Nurturing Discovery and Entrepreneurship

RNA DrawingThe RNA Institute at University at Albany teamed up with Waltham, Mass.-based Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc., in 2012 to challenge students to develop commercially viable RNA- technology projects.

The Thermo Fisher Student Venture Fund unites under- graduate and graduate students and postdoctoral fellows from the School of Business, the College of Arts and Sciences and the Institute to develop inventions and submit project proposals aimed at advancing both the technology and commercialization of RNA science.

The Venture Fund is made possible through a $133,900 gift from Thermo Fisher Scientific, a world leader in serving pharmaceutical and biotech companies, hospitals, clinical diagnostic labs, universities, research institutions and government agencies.

Two teams from the six participating are awarded $65,000 each toward the development of proof of principle, market analysis and a business plan, formulated through an entrepreneurship course offered by the business school. Winning projects are based upon scientific merit, market potential, and synergy with existing Thermo Fisher product lines. UAlbany owns the intellectual property created in the projects and Thermo Fisher has the first right to license inventions.

The Venture Fund presents an opportunity to create a collaboration among life scientists and MBA students that catalyzes the effective commercialization of RNA science.