SPARK Entrepreneurial Forum: Funding Options & Innovations Culture

Dr. Frank Stief, Charité Tech Transfer Office
Prof. Richard Kroczek, Comprehensive Cancer Center Charité
Prof. Roland Lauster, Institute for Biotechnology, TU

What are the options for funding a translational project? This question is tightly linked to what the vision of the translational project end point is about . In academia, we usually start with a research question. Once results that may answer a clinically relevant question have been acquired, the project that once started with the goal to publish good science evolves into an idea for a solution that potentially can be translated and serve patient unmet needs. How can the project now move forward? How can additional work be financed? Who is interested in further developing the project, and are there any chances that this idea can be developed into a product that can survive market competition and have a life beyond academic knowledge? What business model is conceivable? And does a startup make sense? All these question and many more are relevant for translation.

The first focus of this evening is on the funding options that translational researchers have access to. Frank Stief from the Technology Transfer Office at Charité will give us an overview of the current funding opportunities for translational projects e.g. Go-Bio grants, and the requirements to acquire them. We will then hear Richard Kroczek tell his story of having acquired such a grant, and what it was and is like to turn excellent science into a translational project that aims to hit the market. Undoubtedly, this change of perspective bears great opportunities and challenges. In the second part of the evening we will go on to discuss innovation culture and its implications on the ecosystem. Roland Lauster who is a serial entrepreneur will add his perspective on translation and innovation culture.