Transforming Early-Stage Drug Development

Arrowsmith Genetics is a preclinical stage precision oncology company that aims to revolutionize early-stage drug development in the field of cancer therapeutics. Recognizing the exorbitant costs and time-consuming nature of traditional drug development processes, Arrowsmith has devised a cutting-edge platform that leverages genetics to identify novel cancer therapeutic targets. By doing so, they effectively reduce the risks associated with early-stage drug development, preventing costly failures downstream.

Currently, conventional cancer drug target discovery tools experience limited success and high expenses. To overcome these challenges, Arrowsmith has taken a groundbreaking approach by reverse engineering the drug development process. Their innovative method involves creating advanced cell-based drug models that allow for better modelling and evaluation of potential anti-cancer drugs.

Through their data-driven approach, Arrowsmith Genetics paves the way from target discovery to clinical trials, offering a comprehensive solution to the complex challenges of precision oncology. By exploiting genetics and adopting a novel cell-based model, the healthtech startup significantly enhances the chances of identifying successful cancer therapeutics while streamlining the early-stage drug development process.



Following the Footsteps

Arrowsmith Genetics has achieved significant milestones on its journey towards advancing precision oncology. The company was recently honoured with the prestigious 2022 Amgen/SBME Golden Ticket, earning them two years of free research incubator space. Additionally, Arrowsmith’s selection as one of the “Sweet Sixteen” companies for Biopharma Day in Mirabel, Quebec further solidified its reputation as a promising player in the biopharmaceutical industry.

The Vancouver startup’s momentum continued to grow as they recently advanced to the Top 25 of this year’s NVBC Competition. As they progress through the competition, they’ll be taking inspiration from another UBC biotech success story, AbCellera. The biotech giant’s impressive achievements — which include its second-place finish in the 2013 NVBC Competition — serve as a blueprint for the potential growth and success that Arrowsmith hopes to achieve. The 2013 Competition served as a launching pad for AbCellera and Arrowsmith hopes to follow in those same footsteps as they ramp up their commercialization efforts. 


Bridging the Gap

Arrowsmith Genetics has ambitious plans for the future, with a primary focus on expanding its pipeline of drug candidates to showcase the efficacy and versatility of its drug discovery engine. By diversifying its pipeline, Arrowsmith aims to demonstrate the utility of its technology across a wide range of tumour types, making it an attractive prospect for potential partnerships with larger pharmaceutical companies. These strategic partnerships will be instrumental in advancing the development and commercialization of their precision oncology solutions.

However, the company faces a significant challenge in navigating the “Valley of Death” that exists between academic discovery and therapeutic commercialization. This gap poses a formidable obstacle for many biotech ventures, and Arrowsmith Genetics is determined to overcome it. To do so, the company has been diligently seeking guidance from experienced mentors to refine their approach in explaining and promoting their drug discovery platform from both an investment and commercialization perspective. By effectively bridging this gap and garnering support from the right stakeholders, the biotech startup seeks to accelerate its growth and ultimately contribute to groundbreaking advancements in precision oncology.


About the founders


Peter Stirling: CEO and Co-Founder 

Fun Fact: Arrowsmith Genetics is named, not only because of the company goal of designing precision medicines (arrows), but also because two of the founders grew up near Mt. Arrowsmith Massif Regional Park on Vancouver Island.


Nigel O’Neil: Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder 

Fun Fact: Nigel is an avid movie buff with a particular interest in genre films from the ‘70s and ‘80s.





Phil Hieter: Director and Co-Founder

Fun Fact: Phil loves spending time on Salt Spring Island.





Location: Vancouver

Founded: 2021

Sector: Biotech

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