Rigor and Reproducibility: Minimizing Scientific Risk for Investors

In a recent webinar, Rick Huntress of The Jackson Laboratory identified key roadblocks for moving scientific discoveries through the development pipeline, part of our web series Commercialization A-Z. Click for More and Recording

Rigor and Reproducibility: Presenting Data for Funders and Investors discusses significant evaluation criteria employed by investors, academic publishers, and companies engaged in licensing or acquisition.

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“When a researcher or company enters into an agreement with a licensee or investor, the valuation of their underlying capabilities, intellectual property, and market potential drives the deal,” said Rick Huntress. “Experienced investors and companies value research that demonstrates a drug response, and helps to de-risk their investments from the traditional points of failure,” he says. “Unfortunately, it is still true that majority of drugs fail to move into the clinic after licensing.”

Mitigating Risks from the Beginning:

It’s crucial for researchers to understand and position their data with the investor’s perspective in mind. According to recent analysis, including work by the NIH, a much higher % of peer-reviewed in vivo animal data is unrepeatable than many researchers would expect. This reproducibility gap is creating barriers for trust and makes the need for well-defined models and methods essential.

When a researcher or company enters into an agreement with a licensee or investor, the valuation of their underlying capabilities, intellectual property, and market potential drives the deal.
— Rick Huntress

Animal models and cell lines must be carefully critiqued and selected based on clinically relevant characteristics. With some interesting examples, Rick underscores his guidance that failing to address the criteria investors appreciate in your research design will reduce the appeal of your technology.

The session offers multiple ways to de-risk your discovery and navigate the complex process of attracting more investors through building and presenting robust data.

Thanks, Rick and Eileen!
Rick is on our Advisory Board. At JAX, he works directly with researchers, sponsors, engineers, and data scientists to design and execute early-stage drug efficacy evaluations.

The session is moderated by Eileen Geoghegan, Ph.D., Research Fellow, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, a member of WBP’s Scientific Advisory Board.

Reported by Neha Nigam, Ph.D., and Christopher Kinzel

Neha Nigam, Ph.D., Strategy Project Manager at HITLAB, New York, is passionate about the applied aspects of innovative scientific discoveries and their impact. She strives to be at the interface of business and science and help in the commercialization and advancement of science to its right audience.

Christopher Kinzel, Associate for Communication, is a biochemist with a Professional Science Master’s (PSM) in Molecular Biosciences. He has a research and technology transfer background and is now using his experience in business development and communications.