Congratulations to the seven outstanding researchers winning proof-of-concept funding through the XLerator Network’s I2P Grant Program!
NIGMS has approved our External Advisory Committee’s recommendation to fund the continued development of their biomedical innovations which represent various areas of technology, from medical devices, to diagnostics, to therapeutics.
Out of 55 pre-applications, 10 were invited to submit full proposals and make a live presentation in front of the EAC. Out of 10 finalists, 5 PI's were male and 5 female. Two finalists represented institutions that are not officially a part of the university consortium on this grant (came from referrals by INBRE's). As a result of rigorous review and scoring by EAC members, based on various criteria, from description of unmet need, to market size, to competitive landscape, to IP status, to regulatory and reimbursement, to development milestones, to personnel, 7 best-scored applications were selected for funding recommendations.
These are the winning projects:
Dr. Yao from Clemson University (South Carolina) is developing a re-designed medical device for the surgical treatment of hyperkyphosis and early-onset scoliosis that has the potential to lower complication rates and enhance deformity correction using a paradigm-shifting procedure to manipulate the thorax to reposition the spine.
Dr. Flores from Ponce Health Sciences University (Puerto Rico) works on the first immune-based, non-invasive diagnostic assay for endometriosis, estimated to affect 10% of women, that will fill a critical void in clinical management and substantially improve quality of life by decreasing the average diagnosis lag time of 7 years from onset of symptoms.
Dr. Caldorera-Moore from Louisiana Tech University develops a single-platform hydrogel wound dressing with antimicrobial, hemostatic, and biocompatible properties that has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of wounds and the management of soft-tissue defects.
Dr. Sakon from University of Arkansas is working on a novel, lesion-seeking biologic that has the potential to drastically improve heart regeneration after stent placement to treat coronary blockages (heart attacks) and minimize the risk of subsequent heart failure.
Dr. Berson from University of Louisville (Kentucky) is developing a new non-invasive real-time assessment of coronary stenosis that offers the potential to improve patient outcomes, save money for payers and hospitals, and reduce procedural risk to patients.
Dr. Wimley from Tulane University (Louisiana) works on a new set of broad-spectrum, peptide antibiotics with potent sterilizing activity and low toxicity that has the potential to effectively combat drug-resistant bacteria, which currently affects over 3 million people in the US annually.
Dr. Guo from West Virginia University develops novel gene assays for ovarian, breast, and non-small-cell lung cancer capable of improving diagnosis and prognosis and predicting the benefit of possible chemotherapy treatments, potentially shifting the current paradigm for clinical management of cancer patients with resectable tumors.