DTRA announces diagnostics grand challenge

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency recently announced its intention to enter into a competition between the X Prize Foundation and a team of InnoCentive/Booz Allen Hamilton.

DTRA is looking for assistance in developing, advertising and administering a stimulatory grand challenge. The combined effort is being called Open Innovation Services for Prizes and Challenges. The DTRA's grand challenge revolves around solving the scientific, engineering or commercial barriers to the development of a point-of-care or point-of-need diagnostics system for infectious disease threats.

The challenge will include a prize not to exceed $10 million. Interested sources will be expected to access a technically capable "solver community" in the biological, healthcare, chemical and microelectronics sciences fields, as well as be within the geographical reach of their solver community and a larger pool of contributors.

"As a grand challenge is meant to stimulate the marketplace to solve a large problem, the public and the marketplace must be made aware of the challenge and prize through the public awareness campaign," DTRA's request for information says.

The created diagnostic is to potentially be implemented in the U.S. Armed Forces and will directly involve the healthcare sector because any adopted technology or strategy must be cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The DTRA anticipates that the award will be granted in June.