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Welcome to campus

Visit Case Western Reserve University's uniquely urban campus, located in the heart of Cleveland's cultural hub, University Circle. Plan your trip:

The Office of Translation and Innovation at CWRU School of Medicine works to foster commercialization, build relationships with pharmaceutical and biomedical device corporations, and develop strong partnerships in therapeutics at all levels. The office serves to assess and advise investigators with supported projects, to educate faculty, fellows and graduate students in technology transfer and development of research ideas, and to move promising candidates quickly from discovery to development.

The School of Medicine has a vibrant pipeline of research programs, and the OTI works to provide a funding pipeline to match each stage. We focus our efforts on the most critical - and often most underfunded - stages of development, Lead Optimization and Preclinical Development. In addition to providing funding opportunities and expert advice, our office is currently building entrepreneurship and translational research support programs which include venture mentoring, webinars, and access to training programs such as i-Corps.

The OTI three-pronged approach:

  • building technologies by providing strong pre-clinical development programs
  • attracting capital using CWRU endowment and state grants as a foundation to attract partner investors
  • supporting the development of people by actively building entrepreneurship and translational research support programs


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

NCAI-CC: New Funding Cycle for Innovations in Heart, Lung, Blood

New RFA now available - Deadline for LOI is February 8, 2017


The NIH Center for Accelerated Innovations at Cleveland Clinic announces a request for applications. Funding is available for promising emerging technologies in cardiovascular, pulmonary, blood or sleep-related disorders. NCAI-CC is seeking projects in therapeutics, diagnostics, devices, tools, or systems in order to facilitate translation to commercialized products that improve patient care and enhance health.

This program provides funding and project assistance to advance the development of high priority early-stage technologies in NHLBI research areas. Expert assistance will be provided to funded investigators in early technology develpoment including commercial opportunity assessment, intellectual property, clinical and regulatory, reimbursement, business, leagal and project management.

Letters of intent are due Wednesday, February 8, 2017.

For more information on this funding opportunity, CLICK HERE.

To download the RFA, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about the NCAI-CC, CLICK HERE.

NCAI I-Corps @ Ohio RFP: Training in Commercialization

New RFP now available - Deadline for Executive Summary is January 10, 2017


The NIH Center for Accelerated Innovations at Cleveland Clinic is participating in the I-Corps @ Ohio latest request for proposals. If you have a team that would like to participate in the I-Corps program, please submit your executive summary by January 10. I-Corps @ Ohio is a statewide program to assist faculty and graduate students from Ohio universities and collegs to validate the market potential of their technologies and launch startup companies. Modeled after the NSF program, I-Corps @ Ohio will help increase innovation, entrepreneurship, and industry collaboration while expanding the business acumen and networks of faculty and students across the state.

Executive summaries are due January 10, 2017.

For more information on this training opportunity, CLICK HERE.

To download the RFA, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about the I-Corps @ Ohio program, CLICK HERE.

CWRU Technology Validation & Start-Up Fund Program (CTP)

New RFP now available - Deadline for Pre-Proposals is January 15, 2017


CWRU's Technology Transfer Office has been awarded a grant by the State of Ohio to fund the CTP. The Technology Validation and Start-Up Fund (TVSF), funded by the Ohio Third Frontier, aims to accelerate and fund the translation of promising technologies into the marketplace through Ohio start-up companies with the eventual goal of creating greater economic growth.

In October 2016, CWRU was awarded a $500,000 fund, which will be administered by the Technology Transfer Office as the CWRU TVSF Program ("CTP") to advance a number of selected programs over a 12-month period. As a result of this award CWRU investigators are no longer eligible to apply for TVSF funding directly to the State of Ohio, but must instead apply to this internal competition.

The CTP is intended to be the final bridge between a translational research project and a viable commercial program. Funding will support technologies that require validation/proof that will directly impact and enhance commercial viability and the ability to support a start-up company. Projects must have already advanced beyond basic research and should have the equivalent of a laboratory-scale proof of concept prior to applying for funding.

Applicants are encouraged to work with potential Ohio licensees and business advisors prior to submitting an application in order to identify critical needs for the technology. Paramount importance will be placed on customer discovery, whether in the form of industry partners or potential end users. Specific milestones related to enhancing valuation and reducing risk should be defined, which can include any of the following: Prototyping, scale-up, animal and/or clinical testing, addressing regulatory or reimbursement requirements. All proposals must fall into one of these State of Ohio's technology focus areas:

  • Biomedical/Life Sciences
  • Advanced Materials
  • Energy
  • Software/Information Technology
  • Sensors
  • Advanced Manufacturing

Number of Applicants Allowed: 10-12 per year at $25,000-$100,000 each (includes cost match)

Total amount of funding: $500,000 + $500,000 cost match by awardees

Anticipated award type: Standard grant with 1:1 cost match required by applicant

Number of RFPs: 3 per year (anticipated dates: January 2017, April 2017, September 2017)

Funding period per project: 1 year

Funding start dates: 1-2 months after submission of full proposal

For more information on this limited submission opportunity, visit the Office of Research Administration website.

Discovery Translation Pipeline

The Office of Translation and Innovation provides solutions for the unique challenges to supporting biomedical research innovation and associated commercialization and product development in a university setting. We help identify appropriate funding opportunities for investigators looking to translate their discoveries through lead optimization and pre-clinical development. We also assist in exiting programs outside the university when the time is right.

Funding Opportunities

Contact us to discuss the funding opportunities listed here.

CAHH Accelerator Fund: The Council to Advance Human Health (CAHH) was developed as a catalyst to provide a focused model of translation. The CAHH consists of alumni and industry leaders in pharmaceuticals, devices, ventures, law, finance, and entrepreneurship. This group collectively possesses the knowledge and perspective required for rigorous assessment of projects. The CAHH Program directly links to our Accelerator Fund. Support through the philanthropic Accelerator Fund provides small targeted grants for investigators to follow through on CAHH advice and move projects to the next stage.

NCAI: One of only three National Centers for Accelerated Innovations (NCAI) was awarded to the Cleveland Clinic Consortium consisting of the Clinical and Translational Science Award Centers in Ohio including Case Western Reserve University, The Ohio State University and the University of Cincinnati. The NCAI-CC serves to improve how basic science advances and discoveries are translated into commercially viable products that improve patient care and advance public health. Funded by the NIH's Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), this program provides funds to specific, measurable project development activities that are key to establishing commercial opportunities.

High Throughput Screening Pilot: The School of Medicine supports limited pilot awards in high throughput screening. PLease contact our office for more information.

Technology Validation and Start-up Fund: The Ohio Third Frontier Technology Validation and Start-up Fund supports research technology development in specific program areas that need known validation or proof. Successful applications will directly impact and enhance both their commercial viability and ability to support a start-up company. There are two options for this program: Phase 1 supports technologies developed at an Ohio research institution and Phase 2 supports Ohio start-up companies with technologies licensed from an Ohio research institution. Please visit the Ohio Third Frontier site for more information.

Return on Investment

The Office of Translation and Innovation assists more than 50 investigators by providing assessments and advice, sourcing outside work, cultivating relationships with industry partners, and working to secure funding. Over 40 of our research programs have received funding through internal vehicles that include High Throughput Screening (HTS) and CTSC Pilot grants. We have presented projects to more than 12 different industry partners, and translated CWRU SOM research programs into over $22M in new investments comprised of corporate financing and sponsored research agreements, commercial licenses and new federal and foundation grants.

Contact Us

Anne DeChant
Assistant Director

News and Announcements

Skills Development

How do I get started?

Submit an Invention Disclosure Form to the Technology Transfer Office. TTO will assess the stage of technology, commercial potential, and patentability. Then investigators can meet with the CTOs to discuss the possibility of a translation plan, develop experiments, and identify sources of funding, on-campus resources, and CROs. Finally, the team will help present your program to pharma and biotech and foster new partnerships.