University of Minnesota selected as hub for NIH program to accelerate new inventions to the market

June 8, 2015
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The National Institutes of Health has chosen the University of Minnesota as one of three Research Evaluation and Commercialization Hub (REACH) sites nationally to establish a university-wide strategic framework promoting commercialization and technology transfer in the life sciences and biomedical technology.

Supported by a $3 million NIH grant with another $3 million in matching U of M funds, the University’s MIN-REACH program will provide commercial expertise and resources needed for the development and commercialization of diagnostics, therapeutics, preventive medicine and medical devices. The program will establish new industry partnerships, strengthen existing partnerships, and provide entrepreneurial, commercial-style education for innovators to accelerate the pace at which innovations reach the marketplace. It will fund between 10-20 research projects a year.

Under the program, workshops and industry mentors will coach faculty in key aspects of commercialization, including subjects like competition, venture capital and market assessment. Meanwhile, the program will identify and address barriers in the academic environment that may hinder commercialization.

MIN-REACH builds upon several nationally recognized programs at the U designed to advance sponsored research and technology commercialization, including Minnesota Innovation Partnerships, Discovery Capital, and MIN-Corps, an NSF-funded program to promote student entrepreneurship in science and engineering.