The Wellcome Trust is a committed funder of translational research. A principal means by which it expresses that commitment is through the provision of Translation Awards and Strategic Translation Awards. These forms of funding have been available through Technology Transfer since 2003.
To enhance the effectiveness of our funding, we are evolving our mechanisms for support. Under the title of the ‘Translation Fund’, we will consolidate the budget allocation for Translation Awards and Strategic Translation Awards, announce areas of translational R&D we would like to highlight for particular attention, and simplify the application process, while extending eligibility.
The new fund will be open to academic groups, companies and not-for-profit organisations worldwide. All approaches for funding will be managed in the same way, irrespective of the type of organisation or geographic location.
Prospective applicants will be encouraged to discuss the suitability of their product development concept with a member of the Technology Transfer team. Suitable proposals will be taken forward for review by the funding committee as preliminary applications and, if successful, as full applications.
Post-award management will be along the lines of our current awards. Unsolicited applications, as permitted under the original Translation Award scheme, will no longer be considered.
The final deadline for the Translation Awards will be extended to 28 August, and the new scheme is set to launch in September 2012. The first strategic highlight will also be announced in September.
The Translation Fund complements the Trust’s existing portfolio of translational research schemes, namely Seeding Drug Discovery, the Health Innovation Challenge Fund, the Pathfinders Awards and the R&D for Affordable Healthcare in India initiative.
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