UT’s technology transfer team learns new ways to help researchers

June 15, 2012 | UToday
By Anne Izzi

Staff from UT’s Technology Transfer Office recently attended the Association of University Technology Managers’ annual meeting, a networking and professional development conference that drew nearly 1,700 academic and industry technology transfer professionals, venture investors and intellectual property experts.

Technology Transfer staff attended educational sessions and one-on-one meetings with industry representatives, gaining insight into additional ways to assist UT’s faculty, staff and students in the successful transfer of creations, discoveries and innovations developed at the University to the commercial sector and to make an impact by improving the health and prosperity of the worldwide community.

Sessions covered a variety of topics related to technology transfer, such as changes to the U.S. patent system, web design and the use of social media, and drafting and negotiating research and licensing agreements.

In addition, several sessions highlighted the many benefits to be realized by commercializing technologies and novel research tools developed at academic institutions.

Research tools are defined as the full range of resources and techniques used in the laboratory or clinical setting; these include methods of treatment or diagnosis, assays, reagents, cell lines, animal models, antibodies, proteins and peptides.

Research tools are valuable in the UT laboratories and clinics, but they also may benefit global scientific research, and making these research tools available to others should be given consideration.

Many UT researchers do not realize that providing their research tools for license also can offer significant personal financial benefits, as well as benefits to their laboratories and academic departments.

For example, Technology Transfer staff attended a session discussing a novel mouse model developed at a university that was licensed for $100,000 annually.

According to UT policy, in the case of a single inventor, such an agreement would result in annual payments of $40,000 directly to the inventor; $10,000 to support his or her continuing research; $5,000 each to the dean of the college and chair of the department in which the inventor has primary appointment for use toward college/departmental funding; and the remaining balance would be retained by the institution to support the commercialization of university creations, discoveries and innovations.

While the potential for financial gain is always a possibility, the prime motivation and value to UT in pursuing technology transfer is in making the important resources and tools developed at the University available outside of the institution to improve the human condition.

Many of the creations, discoveries and innovations developed at UT — including software and mobile apps, theatrical sets and manuscripts, music and art, scholarly works and innovations from the social sciences, business, physical science and engineering departments — would benefit the worldwide community if successfully transferred.

Faculty, staff and students in all areas of academics — including those outside the physical and life science areas — are encouraged to submit their novel research tools, creations, discoveries and innovations to the Technology Transfer Office.

For more information about how the Technology Transfer Office can assist in protecting intellectual property rights or commercializing work developed at UT, call Mark Fox at 419.530.6224 or email mark.fox@utoledo.edu.

Click to access the login or register cheese