CAMBRIDGE, Mass., March 27 /PRNewswire/ -- The Deshpande Center for
Technological Innovation at MIT today announced it is awarding $550,000 in
grants to seven MIT research teams that are currently working on discoveries
that could revolutionize drug development and delivery, surgical procedures
and trauma care, safety products in sports and water purification processes,
Founded three years ago, The Deshpande Center serves as a catalyst for
innovation and entrepreneurship by supporting leading-edge MIT research and
increasing the impact of MIT technologies in the marketplace. Since its
inception, the Center has funded 51 projects with over $6M in grants. Nine
projects have "rolled out" as independent startups, having collectively raised
over $36M in outside financing from top tier VCs.
The spring 2006 grant recipients are:
Angela Belcher and David Clapham: Fast discovery of ion-channel targeting
This nanotechnology-based approach to monitoring key proteins could open
up new drug markets worth billions.
Rutledge Ellis-Behnke: New compound stops bleeding instantly
A new transparent compound that stops bleeding instantly, including during
operations, providing the potential to revolutionize surgery and trauma care.
Paula Hammond: Implant coatings for sequential drug delivery
"Smart" drug coatings that can conform to medical devices of any shape
(e.g. stents, bone implants, pills and micro particles) and that allow the
release of multiple drugs at varied times could make multiple surgical
procedures and drug-doing schedules a thing of the past.
Michael Cima: Medicine delivery method for bladder disorders
A new device to provide medicine over a period of time that treats bladder
disorders from incontinence to interstitial cystitis to cancer.
Laurence Young: Improved safety helmets
The creation of a new safety helmet to help reduce the number of localized
head injuries children and adults receive in sports and industrial-related
Michael Stonebraker: Next-generation data transformation tool
A data transformation technology that will allow for various formatted
data to be converged into a centralized database.
Amy Smith: New method for water purification
The creation of a new incubator to test for bacterial contamination in
water sources within developing communities.
"The real-world implications of MIT research are critical to improving way
of life worldwide. The purpose of the Deshpande Center is to bring these
innovations out of the lab by bringing the gap often created when discoveries
are noted to have potential, but require additional resources to prove their
viability," said Charles Cooney, faculty director of the Deshpande Center.
"To date, our efforts have successfully begun supplying a badly needed missing
ingredient in the innovation ecosystem -- one that must be nurtured and
sustained to generate growth in employment and competition in a dynamic
economy. We look forward to working with this list of grant recipients to
bring their research to fruition."
Each spring and fall, the Deshpande Center awards $50,000 Ignition Grants,
which funds proof-of-concept explorations, and Innovation Grants ranging from
$50,000 to $250,000 to help recipients assess and reduce the technical and
market risks associated with their innovations. In addition to financial
support, the Deshpande Center's network of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists
and academic and legal experts helps recipients assess the commercial
potential of their innovations and make decisions that accelerate progress
toward the development of a business plan or licensing strategy. All projects
are featured at the Center's annual IdeaStream Symposium at MIT which is
sponsored by several leading firms including Accenture, Choate Hall & Stewart
and Qualcomm, being held this April 13, 2006.
About the MIT Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation
The Deshpande Center is part of the MIT School of Engineering and was
established through an initial $20 millions gift from Jaishree Deshpande and
Desh Deshpande, the co-founder and chairman of Sycamore Networks. It serves
as a catalyst for innovation and entrepreneurship by supporting leading-edge
research and bridging the gap between the laboratory and marketplace. The
Deshpande Center supports a wide range of emerging technologies including
biotechnology, medical devices, information technology, new materials, "tiny
technologies" and environmental innovation. Additional information on the
Deshpande Center's grant program, research portfolio and other entrepreneurial
resources can be found at http://web.mit.edu/deshpandecenter/index.html.