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Boyd Street Ventures Invests in Moat Biotechnology

Under the Radar. Above the Crowd.™

MoatBio is the latest startup founded by two legendary biopharmaceutical entrepreneurs

We couldn’t be more pleased or excited to be investing in a company founded by Drs. Rollins and Rother, two industry legends with truly remarkable track records over the past 30-plus years.”
— James Spann, Founder & General Partner, Boyd Street Ventures

NORMAN, OK, UNITED STATES, April 28, 2023/ -- Boyd Street Ventures announced that it is an investor in the initial round of funding for Moat Biotechnology (MoatBio), a clinical development stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel intranasal and oral vaccines based on the SC-AdVax platform and exclusively licensed from the Mayo Clinic. Cortado Ventures is the lead investor.

MoatBio was founded and is led by serial biopharmaceutical entrepreneurs Drs. Scott Rollins and Russell Rother.

“We couldn’t be more pleased or excited to be investing in a company founded by Drs. Rollins and Rother, two industry legends with truly remarkable track records over the past 30-plus years,” said James Spann, Boyd Street Ventures Founder and General Partner. “That the Mayo Clinic would give MoatBio an exclusive license to its SC-AdVax platform says volumes about the respect Scott and Russell command. And the facts that MoatBio is based in Oklahoma and both leaders are University of Oklahoma alumni just make this investment that much sweeter.”

In 1992, Dr. Rollins co-founded Alexion Pharmaceuticals, where he served as Executive Vice President of Drug Development and Dr. Rother served as Chief Scientific Officer. They were the principal inventors and developers of the company’s SOLIRIS, the first therapy approved for the treatment of atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) to inhibit complement-mediated thrombotic microangiopathy. Alexion was ultimately sold to AstsraZenexa for $39 billion. Drs. Rollins and Rother also served as CEO and COO, respectively, of Selexys Pharmaceuticals, where they developed the novel drug ADAKVEO for sickle cell disease. Selexys was sold to Novartis for $665M in 2016.

The two industry leaders are currently serving as CEO and COO, respectively, of Tetherex Pharmaceuticals, which is developing anti-inflammatory therapies for asthma and other indications. MoatBio was spun out from Tetherex Pharmaceuticals to focus on the SC-AdVax platform as a separate entity and facilitate faster and broader development of its vaccine candidates. They have been joined at MoatBio by Richard Alvarez, who has also instrumental in the successes of Selexys and Tetherex.

MoatBio becomes the seventh portfolio company in Boyd Street Ventures’ Fund I, which was launched just over one year ago.

About Boyd Street Ventures

Boyd Street Ventures is a groundbreaking early-stage venture capital firm connecting institutional and other investors to high-growth investment opportunities developed within the ecosystem of University of Oklahoma, recipient of the Carnegie Classification’s highest rating for research activity, and by OU alums and other Oklahoma-affiliated entrepreneurs. BSV places Pre-Seed, Seed, Series A and follow-on investments in the Life Sciences, FinTech, Energy Tech, Aerospace & Defense, and Climate Tech sectors. The firm focuses on under-the-radar startups that are less likely to have their prices overbid and overpriced than are startups on the East and West Coasts. This strategy, coupled with its unusually active involvement in providing de-risking strategic and operational counsel to these startups through its BSV Venture Studio, enables Boyd Street Ventures to target above-average returns for its investors. For more information, please visit

John Pohl, Venture Partner, Marketing & Investor Relations
Boyd Street Ventures
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