BIO International Convention (BIO), the world’s largest partnering event and convention in the bio industry, was held from June 13 to June 16 in San Diego, CA this year. This marked the first time the event returned to being held in-person in 3 years, following two consecutive years of being held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. BIO International has traditionally been held in San Diego, and 2022 happens to mark the 65th anniversary of the start of the sister-city relationship between San Diego and the city of Yokohama, Japan. BIO’s return to its physical roots was very successful, with more than 3000 companies from all over the world participating in this year’s event, including over 100 companies from Japan.
Three companies from Yokohama participated in the partnering during the event: MabGenesis, Artham Therapeutics, and Reprocell. Out of these, MabGenesis and Reprocell also exhibited within the Japan Pavilion hosted by JETRO. The Office of the City of Yokohama Rep. to the Americas also participated in partnering on behalf of the City of Yokohama, working to collaborate and connect with venture capital (VC) and US state government agencies, and support the networking of the Yokohama-based companies.
Companies partnering from Yokohama at the BIO International Convention 2022
MabGenesis: MabGenesis Inc. is a biopharmaceutical startup that uses 30+ years of antibody research to provide first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutic monoclonal antibody drugs for humans and animals. They have the world’s highest quality antibody libraries (MOURA Libraries) in terms of functionality and completeness, as well as highly efficient monoclonal antibody isolation technology (IMPACT). By using these, they make it possible to obtain quality monoclonal antibodies that recognize unique 3D structures or subtle structural differences of target molecules such as membrane proteins, thus contributing to new drug development opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry. The company is proceeding with partnering with overseas pharmaceutical companies, such as by concluding a joint research and development agreement with Boehringer Ingelheim.
Artham Therapeutics: ARTham Therapeutics Inc., is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company that will deliver ‘medicines that matter’ for patients. Our goal is to create innovative medicines that are disease modifying and satisfy significant unmet medical need. To deliver on cost and time efficiency, ARTham will run a virtual R&D operating model that seeks innovation through the best academic and business partners. The company became a wholly owned subsidiary of Kaken Pharmaceutical through an M&A last year. This is the highest exit ever for a Japanese bio-startup.
Reprocell: Reprocell was established in 2003 as a startup company from Kyoto University and the University of Tokyo, and was the first company in the world to offer iPSC-derived human cardiomyocytes, hepatocytes, and neuronal cells for research applications and was listed on the Japan JASDAQ / Growth stock market in 2013. Since its listing, it has been expanding globally and simultaneously expanding their business in the field, including the development of culture reagents, stem cell-based drug development support technologies, and tailor-made medicine. It operates globally and has offices and laboratories in Maryland, USA, the UK, and India..