October 2011

In her words: E-Team grantee Karen McDonald describes her team's speedy ascension

Great news for one of our recent E-Teams! Inserogen, a 2010 E-Team from University of California, Davis, is a grantee of the NSF's new I-Corp program. Inserogen's lead faculty, Karen McDonald, Professor of Chemical Engineering and  Materials Science, told us about her team's progress.

"Our team, Inserogen, was delighted to be selected as one of the 21 university-based teams participating in the National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (NSF I-Corps) program.  I-Corps is a new NSF program that is aimed at providing training and opportunities for university-based teams to assess the commercial viability of their previously funded basic research. Our team's technology is a platform that uses tobacco and other plant materials for rapid and cost-effective production of recombinant proteins, such as vaccines or therapeutic proteins.

"Earlier this year, we were fortunate to receive NCIIA funding through the Advanced E-Team program which will allow us to perform a proof-of-concept demonstration for a veterinary vaccine as a potential product target. In August, Lucas and I attended the NCIIA VentureLab workshop in Cambridge, which was taught by James Barlow. VentureLab was a great experience that accelerated our learning by providing tools that helped us better articulate our business concept, as well as to test and refine our business model. Our goal for the I-Corps program is to identify potential markets for our platform technology, assess commercial readiness, talk to potential customers and partners, and further refine our business model."

Pictured, Lucas Arzola and Karen McDonald in the UC Davis greenhouse.

 

Company News!

PuraCath Medical, a 2010 E-Team from Stanford University, has formed a company and is developing a catheter to reduce infection risk and enable some patients to avoid coming to the hospital for dialysis. The company has received funding from the National Science Foundation and is seeking further investment.

The Extremely Low Frequency Seismic Detector team from Virginia Military Institute, a 2007 E-Team, has successfully negotiated a license with Strata Products Worldwide, LLC, to commercialize a low-frequency seismic detector that will enable miners trapped up to 2,000 feet underground to be located in a matter of hours. U.S. Mining companies have a legal mandate to retrofit all of their life refuge chambers starting in 2013, and as a result, the VMI device will soon make its way into almost every mine in the U.S.

NCIIA teams win $200K at MassChallenge!

Great news! The three NCIIA teams in the MassChallenge 2011 finals have won  $200,000! The winners were announced last night (Oct. 24). Read the article at Bostinnovation.

About the teams:

Sanergy, 2010 Sustainable Vision grantee from MIT
Sanergy makes it profitable to provide sanitation services in urban slums. This team has designed, constructed and implemented a pilot modular low-cost sanitation facility customized for the residents of two slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Two low-cost technologies are the centerpiece: a prefabricated ferro-cement toilet and a bicycle-powered exhaustion pump for pit latrines. These technologies are combined with a micro-franchised network of sanitation centers, low-cost waste collection infrastructure, and a centralized processing facility that converts waste into biogas, electricity, and fertilizer that is sold commercially.

SmarterShade (Lono LLC), 2007 E-Team from the University of Notre Dame
SmarterShade makes it possible to electronically darken a window with the flip of a switch. Using a remote control, the customer can adjust the level of tinting from clear to opaque. SolarShade itself is a lightweight, semi-rigid sheet of plastic made from offset planes of polarized material. The sheet can be manufactured to fit into any existing window track or frame, right over the window itself. The team has since incorporated as Lono LLC.

Therapeutic Systems, 2007 E-Team from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Therapeutic System’s Vayu vest is a portable sensory solution for children with autism, so they can participate in life more fully. Deep Pressure Touch Stimulation (DPTS) is a method of treating people with mental illness that involves applying firm pressure to the chest, much like the feeling of a hug. DPTS is most often applied passively, using simple weighted vests and toys. This E-Team is developing a DPTS system with more user control: the inflatable Vayu system can be inserted into any off-the-shelf vest and can safely apply a range of pressure, helping people cope with their anxiety.

Last year, two NCIIA E-Teams, Sproxil and OsmoPure, made the final, with OsmoPure winning $100,000!

NCIIA grantee receives NSF I-Corp funding

An NCIIA E-Team that is developing a green tech solution for vaccine manufacturing has been selected as one of 21 teams to receive an inaugural NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) award. Each awardee receives a $50,000 grant from NSF.

The Green Technology for Sustainable Poultry Manufacturing E-Team, led by Karen McDonald from UC-Davis, is developing SwiftVax, a plant production platform that produces animal and human vaccines efficiently and affordably. The technology can rapidly produce large amounts of therapeutics with minimal investment compared to traditional vaccine production infrastructure.
 The team received a $20,000 E-Team grant from NCIIA in 2010, and attended an NCIIA VentureLab to improve its business strategy.

Three NCIIA teams in running for MassChallenge $1 million

Three NCIIA grantee teams are finalists at MassChallenge 2011, and will compete with 23 other teams for a share of $1 million. The teams are:

Sanergy, 2010 Sustainable Vision grantee from MIT
Sanergy makes it profitable to provide sanitation services in urban slums. This team has designed, constructed and implemented a pilot modular low-cost sanitation facility customized for the residents of two slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Two low-cost technologies are the centerpiece: a prefabricated ferro-cement toilet and a bicycle-powered exhaustion pump for pit latrines. These technologies are combined with a micro-franchised network of sanitation centers, low-cost waste collection infrastructure, and a centralized processing facility that converts waste into biogas, electricity, and fertilizer that is sold commercially.

SmarterShade (Lono LLC), 2007 E-Team from the University of Notre Dame
SmarterShade makes it possible to electronically darken a window with the flip of a switch. Using a remote control, the customer can adjust the level of tinting from clear to opaque. SolarShade itself is a lightweight, semi-rigid sheet of plastic made from offset planes of polarized material. The sheet can be manufactured to fit into any existing window track or frame, right over the window itself. The team has since incorporated as Lono LLC.

Therapeutic Systems, 2007 E-Team from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Therapeutic System’s Vayu vest is a portable sensory solution for children with autism, so they can participate in life more fully. Deep Pressure Touch Stimulation (DPTS) is a method of treating people with mental illness that involves applying firm pressure to the chest, much like the feeling of a hug. DPTS is most often applied passively, using simple weighted vests and toys. This E-Team is developing a DPTS system with more user control: the inflatable Vayu system can be inserted into any off-the-shelf vest and can safely apply a range of pressure, helping people cope with their anxiety.

MassChallenge seeks to identify and accelerate high potential new busnesses from around the US. Last year, two NCIIA E-Teams, Sproxil and OsmoPure, made the final, with OsmoPure winning $100,000! 

Malo Traders, 2011 Open Minds team, wins second place at Dell Social Innovation competition

Take a look at their prize-winning video.

More about the competition.

 

 

 

 

 

Company news: BullEx Digital Safety 'HazMat' training tools gain GSA contract

Former E-Team BullEx Digital Safety has been awarded a GSA contract for its hazmat training materials which include a gas detector training system, a hazardous materials placard kit and a leaking propane tank simulator. Firefighters and safety personnel use the tools as they conduct hands-on hazardous materials response training.

Read more about BullEx's training system.
 

 

 

Former E-Team Buzby Networks technology will keep seniors safe in care centers

Buzby Networks, which received a $18,000 E-Team grant in 2007, has created an indoor positioning device that may replace locked doors or alarm systems in senior care centers where residents’ freedom of movement must be balanced by the assurance they are kept safe.

The team attended NCIIA's Open Minds showcase in Dallas, TX, in 2008 (pictured) and incorporated as a company shortly after, receiving its first investment from The Technology Collaborative in Pittsburgh. Since then, the money has continued to flow in for development, culminating in the announcement on Sept. 20 it had received a $109,150 investment from Ben Franklin Technology Partners.

Read more here.

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