MTRAC Life Sciences Award Program


Welcome to the Proposal Submission Process for the Michigan Translational Research and Commercialization for Life Sciences (MTRAC) Hub. MTRAC Life Sciences provides resources to support translational projects in the life sciences with high commercial potential. MTRAC Life Sciences is administered by Innovation Partnerships and Fast Forward Medical Innovation at the University of Michigan, with generous sponsorship from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. This program is open to investigators at any public university, non-profit research center, or health system in the state of Michigan. MTRAC Life Sciences includes research funding for late-stage translational studies, regulatory guidance, and limited customer discovery, as well as mentorship from industry and investment experts. MTRAC Life Sciences will be focused on 4 specific market segments, or “verticals”: medical devices, diagnostics, therapeutics, and digital health/IT.

The MTRAC award offers 1-year of funding in the $100,000-$250,000 range (direct cost), with all budgets requiring a tiered cost-share from the investigator/institution based on institutional research expenditures as follows:

  • 50% of the direct costs for applicants from University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Wayne State University, health systems, and non-profit research centers (i.e. $100k project = $50k from sponsor and $50k from investigator/institution)
  • 25% of the direct costs for applicants from Michigan Technological University (i.e. $100k project = $75k from sponsor and $25k from investigator/institution)
  • 10% of the direct costs for applicants from all other academic institutions (i.e. $100k project = $90k from sponsor and $10k from investigator/institution)

Applicants are anticipated to be 12-24 months from a University “exit” in the form of a license into a start-up company or to an existing revenue-generating company. Award winners will receive mentorship from industry and investment experts.

Proposals to MTRAC Life Sciences must be submitted to the “Innovation Hub – MTRAC for Life Sciences (2024)” competition by 11:59pm on Thursday, October 12, 2023. The proposal must be uploaded as a PDF conforming to the page and format specifications outlined below.


MTRAC Award Process Overview:

  • Prior to submission: it is strongly suggested that investigators interested in applying contact Meghan Cuddihy (, 734-763-0614) to discuss the technology, its stage of development, and suitability for the MTRAC award.
  • Proposal Submission: Proposal submission and review will be conducted using InfoReady. Visit and click on the “Innovation Hub – MTRAC for Life Sciences (2024)” competition for application instructions, application templates, and to upload your proposal. Completed proposals must be uploaded to the MTRAC InfoReady site by 11:59pm ET on October 12, 2023.
  • Mid-October 2023: Semi-finalists selected by University of Michigan internal triage group for eligibility criteria, and proposals sent to Oversight Committee for review.
  • Mid-November 2023: MTRAC Life Sciences Oversight Committee review of semi-finalist proposals to select finalists. Finalists will be notified within one week of this meeting and invited to make an in-person presentation to the Oversight Committee in late-January 2024 in Ann Arbor, MI. Project teams will work with the Commercialization Program Director to review Oversight Committee feedback and develop their “pitch” presentations.
  • Late-January 2024: Finalists present their projects to the Oversight Committee.
  • Late-January 2024: Funding decisions are made and selected projects are notified.
  • April 1, 2024: Funding begins.