Mayo's Florida campus is celebrating 20 years of research this year, including major contributions to intellectual property development -- patented inventions and discoveries -- ranging from transgenic mice to medical devices. Writer Matt Derechin contributes this overview:
The numbers from the first 20 years of research at our Florida campus clearly demonstrate this aspect of our research. During those two decades, Florida staff members have participated in nearly 293 inventions from Mayo Clinic. In total, these inventions have generated more than $36 million for Mayo Clinic. In addition to new animal models of diseases, new diagnostic tools and other innovations, Florida staff members have helped design new surgical equipment and an orthopedic device sold by a major manufacturer.
While collaboration is key to producing these innovations, many Florida researchers are especially proud of the contribution they make on their own to Mayo Clinic’s intellectual property inventory. Despite our relatively small size, last year staff members here contributed to more than 12 percent of the intellectual property created at Mayo.
The future also seems promising. With benefactor support, Mayo recently established the Discovery and Innovation Fund to help researchers move discoveries from the laboratory and into patient care. Staff members apply for the fund’s support, and recipients are chosen after a competitive, peer-review. Several physicians and scientists in Florida have submitted winning proposals, receiving support for projects developing new treatments for depression, female incontinence and Alzheimer’s disease.
"It’s another unbelievable aspect of the research transformation that has occurred at our campus," says Bernadette Cusack. She should know. Not only was she one of the first members of our research team here; she is now the intellectual property liaison for the campus, where she plays a key role in helping researchers commercialize their discoveries.