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Utah Life Sciences News & Events

Recursion and University of Utah Launch Altitude Lab, Largest Life Sciences Incubator in Utah

August 14, 2020

On August 11, Altitude Lab, founded by BioUtah member Recursion and the University of Utah’s Center for Technology & Venture Commercialization (TVC) announced its first resident companies and opened applications for its unique collaborative facility and program. The incubator, a state-of-the-art 14,500 square foot lab facility, will offer resident companies workshops, mentoring, and non-dilutive funding resources that are so critical to success. The lab is located in the University’s Research Park.

In a press statement, BioUtah President and CEO, Kelvyn Cullimore, said, “This is truly a life sciences milestone in Utah. BioUtah looks forward to supporting the lab and its residents as part of a larger strategy to establish Utah as a global hub for the life sciences.”

“Altitude Lab is bringing together resources and a community that many startups lack, but were pivotal to Recursion’s success,” said Chris Gibson, co-founder and CEO of Recursion.

Altitude, which will serve all aspects of the state’s life sciences industry – medical device, diagnostic, biotech, biopharma, and health tech – will officially open its wet lab facility in October.

“We’re focused on where innovation and economic growth truly start—founders,” explained Chandana Haque, executive director of Altitude Lab.

“Utah is a substantial source of innovation, as TVC has launched more than two hundred companies in just the last decade, one of which was Recursion,” said Keith Marmer, associate vice president for technology & venture commercialization and corporate partnerships at the University of Utah.

Altitude Lab’s first companies include: 

  • Known Med: Accepted to Y Combinator’s summer cohort, founders Andrea Mazzocchi, PhD and Katie-Rose Skelly are working at Altitude Lab to develop an organoid-based platform to personalize cancer treatment strategies.
  • 3Helix: Mike Kirkness, PhD (CIO), Luke Bennink, PhD (CTO), and founder Michael Yu, PhD are disrupting traditional histology methods for diagnosis of liver fibrosis with their collagen-based diagnostic platform. The technology originates from Yu and his team’s work at Johns Hopkins University and the University of Utah.
  • NexEos Bio: Theresa Mansi (CEO) and Gerald Gleich, PhD (Co-Founder and CSO) are leading the NexEos team, along with collaborators from the University of Utah, to develop diagnostic tools and therapies to address eosinophil-related diseases. NexEos offers an alternative to endoscopy with biopsies—a painful and invasive procedure—with its noninvasive imaging agent to diagnose and manage eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). The highly experienced team is also working on treatments for EoE and other eosinophil-driven inflammatory conditions.