Rules of engagement: Promoting academic-industry partnership in the era of digital pathology and artificial intelligence

Liron Pantanowitz, Marilyn M. Bui, Chhavi Chauhan, Ehab ElGabry, Lewis Hassell, Zaibo Li, Anil V. Parwani, Mohamed E. Salama, Manu M. Sebastian, David Tulman, Suryanarayana Vepa, Michael J. Becich

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Academic industry partnership (AIP) represents an important alliance between academic researchers and industry that helps translate technology and complete the innovation cycle within academic health systems. Despite diverging missions and skillsets the culture for academia and industry is changing in response to the current digital era which is spawning greater collaboration between physicians and businesses in this marketplace. In the field of pathology, this is further driven by the fact that traditional funding sources cannot keep pace with the innovation needed in digital pathology and artificial intelligence. This concept article from the Digital Pathology Association (DPA) describes the rules of engagement for pathology innovators in academia and for their corporate partners to help establish best practices in this critical area. Stakeholders include pathologists, basic and translational researchers, university technology transfer and sponsored research offices, as well as industry relations officers. The article discusses the benefits and pitfalls of an AIP, reviews different partnership models, examines the role of pathologists in the innovation cycle, explains various agreements that may need to be signed, covers conflict of interest and intellectual property issues, and offers recommendations for ensuring successful partnerships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100026
JournalAcademic Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2022


  • Academic-industry partnership
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Conflict of interest
  • Digital pathology
  • Industry
  • Innovation
  • Intellectual property
  • Patent
  • Sponsored research
  • University

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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