NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Cancer Institute will use $10 million this year to fund 10 small businesses in the later stages of developing diagnostics, therapeutics, and imaging tools for cancer and seeking help in moving these products toward commercialization.
The new funding under NCI's Small Business Innovation Research Program will support the Phase II SBIR Bridge Awards, which were created to help small businesses speed up the commercialization of cancer detection, treatment, and prevention tools.
The three-year Bridge Awards are aimed at incentivizing partnerships between SBIR Phase II awardees and third-party investors and strategic partners, and to help small companies traverse the funding gap between the ending of Phase II grants and commercialization known as the "Valley of Death."
The grant funding could be used for molecular diagnostics and prognostics, in vitro diagnostic multivariate index assays, image analysis tools, and spectroscopic methods for in vitro and ex vivo tissue analysis, and others. These diagnostics tools could be focused on disease progression or responses to therapy.
The program also will fund development of cancer therapeutics, including small molecule anticancer agents, biologics, nanotechnology-based therapeutics, and anticancer drug delivery systems. Other technology areas these grants will fund include companies developing cancer imaging technologies, interventional devices, and in vivo diagnostics.
Applicants for the program should be prepared to submit a plan for commercialization and propose taking steps that will lead to the successful filing of a 510(k) application, Premarket Approval application, or Investigational Device Exemption application.