Session 303
Aligning Fundamental and Translational Research with Clinical and Commercialization Needs

By attending the ASAP BioPharma Conference, it is assumed an interest in and commitment to establishing strong and effective academic-industry partnerships that accelerate the pace at which academic research leads to advances in human health. Yet, there's awareness that these partnerships can be challenging and less productive than hoped by industry.

During this session learn from two pioneers who have established programs that leverage partnerships to create paths-to-impact with manageable risk. These programs enabled by a unique approach to accessing academia and industry, provide a framework for de-risking the science and for aligning the research with commercial needs and outcomes. One program, the MIT LinQ Catalyst program, which is part of MIT's Innovation Initiative and Institute of Medical Engineering and Sciences (IMES), focuses on promoting, developing, and implementing plausible solutions to unmet clinical needs. In another program, Cancer Research UK's Commercial Partnerships and Therapeutic Discovery Laboratories (TDL) drives translational research by establishing and prosecuting biologically themed, multi-project drug discovery alliances to deliver breakthrough medicines for cancer patients.

By participating in this session, learn three main ideas:


Elaine Anderson, CA-AM
Strategic Alliance Executive
Cancer Research UK

Elaine is a Strategic Alliance Executive within Commercial Partnerships at Cancer Research UK who have exclusive rights to over £350 million of world class research annually funded by Cancer Research UK. In her role within this new team, Elaine has responsibility for managing several strategic alliances between industry, a network of academics and CRUK's Therapeutic Discovery Laboratories.

Prior to joining Cancer Research UK, Elaine has over 25 years' experience in the life sciences sector, working in large pharma, small biotech and academia. During her 15 years in AstraZeneca, she held both scientific and commercial roles, including Alliance Manager within the New Opportunities iMED. Elaine then joined the European arm of Eli Lilly and Co's Global External R&D team and has also served as a member of the Science and Innovation Advisory Committee for the UK Bioindustry Association.

Martha Gray, PhD
Faculty Director & Professor
Institute for Medical Engineering & Science (IMES)

Martha Gray, PhD, has a multifaceted career in which she has built programs to drive biomedical technology innovation, conducted research to better understand and prevent osteoarthritis, led a preeminent academic unit, and served the profession through work with organizations and institutions. Trained in computer science and electrical and biomedical engineering, and serving as an MIT faculty for three decades, she has held numerous leadership positions. For 13+ years, she directed the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST), an academic unit with multiple research and training programs for careers in medicine, business, and research. Dr. Gray currently directs MIT linQ which operates several multi-institutional ventures focus on accelerating and deepening early-career researchers' potential for impact. Over the course of these efforts, she and her team have established a principled methodology for needs identification and opportunity development, and an organizational model that fosters a vibrant multi-stakeholder community necessary for sustained local and global impact.