There is a deeply rooted entrepreneurial spirit
on this campus. Our history of innovation has led to important patents,
powerful companies and discoveries that improve lives. But the evolving health
care landscape requires new models for innovation, ones that leverage our
considerable assets to generate revenue outside traditional models. So I'd like
to update you on how we are accelerating CU Anschutz ideas and discoveries into
real-world impacts for the broader community.
A new office
In July, we launched CU Innovations, a vital conduit between inventors
and innovators located here at CU Anschutz and the private industry executives
who can take their breakthroughs to market.
CU Innovations, once known as the Technology
Transfer Office, is led by Kimberly Muller, who joined us in June 2015 from the
Yale Entrepreneurial Institute. Between Kim and Steve VanNurden, CU Anschutz
executive director of biotechnology relationships and CEO of the Fitzsimons
Redevelopment Authority who joined us from the Mayo Clinic in 2012, I am
confident we have the right leadership to advance in this critically important
Over the last year, Kim, Steve and their team
have expanded on the work of the previous Technology Transfer Office -- which
focused primarily on intellectual property and license management -- to partner
with the campus hospitals, re-engineer the innovation development process and
build new corporate partnerships. To better engage faculty, they are holding
regular seminars at which successful entrepreneurs from our Entrepreneur in
Residence program meet with faculty who have innovative ideas. They're putting
scientists, physicians and researchers with novel ideas in touch with investors
and business developers to discuss their likelihood of success. And they're
promoting the incentive program for faculty who develop ideas to share in
Partnering for success
Yet for these innovations to succeed, we must
continue to nurture strong relationships with hospitals and industry. That's
why CU Innovations is partnering with New York City-based StartUp Health to bring start-up companies and
potential partners in technology development to campus. Startup Health will
have its own office in the Bioscience 2 Building.
Additionally, CU Innovations assisted
Children's Hospital Colorado (CHCO) in its June 1 launch of the new Center for Innovation led by Kim Muller,
which leverages the CU Innovations infrastructure through a web portal that
helps CHCO's employees identify ways to improve kids' health and
CHCO's internal processes. The center will provide training, workshops and
programs to bolster new ideas that have potential for commercialization and
support new ways to improve a patient's hospital experience.
Similarly, UCHealth has created the CARE Innovation Center under Dr. Richard
Zane, Boedecker Foundation Endowed Chair of Emergency Medicine. As chief
innovation officer for UCHealth, Dr. Zane founded the CARE Innovation Center to
test novel approaches that can strengthen health care service, improve patient
outcomes and minimize cost.
We're also working to remove obstacles to tech
transfer on campus, from developing new funding mechanisms to cutting
bureaucratic red tape.
We receive more than $425 million each year in
research funding. While this leads to research breakthroughs, there is often a
gap between discovery and commercialization due to insufficient resources. The
new Chancellor's Discovery & Innovation Fund was set up to provide
targeted, early-stage funding to fill this gap. The fund plans to raise and
leverage $10 million in private philanthropic contributions to support the most
promising discoveries at CU Anschutz in their early stages and accelerate their
move to the clinic and the marketplace.
In addition, our
processes for getting clinical trials approved had been time-consuming and
often duplicative. To fix this, we're developing a coordinated regulatory and
reporting path for the more than 1,400 active clinical research projects on
campus. Alison Lakin, associate vice chancellor for regulatory compliance,
along with Dr. Thomas Flaig, chief clinical research officer for UCHealth and
associate dean for clinical research in the School of Medicine, oversee a new
joint clinical research administrative office, offering a central location for
previously disparate research admin offices from UCHealth and the university.
Staff members with similar roles from both institutions are now physically
co-located, allowing them to manage the clinical research protocol
simultaneously. This has resulted in tremendous economies of scale and
efficiencies, allowing our campus to compete with the more well-known academic
health centers nationally.
We have the expertise,
leadership, facilities and culture to speed the pace of translating research
into practice and make an enormous impact on the health care industry. It's not
out of the realm of possibility for our university to be mentioned in the same
breath as Stanford, the Mayo Clinic or the Texas Medical Center when it comes
to innovation. They've had a big head start, but we are making giant strides.
Our efforts to generate new revenue streams and advance technology in
revolutionary ways is yet another example of how at CU Anschutz, we're clearly