Upstate OTT News

SUNY Upstate and SUNY ESF Researchers are Awarded Research Foundation Technology Accelerator Fund Award

Dr. Stewart Loh, of SUNY Upstate Medical University, and Dr. Art Stipanovic has been awarded an award from the SUNY Research Foundation Technology Accelerator Fund. Drs. Loh and Stipanovic were awarded $50,000 to further their research on the efficient conversion of agricultural waste to bioethanol. The award will allow them to validate the basic technology over the course of the next year, and accelerate the technology’s path to commercialization.

Dr. Loh’s work focuses on the creation of synthetic cellulosomes. Cellulosomes are naturally occurring strings of enzymes that convert cellulose to sugars, and are typically found within microorganisms. The enzymes are linked together and work efficiently in digesting cellulose because of their close proximity. In order to recreate these cellulosomes, Dr. Loh and his team have engineered small proteins called “domain-swapping modules” (DSMs) which are attached at the end of the desired enzymes. The DSMs will spontaneously self-assemble when in close proximity, thus creating a large, flexible meshwork of enzymes, also known as a synthetic cellulosome.

Dr. Stipanovic and his group at SUNY ESF will test Dr. Loh’s cellulosomes and measure how efficiently they digest cellulose. Dr. Stipanovic’s work will be a critical step in verifying that the synthetic cellulosomes are indeed more efficient than just adding free enzymes to unprocessed cellulose.

This technology has major commercial implications. Over 1 billion tons of inedible agricultural byproducts are thrown out each year in the U.S. alone. This waste could be converted into roughly 88 billion gallons of bioethanol. Technologies such as Dr. Loh’s are crucial to develop, because the process currently used is economically inefficient. Further development of this technology could lower some of the economic barriers to harness this energy.

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Upstate inventors create first-of-its kind system to save lives

A prototype of a suicide detection system created by two Upstate Medical University forensic psychiatrists has the potential of saving lives and saving the nation millions of dollars in costs associated with monitoring suicidal adults in custodial care.

Link to the full story here: http://upstateonline.info/static/Oct25-Nov12012/blog/story-3/index.html

Upstate Issued Patent Number 8,283,312 for Fast Treatment of Obesity Related Disorders

The SUNY Upstate Medical University’s Office of Technology Transfer would like to congratulate Dr. Michael Meguid of the surgery department on the issue of United States patent 8,283,312. The patent covers Dr. Meguid’s work on the manipulation of the gut hormones PYY and ghrelin to treat obesity related diseases. This technology was created with funding from the American Society for Bariatric Surgery and is currently available for licensing. Click here for more information regarding this technology.

Nonin Medical Partners With Upstate Researchers

Nonin Medical, a Minnesota based medical device company, has recently partnered with Dr. Andrew Kaufman and Dr. James Knoll, both researchers at SUNY Upstate Medical University in the Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences department. Nonin will assist them with a research project that aims to reduce the number of suicides of inmates. In order to assist Dr. Kaufman and Dr. Knoll with his research, Nonin has agreed to donate hardware necessary to carry out the project.

The donated hardware will help the researchers conduct their field study. The researchers hope to fine tune an early warning system that will immediately alert prison staff when an inmate attempts suicide. Suicides are very costly for prisons to prevent, and costly to prisons when they occur. This partnership with Nonin Medical could lead to a drastic reduction in the number of successful suicides if this, and future studies are successful. 

Upstate Issued Patent Number 8,155,730 for Fast Near Infra-Red Probes

The SUNY Upstate Medical University’s Office of Technology Transfer would like to congratulate Dr. Arkady Pertsov and Dr. Arvydas Matiukas of the Pharmacology Department, on the issue of United States patent 8,155,730, in which they were co-inventors. The patent is being issued for their work on fast near-infrared probes, which has applications in imaging myocardial tissue. This technology was created in a collaborative effort with two researchers from the University of Connecticut. This technology was created with funding from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and is currently available for licensing. Images of the patent are found below:

Patent Cover With Seal

Patent Abstract Page

Upstate Slated to Showcase Technologies at TECHSTORM Conference in Binghamton on April 18th

Upstate researchers will showcase some of their new technologies at the TECHSTORM conference in Binghamton, on April 18th. Dr. Stewart Loh and Dr. Andrew Kaufman will each be presenting their work at the conference. TECHSTORM is an event exclusively focused on matching innovative technologies developed at universities and federal labs with entrepreneurs, industry professionals and investors to partner in the commercialization of these discoveries.

TECHSTORM provides a highly efficient forum to connect with university technologies. TECHSTORM's sole purpose is to focus on technology match making. This unique event features participation from qualified entrepreneurs and a pre-event matching program. This is a must attend event for anyone involved in technology, licensing or new ventures.

Representatives from the Office of Technology Transfer and Industrial Relations will also be participating in this unique event.

Dr. Andrea Viczian Secures $1.5 million in NIH Funding for Vision Research

Dr. Andrea Viczian, a researcher at SUNY Upstate Medical Center, has been awarded $1.5 million dollars over four years to support her current vision research. Dr. Viczian's research is targeted at finding new pathways to treat age related macular degeneration.

Read more about Dr. Viczian's grant and her research.