A competition to accelerate artificial kidney development toward human clinical trials

About the Artificial Kidney Prize

The Kidney Innovation Accelerator (KidneyX), a public-private partnership between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), is accelerating innovation in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of kidney diseases.

The Artificial Kidney Prize is a competition to accelerate the development of continuous kidney replacement therapies that provide transformational treatment options beyond current dialysis methods. For this competition, artificial kidneys may be wearable, implantable, bioengineered, developed as a xenotransplant or chimera organ, or other approaches not yet conceived.

Phase 1 sought component or integrated prototype solutions that enable and advance the functionality, effectiveness, and/or reliability of artificial kidneys. Submissions will include demonstrated scientific and technical proofs of concept with detailed development plans. Phase 2 will focus on initial integration of prototype solutions into an artificial kidney, or advancement of already integrated prototype solutions.

About KidneyX

Announcing the six winners

Development of a Dialysate-Free Waterless Portable and Implantable Artificial Kidney

US Kidney Research Corporation

Wearable artificial kidney that does not need water to conduct filtration, drastically reducing the weight of the device.

Genetically-engineered pig kidney xenotransplantation

David Cooper, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Genetically engineered pig kidneys that will reduce rejection possibility while providing more viable donor kidneys.

iBAK - Implantable Bio-Artificial Kidney for Continuous Renal Replacement Therapy

University of California San Francisco.

Implantable bioartificial kidney that allows for continuous blood processing and direction of waste to the bladder while providing freedom of movement.

MI-TRAM: Smart Module for Implantable, Wearable, Portable or Bed-side Artificial Kidneys

imec USA Nanoelectronics Design Center

Miniature, wireless toxin-removal system for implantable, wearable, portable, or bedside artificial kidneys.

The Wearable AKTIV: Artificial Kidney to Improve Vitality

University of Washington Center for Dialysis Innovation

Wearable continuous-hemodialysis device that allows for greater freedom of movement.

Xenotransplantation: A treatment for Kidney Failure

Makana Therapeutics

Genetically engineered pig kidneys that will increase the supply of transplantable organs by eliminating the antibody barrier to xenotransplantation.


Phase 1 began with an open call for solutions.

Phase 1 submission period

October 30, 2020 - March 24, 2021

Phase 1 winners announced

September 9, 2021


Total prizes

$10 million

Phase 1: Up to $4 million will be distributed among the six winners, at the discretion of HHS and ASN.

Phase 2: Up to $6 million will be distributed to winners, at the discretion of HHS and ASN.

At the discretion of HHS and ASN, additional phases of the competition may follow Phase 2 to further accelerate development of artificial kidneys. KidneyX hopes to secure a total prize of $200 million for all potential phases of the competition.


Entrant resources provide an overview of the state of kidney health and innovation as well as a primer on navigating regulatory details and incorporating patient point of view in early-stage development.