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Purdue Raises $150K for Life Sciences Business Competition; Roche Dx Named as Sponsor

NEW YORK, Jan. 19 (GenomeWeb News) - PurdueUniversity announced yesterday that it is seeking entrants for its third annual Life Sciences Business Plan Competition.


The competition is open to teams around the world based at universities and colleges, research and teaching hospitals, and other academic institutions engaged in bioresearch. In total, the competition will award $147,000 in funding to startups that describe the best path to market for products and technologies in the life sciences, biotech and biomedicine fields. Contestants will be judges by a panel of judges including venture capitalists, scientists, attorneys, accountants, and academics.


Roche Diagnostics is a founding sponsor of the contest and is contributing $100,000. Other sponsors include Aventor, Baker & Daniels, Indiana Health Industry Forum, BioCrossroads, and Ernst & Young.


According to Purdue, teams can be seeking seed funding or can be further along in the commercialization process. They may also have received grants, venture capital, or equity investments, but are not allowed to have third-party intellectual property agreements.


"Genomics-based companies are right in the wheelhouse of what we look for," Don Blewett, associate director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepeneurship at Purdue, told GenomeWeb News.


He noted that last year's second and third place winners - Prosolia and Tienta Sciences - were spin-outs from a genomics based company that had been started by a joint venture of IndianaUniversity, PurdueUniversity, and Eli Lilly. But entrants can be involved in development of diagnostics, medical equipment, drugs, software, and other life science or biotech-related products.


Blewett said that in addition to providing funding and judges for the competition, Roche is "anxious to look for technologies that they might want to follow-up with after the competition."


The deadline for entries is Jan. 28. Teams can register online here.


The team that wins first prize will receive $50,000, plus $10,000 in legal and business services.

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