On April 27, representatives from Tokyo-based Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co. Ltd., known as Kirin, which licenses intellectual property discovered at the IU School of Medicine, met with the researchers and representatives of the IU Research and Technology Corp.
Jun Arakawa and Yoshihiro Furuya, managers at the company, provided an update about its business and the progress made on commercializing the intellectual property with Marie Kerbeshian, David Wilhite and Rebecca Lyon of IURTC.
The group met with Dr. Michael J. Econs and Kenneth E. White, the IU School of Medicine researchers who discovered the innovation and disclosed it to IURTC. Econs is the Glenn W. Irwin Jr. Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism, and White is the David D. Weaver Professor of Genetics. Econs and White talked about the history of the science and future directions of how it could practically be applied.
The visit concluded with further discussion about commercializing the intellectual property during lunch at The Oceanaire Seafood Room in downtown Indianapolis.
Wilhite said IURTC has established an ongoing relationship with Kirin over several years.
“The license with Kirin was originally executed in September 2002, so the relationship has lasted more than 14 years,” he said. “When you’re conducting business for that length of time, no one can predict the changes that might occur. Because of the strong relationship between IURTC and Kirin, we have been able to discuss how the original license might evolve to make it an even stronger agreement for both parties. This is the kind of relationship we hope to have with all companies that license intellectual property from IURTC, whether they are located in Japan or a few blocks away in downtown Indianapolis.”