Catalyst Program

The Catalyst Program accelerates translation of research into products with clinical impact through funding, mentorship, and identification of resources. Catalyst aims to foster academic and industry collaborations as well as enhance education in early translational research and entrepreneurship.

Catalyst Awards

An intramural funding mechanism focused on the development of therapeutics, diagnostics, devices and digital health products. Through funding and an advisor network of 200+ experts from academia and life sciences industry, we help to commercialize your ideas and turn them into products. Watch videos on how to make your project a success.

Deadline for Spring has passed. Please check back again for future cycle soon.

Learn More & Apply

Catalyst Internship

Catalyst Awards Internship Program provides an opportunity to learn about early translational research and the process of translating academic discoveries into valuable products. It runs parallel to the Catalyst Awards Program and allows the students to observe the events of the awards program, the review process, and the unique interactions between the academic researchers and industry experts.

Deadline for Spring has passed. Please check back again for future cycle soon.

Learn More & Apply

Catalyst Case Studies

Case-based teaching has been extensively used in business schools and offers an advantageous model for bridging the gap between concept and practice. To complement existing classroom training in entrepreneurship on campus, and to offer more flexible and modular learning opportunities to academic translational scientists, Catalyst program has developed a series of case studies as a part of the online educational curriculum. We identify the best representative cases (many from UCSF) aligned to the core principles of startup business, and interview the founders of these startup companies, in particular the academic innovators. These cases highlight the challenges and real-world lessons learned from academic translational research to commercially viable products.

Click here to learn more.  

Catalyst + Plus

Catalyst has expanded its program to Catalyst + Plus, a new addition that aims to provide additional support to past Catalyst projects with a successful progress yet still seeking business advice and/or supplemental funding.

UC Center for Accelerated Innovation

A multi-campus funding mechanism for technology development in disease areas of interest to NHLBI.

Learn More

For questions about the Catalyst Program please contact, [email protected] or one of our team members.

Sign up for the Catalyst Newsletter

What We Do

  • Consultation / Mentorship
  • Translational Funding
  • Technology Development

Our Team

  • Charles Hart, PhD


    Charles Hart is the director of the Catalyst program. From 2004 to 2017 he was at Threshold Pharmaceuticals and responsible for both in vitro and in vivo preclinical translational studies. He was also project leader for the global clinical development program for the hypoxia-targeted anticancer drug evofosfamide (TH-302), a partnership with Merck KGaA. Prior to joining Threshold, Charles was Senior Director of Biology at...

    Read more
  • Roopa Ramamoorthi, PhD

    Program Director, Devices and Therapeutics

    Roopa Ramamoorthi brings a diverse scientific background in drug development, bacteriology, biotechnology, and engineering. Prior to joining UCSF, Roopa was Associate Director Partnering and Scientific Affairs at BIO Ventures for Global Health, where her focus was putting together collaborations between academic, non profit and pharmaceutical organizations to accelerate the development of drugs, vaccines and diagnostics for Neglected...

    Read more
  • Joseph Wagner

    Director, UC Drug Discovery Consortium

    Dr. Wagner joins the UC-DDC after over 15 years in senior leadership roles in the biotechnology industry. He was the Chief Executive Officer of two publicly traded companies: OncoCyte, a company focused on the development of blood-based cancer diagnostics, and BriaCell Therapeutics, which focused on the development of a cell-based cancer immunotherapy. He also served as President and Chief Technology Officer of Cell Targeting, a regenerative...

    Read more
  • Nathaniel Prorok

    Program Coordinator

    Nathaniel Prorok brings a diverse and wide ranging skill set and experience to the Catalyst Program team. After undergraduate studies in Physical Therapy and Athletic Training at Loyola Marymount University, Nathaniel worked with the Jesuit...

    Read more