Elodie Brient-Litzler has 15 years of R&D and innovation experience at the intersection of math/physics/chemistry and biology/medicine. She is well-versed in transitioning science from academia into products for the industry, as seen in her invaluable work with launching start-ups. She started her career as a scientist within the French engineering company Bertin Technologies, working on biodetection technologies. She returned to academia and joined Andrew Griffiths’ microfluidics laboratory at ESPCI, where she established and managed public-private R&D projects including the €20 million national “DigiDiag” project dedicated to diagnostics technology. She was an active participant in the launch of several start-ups such as HiFiBiO. She joined Institut Pasteur in 2015 as deputy CTO in charge of operations, where she fostered the adoption and dissemination of innovative technologies, and managed/reorganized the 150 pers. core facilities. She later moved to the Innovation Office of Institut Pasteur after its creation in 2018. There, she helped to structure a number of academic projects into product prototypes, such as the DIVA image analysis project which led to the creation of AVATAR MEDICAL in 2020, of which she is a co-founder and COO. She holds a doctorate in biochemistry from Université Pierre et Marie Curie (today Sorbonne Université) and engineering degrees from Ecole Polytechnique and Chimie Paristech, Paris, France.
When science tries to become a product: the start-up odyssey
Excellent research may or may not transform into successful commercial products and businesses. Many planets need to align to create success stories. Truly innovative projects will nowadays mostly need to be developed though the creation of start-ups, in a context where large companies are more and more averse to risky R&D. Based on personal experience in the field of algorithms/software applied to life sciences and medicine, I will walk you through some key concept as product definition, go-to-market strategies, intellectual property, and illustrate some challenges linked to spinning out research out of academic laboratories to start-ups.