Tech Transfer eNews Blog

Mind the Gap: The University Gap Fund and Accelerator Program Report


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 22nd, 2021

The Mind the Gap Report is a one-of-a-kind guide for current and aspiring university gap fund managers detailing 141 gap funding programs affiliated with 84 research institutions. It provides critical insights and details into their sources of sustainability, processes and management, and ultimately their impact on the innovation community and its capabilities.

Mind the Gap is the go-to source for comprehensive best practices, benchmarking, and program development guidance for university affiliated gap fund and accelerator programs.

Through a mix of data, benchmarks, strategies, and impact measures, this valuable report provides success stories that managers and stakeholders can use to build their unique fund objectives.

For complete details including a report summary, click here.

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180 Life Sciences licenses potential liver disorder treatment from Oxford


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 22nd, 2021

Clinical-stage biotech company 180 Life Sciences Corp. has entered into an exclusive global licensing agreement with the University of Oxford to commercialize a potential treatment for liver damage. continue reading »

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U Buffalo start-up develops turbine blades that could improve wind energy production


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 22nd, 2021

A start-up from the University at Buffalo (UB) plans to commercialize a new kind of wind turbine blade that could both improve the efficiency and reduce the costs of wind energy production. continue reading »

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GA Tech start-up aims to improve energy efficiency in the 5G space


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 22nd, 2021

A microchip start-up from the Georgia Institute of Technology (GA Tech) aims to improve energy efficiency in the 5G space. continue reading »

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TTOs grapple with new DOE domestic manufacturing rules, some will avoid projects


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

A detailed article on the DOE’s new domestic manufacturing requirements and the issues it presents for TTOs appears in the December issue of Technology Transfer Tactics. To subscribe access the complete article, or for further subscription details, click here.

The Department of Energy’s new policy requiring inventions resulting from DOE-funded R&D to be “substantially manufactured” in the United States has tech transfer leaders studying how to comply, and some are determining that the burden is too great. Those programs are deciding to decline licensing of DOE-funded inventions altogether.

The DOE policy encourages domestic production of products developed from DOE funds and requires a suspension of rights to the IP when a licensee undergoes a significant change, such as a change in ownership, until the department provides written approval. In addition, tech transfer programs must submit manufacturing plans for DOE approval before a licensee is obtained or a product is created. (The policy is available online at https://bit.ly/3DsCPoY. The DOE guidance document for the policy is available online at https://bit.ly/3EnuQuu.)

The Bayh-Dole Act has a U.S. Preference clause that requires domestic manufacture unless a waiver is provided, but the DOE guidance document for the new rule says that process has been “largely ineffective.” The new policy is founded on a “determination of exceptional circumstances” under the Bayh-Dole Act, with DOE saying the determination is intended to “revitalize and rebuild domestic manufacturing capability.” (The DOE explanation of the determination is available online at https://bit.ly/3Ih0R9Y.)

The guidance document for the policy, which became effective October 1, 2021, says the new requirement will be implemented in “most” new R&D funding opportunities issued by DOE’s applied energy offices and Office of Science. The rule says that “any products embodying any subject invention or produced through the use of any subject invention will be manufactured substantially in the United States unless the contractor can show to the satisfaction of DOE that it is not commercially feasible.”

Under this rule, DOE is extending the domestic manufacturing requirement to non-exclusive licensees and to uses and sales beyond the domestic market. When any contractor or other recipient of the invention rights experiences a “change in ownership amounting to a controlling interest,” the rights are suspended unless DOE provides written approval for the change.

That requirement also comes into play when entities “sell, assign, or otherwise transfer title or exclusive rights in the invention.”

Even before the rule was enacted, the tech transfer community was concerned about the burden of compliance. The Bayh-Dole Coalition sent a letter to the DOE in August 2021 saying contractors’ and licensees’ uncertainty about the approval process would hinder commercialization of federally funded research.

“We understand and share DOE’s concern about the offshoring of emerging energy technologies of strategic importance to U.S. national security,” the letter said. “However, the ability of our member institutions to transfer such technologies to the private sector for further commercial development may be seriously impeded, if not eliminated, by these requirements.” (The full text of the letter is available online at https://bit.ly/3G9Y5Bs.)

Though everyone seems to agree with the intent of the rule, compliance will be challenging and the end result may not be what DOE intends, notes Jennifer Gottwald, PhD, CLP, director of licensing with the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) in Madison.

“We understand what DOE is trying to do here, and as Americans we want manufacturing here in our country. The pandemic has shown us that not only is that good for creating jobs, it also makes us a more resilient economy when things go wrong in the global supply chain,” Gottwald says. “However, we feel that the way DOE is going about this is very counterproductive and won’t result in more things being manufactured in America.”

Click here to continue reading this article with a subscription to Technology Transfer Tactics. Already a subscriber? Click here to log in.

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Penn researchers develop chewing gum to fight COVID-19 transmission


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) have developed a chewing gum that could help reduce the transmission of COVID-19. continue reading »

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Webinar tomorrow: Non-Monetary Metrics that Every TTO Should be Tracking


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

As most tech transfer leaders can attest, when it comes to TTO metrics university administrators are often looking for a bottom-line return or other hard numbers reflecting year-to-year trends patents, licenses, revenues, and start-ups.

These are certainly important, but the singular focus on monetary metrics risks losing focus on many of the factors that underlie those more tangible results. After all, these numbers don’t come out of thin air, but are built through a host of collaborative platforms and initiatives – and the surrounding culture — that nurture the commercialization outcomes getting so much attention from administrators.

The way these programs and cultural factors impact the bottom line is difficult to quantify, and their contributions often get lost in the shuffle. But one office that measures and showcases these non-monetary metrics is UNeMed, University of Nebraska Medical Center’s TTO. They’ve emphasized these functions as part of their collaborative culture and tied them to specific financial results. And they’re using these metrics to show administrators and other stakeholders a more complete picture of the TTO’s impact.  

To help you learn from their experience and successes, Tech Transfer Central has teamed up with UNeMed’s Michael Dixon, PhDPresident & CEO, and Joe Runge, Business Development Manager, to present this detailed, strategy-filled webinar: Non-Monetary Metrics that Every TTO Should be Tracking: Measuring Your Collaborative Culture, scheduled for TOMORROW, December 16th. For complete program details or to register, click here.

Also coming soon:

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Bloomington program will pay students to launch their own start-ups


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

The Mill, a nonprofit entrepreneurship center in Bloomington, IL, is launching a paid internship program for college students who want to form their own start-ups. continue reading »

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Poolbeg Pharma signs option agreement with U College Dublin to commercialize melioidosis vaccine


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

Poolbeg Pharma, a developer of therapeutics against infectious diseases, has signed an option agreement to license a novel vaccine from University College Dublin (UCD).

Developed by UCD associate professor Siobhán McClean, MelioVac is designed to prevent melioidosis, an infectious disease caused by bacterium commonly found in the soil and surface groundwater of many tropical and subtropical regions.

Also known as Whitmore’s disease, melioidosis affects roughly 165,000 people each year in regions including Northern Australia, Asia and India, with as many as 89,000 yearly deaths. There are currently no approved vaccines targeting the disease.

Under the option agreement, Poolbeg will perform due diligence on MelioVac to aid its development and eventual commercialization. The agreement also includes the option to license other vaccines developed by McClean and her team.

“Melioidosis offers Poolbeg an opportunity to expand our portfolio of infectious disease assets,” says Poolbeg CEO Jeremy Skillington. “If we can take MelioVac through clinical development to Phase II ready, it has the potential to generate significant returns for investors in the short term while contributing to the global response to the threat of infectious diseases with an unmet medical need.”

Source: The Irish Times

Global Vaccine Partnering Terms and Agreements: Deal trends, players and financials is a market research report providing a comprehensive understanding and unprecedented access to vaccine partnering deals and agreements. Click here for more details.

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Harvard start-up raises $11M to develop AI-powered drug development tech


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

A Harvard University start-up has raised $11 million to advance a new, AI-powered approach to drug development. continue reading »

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International Isotopes licenses novel SARS-CoV-2 antibody test from Sloan Kettering


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

International Isotopes (INIS), a manufacturer of products for nuclear medicine, molecular imaging and cancer therapy, has signed an exclusive license agreement with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) for a novel SARS-CoV-2 antibody test. continue reading »

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Data Licensing, Protection and Policy for Universities


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: December 15th, 2021

When it comes to data and its monetization, things are different – and more complex – than with the intellectual property TTOs, licensing professionals, and IP attorneys typically deal with. Laws and regulations relating to consent and privacy must be navigated, along with issues related to the rights of the licensee and how royalties are distributed. And while virtually all institutions have patent policies in place covering ownership and handling of patentable inventions, data policies are still very mixed and sometimes completely absent. As more and more institutions monetize their data, the importance of a well-considered institutional data policy has become critical.

That’s why we’ve produced the distance learning collection Data Licensing, Protection and Policy for Universities, featuring two outstanding programs that combined will give you a clear roadmap for how to nail down data policies, address the tricky issues related to privacy, effectively protect your data-driven innovations, and license your valuable data to third parties while steering clear of legal potholes.

The collection includes our digital package (on-demand video and transcript), along with all program materials prepared by our expert panelists. You can share it throughout your organization. For complete details, click here.

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