UB Center for Advanced Technology Awards $2 Million to Fund 11 Industry-University Collaborative Projects

Release Date: February 11, 2003

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) is awarding $2 million in funding to support 11 industry-university collaborative projects ranging from the development of a diagnostic medical device to a bioinformatics tool for virtual cloning.

"This round of funding is significantly larger than what was awarded in the previous round," said Robert J. Genco, D.D.S., Ph.D., SUNY Distinguished Professor and UB Vice Provost for Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach (STOR). "Not only are we seeing an increase in the number of applications, but also in the quality of projects proposed. This is a validation for UB and the life-sciences community of Buffalo-Niagara."

The UB CAT is one of 15 centers across the state supported by the New York State Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research. It functions as the science accelerator arm of the Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach (STOR), which administers the program at UB.

The ultimate goal of CAT, Genco said, is to leverage university research into economic gains and new jobs for the region, with an emphasis on a field in which Buffalo-Niagara has traditionally excelled: biomedical and bioengineering research.

Over the past two years CAT has awarded nearly $3 million for 14 collaborative projects. These projects, which are close to commercialization, help existing or start-up businesses to expand through the development of new or improved product lines. According to Genco, each project is a collaborative effort between university researchers and their counterparts in business.

"CAT has been instrumental in providing the much needed gap funding," noted William Mihalko, M.D., Ph.D., and CAT executive director. "This type of funding supports researchers in further developing their laboratory work and in providing targeted products for industry partners."

Awards, which range up to $200,000, are presented in two categories: Discovery awards, for projects in the research stage, with funding typically used to advance ideas into development and prototyping, and Science Transfer awards used in transferring or commercializing late-stage development projects.

Recipients of the 2002 Discovery awards are:

o "PPOSAILS Based Clinical Diagnostic Medical Device." Frank V. Bright, Ph.D., UB Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, and industry partner OmniPharm Research International, Inc., of Buffalo.

o "Antigen Coupling to Dendritic Cells Enhances Vaccine Efficacy." Richard Bankert, V.M.D., Ph.D., UB professor of microbiology, and industry partner T & B Bioclone, Inc., of Eden.

o "Novel Identification Method for Therapy Response Markers." Elizabeth Repasky, Ph.D., Department of Immunology, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, and industry partners Corixa Corporation of California and Virmatics LLC of Buffalo.

o "Neurosurgical Image Enhancement System." Robert Fenstermaker, M.D., UB associate professor of neurosurgery, and industry partner Technology Commercialization Technology Group of Long Island.

o "Development of a Data Glove for Medical Applications." T. Kesavadas, Ph.D., UB assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and industry partner Tactus Technologies, Inc. of Buffalo.

Recipients of the 2002 Science Transfer awards are:

o "Capture, Isolation and Identification of Biological Agents." Anthony Campagnari, Ph.D., UB professor of microbiology and medicine, and industry partners UB Calspan Research Center of Buffalo and HandyLab, Inc., of Michigan and Buffalo.

o "Durable Emitters for Nanospray Mass Spectrometery." Troy Wood, Ph.D., UB associate professor of chemistry, and industry partner Nanogenesys, Inc., of Kenmore.

o "Diagnostic for Monitoring Multiple Sclerosis Therapy." Murali Ramanathan, Ph.D., UB associate professor of pharmaceutical sciences, and industry partner Biogen, Inc., of Massachusetts.

o "Compact Infrared Illumination Flow Cyometer for Enhanced Sensitivity." Paras Prasad, Ph.D., executive director of the UB Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics and SUNY Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, and Stewart Carleton, Ph.D., Roswell Park Cancer Institute and director of the Flow Cytometry Laboratory, and industry partner Laser Photonics Technology, Inc., of Amherst.

o "Development of Bioinformatics Tools for Virtual Cloning." Yangzhou Wang, Ph.D., UB assistant professor of structural biology, and industry partner Virmatics, LLC of Buffalo.

o "Synergistic Inactivation and Disinfection Process and Device for Non-Thermal Pasteurization." Albani Patra, Ph.D., UB associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and industry partners Synergena, Inc., of East Aurora, and ZeptoMetrix Corp. of Buffalo.

To learn more about UB CAT and the application process, contact Mihalko at 716-829-2982 or email mihalk@buffalo.edu. Log onto http://www.stor.buffalo.edu to download a copy of the application.

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