Cloud-based platform for analyzing cryo-EM data secures pre-seed investment

Dutch biotech start-up aims to accelerate the development of new active ingredients


The cloud-based platform for analyzing cryo-EM data enables the fast and scalable determination of 3D protein structures for drug research. 3D structure of the Sars CoV2 spike protein (left) in combination with a therapeutic antibody (right, cyan) using cryo-EM.

CryoCloud, a biotech start-up based in Utrecht in the Netherlands, recently closed a financing round of 500,000 euros. The company has thus reached an important milestone on its way to optimizing cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM). CryoCloud was founded in 2021 by Munich-based Robert Englmeier, Ilja Gubins and Boy Persoon. The company has developed a cloud-based data analysis platform that aims to improve the accessibility and efficiency of cryo-EM in drug development and research. The platform was successfully brought to market after a concept phase and various accelerator programs.

The financing round was led by Nina Capital, with significant support from the Utrecht Health Seed Fund and the ROM Utrecht Region. This underlines the confidence in CryoCloud's potential to change the traditional cryo-EM landscape. Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) is a Nobel Prize-winning technique for determining the 3D structure of proteins and is increasingly used for structure-based drug discovery. Unlike AI tools such as Google DeepMind's AlphaFold which predicts structures, cryo-EM allows scientists to experimentally determine protein structures and visualize relevant proteins in their native or drug-bound state.

CryoCloud's platform addresses the critical challenges scientists face - including the high cost, complexity and inefficiencies associated with traditional cryo-EM computing infrastructure. CryoCloud provides scalable cloud storage and powerful data analytics through a user-friendly web app. This makes cutting-edge research tools more accessible to scientists worldwide and reduces the need for extensive infrastructure and specialized knowledge.

Robert Englmeier, CEO of CryoCloud, emphasizes the importance of innovation in this area: "The landscape and throughput of cryo-EM has evolved significantly over the last six years. But the way in which data is analyzed has remained the same. This leads to bottlenecks and creates barriers to access. Our mission is to make cryo-EM more accessible and speed up the research process. This is now possible with our platform."

This latest investment underlines the confidence in CryoCloud's potential to change the status quo. Marta-Gaia Zanchi, Founder and Managing Partner at Nina Capital, emphasizes: "CryoCloud's innovative approach to leveraging cloud technology in cryo-EM is not only a major step forward for structural biology, but also a testament to the transformative power of digital solutions in life sciences."

The funding will contribute significantly to the further development of the CryoCloud platform. A particular focus will be on expanding data analysis capabilities and integrating AI to optimize the processing of cryo-EM data. This is in line with the general industry trend towards digitalization and automation in life sciences, which promises to increase research efficiency and shorten turnaround times for critical projects.

Irene van de Poll, Investment Manager at ROM Utrecht on the company's progress: "The team at CryoCloud has managed to build their cloud-based platform in a short period of time and attract global interest. Their technology can have a huge impact on the speed of development in the life sciences sector.

"We are excited to invest in CryoCloud's solutions to make the complex and costly process of cryo-EM analysis more accessible to researchers," says Timo Koopmans, Investment Manager at Utrecht Health Seed Fund. "Their platform has the potential to significantly boost the use of cryo-EM in the life sciences."

CryoCloud is preparing for its next phase of growth. The company is ready to attract further investment and partner with leading companies and key opinion leaders in the field. The start-up's vision to simplify and accelerate the analysis of cryo-EM data is in line with the industry's move towards more integrated, efficient and automated research methods. This promises a brighter future for scientific discovery and innovation

Note: This article has been translated using a computer system without human intervention. LUMITOS offers these automatic translations to present a wider range of current news. Since this article has been translated with automatic translation, it is possible that it contains errors in vocabulary, syntax or grammar. The original article in German can be found here.

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