While the pillars of Partners HealthCare’s strategic initiative revolve around care redesign and patient affordability, the strategy encompasses all aspects of the Partners mission: patient care, teaching, community health and research.
In the world of research, Partners is the country’s largest non-university-based not-for-profit private medical research enterprise. In 2014, total research expenditures were more than $1.4 billion, about half of which was funded by the National Institutes of Health and other federal agencies. Research at Partners encompasses bench research, patient-centered research conducted at Partners hospitals, clinical trials of new drugs and devices, and health services and research about various diseases.
Every day in research labs across Partners, investigators are working to discover new treatment options, medical devices and technology to improve the lives and outcomes of patients. But getting those discoveries from bench to bedside is complicated, to say the least.
Enter Partners Innovation, a group of experts in company creation, IT commercialization, licensing, patenting, funding and business development, among other areas. Partners Innovation works closely with Brigham Innovation Hub to help clinicians and scientists move ideas forward for possible commercialization.
“We work collaboratively with staff to bring their breakthroughs to the commercial markets whether they stem from laboratory research, care delivery or management systems,” said Chris Coburn, vice president of Partners Innovation. “Our goal is to deliver the unique attributes developed by Partners innovators into products and services that can benefit patients and reduce the cost of care. We bring deep expertise in every phase of discovery, application and commercialization.”
Successful industrial enterprises take great science and innovators matched with exceptional business collaborations. Here is one example from the Brigham:
CoStim Pharmaceuticals emerged in 2011 from work being done at BWH related to immunotherapy—the treatment of disease by inducing, enhancing or suppressing an immune response—in the laboratory of Vijay Kuchroo, DVM, PhD, of the Ann Romney Center for Neurologic Diseases. The therapies enabled doctors to regulate a patient’s immune system to attack the infection or pathogen while not becoming overactivated. In just two years, CoStim developed a pipeline of antibody agents for the treatment of cancer and chronic viral diseases and was acquired by a major pharmaceutical company in 2014.
“Working with innovators, thought leaders, entrepreneurs and industry, our job is to enable commercialization of the amazing work done by Partners scientists and investigators,” said Coburn.
Partners Innovation is sponsoring the inaugural World Medical Innovation Forum in Boston April 27–29, which this year will focus on neuroscience. Learn more at worldmedicalinnovation.org.