Skip to main content
< Back to news
Dr Gisela Lorente (Photo: Parc Científic de Barcelona).

Gisela Lorente, new CEO of biotechnological company Aptadel Therapeutics

Aptadel Therapeutics – a pre-clinical stage drug development spinoff company of the Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL), based in the Barcelona Science Park which focuses on the development of a new platform for RNA therapies for childhood cancer – has named Gisela Lorente, to date the chief scientific officer, as the company’s new CEO.

Gisela Lorente is a doctor in Molecular Biology through the University of Barcelona, and she has more than 8 years of experience as a scientific researcher in the field of oncology. She began her career in the world of innovation and tech-transfer in the United Kingdom, and later, in 2016, she joined IDIBELL, where she managed the Department of Innovation and Technology Transfer for five years. During this time, she supported the Aptadel Therapeutics project, becoming a key person in the creation of the spin-off company, and eventually joining it as a co-founder and CSO.

Dr Lorente has gained broad experience in the field of technology and knowledge transfer, the assessment and valuation of the results of the research and its protection through industrial/intellectual property, as well as in seeking financing and transferring it to the market. She has been responsible for the management of more than 150 innovative projects and has participated in the incorporation of four start-up companies.

Now, in this new period as CEO of Aptadel, the scientist and entrepreneur takes on the management of leading the spin-off’s strategic plan, focusing on its growth and profitability, as well as the challenge of making it a renowned company in the treatment of childhood cancer with RNA therapies.

“My main goal at the head of the company is to secure funding to validate the IND (Investigational New Drug) studies and bring the candidate molecule to clinical trials in patients suffering from Ewing sarcoma, as well as initiate new development programs in other varieties of paediatric and adult tumours”, explains Lorente.

Aptadel Therapeutics, founded at the end of 2020, is a pre-clinical stage drug development spinoff company of the Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBELL), promoted by Dr Oscar Martinez-Tirado, who has provided the main technology related to the project, and Dr Gisela Lorente. The Alba Pérez Foundation also participated in the incorporation of the company, thus bringing together a solid union of private investors.

Its mission is to develop a new platform of RNA therapies to treat multiple types of cancer, in particular childhood cancers such as Ewing sarcoma, using revolutionary aptamer-based  technology. This platform consists in the use of RNA aptamers conjugated with therapeutic agents, such as RNA molecules or chemotherapy drugs, aimed at different target tumours, which are only released where necessary, thus improving the effectiveness of the treatments and preventing side effects.

Aptadel Therapeutics -which is part of the 1st generation of companies participating in BCN Health Booster accelerator- closed its first round of financing in December 2020, raising €1.75 M. In 2022, the company received a Eurostars Scholarship (Eureka – European Commission) for the amount of €1.87 M to develop the first therapy targeting the childhood cancer, Ewing sarcoma, based on RNA aptamers conjugated in siRNA, and the company also benefited from a grant of €1.78 M from the State’s R+D+I Programme aimed at the Challenges of Society (State Research Agency) and a €325,000 grant from the Neotec Programme of the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI in its Spanish acronym).