December 10, 2007
Troy, N.Y.-Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a new way to seek out specific proteins, including dangerous proteins such as anthrax toxin, and render them harmless using nothing but light. The technique lends itself to the creation of new antibacterial and antimicrobial films to help curb the spread of germs, and also holds promise for new methods of seeking out and killing tumors in the human body.
Scientists have long been interested in wrapping proteins around carbon nanotubes, and the process is used for various applications in imaging, biosensing, and cellular delivery. But this new study at Rensselaer is the first to remotely control the activity of these conjugated nanotubes. Details of the project are outlined in the article "Nanotube-Assisted Protein Deactivation" in the December issue of Nature Nanotechnology.
A team of Rensselaer researchers led by Ravi S. Kane, professor of chemical and biological engineering, has worked for nearly a year to develop a means to remotely deactivate protein-wrapped carbon nanotubes by exposing them to invisible and near-infrared light. The group demonstrated this method by successfully deactivating anthrax toxin and other proteins.
"By attaching peptides to carbon nanotubes, we gave them the ability to selectively recognize a protein of interest-in this case anthrax toxin-from a mixture of different proteins," Kane said. "Then, by exposing the mixture to light, we could selectively deactivate this protein without disturbing the other proteins in the mixture."
By conjugating carbon nanotubes with different peptides, this process can be easily tailored to work on other harmful proteins, Kane said. Also, employing different wavelengths of light that can pass harmlessly through the human body, the remote control process will also be able to target and deactivate specific proteins or toxins in the human body. Shining light on the conjugated carbon nanotubes creates free radicals, called reactive oxygen species. It was the presence of radicals, Kane said, that deactivated the proteins.Kane's new method for selective nanotube-assisted protein deactivation could be used in defense, homeland security, and laboratory settings to destroy harmful toxins and pathogens. The method could also offer a new method for the targeted destruction of tumor cells. By conjugating carbon nanotubes with peptides engineered to seek out specific cancer cells, and then releasing those nanotubes into a patient, doctors may be able to use this remote protein deactivation technology as a powerful tool to prevent the spread of cancer.
November 27, 2007
TROY, N.Y.- Two Rensselaer student start-up companies took first and second place at this year's inaugural Innovation Showcase (I-Show) competition Nov. 9 in Seattle, Wash. Ecovative Design LLC and JDAxis Corporation, both companies that are focused on developing products to improve the environment and people's lives, won first and second place, receiving $5,000 and $3,000 respectively.
The competition was sponsored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) in collaboration with the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA) and Idea to Product (I2P) competitions.
The founders of Ecovative Design LLC have developed an environmentally friendly organic insulation called Greensulate. Created from waste agricultural materials, water, and mushrooms, the patent-pending insulation could replace conventional foam insulations, which are expensive to produce and harmful to the environment.
The founders of JDAxis Corporation are developing a device that could aid diabetic patients with early identification of foot disorders caused by the disease. STOMP (Scanning Thermal and Optical Measurement Platform) will scan visual and infrared images of the bottom of an individual's foot, obtain blood pressure and heart rate readings, and check skin surface temperature, swelling, increased hardness, and moisture content.
The I-Show is a competition that encourages collegiate student teams to display and present their technological innovations to an audience that includes successful entrepreneurs, seed venture capitalists, and intellectual property specialists. Judges decide the best and most feasible ideas, and winners will receive cash prizes and additional product and start-up support, according to ASME.
October 29, 2007
Featured in "Small Schools' Big Tech Dreams" in BusinessWeek on-line, Rensselaer is one of the smaller Universities that has successfully moved research into the commercial arena. According to Innovation Associates, a consulting firm in Virginia that prepared a study sponsored by the National Science Foundation, even with a limited R&D budget a school may leverage "a good combination of partnerships, incentives, and federal and local funding." Since 1999, RPI has hired 183 new faculty increasing and producing quality reseach.For the full article see "Small Schools' Big Tech Dreams". (www.businessweek.com, October 16, 2007)
April 23, 2007
The OTC has planned its annual Inventor Recognition Luncheon for Monday, May 21st. RPI faculty, staff and students who submitted a new invention disclosure, had a U.S. Patent or Copyright issued, or had a patent under prosecution in fiscal year 2007 are invited to join us in celebration of you efforts. Leonard V. Interrante, 2007 ENYIPLA Inventor of the Year, will be the guest speaker. For more information, please contact Kris Burton 276-3675.
October 5, 2006Alkermes and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Announce Exclusive Licensing Agreement for Novel Opioid Receptor Compounds Further Expansion into Development of Oral Compounds Leverages Alkermes' Therapeutic Franchise in the Areas of Central Nervous System Disorders and Addiction CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and TROY, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Alkermes, Inc. (Nasdaq: ALKS) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute today announced they have entered into a license agreement granting Alkermes exclusive rights to a family of novel opioid receptor compounds discovered at Rensselaer. These compounds represent an opportunity for Alkermes to develop important therapeutics for a broad range of diseases and medical conditions, including addiction, pain and other central nervous system (CNS) disorders. Alkermes will screen this library of compounds and plans to pursue preclinical work of an undisclosed, lead oral compound that has already been identified. Under the terms of the agreement, Rensselaer granted Alkermes an exclusive worldwide license to certain patents and patent applications relating to its compounds designed to modulate opioid receptors. Alkermes will be responsible for the continued research and development of any resulting product candidates. Rensselaer will receive from Alkermes an upfront payment, certain milestone payments relating to clinical development activities, and royalties on products resulting from the agreement. This agreement was signed following an extensive evaluation period. Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed. "This agreement underscores Alkermes' commitment to building our franchise in the area of CNS, including addiction," stated Richard Pops, CEO of Alkermes. "We are excited to begin development of this promising family of compounds, which provides us with the opportunity to leverage our success and experience with VIVITROL and build our proprietary product portfolio." "We are delighted to partner with Alkermes,"said Ron Kudla, executive director of the Office of Intellectual Property, Technology Transfer and New Ventures at Rensselaer. "This is a wonderful example of progress under the Rensselaer Plan in the areas of biotechnology and technology transfer that demonstrates Rensselaer's unique strength in its ability to translate scientific discoveries into practical application." Mark Wentland, professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Rensselaer, led a team of more than 15 Rensselaer undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral students in the department of chemistry and chemical biology in the discovery of this novel family of opioid compounds. Jean Bidlack, professor of pharmacology and physiology at the University of Rochester, along with members of her pharmacology group also contributed to the research. About Alkermes, Inc. Alkermes, Inc. is a biotechnology company that develops products based on sophisticated drug delivery technologies to enhance therapeutic outcomes in major diseases. The Company has two commercial products. RISPERDAL® CONSTA® [(risperidone) long-acting injection], the first and only long-acting atypical antipsychotic medication approved for use in schizophrenia, is marketed worldwide by Janssen-Cilag (Janssen), a wholly owned division of Johnson & Johnson. VIVITROL® (naltrexone for extended-release injectable suspension) is the first and only once-monthly injectable medication approved for the treatment of alcohol dependence and is marketed in the United States primarily by Cephalon, Inc. The Company has a pipeline of extended-release injectable products and pulmonary products based on its proprietary technology and expertise. Alkermes' product development strategy is twofold: the Company partners its proprietary technology systems and drug delivery expertise with several of the world's finest pharmaceutical companies; and it also develops novel, proprietary drug candidates for its own account. The Company's headquarters are in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and it operates research and manufacturing facilities in Massachusetts and Ohio. About Rensselaer Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is the nation's oldest technological university. The university offers bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in engineering, the sciences, information technology, architecture, management, and the humanities and social sciences. Institute programs serve undergraduates, graduate students, and working professionals around the world. Rensselaer faculty are known for pre-eminence in research conducted in a wide range of fields, with particular emphasis in biotechnology, nanotechnology, information technology, and the media arts and technology. The Institute is well known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace so that new discoveries and inventions benefit human life, protect the environment, and strengthen economic development. Certain statements set forth above may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to whether Alkermes will develop and commercialize licensed compounds as a result of the licensing agreement. Although the Company believes that such statements are based on reasonable assumptions within the bounds of its knowledge of its business and operations, the forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees and the Company's business is subject to significant risk and uncertainties and there can be no assurance that its actual results will not differ materially from its expectations. For further information with respect to factors that could cause the Company's actual results to differ materially from expectations, reference is made to the reports the Company filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. The forward-looking statements made in this release are made only as of the date hereof and the Company disclaims any intention or responsibility for updating predictions or financial expectations contained in this release. VIVITROL® is a trademark of Cephalon, Inc. and RISPERDAL® CONSTA® is a registered trademark of Johnson & Johnson Corporation. Contacts Alkermes, Inc. Rebecca Peterson, 617-583-6378 Corporate Communications or Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Jessica Otitigbe, 518-276-6050
July 26, 2006
The spirit of invention lives and breathes within the research laboratories, classrooms, hallways, and dorm rooms at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Now, the breakthrough ideas conceived by Rensselaer undergraduate seniors and graduate students can get an additional financial boost with the new $30,000 Lemelson-Rensselaer Student Prize that will be awarded beginning in the 2007 academic year.
The award is being offered through a partnership between Rensselaer and the Lemelson-MIT Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a nonprofit organization that recognizes outstanding inventors, encourages sustainable new solutions to real-world problems, and enables and inspires young people to pursue creative lives and careers through invention. The $30,000 Lemelson-Rensselaer Student Prize will be awarded annually to a student who has created or improved a product or process, applied a technology in a new way, redesigned a system, or demonstrated remarkable inventiveness in other ways.
October 4, 2005
Rensselaer entrepreneurs Ryan O'Donnell, John Blackburn and Tom Rossi won the distinction of Best Business Plan Presentation at UNYTECH 05. Thier company, BullEx Digital Safety, is the producer of the world's first intelligent fire extinguisher training system (ITS). ITS uses an electronically controlled flame, and an extinguisher that enables the user to experience the feel and orientation of using an actual extinguisher without discharging any extinguishant. ITS can interpret, record, and score a user's performance, and allows for a variety of training scenarios through a wireless handheld control device operated by the trainer.UNYTECH is a collaborative effort among regional economic development agencies, venture capital firms, and leading research institutions in the Upstate New York region to promote research, technology transfer, and economic growth. The event showcases business plan presentations of university-based companies that are seeking capital and highlights emerging university research. BullEx's ITS product is based on technology developed by the team and licensed through the Office of Technology Commercialization.
April 20, 2005
Over seventy Rensselaer researchers gathered for the first Inventor Luncheon sponsored by the Office of Technology Commercialization, held April 19th at the Heffner Alumni House. The purpose of the event was to recognize the efforts of inventors in disclosing their technologies and following through with the IP protection process and commercialization activities.Mr. Chuck Carletta, Chief Counsel and Secretary of the Institute, provided opening remarks on behalf of the administration. An overview of OTC priorities and activities followed, presented by OTC Director Mr. Chuck Rancourt. Guest speaker Dr. Nigel Skinner of GE Global Research spoke of experiences gained throughout his career involving the challenges and rewards of interdisciplinary research collaboration. Given the high priority of interdisciplinary research on campus, Dr. Skinner's remarks were both timely and relevant. The OTC extends thanks to all who attended, and hopes to recognize the efforts of researchers in the future as the Inventor Luncheon becomes an annual event.
February 2, 2005
Justice Diagnostic Imaging of Memphis, TN and Eldorado Hills, CA recently agreed to license and commercialize retinal imaging technology developed at Rensselaer by an interdisciplinary research team including Chuck Stewart, professor of computer science, and Badrinath Roysam, professor of electrical, computer, and systems engineering.
The technology is a highly accurate and efficient method for performing retinal image registration. A proprietary algorithm allows this new method to overcome challenges that emerge when taking projections of a curved surface from a wide range of viewpoints, using an uncalibrated camera.
"By using these unique software algorithms developed by our students, ophthalmologists can reap the real benefits of modern digital retinal imaging systems such as those manufactured by Justice Diagnostic Imaging" said Roysam.
Johnny Justice, Jr., CEO of Justice Diagnostic Imaging says, "RPIs retinal imaging registration software will be extremely helpful as an aid in the diagnosis and treatment of retinal diseases such as diabetic retinopathy and age related macular degeneration and other intraocular diseases as well as being valuable in the teaching of these diseases to ophthalmology residents and fellows."
Justice Diagnostic Imaging provides high-resolution digital diagnostic imaging systems, digital supplies and diagnostic dyes along with support services to ophthalmologists and other ophthalmic professionals.
December 21, 2004
Computer software should not be protected by copyright laws designed for music, literature and other creative works, according to a lawsuit filed in a U.S. court in San Francisco.
Read the complete article
November 19, 2004
The Technology Law and Commercialization Group (TLC) held its sixth annual meeting in Washington, DC on October 14, 2004, in conjunction with the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) conference. The event was designed to give our patent law attorneys an opportunity to network with other RPI alumni working in patent law. Over the years it has been a highly successful tool for alumni to find new careers, make important contacts, and also to receive informal campus updates.
If you have attended this event in the past, we would like to ask for your input.
Follow the link for Technology Law & Commercialization Professionals: Your Input Needed on AIPLA Reception Plans for 2005 at http://www.alumni.rpi.edu/ for more information.
November 12, 2004
The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit broadened the definition of public disclosure recently when it held that an inventor's oral and visual presentation at a scientific conference was a "printed publication" under 35 U.S.C section 102(b), and thus served as a bar to patentability of the claims in the application.
In re Klopfenstein, 380 F.3d 1345 (Fed. Cir. 2004), the inventor presented a paper that disclosed the invention, both orally and with slides displayed, for a total of three days at two conferences more than one year before the inventor filed a patent application on the underlying invention. The Federal Circuit held that it was proper for the claims of the inventors subsequent patent application to be invalidated because this "printed publication" took place more than one year before the application was filed.
Read this article by Baker Botts, L.L.P. for more information
Read the case on FindLaw
October 20, 2004
In a move with important implications for nanotechnology, the federal government's National Institutes of Health (NIH) again announced a controversial decision denying so-called march-in rights under the Bayh-Dole Act. March-in rights generally means that the federal government has the potential power to break the private sector's commercial exploitation of a patent using, for example, government forced compulsory licensing.
Read this article by By J. Steven Rutt, Stephen B. Maebius Foley & Lardner, L.L.P.; Nanotechnology Industry Team at http://www.nanoinvestornews.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=3579
October 12, 2004
The first meeting of the Tech Valley chapter of the Licensing Executive Society will be held at the Heffner Alumni Center on the campus of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) on November 3, 2004 at 6:00pm. There will be a reception followed by the program beginning at 6:45pm. The inaugural meeting will have as a speaker, the Senior Licensing Program Manager from the IBM Corporate Intellectual Property and Licensing Department, Michele Baumgartner-Bonanno. She will speak on the topic "Intellectual Property Licensing: Basic Considerations from a Corporate Perspective".
For more information and registration, please visit http://www.usa-canada.les.org/chapters/Albany/upcoming.asp
October 7, 2004
Rensselaer Nanotechnology Center and the Office of Alumni Relations will sponsor "Nanotechnology: Innovation, Opportunity, and Commercialization" a conference exploring opportunities in commercialization of nanoscience, nanotechnology, and related science and engineering fields.
August 30, 2004
Faculty and their departments are beginning to realize financial benefits from intellectual property licensed for commercial use through Rensselaer's Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC).