Leaders from Northwestern University and Deerfield Management at an event celebrating the new Lakeside Discovery collaboration.

$65 Million Launches Lakeside Discovery LLC


Northwestern University and Deerfield Management announced the launch of Lakeside Discovery, LLC, with the mission to accelerate the translation of transformative biomedical technologies. Deerfield will provide up to $65 million in targeted funding and deep development expertise to advance promising Northwestern research.

During an event introducing the collaboration in June, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called the partnership “an important part of Chicago’s future,” adding that biomedical research and innovation are an essential part of the city’s growing economy.

“This exciting partnership combines two cutting-edge institutions under one roof to serve patients and save lives,” Mayor Emanuel said. “As a global hub for healthcare innovation, Chicago is the perfect home for this new venture, and we look forward to working together as we continue to advance medical care in the 21st century.”

Eric G. Neilson, MD, vice president for Medical Affairs and the Lewis Landsberg Dean, said Lakeside Discovery provides needed funding that can speed up the research process.

“Society is quite impatient for great advances, but biomedical research is not a sprint — it’s more like a relay,” Neilson said. “It takes an unpredictable amount of time. If society wants to quicken the pace, it has to provide more fuel, and this is where the Deerfield partnership can be a great benefit for our shared goals.”

Combined with the 2019 opening of the Louis A. Simpson and Kimberly K. Querrey Biomedical Research Center, Lakeside Discovery will further strengthen Northwestern’s position as one of the leading academic medical research centers in the world, said Alicia Löffler, PhD, executive director of Northwestern’s Innovation and New Ventures Office.

Lakeside will tackle projects approved by a joint steering committee comprised of members from the Northwestern and Deerfield scientific leadership teams. Northwestern members will initially include Neilson, Löffler and Richard Silverman, PhD, the Patrick G. Ryan/Aon Professor of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.

They will use their experiential scientific knowledge, in consultation with Deerfield, to assess each proposal’s potential biological and commercial success. Projects will be selected based on many criteria, with an emphasis on the novelty of biological insight, regardless of its stage of development.

Projects accepted by Lakeside will be supported with a complete development plan, including vital experiments needed to reach Investigational New Drug readiness in an expedited time frame. Deerfield also will support Lakeside with operational expertise.