AZAdvances Discoveries

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Advancing Discoveries into Development

AZAdvances Discoveries™  is a statewide pilot program designed to translate university and other institutional research into commercially viable diagnostics, devices, therapeutics and tools that improve patient care, making life better for people in Arizona, across the United States and around the world.

AZAdvances Discoveries grants will be competitively awarded proof-of-concept projects and feasibility studies related to research initiatives  at participating Arizona universities and  non-profit research institutions.  To participate in AZAdvances Discoveries, the non-profit research institution contractually agrees to participate in the AZAdvances Discoveries Consortium and to provide matching funds to their approved and awarded  grant projects so that the impact of the funding is doubled as well as scientific and business support to the consortium as a whole.

The program will launch once it is capitalized with designated donations to  the AZAdvances Today Fund™  with minimum commitments of $1 million per year for 5 years. 

How it works

  1. AZAdvances Discoveries consortium members  sign a Memorandum of Understanding, outlining their expectations and responsibilities and confirm participation in the AZAdvances Discoveries Consortium. 
  2.  The Member Institutions come together to share best practices for the discovery asset development and develop the processes and materials to be used for the solicitation, review, and tracking of awards.
  3. Calls for proposals will be made at least twice per year, with awards selected by the consortium governing  board in partnership with AZAdvances and based on feedback from an External Review Board. Awards will be to those projects with the best commercial potential, but all efforts will be made to provide an equitable distribution of awards among all participating research institutions. 
  4. After grants are awarded, the host instituion and an AZAdvances Discoveries team from individuals from consortium members will provide additional resources and technical support th the team leading the proof-of-concept or feasibility study supported by the grant with a goal of supporting the decision process of determining if this this discovery is ready to progress to development.
  5. The AZAdvances Discoveries program will be  continuously monitored and evaluated on its stated performance metrics to ensure that it fulfills its promise to participating institutions and the community.

Why AZAdvances Discoveries

Aim 1: By working together, AZAdvances Discoveries Members leverage their combined research expertise and  maximize funds for efforts in commercializing their most promising research. 

Aim 2: By establishing a statewide network within the broader AZAdvances structure, we can leverage relevant talent, programs and capital that will both inform the asset development effort and provide ongoing support for those technologies that move into the development process as new commercial ventures. 

Aim 3: By creating a sustainable model within AZAdvances, we can succeed beyond the initial five-year pilot period. Ongoing engagement with stakeholders and industry partners is expected to create an ongoing program to advance Arizona based healthcare discoveries into development  and commercialization. 

The “Valley of Death” is not a single location on the development journey. It is a series of valleys that appear at multiple points along the way.

Successful programs must have on-going strategies for sustaining cash-flows; must continuously develop a pipeline of talent; seek out/apply innovative ideas and models available from internal and external sources; and commit to the highest levels of both scientific and ethical rigor.

Making an Impact

AZAdvances is designed to do this.

AZAdvances Discoveries moves potential life changing and life saving discoveries forward towards development.

Billions of dollars have been invested by taxpayers, philanthropists and industry into Arizona’s research institutions with a goal of advancing life changing and life saving innovations that will make life better for people in Arizona, across the United States, and around the world. 

They have entrusted in us their hopes for a healthier tomorrow. 

Not every experiment will result in a discovery.  

Not every discovery will be ready for commercial development.

But, for the discoveries that prove that they are ready, AZAdvances Discoveries can help to move them forward so that Arizona healthcare innovators can work to keep our promise to the people who have put their trust in us and are waiting for us to succeed.