Guiding Nightstar

Following the success of the COVID Conversations series earlier this year, a series of online Innovation Conversations are being livestreamed throughout September 2020, as part of the celebrations of this year’s Vice-Chancellor’s Innovation Awards.

This series will offer the chance to hear more from each of the category winners, as well as to ask questions about their award-winning research, before culminating in a panel discussion event hosted by Professor Chas Bountra, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Innovation, on 7 October 2020.

The series continues on Wednesday 9 September 2020 with Inspiring Leader and Overall Winner of the Vice-Chancellor’s Innovation Awards 2020, Professor Robert MacLaren who will discuss the creation and spinout of Nightstar.

Gene therapy may help to slow or even stop the degeneration in genetic eye diseases. Research led by Professor MacLaren led to the spinout of Nightstar which was acquired by Biogen for $877 million in early 2019 – just five years after its founding. The deal ranks as the third most valuable British biotech exit in the last two decades.