AyuVis Research, Inc. has been selected for MassChallenge’s 2022 U.S. Early-Stage Cohort. The company was invited to join 200 other startups from more than 1,000 applicants to participate in this year’s global accelerator program.
“Being selected for the 2022 cohort is a testament to the impact that AyuVis is primed to make as it continues its trajectory on fully realizing its science,” said Hayden Blackburn, Executive Director of TechFW, where AyuVis is a member. “With MassChallenge’s mission of being the global network for innovators who are working to solve massive challenges, it is a great compliment that AyuVis was accepted. We are excited for its journey and upcoming growth.”
TechFW is a nonprofit technology business incubator and accelerator in Fort Worth, through which AyuVis was introduced to and became a portfolio company of the Cowtown Angels, an angel investor network affiliated with TechFW.
The MassChallenge accelerator offers unrivaled access to a global network of partners, experts and mentors; a private office in the new BioLabs at Pegasus Park, Dallas, TX; market access opportunities and more to bolster AyuVis’ efforts to solve unmet medical needs in inflammatory and infectious diseases. MassChallenge will benefit AyuVis in developing a broader network of resources, especially as it relates to strengthening its business strategy, funding, market awareness, strategic relationships and the ongoing benefits of being an alumnus.
To tap into the life sciences innovation ecosystem in DFW, AyuVis is a partner with the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth in its HSC Next Innovation Labs incubator program. This is where AyuVis’ research labs and office are headquartered.
“Being accepted into the MassChallenge program is a really big deal and it’s exciting that a life science company from Fort Worth with the potential to make a high impact has been selected,” said Cameron Cushman, Assistant VP of Innovation Ecosystems at HSC Fort Worth.
Just as antibiotics revolutionized the treatment of infections, AyuVis compounds are projected to revolutionize the prevention and treatment of life-threatening inflammatory diseases. More than 1,300 premature babies die in the U.S. every year because of chronic lung injury caused by inflammation, and according to the CDC’s National Vital Statistics Report on U.S. Births in 2019, at least half of premature babies are from underserved communities. AyuVis is pioneering innovative immunotherapies via recharging the innate immune system with a goal of saving and improving the lives of these premature babies.
Focusing on respiratory diseases with high unmet medical need and no effective therapies, the company’s novel, proprietary compounds address global markets of more than $35 billion.
AyuVis has received three NIH grants for $2.1 million and funding from private investors/family offices of $4.6 million.
The company’s Founder and CEO/CSO, Suchismita Acharya, PhD said, “I look forward to participating in this program with my team. We have the opportunity to work with a global network of mentors that will help us close the gaps to starting our clinical trials. This will be a big inflection point for the company.”
AyuVis’ lead drug candidate, AVR-48, developed to fight bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) commonly seen in prematurely born infants in the NICU, is in the near-clinical stage. AVR-48 has demonstrated an excellent safety profile and speed of therapeutic response in preclinical testing, with an efficient small molecule manufacturing cost. AVR-48 is Orphan Drug and Rare Pediatric Disease Designated for the prevention of BPD by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
AyuVis selected BPD as its lead indication because it is an area of high unmet medical need with no FDA-approved therapies for prevention or treatment. BPD has a 9% mortality rate and those who do survive often require ongoing care. AyuVis’ goal is to save and improve the lives of these babies by preventing BPD in at-risk preterm infants with its unique, first-in-class immunotherapy.
The AyuVis management and core team members are: Suchismita Acharya, PhD, Founder/CEO/CSO; David Riley, MD, MBA, Chief Medical Officer; Dale Christensen, PhD, Director of Early Development; Stella Robertson, PhD, Board Member and Drug Development Advisor; William Dean, PhD, Head of CMC; Gagan B Acharya, MS, CA, Founder, Board Secretary and IT Advisor; Russell Bromley, BA, Director of Operations; Ranjan Misra, BS, Business Advisor; Darlene Boudreaux, MBA, CPA, former Executive Director of TechFW, as CFO; and Sarah Spain, BBA, Senior Operations Manager.