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Challenge Cleveland Clinic: Improving Endothelial Cell Recovery
Cleveland Clinic: Improving Endothelial Cell Recovery
STATUS: Awarded
Active Solvers: 174
Posted: Nov 05 2013
Challenge ID: 9933159
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Endothelial cell dysfunction plays a role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes, and pulmonary hypertension. Research in these areas hinges upon successful isolation and growth of endothelial progenitor cells (EPC). These cells may be obtained directly from diseased tissue or isolated from peripheral blood samples. To maintain maximum viability, EPC must be processed and plated within two hours of a blood draw. The challenge is to identify a method that preserves EPC and allows processing to take place the next day while maintaining the yield and viability of the cells.

This Challenge requires only a written proposal.


Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a chronic and currently incurable disease that affects the walls of the arteries that carry blood to the lungs. In PAH, these arteries constrict abnormally leading to increased blood pressure and extra strain on the heart. Some forms of PAH are hereditary and research at the Cleveland Clinic focuses on characterizing signaling defects resulting from genetic mutations. Experiments require endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) isolated from peripheral blood samples. The EPC are exquisitely sensitive and must be processed and cultured within two hours of a blood draw, thereby limiting the available patient pool. Cleveland Clinic is searching for a new method to preserve EPC in blood, so that samples can be shipped overnight for processing the next day. 

Dr. Micheala Aldred of the Cleveland Clinic Genomic Medicine Institute is a translational genetics researcher with a specific interest in pulmonary arterial hypertension. Cleveland Clinic strives to make scientific advances that will benefit patient care and support outside relationships that promise public benefit.

This is a Theoretical Challenge that requires only a written proposal to be submitted.  The Challenge award will be contingent upon theoretical evaluation of the proposal by the Seeker.

To receive an award, the Solvers must transfer to the Seeker their exclusive Intellectual Property (IP) rights to the solution.  However, the Seeker may be willing to consider a licensing agreement for a partial award if exclusive IP cannot be transferred by the Solver.

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An InnoCentive Theoretical Challenge builds upon an idea but is not yet a proof of concept. A solution to a Theoretical Challenge will solidify the Solver's concept with detailed descriptions, specifications and requirements necessary to bringing a good idea closer to becoming an actual product or service.

This Challenge is a Theoretical-IP Transfer Challenge, meaning that Solvers must relinquish all rights to the Intellectual Property (IP) for which they are awarded. By contrast, Theoretical-Licensing means that the Seeker is requesting non-exclusive rights to use the winning solution. For these forms of a Theoretical Challenge, Solvers that do not win retain the rights to their solution after the evaluation period is complete. The Seeker retains no rights to any IP not awarded.

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