Link To Guest Website: https://vincerebio.com/
Title: “Fighting Parkinson’s And Tackling Other Age-Related Diseases”
Guest: Andy Lee – Vincere Biosciences
Interviewer: Jeffrey Davis – MAGE LLC
Click here to read the transcript
Well, here we are a backup Radio Entrepreneurs, my name again, Jeffrey Davis, and I am the host and we continued to stream stories of a business leadership and entrepreneurship and strategy during these times of constant change. And I assume when the next two to three years will have more change than we think what we experienced in the last year as a things change. And our next guest is Andy Lee Director and COO Vincere Biosciences welcome, Andy.
Thanks for having me be here. Thank
You. So what did you tell us about Vincere Biosciences w what, what do you do? We’re
Developing small molecule therapeutics for diseases of aging, like Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s a, it’s all aided buy a unique pet, did a computer simulation platform, but ultimately we now know that biological age is modifiable and diseases of aging. Like Parkinson’s are tied to some core mechanisms that a way that we think we’ve got drugs in the pipeline to a, to fix now. So,
Jeffrey (1m 5s):
And is there a lateral use so I can keep my sports a, my athleticism at a young age?
Andy (1m 12s):
I think so. I mean, there, there are certainly some things that are starting to a, you know, reverse biological age and, you know, we’re, we’re specifically focused on improving mitochondrial health. So you, you probably all remember from high school mitochondria or the powerhouses of the cell, they also do a lot of other things as far as like sensing viral invasions and a triggering inflammation and other things. And as we age the, the, the network of mitochondria, it becomes dysfunctional and the processes that are naturally there to clean up damaged mitochondria, a don’t work as efficiently as they do when you’re young.
Andy (1m 52s):
So the drugs that we have make that happen more quickly, so the recycling can happened, and you can see, you can keep the, the healthy cells, the healthy cells are healthy systems.
Jeffrey (2m 2s):
So how far along, or we are you not, we are in terms of making, this is something that’s usable by that by the public we
Andy (2m 11s):
Are expecting to start are first a human clinical trials within about two years, a testing, the compounds in animal models right now. And so far everything’s looking good. So our plan is to start a FDA approved path for Parkinson’s disease, but you know, it as kind of suggested buy the link to a core aging. I think there’s a lot of other areas that this might apply. So we’re also looking for other indications and may start to kind of look at those clinical options and maybe some consumer options, all the parallel.
Jeffrey (2m 50s):
I, you know, I’m not trying to be a little what you’re saying, but as you’re talking, you make me think about my friends sitting to my back left, who is 15 years old, my pet dog, the applicability to pets who don’t seem to have as long a life.
Andy (3m 4s):
Yeah, they’re, it’s a really interesting area. And so, you know, we’ve done, researchers have demonstrated in the lab, the ability to increase lifespan in flies and worms and my son and other things. So it’s pretty clear that this is a doable, there, there is actually another company called the loyal that is working on a longevity drug’s for dogs. They actually just started a trial for that, for that process, for the first, a new drugs for that. Its an interesting idea. And if you think about one of the challenges of testing, longevity, drugs for humans is that we live so long. So to show conclusively that you have increased lifespan or slowed down aging may take, you know, decades, whereas in a, a, in a, in a dog you might be able to see here.
Andy (3m 56s):
So you’re, you’re looking at trying to get a couple of years extra out of a 15 year span. You know, you can, you can see, you can prove the efficacy of that on longevity a much faster. So it is certainly something that the, the longevity community is looking at. And, you know, for one, it proves that the compounds, our safe and effective in a mammals, but also it has that direct a benefit. We have all we’ve all lost are pets. We’ve been close to. It is it’s a painful process and you know, anything that we can do to keep them healthy longer as it is certainly a good to be a high demand.
Jeffrey (4m 34s):
Well, and I know that people spend unlimited amounts of money on their pets. It’s
Andy (4m 38s):
Good. It is. It’s a, it’s amazing, you know, what, what people will spend for the better dog food or the, you know, all of the, the medical treatments, if things go wrong, a really gets off their fast. So I think there’s definitely a huge market there.
Jeffrey (4m 53s):
My wife and I represent that remark. And, but I wanna know ’cause, this is really is about, you know, a science fiction living today. How did you get into this field? It’s so it sounds so exciting at arms length and I’m sure it day-to-day it’s grueling, but how did you get into it? What is it about you where you are, where you are, that science kid is sitting beside me and class that I wanted to cheat off of it as a kid,
Andy (5m 15s):
It’s actually interesting stories. So my background is computer science and software engineering. So, you know, it probably, yeah. And the math class is that was that it was me. And so I I’ve gone through a few industries of you are trying to optimize work-flows and make processes, run a veteran, and you’ve done that through eliminating government bureaucracy or improving FinTech. And you knew about a seven years ago, had an idea to, to do this. And actually my cofounder is my wife, who is a neuroscientist, a, she was doing Parkinson’s disease research. And we started looking at the massive amounts of new discovery coming out.
Andy (5m 57s):
And the, the, the, the advances in computer technology to do you massively parallel computing. And so there are, there’s this convergence coming when the next couple of years, we’re going to have enough power to crunch that data, to make a new insights that that can really change the way we develop drugs. A so that’s where we started tinkering nights and weekends to, to build a simulation platform that could predict biological outcomes and a doing that for a couple of years, led us to a understanding what the core root cause of Parkinson’s is a witch. Then we we’re able to find small molecules therapeutics that can modulate those, those pathways.
Andy (6m 41s):
And that’s when a VIN Sierra was formed to you to actually go full-on with a biotech route to develop these small molecules. A so a interestingly along that way, you know, starting with like, how can we find the best target to slow? The progression of Parkinson’s really led us down this rabbit hole of aging being one of the mechanisms and age being a modifiable and realization that umm, you know, Parkinson’s disease. It is just the tip of the iceberg. You know, we are, we are imminently at this point were a human longevity will be a changed where we can, we can take actions and you know, one of the first things that we’re looking at it on that, but that’s a really important as the ability to track biological age, you know, it, it’s becoming quite clear that calender age and biological age, our not the same thing and being able to measure that with a simple blood or saliva test or something that can, can measure how old are you biologically a is going to be the key to, you know, I think really gaining adoption on some of these are some of these approaches and we all feel it, right.
Andy (7m 56s):
You know, you, you, you look at the mirror some days and you’re like, man, that was a rough night. I aged 10 years. So you know, yesterday and you get up some days and you feel like, wow, I, you know, I think I’m getting younger. Everything is moving the right direction.
Jeffrey (8m 11s):
No, it doesn’t happen too often anymore. Mostly I just say we had that ugly old man.
Andy (8m 15s):
Yeah. I, I think we all a, you know, you feel that, that sorta thing accelerating a so, you know, hopefully we can get some things that could slow that down.
Jeffrey (8m 26s):
You know, it’s also deciding, but then I just found out that you’re also a part of the majority of businesses in America. You’re a family owned business.
Andy (8m 34s):
We are, I noticed your, your family business, a Lynx they’re and I think that’s kind of interesting. It’s it’s a rarity in the startup world then and more so in the M the biotech space. So
Jeffrey (8m 45s):
A biotech family business, I assume also a funded company we are, but so you’re really taking off all the boxes, but it for an entrepreneurial story, aren’t you?
Andy (8m 58s):
Yeah, it, it, it was interesting. We started talking to a, kind of are on the same point. We we’re looking at this end and what the right format for this, this was. And, you know, there are, there are some husband and wife teams that are in the academic space. There there’s some, you know, and great examples out there. A PRM Marie Curry’s the famous ones. Everybody knows about it, right. A and still are a lot of those are wrong. But then looking at, I had seen the, the red tape in a big corporate environments and we see that in the, the big pharma worlds’. And so if we can look at that, you know, if we really wanna advance the science or are we better off doing that through academic positions, through corporate positions, through a nonprofit that we can then funnel into research and, and ultimately thought, you know, this, the structure of a independent business allows us to move really quickly at these early stages.
Andy (9m 54s):
And we still have all of the opportunities available for grant funding that we would have. If we were a nonprofit or an academic, we still have to raise the funds ourselves. We would, if we were a PI on a, in a university. And, but yet we have the independence that we wouldn’t have in either of those other two spaces. So I think, I think the structure works out quite well. You know, have you been able to raise investment and grants and corporate partnerships? So I think it, I think this is a new model that is kind of starting to gain some traction as an alternative for a PhD researchers that are coming out of the field.
Andy (10m 35s):
If it was always, no, you got to a graduate, do a post doc and go into the industry or you go into academia. And, and I think entrepreneurship is a path, but a lot of a new graduates should just take a serious look at it.
Jeffrey (10m 46s):
Well, I, I think that everybody has been chasing the fountain of youth since the beginning of time, for sure. And I hope that your technology out of the, you know, progress is faster than I, it deteriorate and find the whole topic to be very interesting and exciting and hope that you will continue to talk with Radio Entrepreneurs that come back to us as you progress. Definitely a until that time, if somebody wants to know more about your business in what you’re doing, is there a way that we can connect with the company? Yeah,
Andy (11m 18s):
Absolutely. Our website is Vincerebio.com and we’ve got a lot of information there. I’m also active on Twitter and can I can share my is just my name, Andy de li. So if anybody wants to look me up there, I’m happy to chat.
Jeffrey (11m 36s):
Great. Very exciting to talk with you. And I do want to, I do want you to come back again and remind everybody that we just are speaking with Andy Lee director and COO of Vincere Biosciences a pretty exciting story and it remind everybody, this is Radio Entrepreneurs. Thanks, John and Andy. Great.
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