Translational Research

We are increasing the impact of protein design through commercialization. Our Translational Investigator Research Program enables entrepreneurial scientists to turn their first working versions of designed proteins into commercially viable assets. Trainees also receive the guidance needed to launch new companies.

Basic Research

We bring diverse researchers under one roof to explore fundamental questions in protein science. Most projects begin here — and often on a whiteboard.

Translational Investigation

Our Translational Investigator Research Program offers the tools, time and space needed for breakthroughs to mature. Translational Investigators receive guidance from within and beyond the institute. 


We encourage Translational Investigators to step into the role of founder. Projects at this stage remain at the UW while licensing agreements are inked and markets analyzed. 


Company formation with eventual employment is one important career path for researchers who train at the IPD. To date, our spinouts have raised over $1 billion.



Arzeda’s unique combination of computational protein design and state-of-the-art high-throughput screening is a radical change over what’s possible with traditional protein engineering. Their proprietary technology has been peer-reviewed in Science and Nature, and is based on solid and vetted models of protein biophysics and metabolic biochemistry coupled with large-scale computing. —

Icosavax is committed to developing safe and effective vaccines against infectious diseases that address important unmet medical needs to save lives and improve health. We were founded on breakthrough computationally-designed virus-like particle technology, developed at the Institute for Protein Design and exclusively licensed for a variety of infectious disease indications from the University of Washington.


Neoleukin uses sophisticated computational methods to design proteins that demonstrate specific pharmaceutical properties that provide potentially superior therapeutic benefit over native proteins. Neoleukin’s lead product candidate, NL-201, is a combined IL-2 and IL-15 agonist designed to eliminate alpha receptor binding. —


Cyrus delivers the most scientifically advanced, powerful, and easy-to-use protein structure prediction and protein design software available. Cyrus is based primarily on the Rosetta molecular modeling and design toolkit first developed at the lab of co-founder David Baker. —

PvP’s mission is to reduce the burden of living with celiac disease. Towards this end, they have advanced a product candidate designed to break down the immuno-reactive parts of gluten in the stomach and thereby avoid the painful symptoms and damage done in the small intestine from accidental gluten ingestion. In 2020, PvP was acquired by Takeda Pharmaceuticals —


A-Alpha Bio has developed a synthetic biology platform called AlphaSeq to aid in the development of drugs that interact with multiple targets. AlphaSeq is a multiplexed, quantitative, and versatile platform for characterizing entire protein interaction networks in a single test tube. —