Digestive Disease Drug Discovery Conference


Are you interested in working with a commercial partner to bring your GI research to life? Takeda Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. (Takeda) and AGA Research Foundation invite researchers who have an idea for a research collaboration that could yield a new drug or molecular diagnostic relevant to Celiac Disease or Gastrointestinal (GI) Motility Disorder (particularly those involving Neural/ Hormonal Dysfunction or the Gut Microbiome) to submit a summary of their concept.

The authors of the most promising abstracts will be invited to make a personal presentation to Takeda Pharmaceuticals at its headquarters in Deerfield, IL on Oct. 8, 2014 and may be chosen to work directly with this international company to further develop their promising ideas.


To provide an opportunity for scientists to work with an international company to further develop their promising ideas and to help advance their research careers.


  • Candidates for this program must hold an MD, PhD or equivalent degree (e.g., MB, ChB, MBBS, DO). There are no geographic or applicant age restrictions.
  • Applications from individuals at for profit organizations are not eligible.
  • AGA membership is not required to apply for this grant. However, if the grant recipient is not a member, he/she is encouraged to submit an application for membership.
  • Applicants in the early stage of their careers are encouraged to apply.


Up to thirteen applicants will be selected to travel to Takeda headquarters in suburban Chicago to present their ideas on Oct. 8, 2014. This conference is similar to an oral abstract session at a scientific conference. Each presenter will have 20 minutes to explain his/her idea in detail to Takeda followed by a 10 minute question and answer session.

If you are selected to be a presenter, AGA Institute will reimburse your travel, lodging and per diem expenses per AGA travel policy. (Note: we cannot reimburse business class or first class airfare.)


  • Applications must be relevant to either Celiac Disease or GI Motility Disorders. Proposals involving Neural/ Hormonal Dysfunction or the relationship of the Gut Microbiome to either of these problems are of special interest.
  • The selected investigators must present the summary at Takeda headquarters on Oct. 8. No exceptions are allowed.
  • Applicants (and their institutions) must be willing to negotiate in good faith, with Takeda to further develop their concepts if it so requests.
  • The investigator must not hold any agreement with another commercial entity related to his/her idea.
  • Takeda is under no obligation to pursue any further relationship with any presenter.

Selection Criteria

Conference presentations will be limited to those applicants whose ideas are determined by the selection panel to have the potential to develop into a product relevant to preventing, diagnosing or treating Celiac Disease or GI Motility Disorders. Proposals involving clinical trials of marketed drug products including Takeda products and investigator-initiated sponsored research are outside the scope of this program.

Review Process

A selection committee with expertise in the disease states appointed by AGA and Takeda will select the presenters. The investigators whose ideas are deemed the most promising will be invited to present their concepts directly to Takeda.

Application Process

The application deadline is July 28, 2014. Applicants will be notified by email if they have been selected to present on or about Sept. 10. Information regarding meeting logistics will be provided at that time. Please see additional information online. The application form can be accessed at the top of this page or here.

Please direct all questions concerning this program to Dr. Michael Stolar via email.

This program is funded by Takeda Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. and the AGA Research Foundation.