In an innovative collaboration designed to speed the process of drug discovery, Pfizer and the University of California, San Diego health sciences report that UC San Diego has joined the ranks of other life science research institutions across the country as part of Pfizer's Centers for Therapeutic Innovation (CTI).
CTI differs from other such programs that seek to drive innovation in drug discovery by providing a non-traditional business model based on continuous collaboration and transparency, one which offers well-defined incentives for success to its participants. For example, as part of the CTI program, Pfizer will provide UC San Diego researchers access to some of its antibody libraries and technologies, as well as funding to support the pre-clinical and clinical development of sponsored programs. CTI partners receive intellectual property rights and are granted milestone payments and royalties tied to the advancement of mutually agreed-upon drug candidates. The potential value to UC San Diego over the five-year agreement could exceed $50 million.
"Public-private partnerships are increasingly important in science, especially in an era of limited federal grant support, when new resources are needed to commercialize innovations related to health care," said UC San Diego chancellor Marye Anne Fox.
David Brenner, MD, vice chancellor for health sciences and dean of the school of medicine at UC San Diego, said that more research collaborations between academia and industry will be critical in the face of the uncertain support from the state and federal government.
CTI laboratory staff will include Pfizer employees plus leading basic and translational science investigators and doctoral candidates from UC San Diego school of medicine and the Skaggs school of pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences, along with other UCSD researchers in biological sciences, bioengineering and at the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology.