Biomedical catalyst 2017 round 3: early stage

Key Features

Micro, small or medium-size UK companies can apply for a share of £10 million to work alone or with others on solving healthcare challenges.

Programme:     Innovate UK

Award:     Up to £2.8m

Opens: 31st Jul 2017

Closes: 11th Oct 2017

! This scheme is now closed

The aim of this competition is to support the development of technologies and processes including:

  • disease prevention and proactive management of health and chronic conditions
  • earlier and better detection and diagnosis of disease, leading to better patient outcomes
  • tailored treatments that either change the underlying disease or offer potential cures

The biomedical catalyst has 4 types of funding award designed to support small to medium enterprises (SMEs) that are developing a product or process. It helps them progress from initial concept through to late-stage development.

Each type of award has a different scope and you should apply only if your project fits a specific competition scope.

This is an early-stage competition which is looking to fund projects that enable SMEs to complete a data package sufficient to support the subsequent testing of their product or process in a clinical setting (or other relevant environment).

The early-stage project can include:

  • experimental evaluation (lab scale)
  • use of in vitro and in vivo models (but not studies in humans or patients) to evaluate proof of concept and safety testing to appropriate regulatory standards
  • exploration of potential production mechanisms
  • early-stage prototyping
    product development planning
  • intellectual property protection


You must:

  • be a UK-based SME to lead the project
  • work on your own or with other UK SMEs or research organisations.
  • carry out your project work in the UK
  • be ready to start your project by 1 June 2018 and finish by 1 June 2021

Your project may focus on technical feasibility or industrial research. This will depend on the challenge.

Projects should last between one and 3 years.

Total project costs can range between £250,000 and £4 million.

For technical feasibility studies and industrial research, you could get up to 70% of your eligible project costs if you are an SME.

For experimental development projects you could get up to 45% of your eligible project costs if you are an SME.