CU system a global leader in innovation

Reuters ranks institution No. 29 among World’s Most Innovative Universities
By Staff

Life-changing research and technology originating at the University of Colorado’s four campuses have landed the university system a high ranking – No. 29 in the world – on the Reuters annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Universities.

Among U.S. institutions, CU is No. 20.

The annual list from the global news agency identifies and ranks the educational institutions doing the most to advance science, invent new technologies and power new markets and industries.

The Reuters report on the CU system points to some 294 patents filed from 2010 to 2015, with 28.6 percent of them granted. That earned a commercial impact score of 55.1, well above the 48.7 average.

For the 2015-16 fiscal year, the University of Colorado system attracted more than $924 million in grants and research awards, and its Technology Transfer offices registered 275 invention disclosures, 112 new patent filings and 193 follow-on filings, and $3.1 million in license revenue.

Reuters points to New York-based biotech firm MeiraGTx’s recent licensing of next-generation gene therapies developed by University of Colorado Boulder biochemistry professor Robert Batey. The technology focuses on using aptamers — sequences of RNA that fold into complex shapes and bind with specific molecules — to treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and cancer. The company also formed an agreement to work with Batey on future research.

Innovation also is being driven at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora. Heart specialists at UCHealth’s Medical Center of the Rockies and University of Colorado Hospital were first in the state to implant the Watchman, a small, umbrella-like device that prevents clots for people with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. It has the potential to change how atrial fibrillation is treated.

The University of Colorado Denver’s Business School is home to the Center for Information Technology Innovation. And within the school’s master of science in information systems degree, the Technological Innovation and Entrepreneurship Specialization helps students gain skills to organize, develop and commercialize information technology-based innovation and create new ventures.

At the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, undergraduates are on a path to future breakthroughs via the Bachelor of Innovation family of degrees, which offer a common innovation core shared across majors in a wide range of areas. Because innovation often happens at the intersection of two or more fields, the Bachelor of Innovation puts students at that intersection.

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