BioCurate aims to draw upon the expertise of industry and the sector to help guide and progress projects, to educate and develop researchers, and to facilitate new collaborations. For industry, there are several opportunities in which to become involved, whether it be during or after each step of BioCurate’s formal review process. The focus at each stage of review is summarised as follows:
- Initial screening – Projects are submitted to BioCurate in a twice-yearly BioCurate Opportunity Assessment (BOA) process and are reviewed for medical need and commercial attractiveness. Feedback is provided to researchers to help them understand the potential for impact (e.g., does their project address an unmet medical need?) and risk (e.g., do they have a validated target?). For high-potential BOAs that may arise outside the formal intake periods, a special ‘ad hoc’ screening will be arranged.
- Expressions of Interest (EOI) – Projects deemed medically sound and commercially attractive are shortlisted and a full Expression of Interest submitted (by researchers and University BD/TTOs working together).
- Tier 1 Review – Once EOIs are submitted, BioCurate and relevant consultants conduct a ‘deep dive’ into the science and commercial potential, inclusive of regulatory and clinical development path.
- Tier 2 Review – With a verified link between the target and human disease, evaluation and planning for new therapeutic development occurs.
- Tier 3 Review(s) – Evaluate data with selected international industry experts; plan for international standard (“IND-ready”) preclinical package.
BioCurate aims to complement, rather than compete with, the Venture Capital and biopharma- industry investment sectors by improving the quality and quantity of ‘investment-ready’ assets in the new drug project pipeline that are available for investment and partnering. BioCurate’s industry engagement strategy commenced implementation in 2018.
These relationships have provided commercial insight and additional national and international recognition for BioCurate. This has further reinforced the reputation and credibility of the team that the Universities have assembled, within the international biopharmaceutical sector.
Currently, BioCurate has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the following biopharmaceutical companies: