Bridging Innovations: From Research to Reality

In this episode, Dr. Lydia McClure, the newly appointed CEO of Research Bridge Partners, joins host Deborah Westphal to discuss the journey from laboratory discoveries to impactful startups. The conversation spans Lydia’s personal career path, the focus of her organization on the middle of America, and the strategies used to identify and support groundbreaking researchers.


Lydia’s Transition to CEO: Insights into Lydia’s recent appointment as CEO, her vision for Research Bridge Partners, and the mission to help faculty research evolve into successful companies.

Lydia’s Career Pathway: From her childhood inspirations at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to significant roles in government and the investment sector, Lydia shares her comprehensive career journey.

Focus on Mid-America: Why Research Bridge Partners is dedicated to fostering biomedical and life sciences innovation specifically in the central United States, compared to the more saturated coasts.

Identifying Innovators: How the organization utilizes advanced data analytics and machine learning to find promising researchers and support their paths to commercialization.

Navigating the Investment Landscape: Lydia discusses the early-stage investment challenges and the nuances of bridging the language gap between scientists and venture capitalists.

Preparing Scholars for Commercial Realities: The tailored guidance provided to Toffler Scholars to refine their research focus based on market and commercial potentials.

Ethical Considerations and Funding Models: A deep dive into the ethical dilemmas researchers face and the diverse funding strategies available to translate findings into commercial ventures.

Future of Funding in Biomedical Research: Predictions about upcoming investment trends in life sciences, influenced by the industry’s recent highs and lows.

The Importance of Collaboration: The critical role of strategic partnerships in advancing neuroscientific research and other biomedical innovations.

Looking Ahead: Lydia’s thoughts on the future of gene and cell therapies, AI, and the potential to revolutionize treatment for rare diseases.

This episode with Dr. Lydia McClure provides invaluable insights into the complexities of transforming academic research into viable startups, emphasizing the importance of strategic investment and ethical considerations in today’s scientific landscape.