Health Innovation Challenge Fund: Repurposing of Technologies and Medicines

Repurposing products is not always commercially attractive, although important medical benefits could be gained, especially from cross-fertilisation between different disciplines which often results in innovative new solutions to previously intractable problems. Proposals are especially invited that will utilise technologies and learning from non-medical settings to develop novel devices and therapies.

Health Innovation Challenge Fund: Repurposing of technologies and medicines

Key points/focus:

Applications are invited that either:

  • will repurpose approved medicinal products, medical devices, diagnostic tests or materials for use in new therapeutic indications or disease states
  • recombine or reuse pre-existing drugs or devices for various diseases, including rare or orphan ones
  • are anticipated to encounter a low regulatory hurdle and rapid progression to clinical use and adoption
  • undertake validation or safety studies and early or small pilot scale efficacy trials
  • repurpose technologies developed within other sectors (for example, the automotive, aerospace, military or computer gaming sectors) for medical use
Specifically out of scope for this call are large scale clinical efficacy trials.

Other comments:

All proposals must meet the essential requirements of the HICF scheme and address at least one of its specific themes, addressing either a single theme within the current call or spanning several themes. Project teams must contain strong clinical representation and will preferably be clinically led. Projects must advance to first testing in man within the duration of the HICF project and have the potential to benefit patients within the following 3-5 years having demonstrated efficacy and received regulatory approvals. Projects must have already demonstrated ‘proof-of-principle’ supported by experimental and, where feasible, in vivo data. Projects must include a plan to progress the technology or intervention to the stage at which it is sufficiently validated, de-risked or developed to be attractive to commercial organisations, not-for-profit organisations and/or healthcare providers. Proposals must include a commercial strategy that takes into account the regulatory pathway, IP management, commercial barriers, health economics and routes to market. The HICF will not fund

  • early stage/ basic research
  • clinical trials
  • health delivery research by the NHS
  • delivery or provision of health services by or within the NHS
  • projects that could secure funding from industry or venture capital
  • drug development
  • regenerative medicine or vaccine development programs

Applications Procedure:

Forms and guidance notes can be found on the Wellcome Trust website.

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