March 16, 2022

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AbbVie is accepting submissions for this year's AbbVie-LabCentral Golden Ticket competition now through March 16, 2022


AbbVie is excited to award the 2022 AbbVie Golden Ticket at LabCentral. For AbbVie, this is an investment to help catalyze a thriving biotech ecosystem in our backyard.

AbbVie will grant one Golden Ticket to an early-stage biotech company. The Golden Ticket Award includes the Opportunity for Residence in LabCentral.


Application requirements

AbbVie is looking for life science companies and biotech start-ups that are pursuing:

  • Therapeutics (any modality in therapeutic areas listed below that are relevant to AbbVie) and
  • Life-science therapeutic platform technologies (e.g., Gene therapy, novel cell therapy, gene editing, or novel drug discovery platform technologies) are invited to participate.
  • Excluded: Diagnostics, Devices, Research Tools, and Healthcare Services/IT.

Additional requirements

  • Companies must have their principal place of business in the New England Area (MA, CT, RI, ME, NH, VT).
  • Companies must not have a major partnership with another large biopharmaceutical company; however, applicants that are current or prior recipients of Golden Ticket awards from other pharmaceutical companies are eligible to apply.
  • Companies must meet LabCentral's Golden Ticket criteria:
    • Total equity funding raised must be less than $7.5M USD before the Golden Ticket is issued to them
    • Companies must not have trailing 12-month revenues in excess of $3M USD
    • Companies must be in the life sciences and have an impact on human health
    • Companies must be financially and scientifically ready to physically move into LabCentral within two months of receiving the Ticket


How to apply

Please send your application to by 11:59 pm EST on March 16, 2022.

Applicants may only submit one entry.

Please include the following in your application email:

  • Name of company
  • Primary contact at the company
  • Therapeutic area
  • One sentence summarizing the scientific basis of the program/technology/asset
  • Funding to date: please include total funding received to date as well as the funder(s) and funding amount(s)
  • Non-confidential slide deck:

Applicants must provide a non-confidential slide deck of no more than ten slides that emphasize:

  • Roadmap and growth plan for the timeframe of the Golden Ticket award
  • Anticipated benefits of securing an AbbVie – LabCentral Golden Ticket. Anticipated move-in date to LabCentral & company roadmap and upcoming key milestones (including financing)
  • Relevant IP and publications that include data supporting your science Mitigation of Risk: What are the potential pitfalls and key challenges
  • Differentiation point: What makes your technology different from the competitors?
  • The prioritized and potentially applicable indications
  • The science behind the technology or asset
  • Management team & expertise
  • Your company's mission

Judging Criteria and Judges

The Judges for the contest are AbbVie employees who are qualified experts in their fields, including in the fields of scientific and/or medical research and business. Applications will be judged using the following criteria:

  • Fit of the research in the fields of oncology, immunology, neuroscience, or ophthalmology, including novel target identification, drug delivery, discovery technology platforms, and translational research and development.
  • Quality of the scientific data, research plan and/or technology platform.
  • Potential for successful achievement of research milestones and the development of the programs.
  • Need for the research in the applicable field - is this research/program/technology addressing a critical need in the field?
  • Readiness to move into the space within two months of being selected for the award.


  • Deadline to submit application: March 16, 2022.
  • Announcement of top 4-5 applications to move forward to formal pitch: April 4, 2022
  • Office hours for pitch guidance will be provided by the selection committee, the date and times of office hours to be determined.
  • Final pitch and selection dates to be determined.


What is a Golden Ticket?

Golden Tickets are vouchers representing use privileges for LabCentral that a Sponsor can award to a start-up company they would like to support.

Golden Tickets provide winning start-ups with access to LabCentral' 's laboratory space at 700 Main Street in Cambridge, MA, including the benefits of LabCentral's shared infrastructure and services. The value of a Golden Ticket is equivalent to the cost of both one (1) 6ft bench and the cost of residency for the scientist who works at that bench for one (1) year.

Lab space at LabCentral is allocated based on availability. As such, the value of the Golden Ticket may be applied to another space that is available at the time of their desired start. The Golden Ticket winner must pay the difference between the larger space and the value of the 6ft bench covered by their Golden Ticket. If there are no 6ft or 7.5ft benches available, the value of the Golden Ticket will be extended while the company remains on the waitlist for a bench. Holders of Golden Tickets will be listed ahead of other companies waiting for space at LabCentral.

The two winners will receive priority admission or renewal for one 'year's use of a lab bench and core facilities at LabCentral, as well as opportunities to engage with AbbVie scientific and business executives.

How do I know if I am eligible for a Golden Ticket?

Golden Tickets may be awarded to either start-up companies that are interested in joining the LabCentral community or current Resident Companies.

To be eligible to participate to have the opportunity to receive the Award, the Applicant must: (1) be an entity formed under the laws of the United States; (2) not have raised more than $7.5 million United States dollars in capital or have trailing twelve month revenue of more than $3 million United States dollars as of the time of Application and the closing date for the Contest; (3) submit a complete Application; (4) represent and warrant that the Applicant has read and agrees to abide by all requirements of these Rules; (5) not be affiliated with or employed by AbbVie or LabCentral including as an employee, contractor, officer or director of AbbVie or LabCentral and including as an immediate family member of AbbVie or LabCentral (including parents, spouses, children, siblings or any individual residing in the household of a AbbVie, officer or director (whether or not related)); and (6) not be an academic institution such as a college, university or school.

Diagnostics, Devices, Research Tools, and Healthcare- Services & IT are excluded.

When will I be able to use my Golden Ticket?

The top 4-5 proposals will be announced in early April, and semi-finalists will be invited for an in-person presentation at LabCentral in mid-May.

Companies must be financially and scientifically ready to move into LabCentral within two months of receiving the Ticket.

Where can I find more details on AbbVie's areas of focus for external innovation?

Please refer to our Corporate Strategy Organization’s brochure: interest.html.

I have additional questions; Who should I contact?

Please email