Ohio Moves Forward with Opioid Technology Challenge

Aug 17, 2017 | News, Newsletter

Lisa Colbert. 
Ohio Development Services Agency.

The Ohio Third Frontier Commission awarded NineSigma, Inc. (Cleveland, Cuyahoga County) $8 million to manage the Ohio Opioid Technology Challenge. The Challenge will focus on getting and advancing new ideas through competition, to find innovative solutions to address prevention, treatment and overdose response.

“The opioid crisis is touching everyone, and we all need to be part of the solution,” said David Goodman, director of the Ohio Development Services Agency and chair of the Ohio Third Frontier Commission. “Taking ideas and advancing technology is one more way to ensure we leave no stone unturned in the fight against addiction.”

NineSigma has managed similar competitions for Federal agencies including NASA and the Department of Homeland Security. Most of the funding will go to monetary prizes to support organizations, chosen through the Challenge, that will develop and advance new technologies to address the crisis.

At the request of Governor John R. Kasich, the Challenge is part of a two-pronged approach to advance new technology in the battle against drug abuse and addiction. The Ohio Opioid Abuse, Prevention and Treatment Technology Initiative aims to accelerate the development of existing, proven ideas that need an extra push to get them to market faster.

In other business, the Ohio Third Frontier commission awarded $1.6 million to Venture for America to support the Fellowship Grant Program. The program supports the placement of recent graduates into Ohio early-stage technology companies, with a focus on minority graduates. The fellowships aim to attract and retain talent in Ohio, and encourage entrepreneurship for the next generation. Venture for America is a national fellowship program that is expanding operations in Ohio.

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