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From innovation to impact

Biomedical research at Harvard has the potential to improve countless lives, revolutionize industries, and create immense social and economic value. Translating this early-stage research into compelling, validated technologies requires careful planning, focused resources, and a tireless pursuit of results.

The Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator guides Harvard scientists toward translational impact by providing strategic, monetary, and advisory support for well-defined research projects. Our work is expressly aimed at hastening the pace of scientific progress, developing a shared vision with partners in industry, and ensuring that lifesaving technologies born at Harvard will become new products that impact the world for the better.

Read about the research projects recently funded or find out how to apply for funding in 2022.

Accelerating innovation to transform medicine

In this video created by the Blavatnik Family Foundation in 2020, learn how the targeted funding and strategic advising of the Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator at Harvard University is helping Harvard scientists to understand disease and advance new treatments that may save lives.

Call for proposals.

Find out how to apply for funding in January or July 2022.

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Positioned for Impact

The Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator was established through a major gift from the Blavatnik Family Foundation.


Cover of the Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator overview brochure.

Proving the value of big ideas

The Accelerator seeks to support innovative, investigator-initiated research, and to develop preliminary observations into robust intellectual property positions. Its primary goal is to advance technologies to the point where an industry partnership can commence.

We employ a proven strategy of selecting projects with significant commercial potential, and providing financial support and domain expertise to fuel translational research, proof-of-concept, and technological development. We simultaneously build relationships with industry, generating partnerships and licensing opportunities, and facilitating startup formation and investment.

Learn more about our tried-and-true approach in the Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator brochure (PDF).


The Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator Advisory Committee

The Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator Advisory Committee comprises academic thought leaders and accomplished members of the biopharma and life-science venture communities. This distinguished group provides critical input on project selection and oversight, helping to ensure that research work plans have been designed to drive results, add value, and effectively address key criteria for licensing.

KEVIN BITTERMAN, PhD
Partner
Atlas Ventures

ALEXIS BORISY
Chairman and CEO
EQRx
Previously Partner, Third Rock Ventures

JON CLARDY, PhD
Hsien Wu and Daisy Yen Wu Professor of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology
Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

ANTHONY MANNING, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer
Momenta Pharma

DEB PALESTRANT, PhD, MBA
Partner, Head of 4:59
5AM Ventures

ARLENE SHARPE, PhD
George Fabyan Professor of Comparative Pathology, Chair of the Department of Immunology
Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

STEVE TREGAY, PhD
Managing Partner
Mission BioCapital

STACIE WENINGER, PhD
President
F-Prime Biomedical Research Initiative


New projects in 2021 and 2022

In labs across Harvard University, 17 innovative research projects received new support from the Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator in 2021 and 2022. Our investigators are advancing crucial translational work in the areas of cell therapy and regenerative medicine, infectious disease, inflammatory disease, metabolic diseases, neuroscience, oncology, and other areas. These projects are driving rapidly toward commercial partnership. To learn more, please contact us.

Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine

Identifying Therapeutic Targets for Regenerative Wound Healing
Ya-Chieh Hsu
Professor of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences / Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Electrical Maturation of Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes
Richard T. Lee
Professor of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences / Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School; Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Infectious Disease

Development of a Small-Molecule Inhibitor of a Herpes Simplex Virus Protein that Targets Lytic and Latent Infection
David Knipe
Higgins Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Inflammatory Disease

Vaginal Lactobacilli-Secreted Anti-Inflammatory Compounds
Smita Gopinath
Assistant Professor of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Evaluation of a Forgotten Drug Candidate for Unmet Need in Inflammatory Disease
Timothy Mitchison
Hasib Sabbagh Professor of Systems Biology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Metabolic Diseases

Identification of Prolyl Hydroxylase Domain 3 (PHD3) Inhibitors
Marcia Haigis
Professor of Cell Biology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Neuroscience

Validation of Targets for Treatment of Mood Disorders
Bernardo Sabatini
Alice and Rodman W. Moorhead III Professor of Neurobiology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Oncology

Small‐Molecule Screening Targeting an Important Ubiquitin Ligase Huwe1 In Cancers
Ying Lu
Assistant Professor of Systems Biology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Cellular Backpacks for Macrophage Cancer Immunotherapy
Samir Mitragotri
Hiller Professor of Bioengineering and Hansjorg Wyss Professor of Biologically Inspired Engineering, Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences; Core Faculty member, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering

A Rapidly Diversifiable Trioxacarcin Pharmacophore as a Novel Antibody-Drug Conjugate Warhead
Andrew G. Myers
Amory Houghton Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Enhancing Mitobiogenesis by Targeting ME2
David Scadden
Professor of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences / Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School; Gerald and Darlene Jordan Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Anti-Cancer and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Novel Cereblon Ligands
Christina Woo
Associate Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Other Areas

Novel Platform with Increased Hyaluronidase Expression for Hyperproduction of Pharmaceutical Grade Hyaluronic Acid (HA) and for the Use in Therapeutics and Cosmetics
Philippe Cluzel
Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences; Gordon McKay Professor of Applied Physics, Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Development of DDR2 Inhibitors to Treat and Prevent Post-Traumatic Osteoarthritis
Yefu Li
Harvard School of Dental Medicine

Aqueous Fluids with Permanent Microporosity for In Vivo Gas Delivery
Jarad Mason
Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

A Platform for Ultrahigh Throughput Interrogation for Cell Engineering
Johan Paulsson
Professor of Systems Biology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School

Developing Non-Covalent Inhibitors to Target the NRF2-KEAP1 Interaction for NRF2 Activation
Gerhard Wagner
Elkan Blout Professor of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School