NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J., April 24, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As part of its Innovation Stage Funding Program, New Jersey Health Foundation has awarded a second grant to Dr. Tomer Davidov, assistant professor of surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, to advance his work to develop a novel puncture resistant surgical glove for use by healthcare professionals.
Dr. Laura Fabris, assistant professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Rutgers School of Engineering, who has done significant work with nanoparticles, will collaborate with Dr. Davidov, using the $20,000 in grants to advance the project.
"We became interested in working with Drs. Davidov and Fabris because needle-sticks among healthcare professionals present a significant problem," explained Dr. George F. Heinrich, vice chair and CEO of New Jersey Health Foundation. "According to a recent survey, 99% of all surgeons have admitted experiencing needle-stick injuries during his or her lifetime."
Dr. Davidov and Dr. Fabris are working to radically improve the mechanical properties of a glove that could retain its flexibility and smooth texture, offering healthcare professionals the highest level of needle-stick protection without compromising tactile sensation and manual dexterity.
"Healthcare workers worldwide are at high risk to contract viruses such as hepatitis C and HIV due to inadequate protection provided by surgical gloves that are currently commercially available," explained Dr. Davidov. "While many types of gloves have been tested, there are none currently on the market that are puncture resistant yet flexible enough to provide surgeons with the dexterity they need during surgical procedures."
Through the Innovation Stage Funding Program, New Jersey Health Foundation provides grants to researchers with promising ideas to advance an intellectual property toward commercialization.
"New Jersey Health Foundation is delighted to support researchers with promising ideas that could open doors for new, innovative technology," said James M. Golubieski, president of New Jersey Health Foundation. "We are particularly excited about the new technology being developed by Dr. Davidov and Dr. Fabris as it has terrific potential to improve safety conditions for surgeons and other healthcare professionals at risk due to needle-sticks."
About New Jersey Health Foundation
New Jersey Health Foundation (www.njhf.org) is a not-for-profit corporation that supports biomedical research and health-related education programs in New Jersey through its Grants Program, its matching program and its affiliate, Foundation Venture Capital Group (www.foundationventure.com) which makes private equity investments in life science start- up companies in New Jersey headed toward commercialization.
SOURCE New Jersey Health Foundation