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Fund taps promising new technologies

September 24, 2014

UR Ventures has awarded three new Technology Development Fund (TDF) grants to projects in the fields of infectious disease, diabetes, and neuromedicine.

Paul Dunman, Ph.D., with the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, was awarded $99,000 for his project, “Prevention and Treatment of MRSA Infections.”  Dunman and his colleagues have discovered a novel compound to treat MRSA, a potentially deadly bacterium.  Early results show that, when used in conjunction with low levels of other antibiotics, the compound is effective in fighting the infection. The award with be used for further animal testing and formulation work.

Mahin Maines, Ph.D., with the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, was awarded $57,200 for her project, “A Novel Approach for Activating Insulin Receptor Kinase and Increasing Glucose Uptake.”  Maines’s group has discovered a peptide that mimics the function of insulin and insulin growth factor-1.  The award will be used to conduct animal studies and to test drug delivery systems.  If successful, this work may potentially lead to a new treatment for diabetes.

Jonathan Stone, M.D., with the Department of Neurosurgery, was awarded $80,000 for his project, “Treatment of Hydrocephalus in an Ovine Model with an Intraparenchymal Stent Prototype.”  Stone has designed and created a prototype for a novel stent for the treatment of hydrocephalus, the dangerous buildup of cerebral spinal fluid in the cavities of the brain.  Current shunting techniques used to treat hydrocephalus fail up to 80 percent of the time.  Stone will use the TDF award to fund an animal trial.

TDF was created in 2010 and award grants to scientists in an effort to help advance a technology closer to the stage where it can be transferred to the market.  To learn more about the fund visit

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Category: Science & Technology