What we do

We create successful therapeutics and diagnostics around groundbreaking science. We create value for early-stage projects by providing our expertise, initial capital and NLC’s supporting ecosystem. Our focus is not limited to a certain therapeutic area, indication or modality. We aim at capturing all the value and ultimately deliver breakthrough therapeutics to patients with high unmet needs. Our project pipeline is diverse and constantly updated, so contact us if you want to see what we have in the making.



We scout for opportunities in academic institutions through our extensive academic network. Thousands of projects are sourced, assessed and selected each year, by evaluating their scientific and commercial potential.

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Industry partners

We also collaborate with pharmaceutical companies to jointly develop out-of-scope assets. Our network extends to venture capital firms, investors, service providers and other venture builders.

Through our established partnerships with key stakeholders we provide the ecosystem for successful biotech ventures. If you would like to know how we can work together you can see our partnership models.

Partnership models


We bring decades of combined expertise from academia, drug development, commercial and business environments in all major therapeutic areas. Together with our advisors, we perform due diligence, build R&D plans, support our ventures and ensure their successful journey towards exit.


Lydia Kalafateli

Venture Developer & Biotech Domain Lead

Lydia joined NLC in April 2022 as a Venture Developer in the Biotech domain. She holds a BSc in Biology from Greece, an MSc in Pharmacology from the Netherlands, a PhD in Neuroscience from Sweden and an MBA. After 9+ years of R&D experience in academic and industrial settings (including Yale University and AstraZeneca), she developed a strong interest in the business/commercial side of Life Sciences. Currently, she leads the Biotech domain at NLC and builds successful Biotech companies bringing innovative therapeutics to patients in need.


Rita Mendes

Venture Developer

Rita joined NLC in April 2022 as a Venture Developer in the biotech team. She holds a BSc in Biology, an MSc in Molecular Genetics and Biomedicine and a PhD in Bioengineering under the MIT-Portugal Program. Rita has +7 years of R&D experience, gathering deep scientific insights in drug development, preclinical models, nanotechnology, and omics/AI strategies in oncology precision medicine. Rita has an entrepreneurial mindset and participated in 8 business/innovation-related courses, including a mini-MBA for life scientists at Nova School of Business and Economics, a workshop on Innovation from MIT, and a masterclass on Negotiations in Pharma&Biotech. She aims to help bring new therapeutics from the lab to the market to solve unmet medical needs and improve patients’ lives.

Ankita Das

Ankita Das

Venture Developer

Ankita joined NLC in July 2022 as a Venture Developer intern and transitioned to a full time Biotech focused Venture Developer from December 2022. She holds a bachelor’s in biotechnology from India and MSc in Biomedical Sciences from Leiden University. Ankita has experience in scientific research and is eager to contribute her knowledge in the success of biotech innovations as a venture developer. With her collaborative and international perspective, she wants to bring promising inventions to reach patients and create an impact in healthcare. Ankita is enthusiastic to hear about new ideas and is open to connecting.

Hanneke van der Kleij

Hanneke van der Kleij

R&D Lead

Hanneke joined NLC in September 2022. Her background is in neuroimmunology, having undertaken a PhD in mast-cell nerve interaction in asthma at Utrecht University in the Netherlands followed by a postdoctorate at the Brain-Body Institute in Hamilton, Canada. Before joining NLC, Hanneke worked as a Senior Scientist and Clinical Trial Manager at HAL Allergy, a pharmaceutical company developing immunotherapy for patients with different types of allergy. Hanneke is eager to use her experience in the different NLC projects related to (neuro)immunology and extend her expertise also towards other scientific areas as well as to get familiar with the processes involved in venture building, bringing healthtech innovations from bench to bedside.

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Ljudmila Katchan

R&D Lead

Ljudmila joined NLC in June 2022. She holds a MSc in physics from Denmark and a PhD in Neuroscience from Germany. Ljudmila has 10+ years of experience in R&D in both academic and corporate setting. After her postdoc at UC Berkeley Ljudmila supported life science startups in the Bay Area with R&D strategy and technical consulting. She gained expertise in preclinical development in early stage startups in both US and Europe. In San Francisco Ljudmila led the in-vitro biology team at SyntheX inc (platform licensed for 300M to BMS). In Copenhagen Ljudmila led an R&D team at Cirqle Biomedical (a BII portfolio company) to a successful 350M licensing deal with Orbimed. At NLC Ljudmila will leverage her expertise to support and develop early stage Biotech ventures ensuring the innovations ultimately reach and impact patient lives.


Kathrin Ballesteros

Venture Partner

Kathrin joined NLC in October 2021. She has more than 20 years of experience supporting Startups – mainly in the Life Science business – in different positions as a consultant and coach. Kathrin is a biochemist and holds a PhD in Molecular Neurobiochemistry. Besides her scientific background, she is also trained as a Business Coach, Team Coach & Team Developer and has a Micro master’s in Business Model Innovation. Kathrin brings expertise in supporting early-stage scientific and entrepreneurial projects turning into valuable businesses.


Gábor Heltovics

Venture Partner

Gábor joined NLC in June 2022. In his most recent endeavour, he was the CEO of a virtual speciality biopharmaceutical company, Tavanta Therapeutics. Under Gábor’s guidance, Tavanta secured over $55 million in funding and grew from a 2-person company to an organisation with 5 pivotal clinical stage compounds for major indications such as oncology and pain, as well as an innovative pre-clinical pipeline following closely in their footsteps. Gábor will apply his experience at NLC as a venture partner to build ventures and advance health.

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