As part of an initiative to extend collaboration between San Antonio’s military medical research missions and the region’s bioscience industry, leaders from the two camps along with entrepreneurs gathered last week to talk about increasing opportunities to work together. One aim of the event was to consider ways to bring more military medical technology to the commercial market, reported Xconomy. San Antonio’s military medical research institutions include the Air Force’s 59th Medical Wing, Brooke Army Medical Center, Naval Medical Research Unit San Antonio and the Army Institute of Surgical Research.
“We have a chance here to create the Silicon Valley of military medicine,” said Sylvain Cardin, chief science director of the Naval Medical Research Unit.
One reason commercializing technologies developed by military researchers is challenging is that the military is more interested in turning a breakthrough into a product that can be used immediately in the field than ensuring its intellectual property rights are protected. But those hurdles can be overcome with persistence, local entrepreneur David Spencer told the conference. “Each of you is working on a problem that no one in the industry cares about,” Spencer said. “If you let them say no to you, they’re just going to say no.”
Navy photo by Jacob Sippel