Twenty-one researchers have today completed the seventh University College Dublin Commercialisation Bootcamp, delivered over the last 5 weeks at NovaUCD, the Centre for New Ventures and Entrepreneurs.

The participants on this Bootcamp represent 15 commercial opportunities which are emerging from research programmes currently taking place across the University.

A total of 135 researchers from UCD and the National College of Art and Design (NCAD), a recognised College of UCD, have now completed Bootcamp programmes since 2013.

The objective of the UCD Commercialisation Bootcamp, which runs twice a year, is to strengthen the pipeline of commercial opportunities arising from UCD and NCAD research programmes. The programme aims to equip participating researchers and postgraduate research students with the knowledge, skills and understanding of the commercialisation process.

Among the participants on the latest Bootcamp were Patricia Maguire, an Associate Professor in the UCD School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science and a Fellow at the UCD Conway Institute, and her PhD student Martin Parsons.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) strikes people in the prime of life, often between the age of 20 and 40, and it is estimated that 2.5 million people worldwide suffer with the disease. Current diagnosis of MS is often delayed and a finite window in which treatment is most effective to reduce long-term disability can be missed.

Professor Maguire and Mr Parsons took part on the Bootcamp programme to further develop their commercial ideas, on a faster, less expensive and non-invasive way to diagnose MS based on the results of their research activities at UCD.

Dr Arun Kumar and David Kilroy, academic faculty members in the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine, also took part on the latest Bootcamp.

Embalming fluids containing formaldehyde, a potential carcinogen and toxic environmental pollutant, are routinely used for preserving the cadavers utilised by medical and veterinary students in their anatomy education. With a weekly average of eight to ten hours of anatomy dissection, students and faculty receive a significant exposure to formaldehyde which poses health risks and additional environmental contamination.

Recent EU directives, when fully implemented, will severely limit the future use of formaldehyde, necessitating a new approach for the preservation of cadavers and tissues.

Dr Kumar and Mr Kilroy, researching on alternative chemicals to replace formaldehyde, have developed formaldehyde-free embalming formulations and took part on the Bootcamp programme to further develop ideas to commercialise their research findings.

Speaking at NovaUCD, Brendan Cremen, UCD Director of Enterprise and Commercialisation said, “Participants on the UCD Commercialisation Bootcamp gain an insight into key commercialisation issues such as; clearly identifying the market problem or need and how their proposed solution or technological innovation solves this problem; commercial exploitation routes; who do they need on their team and what are their funding requirements.”

He added, “We are delighted that 135 researchers have now participated on our Bootcamp programmes to date which demonstrates a high-level of interest by UCD and NCAD researchers in the commercialisation process and the translation of their research outputs into products and services which can impact the economy and society.”

Among former participants on the programme are Obeo, an NCAD spin-out company, and NovoGrid, a UCD spin-out company.

Obeo has developed and is selling the Obeo food waste box which takes the fuss out of food waste recycling. NovoGrid has developed a range of grid automation solutions targeted at maximising renewable generation output onto the grid.

To find out more about UCD’s Commercialisation Programmes watch:

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