Welcome to KidneyX

At ASN Kidney Week 2017, Bruce D. Greenstein, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Chief Technology Officer, highlighted the need for innovation in the nephrology space and announced HHS' commitment to launch a Kidney Innovation Accelerator.

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What is KidneyX?

The Kidney Innovation Accelerator (KidneyX) is a public-private partnership to accelerate innovation in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of kidney diseases. KidneyX seeks to improve the lives of the 850 million people worldwide currently affected by kidney diseases by accelerating the development of drugs, devices, biologics and other therapies across the spectrum of kidney care including:

Prevention

Diagnostics

Treatment

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Guiding KidneyX

Mission

Accelerate innovation in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of kidney diseases

Principles

  • Patient-Centered Ensure all product development is patient-centered
  • Urgent Create a sense of urgency to meet the needs of people with kidney diseases
  • Achievable Ground in scientifically-driven technology development
  • Catalytic Reduce regulatory and financial risks to catalyze investment in kidney space
  • Collaborative Foster multidisciplinary collaboration including innovators throughout science and technology, the business community, patients, care partners, and other stakeholders
  • Additive Address barriers to innovation public/private sectors do not otherwise
  • Sustainable Invest in a diverse portfolio to balance risk and sustain KidneyX

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How will KidneyX Succeed?

Building off the success of similar public-private accelerators, KidneyX will engage a community of researchers, innovators, and investors to bring breakthrough therapies to patients by:

Development

Driving patient access to disruptive technologies via competitive, non-dilutive funding to innovators.

Coordination

Providing a clearer and less expensive path to bringing products to patients and their families.

Urgency

Creating a sense of urgency by spotlighting the immediate needs of patients and their families.

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Kidney Disease Statistics

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A typical in-center hemodialysis patient spends 12 hours a week attached to a machine

Source: Report to Congressional Requesters: National Institutes of Health – Kidney Disease Research Funding and Priority Setting; United States Government Accountability Office; December 2016.

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Among patients ages 18-54 years old at the start of dialysis, 93% were classified as disabled

Source: Erickson K, et al. Employment among Patients Starting Dialysis in the United States. Clinc J. Am Soc Nephrol 13: 265-273, 2018.

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Each year, more than 100,000 Americans begin hemodialysis as a result of kidney failure

Source: United States Renal Data System. 2017 USRDS annual data report: Epidemiology of kidney disease in the United States. National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Bethesda, MD, 2017.

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40 Million adult Americans are currently classified as having chronic kidney disease

Source: Report to Congressional Requesters: National Institutes of Health – Kidney Disease Research Funding and Priority Setting; United States Government Accountability Office; December 2016.

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Every day 13 patients die waiting for a kidney transplant

Source: Mitchell K. For Transplant Patients, 'This is Your Statue of Liberty'. GW Magazine. http://magazine.gwu.edu/for-transplant-patients. Published December 2, 2016. Accessed March 2018.

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Of Stage 4 CKD patients, 48% were unaware of their severe CKD

Source: United States Renal Data System. 2017 USRDS annual data report: Epidemiology of kidney disease in the United States. National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Bethesda, MD, 2017.

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African-Americans are 3.5x more likely to develop kidney failure

Source: Kidney Disease Statistics for the United States. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/kidney-disease. Published December 2016. Accessed March 2018.

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Hispanics are 1.5x more likely to develop kidney failure

Source: Kidney Disease Statistics for the United States. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/kidney-disease. Published December 2016. Accessed March 2018.

What's Next?

KidneyX's first round of seed funding will focus on accelerating the commercialization of next-generation dialysis products.

KidneyX is targeting late 2018 as the first opportunity to apply to participate.

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KidneyX In The News

President's Column: Kidney Innovation Accelerator

Mark D. Okusa, MD, FASN, President of the American Society of Nephrology, catalogues the need for innovation in nephrology and the potential of KidneyX to accelerate the development and commercialization of kidney therapeutics and improve the lives of patients with kidney diseases.

February 1, 2018

Trump Administration Proposes 'Kidney Innovation Accelerator Program'

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has recently taken a critical step that will hopefully increase kidney disease research and therapy integration to the level it needs to be.

December 1, 2017

HHS to Launch Initiative Encouraging Innovation in Kidney Care

The Department of Health and Human Services announced last week that it will establish a public-private fund to help move new technology forward in treating kidney disease.

November 7, 2017

KidneyX Accelerator Raises Hopes for Innovation in Kidney Space

Innovation in kidney care promises to be a significant theme in the kidney community in 2018, and it is hoped, well beyond.

January 5, 2018

Sparking Innovation to Improve the Lives of People with Kidney Disease

In February of 2017, the VA and ASN convened the inaugural Kidney Innovation Summit at the BAH Innovation Center in Washington D.C. to identify opportunities for innovation in the care of people with CKD.

September 7, 2017

VA's Kidney Innovation Summit: Seeding Opportunities for Better Health

The Kidney Innovation Summit, convened by the VA Center for Innovation and ASN, brought together over 150 great minds to think through new approaches to prevent and treat kidney disease.

February 21, 2017

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is KidneyX?

The Kidney Innovation Accelerator (KidneyX) is a public-private partnership between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and American Society of Nephrology (ASN) to accelerate breakthroughs to promising new therapies for people with kidney diseases through a series of prize competitions. Established in 2018, KidneyX will address some of the barriers innovators commonly identify as they look to bring products to market for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment in kidney care by creating a better collaborative relationship among patients, health professionals, innovators, and government. KidneyX will do this specifically by:

1) Providing merit-based, non-dilutive funding to promising innovators through a series of prize competitions;

2) Encouraging better coordination across the HHS agencies including with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to help clarify the path toward commercialization and patient access to innovative products;

3) Creating a sense of urgency to develop new therapies to treat kidney diseases

What is KidneyX's Pilot Round?

KidneyX's pilot round of funding will be issued in 2018. The first round will be focused on accelerating the commercialization and patient access to next-generation dialysis and alternatives to dialysis for renal replacement therapy products. Later rounds of funding from KidneyX will focus on other areas of kidney care, such as diagnosis, prevention, and other therapies.

Does KidneyX provide grants?

KidneyX does not provide traditional grants. KidneyX will operate a series of prize competitions that award funding to competitively selected applicants for achieving specific milestones.

Prize competitions identify a problem in need of solving to the public and asking individuals or groups of individuals to submit solutions to address the problem. Unlike a traditional grant, funding is only provided for those solutions that meet competition criteria and achieve defined milestones. Prizes also benefit from attracting ideas and skills from unlikely competitors drawn to the proposed problem from a different field.

How much funding will be available for each selected applicant?

An announcement about funding levels for KidneyX's pilot round of funding will be shared in fall 2018.

The goal of launching the KidneyX pilot round is to both foster momentum in the development of next-generation dialysis technologies and to learn valuable lessons in this pilot round of funding. As we grow this public-private partnership and engage with patients, innovators, health professionals, and the business and investment communities in future funding rounds, more funding will be made available for KidneyX participants as bolder challenges and milestones are identified.

What is the timeframe for KidneyX?

KidneyX will accept applications for its first round of prize funding in 2018 through its pilot round of funding. The first round of prize funding will be focused on accelerating the commercialization and patient access to next-generation dialysis and alternatives to dialysis for renal replacement therapy products. Future opportunities under KidneyX will focus on additional areas of patient needs including diagnosis, prevention, and other therapies.

What kind of solutions are you seeking in the KidneyX pilot round?

We envision KidneyX pilot round solutions to resolve key limitations of dialytic therapy as currently practiced including but not limited to its intermittent nature, the need to immobilize patients to deliver treatment, and the failure to restore aspects of kidney function other than simple clearance.

Future opportunities under KidneyX will focus on additional areas of patient needs including diagnosis, prevention, and other therapies.

Who can apply to participate in KidneyX?

Prize competitions have a unique ability to attract ideas from unlikely competitors from different fields. Applicants can apply as individuals or teams.

Applicants will have to adhere to eligibility rules posted with the application process later this year.

How does KidneyX help patients with kidney diseases? Their families/caregivers? Physicians, health care providers, etc.?

KidneyX aims to accelerate the commercialization of and availability of therapies for patients and their families. Therapies that could reduce or eliminate their time on dialysis, slow or stop the progression of kidney disease, improve patient outcomes and provide a better quality of life for people with kidney disease. Engaging with patients, family members, and caregivers to both focus KidneyX's future areas of focus for funding as well as provide input on KidneyX's pilot round of funding will be crucial.

How can my organization support KidneyX?

KidneyX is actively looking for organizations to partner with. ASN has committed the first $25 million to KidneyX and seeks additional partners to help achieve the goal of bringing more new products to patients with kidney diseases. Organizations that are interested in supporting KidneyX by providing financial resources, scientific expertise or through other means are encouraged to contact KidneyX staff at kidneyx@asn-online.org.

How can I stay informed of updates from KidneyX?

The best way to stay informed and receive updates on KidneyX is by signing up for our e-mailing list on KidneyX.org and by following KidneyX on Twitter (@Kidney_X).

Want to Learn More?

Contact KidneyX

Individuals that are interested in being part of the KidneyX solution are encouraged to contact KidneyX at kidneyx@asn-online.org to be placed on a mailing list.

Follow on Twitter: @Kidney_X

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