Catalyzing Innovation – The Critical Success Factors for Medical Technology Company – Academia Collaboration

When: « Back to Calendar January 27, 2012 @ 8:00 am - 1:00 pm
Where: Mass. Medical Society
860 Winter St
Waltham,MA 02451
Member Cost: $ 50
Nonmember Cost: $ 85
Categories: MassMEDIC Events


In their ever-increasing efforts to access innovation from external sources, medical technology and diagnostics companies have implemented various approaches aimed at gaining a competitive advantage. These have included mechanisms such as corporate VC funds, options-based deal structures, R&D alliances, and involvement in technology incubators. While these approaches have been billed as “win-win” scenarios for both parties, it is clear that these and other models for engaging academia are evolving in order to optimally deliver high-value opportunities to the medtech company as well as attractive returns to the innovator.

MassMEDIC, in collaboration with Hamilton Brook Smith & Reynolds, P.C. and Back Bay Life Science Advisors, is pleased to sponsor a half day symposium designed to explore the different motivations and drivers of success for the various stakeholders within academia and the medtech industry. Three panels, comprised of leading architects of industry-academia collaborations as well as senior representatives from the local academic community, will explore the challenges and critical factors in making these collaborations work successfully.


8:00-8:45 a.m.


Networking Breakfast

8:45-9:00 a.m.


Welcome & Introduction

9:00-9:45 a.m.


Critical Intellectual Property Strategies for Academia and Industry Collaborations

What are the IP challenges facing industry and academic partnerships? How can both sectors work to develop the most mutually beneficial collaboration? How will the new Patent Refrom law impact these partnerships? A presentation and panel discussion will explore these questions and include case studies.

Mary K. Murray, Ph.D., Principal
Scott Pierce, Esq. Principal
Hamilton, Brook, Smith & Reynolds, P.C.



  • Thomas Tachovsky, Ph.D.Technology Licensing Office, MIT 
  • George Kachen, Ph.D.
    Senior Director of Commercial Ventures & Intellectual Property (CVIP), UMass Lowell
  • Jill S. Murthi, MBA, Patent Agent
    Director of Commercial Ventures & Intellectual Property (CVIP), UMass Lowell, Director, M2D2  

9:45-10:30 a.m.


Understanding the Drivers of Academic Institutions and Principal Investigators

Moderator: Jonathan P Gertler, MD – Senior Partner, Back Bay Life Science Advisors

With the help of a panel of leading investigators and leadership from the academic community, we will address the following issues of importance to fostering a productive academic/medtech company relationship:

    • The commitment to advancing the science & key drivers/ needs for partnering with medtech
    • Understanding the university/PI areas of focus and core strengths prior to engaging
    • The key challenges in collaborating with industry & how best to overcome them, e.g., optimizing communication
    • The tension between commercial productivity and the need to give investigators the freedom to pursue their science
    • Integration of the investigator into core R&D activities and internal research programs
    • Preferred alliance structures, collaboration directions and consistency


  • Brian W. Anthony, PhD, Co-Director, Medical Electronic Device Realization Center, MIT
  • John Brooks, President & CEO, Joslin Diabetes Center
  • John Collins PhD, COO, CIMIT
  • Harald Steltzer, Director, Life Sciences Business Development, BU
  • Paresh Shah MD, Program Director, Dept of Surgery, Lenox Hill Hospital


10:35-11:00 a.m.




11:00-11:45 a.m.


Understanding the Landscape of Current Approaches to Academia by Industry & Investors

Moderator: Christopher Leo, PhD – Senior Vice President, Back Bay Life Science Advisors

With the help of a panel of leading strategists for academic collaborations from the Medical Technology industry, we will address their approaches to sourcing innovation from the academic community and means of improving on them:

    • Role of academia in overall R&D strategy
    • Focus areas for academic collaborations
    • Overall “best practices” for engaging the academic community
    • Discussion of advantages/disadvantages for various initiatives in place for collaborating with academia, e.g.:
      • Traditional IP licensing agreements
      • Contract research / fee-for-service
      • Broad-based, institution-level research collaborations
      • Targeted PI-level research collaborations
      • Company creation (spin-outs from academia)
    • Evaluating the success of academic collaborations


  • Peter Stebbins, VP Business Development, DePuy Mitek
  • T. Forcht Dagi MD, HLM Venture Partners
  • Daniel Behr, SVP & Founder, Access BridgeGap Ventures
  • Doug Hansel, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Americas GE Medical

11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.


Networking Lunch