There are seven new ventures in the Pagliuca Life Lab, the 15,000-square-foot facility that Harvard opened last November to lower the friction costs of growing life science and biotech ventures in Boston.

According to the school, the seven teams were selected thanks to a round of applications and interviews. While the length of stay is different for all ventures, there is an anticipated residency period of six-18 months. To qualify for a spot in the Life Lab, each life science-related venture must be founded and led by Harvard faculty, alumni, students or postdoctoral scholars.

The addition of the seven new companies brings to 17 the number of ventures based in the Life Lab. They’re working on a broad range of life science and biotech challenges, such as improving health outcomes for cancer patients, using DNA for data storage, and combatting hypercarbic respiratory failure.

The Life Lab is one of the three spaces that are part of the Harvard Innovation Labs. The other ones are the i-lab (for student-led entrepreneurs) and the Launch Lab (for alumni-led entrepreneurs).

Here’s the list of the seven biotech startups that just joined the Life Lab (descriptions provided by the Harvard Innovation Labs).

Accure Health Inc.

Accure Health is a smart diagnostics company. They develop and integrate miniaturized biosensor technologies and digital healthcare solutions to enable fast, cost-effective, and highly-accurate cancer diagnosis in point-of-care settings, and to facilitate real-time patient monitoring and personalized treatment.

Arbothera Inc.

Arbothera is creating a rapid response platform to combat global infectious diseases by designing “hyper” rational vaccines based on pathogen genomics and host immunological pathways.


Catalog is revolutionizing data storage by harnessing DNA, a material that is one million times more compact and one hundred times longer lasting than contemporary data storage mediums. Catalog has developed the first cost-effective solution for data storage in DNA and is initially targeting the $7.5 billion data archival market.

Obsidio Medical

Obsidio Medical is restoring health and extending life by stopping unwanted blood flow through vessels anywhere in the body. Obsidio is commercializing a novel biomaterial with the potential to be a best-in-class transcatheter embolization solution by providing instant hemostasis, regardless of coagulopathy, and enabling a simpler, faster, and cost-effective procedure.

Octagon Therapeutics

Octagon has developed a novel screening technology for identifying drug candidates with efficacy against highly resistant bacterial infections. They have assessed more than 15,000 compounds for antibiotic potential, and have protected the use of several molecules that have demonstrated activity in an animal model of these dangerous infections.

WntRx Pharmaceuticals

WntRx Pharmaceuticals’ goal is to improve health outcomes for cancer patients by targeting the historically “undruggable” Wnt signaling pathway. Their lead candidate is a first-in-class β-catenin/BCL9 stapled peptide inhibitor, WX-024, that has shown exceptional preclinical data and synergy with immune checkpoint inhibitors, with significant implications for numerous cancers.

X-Cor Therapeutics

X-Cor Therapeutics is developing a novel approach to combat hypercarbic respiratory failure (HRF) in hospitals nation-wide. With COPD and other respiratory hospitalizations on the rise, the market is demanding a safe and non-ICU admission alternative to ventilators and existing ECMO devices.