Creative Destruction Lab launches neuroscience stream


Creative Destruction Lab (CDL), a Canadian science and tech startup accelerator program, has launched a new stream focused on scaling companies that work on advances in brain and nervous system science.

CDL has previously mentored and helped to scale several startups focused on neuroscience and brain innovations.

CDL Neuro, as the new stream is called, is aimed to bring together scientists, investors, and operators that work in the field of neurotechnology, neuromonitoring, and brain-machine interfaces. The program is designed to provide business judgment, mentorship, and opportunity for investment to founders and innovators. Applications for the new stream are open until July 30.

The program will run for nine months from October 2021 to June 2022. One of CDL Neuro’s founding fellows is Shivon Zilis, also a founding member of Bloomberg Beta and director of the office of the CEO at Neuralink, a neurotechnology company led by Elon Musk that develops implantable brain-machine interfaces.

“Humanity has put a lot more energy into using technology to interact with the brain,” Zilis said.

“Many of the engineers I speak to don’t realize their skills could be massively useful in advancing progress in brain-machine interfaces,” she added. “My hope is that this program helps talented minds from other industries realize just how much of a difference they can make.”

The new CDL stream is looking for seed-stage ventures from anywhere in the world that have technology or deep tech applications in drug discovery, pharmaceuticals, neurodegenerative disorder treatments, neuromonitoring and data utility, and brain-computer interfaces.

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CDL has previously mentored and helped to scale several startups focused on neuroscience and brain innovations. NeuroCreate, which develops digital tools aimed to increase employees’ creativity and cognitive performance, participated in CDL’s 2018 and 2019 Montréal cohort. CDL’s global program also accepted MapNeuro, a brain mapping startup, into its 2018 and 2019 cohort.

Brain tech startups exist at the intersection of neuroscience and technology. According to a global report from JP Morgan, Series A investments in neurology-focused startups have increased over the last two years, even though this funding across the broader medical devices industry declined overall.

Canada is home to a number of innovative brain tech startups, such as Axem Neurotechnology, Supports Health, Welbi, Curv, Cerebian, TruReach, and Nanology Labs, which recently closed a $3 million seed round. Many of these startups have been recognized by organizations such as the Ontario Brain Institute.

Image source Unsplash. Photo by Fakurian Design.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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