Information session set for April 26 for Delaware researchers, businesses

An information session for the expanded Delaware Bioscience Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) grants program — with awards ranging from $5,000 to $100,000 per project — will be held Wednesday, April 26, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at the Ammon Pinizzotto Biopharmaceutical Innovation Center on the University of Delaware’s STAR Campus. Researchers from academic and medical institutions across the state, as well as life science businesses, are encouraged to register online.

“Support from Governor Carney and the Delaware General Assembly has enabled the Delaware Bioscience CAT grant program to build a strong pipeline for collaborative, entrepreneurial projects in the state of Delaware,” said Jung-Youn Lee, interim director of the Delaware Biotechnology Institute, which administers the program. “These projects can lead to exciting collaborations between academic and industry researchers, yielding innovations that result in job creation and economic growth for Delaware.”

Two competitions are held annually — in spring and fall — for the grants program, which offers competitive grants supporting applied research collaborations between academic and industry researchers, to grants supporting Delaware life science businesses with access to high-end research instrumentation, to grants providing entrepreneurial proof-of-concept support to establish a new Delaware-based business. An additional, new grant mechanism will be announced at the information session.

The following projects were funded this past fall:

  • Changqing Wu, professor of food toxicology in UD’s Department of Animal and Food Sciences, is collaborating with 4th Phase Water Technologies, to pioneer studies on the development of a plastic-free carbon nanotube filter for removing bacteria and microplastics from the water.
  • Xinqiao Jia, professor in UD’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering, is working with Hartlon LLC on a resorbable vascular stent for treating coronary and peripheral artery disease.
  • Eric Kmiec, executive director of ChristianaCare’s Gene Editing Institute, is working with CorriXR Therapeutics on CRISPR-directed gene editing to target solid tumors.
  • Aditya Kunjapur, assistant professor in UD’s Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, is pioneering a novel strategy to bolster vaccine development working with Nitro Biosciences, Inc., a startup company he and graduate student Neil Butler founded.

Principal investigators from any academic or medical research institution in Delaware are eligible to apply for the Bioscience CAT grants, including UD, ChristianaCare, Delaware State University, Delaware Technical Community College, and Nemours Children’s Hospital. Delaware-based life science businesses also are eligible to apply for grants specifically directed at core facility technology access.

The current application round closes June 1. Visit the CAT program website for more details.

About the Delaware Biotechnology Institute

The Delaware Biotechnology Institute is a partnership between government, academia and industry to help establish the First State as a center of excellence in biotechnology and the life sciences. Based at the University of Delaware’s Science, Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) Campus, DBI promotes biotechnology research and technology transfer, education and workforce development for the benefit of the environment, agriculture and human health.

Article by Tracey Bryant | Images courtesy of Anitha Ravikrishnan from the Xinqiao Jia lab group at Delaware Biotechnology Institute Bio-Imaging Center (featured on UDaily, 04/12/2023)