College of Louisville researchers and innovators love a very good problem. And in 2020 — a 12 months of challenges — they continued pushing ahead, creating and commercializing groundbreaking applied sciences that may enhance the best way we work and dwell. They have been acknowledged for these contributions on the presentation of the second annual EPIC Innovation Awards, held January 28.
“Innovation is completely crucial to UofL’s mission,” stated UofL President Neeli Bendapudi. “It’s what drives us and conjures up us. Our three most essential targets as a college are to be an awesome place to be taught, to work and to speculate, and the work of those innovators contributes to all three.”
The second annual occasion, hosted nearly this 12 months by the Office of the Executive Vice President for Research and Innovation and its know-how switch arm, the Commercialization EPI-Center, honored UofL innovators who had just lately been awarded a patent or whose know-how had been licensed to an organization for commercialization in fiscal 12 months 2020, which ended June 30, 2020.
Two giant awards have been additionally offered: Paula Bates was given the Innovator of the Yr Award, and Theo Edmonds, Brad Shuck and Laura Weingartner all accepted Trailblazer awards on behalf of their groups. Every was delivered a red-and-black glass flame — the image for the occasion.
“Our workplace, and UofL as an entire, are dedicated to taking the sensible, groundbreaking analysis taking place on our campus out of the lab, out of the classroom, and translating it into innovations and merchandise that enhance the best way we work and dwell,” stated Government Vice President for Analysis and Innovation, Kevin Gardner. “And, this previous 12 months, our researchers labored tirelessly to develop improvements that in a really possible way, might save lives — all whereas coping with the added challenges of COVID-19.”
Innovator of the Yr, Bates, is a serial inventor and cancer researcher, recognized for an extended observe file of growing sturdy partnerships with trade to commercialize her applied sciences. In 2020, she partnered with different UofL innovators to develop a potential breakthrough in our battle towards COVID-19 that’s believed to dam the virus from infecting human cells. The know-how was licensed to a now publicly-traded biomedical firm, which is working with UofL to additional develop it for market.
As for the Trailblazers, who’re awarded for work in new areas of innovation for UofL, Edmonds accepted the award for the Cultural Wellbeing Index, a instrument that helps corporations enhance company tradition and organizational wellbeing. To commercialize the know-how, Edmonds launched UPOP, UofL’s first-ever public benefit corporation spin-out.
Shuck accepted for the Worker Engagement Scale, a software program that helps corporations measure workforce engagement. The know-how’s non-exclusive license to startup Unitonomy marks the first license out of the UofL College of Education and Human Development — adopted by the second and third, additionally secured by Shuck, when the know-how was licensed to 2 different corporations in the identical 12 months.
Lastly, Weingartner accepted the award for “The eQuality Toolkit: Practical Skills for LGBTQ & DSD-Affected Patient Care,” a first-of-its-kind guide aimed toward better-training future medical professionals on caring for LGBTQ and different non-normative sufferers. The guide is supposed to offer assets and steering in order that medical faculties, residencies and persevering with medical education schemes throughout the nation are capable of implement coaching and supply higher assets for extra equitable care.
All instructed, fiscal 12 months 2020 was the best on-record for innovation at UofL, with a complete revenue of $9.4 million pushed by a robust 12 months for startups and offers. It additionally was UofL’s finest 12 months on-record for aggressive analysis funding, with whole new awards of $170 million.
“This was an awesome 12 months for innovation and analysis — additionally our greatest 12 months on file,” stated Allen Morris, govt director of the Commercialization EPI-Center. “Our innovators all share in that success, and I look ahead to persevering with that work collectively in 2021.”