Published: April 25, 2022

Many CU Boulder researchers have created an innovation that can impact commercial sectors and developed a startup company. Now, they are ready to find funding to fuel the company’s growth. That's where the Center for Translational Research (CTR) can help. Since 2020, 50 ventures have worked with this crucial on-campus asset to seek out non-dilutive funding for their companies.

The CTR is a campus-wide resource for faculty, researchers and staff who are seeking non-dilutive funding, especially Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR/STTR) awards, to translate their university inventions into a startup company.

CTR advises teams on best practices for seeking non-dilutive capital for their startup companies, provides market research and industry analysis and offers proposal editing and critique. Ultimately, the Center helps to increase the chance of receiving funding. This is the next step for ventures who have declared their intellectual property, established a venture and are ready to begin their fundraising efforts.

MycoBacteria Therapeutcis found macro growth after enlisting help from CTR

“We kind of stumbled upon CTR and its services after talking with others,” said Adam Bohr, co-founder and CFO of MycoBacteria Therapuetics. “We were talking about SBIR and STTR awards, and Jacob’s name came up as a resource.”

MycoBacteria Therapeutics was formed around 20 years of research on mycobacteria, conducted by Chris Lowry, PhD. These novel bacteria can help regulate the immune system, reduce inflammation and improve quality of life. MycoBacteria Therapeutics was formed in the hope of offering an integrative approach to treating complex diseases with these crucial microbes.

After connecting with the MycoBacteria group, the Center conducted a full market research report in collaboration with the Business Research Division, led by Brian Lewandowski in the Leeds School of Business. The report included customer discovery and value proposition generation as well as data concerning available market sectors. As non-dilutive grants were identified, the Center edited proposals for each grant application to meet individual requirements.

“As we find new ways to fund our company, Jacob has always been a vital resource on what would be best for us and which grants to pursue,” said Bohr.

With the help of CTR, MycoBacteria Therapeutics has raised around $850,000 just from STTR grants alone.

“CTR is really a great resource for companies, especially young ones that are just beginning just like we were. We can attribute a lot of our growth to the Center,” said Chris Lowry, PhD, co-founder and CSO.

On top of STTR grants, MycoBacteria has been introduced to multiple capital opportunities through Venture Partners at CU Boulder and the New Venture Challenge. With their funds, MycoBacteria looks to develop a probiotic or postbiotic drug for gut health.

Services offered by CTR

SBIR/STTR Proposal Development and Strategy Marketing Research and Industry Analysis Proposal Writing Support

 - Locating appropriate grant mechanisms for given technology and principal investigator

 - Advising on team formation, company formation and proposal topic strategy

 - Coordinating proposal preparation schedule, materials, preliminary work, and market research

- Coaching research teams in customer discovery and value proposition generation

 - Researching market sectors and differentiating factors of inventions

 - Detailing overarching industry trends and forces

 - Providing market research and industry analysis

 - Aligning the draft proposal with solicitation requirements

 - Copy editing the draft proposal for grammatical suggestions and edits

 - Advising on proposal structure and arguments

To learn more about the Center, visit their website or email

Eligibility Requirements

To receive services through CTR, ventures must either:

  • Own technology must be rooted in intellectual property filed by Venture Partners at CU Boulder.
  • The SBIR/STTR award must have a sub-award contract with the university to perform substantial activity at CU Boulder.