Eight New Clemson Technologies Ready for Market

The Clemson University Research Foundation works to move the results of Clemson research from the lab to the marketplace where they can provide real-world benefit. Here is a sample of new Clemson technologies available to commercialize.

1 | Ying Mei (bioengineering) has developed a method to help treat patients who have suffered from heart attacks or strokes. By taking a small tissue sample from the patient, doctors can create a miniature 3D tissue “organoid” that can help assess which prescription drugs will be most beneficial.

2 | Ken Marcus (chemistry) has created a novel shaped fiber which can be used in medical diagnostics and disease detection. These “C-CP” fibers trap cellular exosomes, which are produced by a patient’s body in response to certain medical conditions and infections. These exosomes provide doctors an early method of detecting chronic disease.

3 | Worldwide, millions of people are affected by contaminated drinking water. Kevin Finneran (environmental engineering and earth sciences) has developed a new bioremediation technology that can eliminate the common pollutant known as hexavalent-chromium. This new method uses animal byproducts as electron donors, which enable naturally occurring bacteria to break down and eliminate the pollutants. This approach has been shown to perform better and cost less than the current bioremediation materials based on soybean oil.

4 | Mark Thies (chemical and biomolecular engineering) has developed an approach to purify and control the molecular weight of lignin for use as carbon fiber and other plastic materials. Lignin is a wood-derived “biopolymer,” which is a byproduct of the paper-making process. Carbon fiber and plastics made from lignin provide a renewable way to create common materials and products without reliance on limited petroleum resources.

5 | Optical fibers made of glass are critical components of advanced laser and sensor systems. As the power and sensitivity of these systems increase, temperature variation in the fiber can degrade their performance. John Ballato (materials science and engineering) and his team at Clemson’s Center for Optical Materials Science and Engineering Technologies have created an optical fiber that is stable at a wide range of temperatures. These fibers enable substantially higher performance and more advanced photonic applications

6 | Seeding biological cells within tissue scaffolds is a key technology for regenerative medicine therapies. Dan Simionescu (bioengineering) and his team have developed a scalable method of seeding cells into tissue using a micro-injection roller device. This hand-held roller delivers a controlled volume of cells directly onto the tissue and can accommodate a wide variety of tissue types.

7 | In recent years, approximately 2 million surgical procedures were performed in the United States to treat osteoarthritis and other cartilage defects. Typical treatment for osteoarthritis involves removing damaged cartilage and replacing it with healthy cartilage from a different location in a patient’s body. Unfortunately, this method relies on healthy tissue availability and can cause further complications to a patient’s recovery. To combat this, Jeremy Mercuri (bioengineering) has developed a multilayered “osteochondral” implant that eliminates the need for using a patient’s existing cartilage.

8 | Severe bone fractures may require external pins and wires to provide stabilization during healing. However, these “external fixation” techniques often result in a high amount of complications due to infection. Alexey Vertegel (bioengineering) and Igor Luzinov (materials science and engineering) have engineered a mechanically stable antibiotic coating that can reduce the amount of infections associated with this type of treatment. This PGMA polymer coating enables sustained release for a broad range of medications, including antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, growth factors and others.

For a full list of Clemson innovations available, go to curf.clemson.edu.

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