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Out of six Chancellor’s Innovation Fund Awards, two BME faculty projects will receive support this year. The Chancellor’s Innovation Fund (CIF) provides seed funding to a select few NC State research projects each year that have promise for market success. “The goal is to provide the critical funding needed to translate technologies to a point where a startup can be formed for commercialization or a license can be executed with an existing company,” says Wade Fulghum, assistant vice chancellor of the Office of Research Commercialization.

BME Dr Yevgeny Brudno and Dr Michael Williams have developed a biomaterial that could shorten the production of CAR-T cells, which are genetically engineered to recognize and destroy cancerous cells. They will use CIF support to determine if their algae-based, dime-sized scaffolds could be implanted in animal trials to look for undesired side effects.

On the other hand, BME Associate Professor Michael Daniele has developed a microfluidic device that might be able to mimic the blood-brain barrier much more closely than current testing models can. Daniele’s 3D chip contains two engineered-tissue components forming an interface that fits in the palm of your hand. CIF support will be used to validate that the technology can simulate the blood-brain barrier function continuously for multiple days during drug screening. Many Congrats to Dr Yevgeny Brudno, Dr Michael Williams and Dr Michael Daniele on the award and their promising projects, which are one step closer to market-ready technologies! To read about the CIF awards, visit the NC State news website here.

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