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Empowering Science, Impacting Humanity

People-
powered
medicine

Funding and tokenization platform for biopharma intellectual property.

$30M+
Funds in the Ecosystem
$1.95M
Total Funded
15.7K+
Community Members
12
Research Projects Funded
For Researchers

Apply for funding

There is a disproportionate amount of early-stage research that never sees the light of day. This is because traversing the gap between discovery and clinical trials requires a large amount of unique expertise and of course, money. Molecule is a technology platform with an incentive-aligned, community-driven approach that addresses these inefficiencies through real-time global sourcing of ideas, capital, and know-how.

For Funders

Fund biotech

By becoming a supporter, you play a vital role in driving scientific discovery, innovation, and collaboration. Your contribution helps disrupt traditional funding models, ensuring that scientific breakthroughs are accessible to all.

Funded Projects

The latest projects to have been funded using our IP-NFT protocol

Ecosystem Overview

Decentralised global communities of science or BioDAOs that are part of bio.xyz

Funding Entity
Category
Treasury
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Total Projects
Funded
Token
Forum
Longevity
$ 8,825,000
21
-
$ 4,210,000
Women's Health
$ 432,000
2
-
$220,000
Hair Loss
$ 3,320,000
1
-
$ 119,000
Synthetic Biology
$ 836,000
1
-
£ 249,000
Psychedelics
$ 100,000
3
-
$ 6,000
Cryopreservation
$ 200,000
-
$ 35,000
Collaborate

Contribute

Join our ecosystem, where scientific and technological innovation thrives. As a contributor, you will have the opportunity to connect with diverse minds from around the world and support projects with your knowledge and expertise.

News & Content

Molecule News

Stay informed and inspired. Explore Molecule’s news and fresh content.

Ella McCarthy-Page
Feb 13, 2024
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Even the smallest mutations in our genetic code can have damaging effects, cascading into an array of disease pathologies. In an effort to negate these effects,  VitaDAO, a key player in Decentralized Science, has partnered with Dr. Michael Torres and Artan BIO to engineer a first-in-class therapy that aims to suppress deleterious codon mutations. The VitaDAO community voted to provide $91,300 worth of funding to Dr. Torres via Molecule’s Intellectual Property Non-Fungible Token (IP-NFT) protocol. To increase the opportunity for community involvement and further funding, the IP-NFT will be tokenized into Intellectual Property Tokens (IPTs), granting governance privileges to IPT holders in the VitaDAO community and beyond. 

What happens when DNA gets up to nonsense?

The ribosome, colloquially known as our protein printer, is continually walking itself down strands of genetic code, reading each building block like braille, and then summoning the corresponding amino acids, with the help of transfer RNA (tRNA). These amino acids string together, ultimately forming proteins. If a single building block, known as a nucleotide, mutates, it can alter the protein being created. Our proteins participate in every possible shade of bodily function, so changes in protein synthesis tend to cause a whole host of problems. 

One such nucleotide change results in mutations known as nonsense mutations. They occur when a single nucleotide mutates and forms a stop codon, which is effectively a force-eject button. Stop codons are generally reserved for the end of the entire protein sequence when the protein is ready to be sent off into the body, but in the case of nonsense mutations, these stop codons accidentally crop up elsewhere. When this happens, protein formation is halted prematurely, resulting in half-formed, non-functional proteins which can go on to cause mayhem in the body. Finding and correcting nonsense mutations is not a novel concept. In fact, our bodies do it already! However, we’re far from perfect - issues arise when genuine stop codons are recognized as well, and overridden when they should not be. Currently, the existing treatments also fall prey to this issue. 

The Science

To address the gap, Dr. Torres has invented a potential solution; an engineered system to suppress the outcome of a particular nonsense mutation, enabling the continuation of protein formation. His solution is unique in so far that it appears to be more discerning than other treatments, correctly identifying the problematic stop codon while ignoring genuine stop codons, and most importantly, not interfering with normal gene translation. Preliminary data produced in collaboration with Johns Hopkins University has supported Dr. Torres’ hypothesis, leading to VitaDAO’s decision to fund further investigation. 

Additionally, Dr. Torres has identified a delivery system that is adept at sneaking into cells in the heart, liver, skeletal muscle, and central nervous system. By integrating the engineered codon suppressor into this vector, he suspects that it will be the perfect vehicle to carry the therapeutic to exactly where it needs to go. This vector comes with the bonus of already being clinically validated, which enables the team to optimize its path to first-in-human studies, as certain risks have already been addressed. 

The Scientist

Dr. Torres, who holds a PhD in Cancer Biology from UT-Southwestern in Dallas, has previously co-founded ReCode Therapeutics, a clinical-stage genetic medicines company that has secured over $300M in funding. He now works as the CEO of CrossBridge Bio, an oncology-focused company focused on developing next-generation dual payload antibody-drug conjugates. Dr. Torres was introduced to Decentralized Science (DeSci) by longtime DeSci supporter Mike Baran from Pfizer Ventures, and was quickly attracted to the ability to leverage community engagement to critically evaluate and fund ideas. His extensive experience in drug development, as well as his aptitude for both science and entrepreneurship, make him the perfect candidate for VitaDAO and Molecule’s novel funding model.

“In essence, this model is a powerful tool for transforming ideas into tangible data, supporting future drug development, and creating valuable societal assets.” Dr. Michael Torres

A single solution for many diseases

As a seasoned drug developer, Dr. Torres understands the importance of having foresight when in the lab. In studying nonsense mutations, Dr. Torres observed that a specific nonsense mutation is prevalent in many proteins involved in cellular processes associated with aging such as DNA repair, epigenetic regulators, and tumor suppressors. As this mutation is conserved across many diseases, several clinical opportunities are possible. Under optimal conditions, this research has the potential to turn into a ubiquitous therapy that could be used to treat several health issues associated with aging. VitaDAO is particularly interested in the potential of a therapeutic that could reactivate tumor-suppressing proteins in cancer patients, aiming to slow down or even eradicate tumor growth, given their focus on age-related diseases. Some of the other diseases implicated with nonsense mutations are Duchenne muscular dystrophy, cystic fibrosis, spinal muscular atrophy, metabolic diseases, and neurologic disorders. 

About VitaDAO

VitaDAO is a community-owned collective dedicated to funding and advancing longevity science that can improve people's lives. They have a strong presence in the Decentralized Science community and have utilized the IP-NFT model multiple times. In addition to this, together with Molecule and Dr. Viktor Korochuk, VitaDAO launched the first tokenized research project in the form of IPTs. The IPT tokens, known as VITA-FAST have enabled direct community governance - a world first. 

Dr. Anthony Schwartz, a VitaDAO Entrepreneur in Residence, will act as the project manager for this project. He has founded at least 15 startups, primarily focused on autoimmune diseases and cancer, which have led to large financings and an FDA-approved product. He is also a lecturer at Johns Hopkins. 

“The emerging VitaDAO model can potentially change how new drugs are funded. I'm excited and motivated to help bring that model to fruition through VitaDAO's funding of new companies and blockchain capital raises (IP-NFT/IPT) and seamlessly transition these companies into traditional VC/Pharma financing to bring new drugs to the market.” Dr. Anthony Schwartz

What is an Intellectual Property Non-Fungible Token?

Intellectual Property Non-Fungible Tokens (IP-NFTs) bring IP rights, such as the right to data and patents from drugs developed by funded research, onchain by attaching IP rights to smart contracts. By unifying data and intellectual property rights into programmable, transactable, blockchain tokens, IP-NFTs represent an evolutionary step in the development and management of scientific research IP. To date, IP-NFTs have been used to register IP of more than $1.95M in scientific research. The Torres IP-NFT adds to this growing list. You can find the IP-NFT here

The IP-NFT artwork created to visually represent the project

Intellectual Property Tokens invite the community to participate 

“This revolutionary concept of IP tokenization allows community involvement in the drug development process, creating a mutually beneficial situation. For us, it enables unlocking additional capital in a collaborative manner. For the community, it gives them an opportunity to directly support projects in a manner previously unavailable.” Dr. Michael Torres

True to the belief of equitable and accessible scientific research, VitaDAO will be tokenizing the Torres IP-NFT into IPTs, fungible tokens enabling the distribution of IP rights to their holders, in order to raise funds for the science and empower the community to govern the resulting IP.  

Funding from sales of the IPTs will enable Dr. Torres and his team to insert the engineered fragment into the chosen vector and perform in vitro testing to validate its effectiveness. IPTs will enable individuals to actively govern the project and its results, such as new drugs developed from the team’s research. 

Granting community members the power to co-develop research projects harnesses the potential of incentive-aligned expertise, furthering decentralized science. Many decisions need to occur as this project unfolds, such as which other possible delivery vehicles to test, which disease indication is best suited for clinical testing, and how to raise additional funds. With the power of IP tokenization, the wisdom of the crowd now has the chance to influence those decisions.  

Join VitaRNA Crowdsale

Logan Bishop-Currey
Feb 5, 2024
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Strengthening Decentralized Science 

Sharing a mission of supporting early stage life sciences research and development, Molecule and Nucleate are joining forces to cultivate the next generation of bioentrepreneurs. A partnership between Molecule, a central player in the growing Decentralized Science (DeSci) ecosystem, and Nucleate, a leading organization in the development of biotech leaders, is a novel opportunity to engage and educate the scientific community about innovative ways to fund their cutting-edge research. Molecule’s unique decentralized funding infrastructure enables this synergistic alliance, connecting a global network of drug hunters, academics and science enthusiasts across the world, united in the common goal of advancing high-quality biomedical research.  

Nucleate and Molecule share a common culture of innovation. Like Nucleate, Molecule’s vision for the future of life sciences is where intellectual property value is shared by researchers, entrepreneurs and patients alike. DeSci is the mechanism through which this vision can come to fruition. Its principles of incentive alignment, community engagement, and human-centricity are critical in moving the needle of change forward. 

Molecule has created a legal & smart contract platform called an intellectual property non-fungible token (IP-NFT). The IP-NFT facilitates the assignment of IP rights to blockchain-based tokens, enabling the legal rights, data access, and economics around research projects to be seamlessly funded and traded. Leveraging this technology, Molecule is building an ecosystem of scientific supporters eager to fund researchers, and the partnership with Nucleate is instrumental in connecting researchers with this community.

“We are thrilled to partner with Nucleate and to support the next generation of biotech leaders. Through this partnership, we hope to expand the reach of decentralized science to every campus in the world, and build on what is already the largest global community of bio innovators.” Tyler Golato, Molecule CEO

“We couldn’t be more excited to be partnering with Molecule to enable translation of research from the University to the real world through community engagement. Through this partnership, we are proud to empower the next generation by launching the Nucleate - Molecule Venture Fellowship which aims to train students in the field of venture building while simultaneously increasing the number of academic research projects that lead to commercialization.”  Sammi Sison, Nucleate’s Co-President

Venture Fellows

Ten candidates will be selected from a global pool of Nucleate fellows for the Venture Fellows program in 2024, and will undergo thorough education in two key areas: the essentials of IP funding via Molecule’s token-based model, and the principles of Decentralized Science (DeSci). Equipped with this knowledge, they will support selected research projects to successfully showcase their science and secure funding via Molecule’s platform. The fellowship will last for 6 months, in which time the Venture Fellows will participate in deal flow discussions with researchers and university technology transfer offices (TTOs), scientific reviews of projects, product development, and community engagement. By the end of the fellowship, the candidates will have been exposed to many of the challenges facing early stage researchers, and will be well positioned to tackle them in the next stage of their careers. 

Applications for 10 positions are now open, and those interested in applying can check out the job description here and submit their CV and cover letter here. Applications from European candidates will close at the end of March, and applications from candidates in the U.S. and Taiwan will close at the end of April. 

The $100K DeSci Award

In addition to the partnership, Molecule has created a $100,000 DeSci Award that will be granted to a research program sourced and tokenized by a Nucleate Fellow. The money will ensure that the deserving project will have sufficient resources to advance to its next value inflection point. Molecule will also assist the winning team in spinning out their asset with IP-NFT formation and tokenization to further increase the ability of the DeSci ecosystem to participate in its development. 

About Molecule

Molecule enables funding at the earliest stages of translational research. Molecule’s products make IP effortlessly transactable through tokenization, enabling an incentive-aligned, community-driven approach to address inefficiencies in the translational research pipeline. Simply put, Molecule is building a future where smart people with good ideas can quickly fund and successfully de-risk them with community support. Since 2022, Molecule has raised $20+ million to further this goal.

 

About Nucleate

Nucleate is a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering the next generation of biotech leaders. With chapters spanning 23 geographic regions and participation from over 120 academic institutions, Nucleate sparks new intellectual communities and embeds emerging talent within a global biotech community. Through open-access educational programming, Nucleate helps democratize biotech innovation — removing barriers and helping founders concentrate on building transformational technologies.

Paul Kohlhaas
Dec 8, 2023
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Unveiling the Future: Sora Ventures' Investment in Molecule

In a recent development that promises to reshape the landscape of scientific research in Asia, Sora Ventures has committed $1 million to Molecule. Founded in early 2018, Sora Ventures is Asia’s leading venture capital firm dedicated to digital asset and blockchain investments. The firm adopts an entirely new venture model designed to scale blockchain community and help transition blockchain projects into the business world. This strategic investment aims to pioneer the integration of DeSci across the continent. The goal is to transcend physical borders and foster a culture of objective science and intellectual property sharing, leveraging the decentralized nature of DeSci.

Why Globalisation Matters to Molecule

Molecule is a proud and active supporter of the DeSci movement. Engaging in partnerships such as these is critical in ensuring the global uptake of the movement. A core principle remains the inclusion of people from around the world, opening up pockets of exceptionally valuable and previously localized knowledge.

An Open Invitation to Asia’s Scientists 

Molecule extends a warm invitation to scientists across Asia to join this transformative journey. This initiative is not just about funding; it's a call to action for scientists to be part of a movement that redefines how scientific research is conducted and shared in an open-source manner powered by the permissionless nature of tokenisation.

Empowering Innovation: Molecule's $50,000 Award

To catalyze innovation in the field of biomedical research, Molecule is offering a $50,000 award to a deserving scientific team or individual. By offering this award exclusively to researchers based in Asia, Molecule hopes to set off a chain reaction culminating in a revolutionized scientific landscape. If you are interested in receiving application details once they have been released, please add your name and email address to this form

Why This Time is Different: The DeSci Paradigm

DeSci diverges fundamentally from its predecessor, Decentralized Finance (DeFi). While DeFi often replicated the exclusive and extractive nature of traditional finance, DeSci heralds a new dawn of inclusivity and democratization in scientific research. Today, pharmaceutical companies grapple with declining returns on innovation, facing stiff competition in discovering new medicines. DeSci emerges as a beacon of hope, empowering those historically marginalized in science - the scientists and patients.

Tokenized Science: The Unstoppable Force

The rise of NFTs has revolutionized the art world by empowering artists with a platform for recognition and fair compensation. DeSci mirrors this impact in the scientific realm, breaking down geographical and institutional barriers and valuing scientific contributions based on their merit, not their origin.

The Time is Now

The fusion of DeSci and strategic partnerships like that of Sora Ventures and Molecule heralds a new chapter in scientific innovation in Asia. This movement isn't just about groundbreaking discoveries; it's about making those discoveries accessible and impactful for every individual, regardless of location or language. The time is ripe for scientists, investors, and the public to embrace DeSci and contribute to a more inclusive, equitable, and innovative scientific future.

Join us in this journey towards a scientific revolution. Be a part of the change that shapes the future of science in Asia and beyond.

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"Molecule is a leader of the “new fashion” on how to distribute private grants to the most competitive and deserving scientists: it delivers grant in a fast, fair, and low working load manner."

Evandro Fang

Lead Researcher

“Molecule has not just paved the way for innovative funding of scientific research, but has also welcomed everyone to participate in molding the next era of medicine.”

Morten Scheibye-Knudsen

Lead Researcher