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White House Seeks Comments on Translating Federal R&D

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Seeking to enhance the amount of bang the US economy gets for the bucks that the federal government invests in research, the Obama Administration is asking for ideas and comments from the public on what policies and steps may be taken to help commercialize the fruits of science at universities.

In a request for information, the White House said that it wants to pursue this aspect of national innovation strategy, which is aimed at promoting sustainable growth and creating quality jobs, by seeking comments from universities, companies, federal research labs, entrepreneurs, investors, and non-profits.

To stir the comments, the White House's Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Economic Council have posed two sets of questions.

One section of this RFI asks questions about the best ways to encourage commercialization from university research. The second section seeks comments on how federal or privately-funded proof-of-concept centers can be a means of bridging the 'valley of death,' the period between federal funding and investment that can stall technological innovations.

National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins has named translational medicine advancement, such as finding new ways to move from fundamental research to the creation of assays that can screen hundreds of thousands of candidates for drug development, among NIH's top five priorities.

Responses to the RFI are due by April 26.

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