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FasterCures Rewards Two InnoCentive Solvers for Innovative Ideas to Accelerate Medical Research
Date:3/12/2009

Challenge Sought Ideas to Encourage Investment and Collaboration in Biomarker Research, Leading to Faster Medical Solutions

WALTHAM, Mass., March 12 /PRNewswire/ -- InnoCentive, Inc., the global open innovation marketplace, and FasterCures/The Center for Accelerating Medical Solutions, today announced that two InnoCentive Solvers have been awarded $5,000 each for solutions they submitted to a Challenge that FasterCures posted to InnoCentive's online network in September 2008. This Challenge sought novel approaches or incentives to reduce the first-mover disadvantage for companies to invest more in biomarker research and qualification, while not limiting their availability to others.

Biomarkers are an increasingly critical element in accelerating medical research, especially as the era of personalized medicine unfolds. A biomarker is "any characteristic that can be objectively measured and evaluated as an indicator of normal biological or pathogenic processes, or of pharmacological response to a therapeutic intervention" (Institute of Medicine, USA). Accurate and reliable biomarkers can shave years and millions of dollars from the research process. Biomarkers are also an example of a classic "first-mover disadvantage" where the first mover spends all the time and money to discover a biomarker, and its competitors reap the benefits. As a result, companies often patent the biomarkers they discover and utilize them in their own research, which can limit their benefit to the rest of the research community, despite the fact that biomarkers frequently have a very broad range of potential clinical and non-clinical applications.

FasterCures selected the two winning submissions from Steve Donoho, Ph.D. and Susan Levinson, Ph.D., following a review of 15 qualified proposals. Both
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SOURCE InnoCentive, Inc.
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