Matter Neuroscience Secures $26M in Funding

Matter Neuroscience, the company working to unlock a deeper understanding of happiness and well-being by providing people with personalized insights into their brain chemistry emerges from stealth mode today. Matter announced it has received $26 million in funding, initial funding seeded by Polaris Partners and a more recent round co-led by ARCH Venture Partners, Polaris Partners, and Exor Ventures, and joined by Collaborative Fund and others. With this backing, Matter will bolster its efforts to pioneer solutions that address the unhappiness epidemic by transforming our understanding and management of mental well-being.

Identifying a Biomarker for Happiness
Currently in its third year of clinical studies with leading labs in the fields of brain imaging and happiness research, Matter is on a mission to identify a biomarker for happiness. Such a discovery would enhance our understanding of the biological activity that underlie positive emotions and drive further advancements in depression, anxiety, addiction and aggression disorders. These studies are being led by renowned scholars including Professor Rainer Goebel of the Maastricht University Brain Imaging Center and a member of the Science and Infrastructure Board of the Human Brain ProjectMeik Wiking and the team at the Happiness Research Institute, and professors at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Results of the most recent high-field fMRI studies by Professor Goebel and team, examining the neuroscientific basis of positive emotions and well-being using the Matter app, will be presented at the 2024 Organization for Human Brain Mapping Annual Meeting. Publication of the full study data and analysis is expected later this year.

“Based on our early study results we see strong evidence for a universal map of distinct positive emotions in the human brain,” said Professor Goebel. “In addition to guiding healthy individuals to greater well-being, this may provide a path to emotion regulation training for depression treatment.”

Together with its collaboration partners, Matter Neuroscience will initiate three more clinical studies in 2024.

Improving Health and Happiness with Matter
Given the early positive results on subjective well-being and brain markers in clinical studies, Matter has released an early version of its public beta app for interested, healthy users and plans to further develop the technology it has used successfully in clinical studies through the help of public usage of the app. The app is designed to provide individuals with a tool to record and reflect on their positive experiences, to better understand the neurotransmitter activity behind them, and to make changes in their daily lives to improve their health and happiness. Matter also offers users access to educational materials and a lecture series on the neuroscience of happiness.

For more information and to become a beta user of the Matter app, visit

The Matter Neuroscience Team
Matter is led by veteran biotech and pharmaceutical executive Axel Bouchon, who previously led the venture arms for Moderna and Bayer and is an ARCH Venture partner. Driven by the desire to prevent unhappiness for himself and hundreds of millions of others at risk of developing mental disease, Bouchon spent several years working to understand the molecular basis for happiness in our brains.

Bouchon’s ideas, published in his book, “Capitalism of Happiness,” created the vision for Matter Neuroscience: find an algorithm that allows people to understand and leverage their natural molecular compass for happiness. Matter Neuroscience was co-founded in 2019 with Ben Goldhirsh of GOOD Worldwide and the Goldhirsh Foundation, and Chris Shiflett of Faculty and Brooklyn Beta.

“The wealthiest areas of the world are struggling with record levels of depression, addiction, and anxiety,” said Axel Bouchon, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Matter Neuroscience. “Our consumer culture systematically blocks brain development and erodes mental health. Matter offers a scientifically based, universal, biological indicator for human progress and sustainable happiness.”

The independent scientific and clinical advisory board of Matter Neuroscience includes Professor Daniela Schiller (Departments of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai,) Professor Zahi Fayad (Lucy G. Moses Professor of Medical Imaging and Bioengineering at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, BioMedical Engineering and Imaging Institute), and Professor Konstantin Nikolaou (Professor & Chairman, Dept. of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, University Hospitals Tübingen, Germany), along with Professor Goebel (Maastricht University), and Meik Wiking (Happiness Research Institute).

Paul Berns of ARCH Venture Partners and Amir Nashat of Polaris Partners serve on Matter’s Board of Directors. Berns is a seasoned biopharma veteran and entrepreneur with over 30 years of success in the field of neurology. Nashat is an active investor and entrepreneur in the healthcare industry and has been named to the Forbes Midas List of “Top 100 Venture Capitalists.”

About Matter
Matter Neuroscience was founded in 2019 by Axel Bouchon and Ben GoldhirshChris Shiflett joined in 2021 as co-founder. Matter’s mission is to use neuroscience to help people live longer, healthier, happier lives so that individually, we can reach our full potential, and collectively, we can solve the world’s most pressing problems. Matter is led by CEO Axel Bouchon (Moderna, Bayer, ARCH Venture Partners). Matter’s COO is Bridget Best (Kickstarter, Sweeten). Ben Goldhirsh (GOOD Worldwide and the Goldhirsh Foundation) serves as Matter’s Chairman.

Visit to learn more about Matter and sign up for the beta. Follow Matter on Instagram and Tiktok for education and inspiration for living a happier life.