Melanie Leitner, PhD

Founder of Accelerating NeuroVentures, LLC

Dr. Melanie Leitner is the Founder of Accelerating NeuroVentures, LLC, a solo consulting practice providing strategic, programmatic, and business development services to investors, biopharma, and non-profit clients interested in funding, initiating, or advancing programs within the neuroscience translational space. Her clients have included SV Life Sciences, the XPRIZE Foundation, the ALS Investment Fund, Clearview Healthcare Partners, the Center for Applied Research (CFAR), the Dementia Discovery Fund, and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research among others.

Prior to launching Accelerating NeuroVentures, Melanie served as Associate Director for Clinical Research in Biogen’s ALS Innovation Hub (ALS iHub), a newly created ALS team dedicated to developing new paradigms for testing ALS therapies, incorporating the latest advances in science, technology, and clinical trial design. At Biogen she was the lead architect of the company’s ALS Communications Strategy, and study director for the ALS Methodology Study, a longitudinal clinical study designed t validate novel outcome measures for future ALS clinical trials. Prior to Biogen, Dr. Leitner spent 7 years as Chief Scientific Officer at the ALS non-profit Prize4Life, founded to accelerate the discovery of treatments and cures for ALS through the use of the incentive prize model.

Dr. Leitner has also held Program Director positions at the non-profits FasterCures and the Society for Neuroscience, and was a member of US Senator Dick Durbin’s Health staff. Melanie was awarded a Howard Hughes Predoctoral Fellowship and a Lucille P. Markey Fellowship for her Ph.D. work at Washington University, and graduated Magna Cum Laude with an Sc.B. from Brown University; all in the field of Neuroscience.

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