KidneyX Plans Artificial Kidney Prize; Redesign Dialysis Phase II Open for Submissions

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KidneyX was established in April 2018 as a public-private partnership between the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) with a mission to accelerate innovation in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of kidney diseases.

KidneyX aims to achieve this mission through a series of competitive prize competitions. The first competition hosted by KidneyX is a phased competition centered on improving dialysis. Redesign Dialysis Phase I asked innovators to accelerate the development and commercialization of next-generation dialysis products, specifically to design possible solutions or solution components that can replicate normal kidney functions and improve patient quality of life. Fifteen winners were selected from among 167 submissions, and a total prize amount of $1,125,000 was distributed.

Announced and open for submission as of November 18, 2019, Redesign Dialysis Phase II challenges participants to build and test prototype solutions, or components of solutions, that can replicate normal kidney functions or improve dialysis access. The total prize pool amounts to $1,500,000 and up to 3 recipients may be selected. Entries must be submitted by January 31, 2020.

To further advance innovation in the field, a Request for Information (RFI) has been issued outlining an Artificial Kidney Prize. This prize is being put forth in order to fulfill the goals set by KidneyX and Section 6 of the Executive Order on Advancing American Kidney Health. The Artificial Kidney Prize intends to build off Redesign Dialysis and to advance the development of an artificial kidney that can replace physiological kidney function to sustain life and improve patient quality of life. The RFI asks for constituents’ feedback on the following questions, and welcomes additional comments:

  1. How would you prioritize the modular challenges described in section I.C, Scope of the Prize Competition? Are there additional challenges that should be considered?

  2. For patients and care partners: What criteria should the Artificial Kidney Prize use for judging a solution’s ability to improve the quality of life for patients?

  3. What criteria would you propose for award of the moonshot prize, to both ensure that all promising approaches are considered on their merits and that the field advances beyond the current state toward human testing of an artificial kidney?

  4. What forms of technical or operational support would enable you to participate, or accelerate your development timeline, in either track of the Artificial Kidney Prize?

  5. If you entered the Artificial Kidney Prize, would you be more interested in participating in the moonshot track or modular track? What would you consider in deciding which track to enter?

Feedback on the RFI must be received on or before December 13, 2019, to be considered. Responses may be emailed to KidneyX@hhs.gov.

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