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Call for Applications: MaRS Innovation seeks applicants for early-stage MSc POP projects

Government of Ontario logoMaRS Innovation (MI) seeks applicants for the Medical Sciences Proof-of-Principle (MSc PoP) program, which supports early-stage medical science technologies and allows their founding teams to conduct crucial proof-of-principle work.

Through the two-year MSc POP program, MI will distribute funding awards to qualified applicants within its membership on behalf of the Ministry of Research and Innovation (MRI). Funds are available in $25,000 or $75,000 grants.

“At MaRS Innovation, the PoP program functions as a kind of internal Dragons’ Den,” says Dr. Raphael Hofstein, president and CEO of MaRS Innovation. “For three years, we’ve used a panel of industry leaders to hear pitches from the founding teams of the most promising technologies in our intellectual property pipeline. Based on their assessments, the strongest projects receive PoP funding to fuel their prototyping and other proof-of-principle work.”

The program funding from MRI will stimulate the effective commercialization of medical technology and life sciences research by bridging the development gap to help attract investment and development partners from industry and the venture community as well as build institutional commercialization capacity and expertise in these areas. Its ultimate goal is to deliver substantial and sustainable economic benefit to Ontario through licensing and company creation.

“Using this methodology, MaRS Innovation strategically converts the push of curiosity-driven academic ideas to industry-driven market pull, ensuring a preliminary validation for these technologies even at their most nascent stage,” says Hofstein.

Past recipient technologies include ApneaDx, DLVR Therapeutics, Encycle Therapeutics, Kapplex Inc., tigecycline and ScarX Therapeutics Inc., among others.

MaRS Innovation and the Ontario Centres of Excellence have partnered to deliver the MSc PoP program; applicants who are not affiliated with MaRS Innovation’s 16 member institutions should contact Jennifer Moles, OCE program manager, to explore potential applications.

For more information about how to apply, contact Jackie Terry, Proof of Principle (PoP) program administrator.

By Elizabeth Monier-Williams, marketing and communications manager.