examining the issue reported on the magnitude of the irreproducibility problem. The news was not good. Results from only 35 of 97 psychology experiments published in three major journals in 2008 could be replicated, researchers reported in August (SN: 10/3/15, p. 8). The tumor-shrinking ability of the cancer drug sunitinib was overestimated by 45 percent on average, an analysis published in October showed (SN: 11/14/15, p. 17). And a report in June found that, in the United States alone, an estimated $28 billion is spent annually on life sciences research that can’t be reproduced (SN: 7/11/15, p. 5). Estimated annual U.S. spending on preclinical research that is irreproducible There are many possible reasons for the problem, including pressure to publish, data omission and contamination of cell cultures (SN Online: 7/2/15; SN: 2/7/15, p. 22). Faulty statistics are another major source of irreproducibility, and several prominent scientific journals have set guidelines for how statistical analyses should be conducted. Very large datasets, which have become common in genetics and other fields, present their own challenges: Different analytic methods can produce widely different results, and the sheer size of big data studies makes replication difficult. Perfect reproductions might never be possible in biology and psychology, where variability among and between people, lab animals and cells, as well as unknown variables, influences the results. But several groups, including the Science Exchange and the Center for Open Science, are leading efforts to replicate psychology and cancer studies to pinpoint major sources of irreproducibility. Although there is no consensus on how to solve the problem, suggestions include improving training for young scientists, describing methods more completely in published papers and making all data and reagents available for repeat experiments.