Apr 5, 2021
Nick Halper is a cofounder of Braingrade, where he and his team are developing a brain-computer interface to reverse the cognitive deficits associated with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Before founding Braingrade, he worked at Blackrock Microsystems as a project manager on the product, support, engineering and software teams. In today’s episode, Nick talks about his transition from academia to industry and then from leaving a stable job to joining an early-stage startup in the middle of a pandemic. He also talks about the work he is doing with his new company, Braingrade.
Top three takeaways:
[0:00] Ladan introduces the episode and the guest, Nick Halper
[2:20] Nick Halper introduces Braingrade to the public. He talks about his background and how he got started with Braingrade.
[5:30] Braingrade is working on an implantable device geared at the memory circuit and hippocampus. A disease they are working to have a real impact in treating is Alzheimer’s disease.
[7:30] Some aspects of the company (Braingrade) are defined by COVID, for instance, Peter and Nick work in completely different parts of the world. This structure has helped produce an incredible team of people by removing the barrier of entry.
[10:00] Nick talks about working with a team completely remotely and setting up a work culture that keeps everyone feeling included.
[11:20] Braingrade is hiring for Head electrical engineering and a few other roles.
[13:00] Challenges: A neurodegenerative disorder is an interesting one to tackle and that will differently come with its challenges.
[15:30] Speaking on how medical regulations should actually be seen as guidance rather than challenges, Nick discusses how he sees the opportunity to have constructive discussions and interaction with institutions like the FDA on moving your project forward.
[16:55] Nick talks about his career jump from academia to industry to joining a med device startup
[18:30] If you had unlimited funding, what would you do?
[22:50] Reminder: Braingrade is currently hiring for positions to join their team doing cutting edge work in Alzheimer’s research and memory enhancement,