Translational Proof of Concept Awards to accelerate the fight against musculoskeletal disorders

Date: November 14, 2014

A partnership between a leading medical research charity and a national centre for innovation is launching a new fund to accelerate the commercial development of treatments and prevention of musculoskeletal disorders.

Arthritis Research UK, the biggest funder of research into the cause, treatment and cure of all forms of arthritis in the UK, and the Medical Technologies Innovation and Knowledge Centre, have joined together to offer funding and project management support to progress research ideas with commercial potential.

The Translational Proof of Concept Awards will provide support for one year with a total funding of £500,000 to accelerate exciting innovations that support the lives of people with arthritis.

Awards will be accepted from scientists and clinicians in UK universities, and will be judged on the clinical need, potential market opportunity and industry confidence to progress and support the technology to market.

The charity has joined forces with the national Medical Technologies Innovation and Knowledge Centre to access expertise in product development, speeding up route to market and reducing the risk of late stage failure.

Commenting on the Translational Proof of Concept Awards, Professor Philip Nelson, CEO of Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), said: “These awards are a fantastic example of how to bridge the gap between fundamental research and the development of technology that is fit for purpose and ready for serious industrial investment.

“The changing demographic of the UK population means that the need to develop treatments and prevent musculoskeletal disorders is becoming ever more pressing. Our engineers, scientists and clinicians are already working together on research in healthcare technologies and are well placed to meet this challenge.”

Dr Stephen Simpson, Director of Research at Arthritis Research UK said “We’re committed to supporting research that will have the greatest impact for the millions of people living with the pain of arthritis. Research is all about outcomes and practical benefits for patients, so it’s fundamentally important that our funds are invested in projects with the most potential and supported by innovation managers with a track record of commercial development”.

Professor John Fisher, Academic Director of the Medical Technologies IKC said “Developing innovative technologies that help the musculoskeletal system repair and restore function is at the very core of our work. Working in partnership with Arthritis Research UK means we can widen the reach of our know-how, into new technology areas and with new partners”.
Applying for an Arthritis Research UK Translational Proof of Concept Award

Those interested in learning more about the call are encouraged to read theTranslational Proof of Concept Award call document and complete an Expression of Interest form.

The Translational Proof of Concept Award Launch will be held in London on November 21st, with the opportunity to book 1-to-1 meetings to discuss potential projects.

Register now:

About Arthritis Research UK

Arthritis Research UK is the charity dedicated to stopping the devastating impact that arthritis has on people’s lives.  Everything that we do is focused on taking the pain away and keeping people active.  Our remit covers all conditions which affect the joints, bones and muscles including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, back pain and osteoporosis.  We fund research into the cause, treatment and cure of arthritis, provide information on how to maintain healthy joints and bones and to live well with arthritis. We also champion the cause, influence policy change and work in partnership with others to achieve our aims. We depend on public support and the generosity of our donors to keep doing this vital work.

Arthritis Research UK press office contact:
Jane Tadman, communications manager, 01246 541107

About Medical Technologies IKC

Based at the University of Leeds in the UK, the Medical Technologies IKC is an Innovation and Knowledge Centre funded by the UK Research Councils, EPSRC and BBSRC, and Innovate UK.

Medical Technologies IKC delivers innovation right across the medical technology spectrum – from implantable devices through to regenerative therapies that can be enhanced with autologous stem cells. The centre focuses on technologies that have viable and feasible routes to commercialisation and supports these through an approach that reduces late failure and cost.

Medical Technologies IKC contact:
Miss Rowan Grant, National Outreach Manager; 0113 3430923;

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