The Case-Coulter Translational Research Partnership between Case Western Reserve University and the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation has announced over $1 million in funding for six biomedical technologies.
Each of the six Case Western Reserve projects were selected for full program funding, and additional pilot projects will be awarded funding at the end of the year. Each project is focused on solving areas of unmet clinical needs and include a partnership between a clinician and biomedical engineer.
The following were the six projects selected:
Sickle cell disease biochip blood-cell adhesion test for anti-adhesive therapies
Created by: Umut Gurkan, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and Jane Little, professor of medicine in the department of hematology and oncology
The sickle cell disease biochip technology is a microfluidic blood test that will measure the stickiness of blood cells to blood vessel walls. This test can be used as a diagnostic test platform for emerging anti-adhesive therapies that allow personalized treatment and care for patients who have sickle cell disease.
3D ultrasound imaging for ophthalmology
Created by: Faruk Orge, professor and pediatric division chief of ophthalmology at University Hospitals of Cleveland and David Wilson, professor of biomedical engineering
This technology is a high-resolution, 3D microscopic ultrasound system that provides visualization of eye structures to better understand pathophysiology, and plan and assess treatments. The ultrasound is an ophthalmic imaging method that ensures hidden areas of the eye are seen such as the lens and ciliary body, which are located behind the iris. These regions of the eye play a vital role in glaucoma and cataract, which are causes of reversible and irreversible blindness.
LunIOTx: decision-support technology for predicting response to immunotherapy in lung cancer
Created by: Anant Madabhushi, the F. Alex Nason Professor II of biomedical engineering and director of the Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics
LunIOTx is a decision-support technology that uses patented artificial intelligence and pattern recognition algorithms on CT scans to identify lung cancer patients who will or will not respond to immunotherapy. LunIOTx can identify lung cancer patients who can avoid immunotherapy, and may be better candidates for chemo or radiation therapy; the technology does this by identifying patterns on CT scans.
Magneto-optical diagnosis of Lyme disease in blood samples
Created by: Brian Grimberg, assistant professor of international health at the School of Medicine and Umut Gurkan, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering
More than 300,000 people are potentially infected with Lyme disease in the United States, and there is a growing need for a more reliable test. This technology works when iron-labeled antibodies attach to Borrelia bacteria, making them receptive to a magnetic field that can yield results in five minutes. The technology functions immediately after exposure to an infected tick instead of waiting weeks or months for current tests. This early detection can lead to an early cure instead of patients suffering for years without treatment.
Magnetic resonance fingerprinting for target identification in deep brain stimulation
Created by: Cameron McIntyre, the Tilles-Weidenthal Professor of biomedical engineering and Mark Griswold, professor of radiology
This project developed a clinical workflow and computational algorithm that enables the integration of advanced magnetic resonance fingerprinting for surgical strategies in deep brain stimulation (DBS) therapies. This prototype system is developed around the subthalamic nucleus DBS for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
Novel positron emission tomography (PET) imaging agent for tumor detection and treatment
Created by: Brady-Kalnay; professor of molecular biology and microbiology and James Basilion, professor of radiology biomedical engineering and pathology
Specific tumor detection is extremely important in cancer imaging to avoid unnecessary biopsies that show false-positive readings and to allow treatment at earlier stages of the disease. Positron Emmision Tomography (PET) imaging agents specifically recognize tumor cells that are necessary for improved imaging, and provide evaluation of therapeutic efficacy independent of their metabolic rates. PTPµ is an imageable biomarker that can be used to detect and monitor invasive and metastatic tumors.
“As a group, the quality of the proposals received continues to improve each year, making the selection decisions more challenging than ever,” said Stephen Fening, director of the Case-Coulter Translational Research Partnership at Case Western Reserve. “We had many more proposals that were deserving of inclusion into the program than we were able to accommodate.”