Brain Sciences



UCL is committed to supporting spin-outs and start-ups developed by its academic and student communities. Read about success stories from our Faculty.

UCL Brain Sciences student has launched Langu – a live online language platform to make learning a language accessible for as many people as possible

Langu Logo
With the shifting tides of globalisation gathering pace and Brexit on the horizon, the benefits associated with speaking several languages are becoming increasingly apparent. One UCL Institute of Cognitive Neurosciences Masters student wants to help foster linguistic diversity and has made it her mission to make learning a language as easy and accessible for as many people as possible.

Agnieszka Nowicka (Cognitive and Decision Sciences MSc) is the co-founder of Langu, a start-up that connects students and teachers from around the world for live, 1-to-1 language lessons in a virtual classroom. Students can choose from a range of languages including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Polish, Russian, and Mandarin.

The idea for the platform came about as a result of Agnieszka’s educational background, including her Applied Linguistics MSc from Oxford as well as her experience teaching English as a foreign language in London and in her home country of Poland.

UCL gene therapy company Athena Vision

Athena Vision
Athena Vision is focused on developing gene therapies for eye diseases based on research conducted at UCL. Athena has entered into a global partnership with MeiraGTx Limited to develop and commercialise Athena’s ocular gene therapy programmes. These programmes arise from research conducted by Professor Robin Ali, Head of the Department of Genetics at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and a leader in the field of cell and gene therapy for the eye. Read the full case study on the UCLB website.

Gold Standard Phantoms

Gold Standard Phantoms
Gold Standard Phantoms is a University College London's Institute of Neurology Spinout company which is developing, marketing and selling calibration services for Quantitative Medical Imaging. Gold Standard Phantoms' mission is to enable medical imaging to move from a pattern recognition-based technique to a quantitative and reproducible scientific measurement methodology. They are working in collaboration with the main stakeholders in the field to provide a one-stop-shop integrated solution to the problem of maintenance of standards and quality assurance in Quantitative Medical Imaging. 

Currently, outcome measures based on quantitative MRI are not being used due to the scarcity of standards (or phantoms) against which quantitative imaging protocols can be tested. The high variance of quantitative MRI without the possibility to link the measurements to their source hinders both interpretations of this variance and possibility to reduce it. Gold Standard Phantoms (GSP) aims at developing a series of gold standards to be used in clinical trials and to enable MR vendors to market their imaging packages for diagnostic use. Learn more about this company from their website.

Choosic: the next big thing in music

Choosic app
Choosic is a music discovery app that delivers personalised recommendations to its users. With a focus on a seamless user experience and integration with social media, it has the potential to make major waves in the world of social start-ups. The team behind it is an ‘allstars’ group of London university alumni, comprising data scientist Thinh Truong Ha (UCL BSc, Psychology, MSc, Royal Holloway), Project Manager Alessia Sannazzaro (Goldsmiths, University of London) and Founder Chris Underdown (London South Bank University). Starting life as a YouTube channel that gave a platform to up-and-coming artists, Choosic soon changed its offering to an app.