Cancer Scientist Launches Drug Development Company:
The Story of
UB Biotechnology Professor, Kate Rittenhouse-Olson, founded For-Robin Inc, a company that has developed a promising antibody that stops breast cancer tumors from metastasizing to other parts of the body to honor the memory of her sister Robin who died of breast cancer in 1986 at the age of 31.
Following her passing, Rittenhouse-Olson resolved to learn as much as she could about cancer, with the goal of fighting it one day. Twenty-six years later For-Robin was founded to bring the anti-metastatic monoclonal antibody, JAA-F11 to the clinic. Recent humanization of the antibody indicates that it can be used for direct tumor cell killing and as a carrier for drugs toxic to the tumor cells.
Rittenhouse-Olson tapped into the expertise of UB and the CBLS in gaining funding through the University at Buffalo's Center for Advanced Biomedical and Bioengineering Technology (UB CAT) program, which supports research and development projects that are pair local life sciences firms with UB scientists. She received additional startup funds from the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program of the National Cancer Institute and the Bruce Holm Memorial Catalyst Fund at UB, which supports commercialization of UB inventions.
She went on to join UB's Entrepreneur-In-Residence (EIR) program, which pairs university spinoffs with experienced entrepreneurs who can provide guidance on business matters. Rittenhouse-Olson was able to gain access to student interns as part of the CBLS Workforce Development Career Experience Program and she has continued to expand her network and industry partnerships through connections made through attendance at the BIO International Conference and the CBLS Commercialization Lecture Series.
To read more about our successful collaborations, click here.