University Inventions Awarded Proof-of-Concept Funding

10/26/15
BATON ROUGE – A new, web-based tool that can be used in political campaigns is one of the 15 innovative projects developed by LSU system faculty that recently received funding through the LIFT2, or Leverage Innovation for Technology Transfer, fund.

LSU Department of Geography & Anthropology Assistant Professor David Sathiaraj is working on a predictive analytic model that can be integrated into existing voter targeting and canvassing software. The result will be an interactive software dashboard that can predict individual voter scores.

“I always felt election polls use sample sizes that are not representative of the electorate and are too small,” Sathiaraj said. “This product will help campaigns answer the questions of who are our likely supporters and how do we mine them from Big Data voter files?”

More than $530,000 has been granted to the 15 new proof-of-concept projects from a portion of the licensing income generated by previous inventions created at the university.

“The breadth of the technology in this third round of funded projects is very exciting,” said Arthur R. Cooper, CEO of the LSU Research & Technology Foundation, which administers the LIFT2 grant application process.

Invention disclosures at LSU have risen by 48 percent since the inception of LIFT2 in 2014. More than $1.5 million has been grant to 44 projects through this program, which was created by the LSU Board of Supervisors.

A collaboration between researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center and the LSU AgCenter to develop a food additive that can help control blood sugar levels was funded. The researchers will create nano-sized particles from crushed sugarcane bagasse, which is known to enhance insulin sensitivity and improve glycemic control.

Another recently funded product is Bone Foam, which is a synthetic composite that can be used to graft bone. LSU AgCenter Assistant Professor Daniel Hayes and Department of Chemistry Professor John Pojman are working together on this invention.

“We’ve improved the LIFT2 program with each round of grants from input gathered from applicants, faculty, administration and tech transfer officers,” Cooper said. “The LIFT2 program is on its way to becoming one of the best commercialization programs in the country.”

The LSU LIFT2 program was created by the LSU Board of Supervisors to help “Leverage Innovation for Technology Transfer” across all the campuses of LSU. Innovations include creative and artistic works as well as devices, drugs, software and other more traditional inventions; thus, personnel from all disciplines on all LSU campuses are strongly encouraged to consider an application to further develop an invention which has been previously disclosed to their campus technology transfer office.

The LSU LIFT2 Fund provides support to help transfer LSU technologies and innovations to the market – support difficult to come by through traditional means. Providing a bridge over the critical gap between basic research and commercialization, the LSU LIFT2 Fund awards grants to faculty on a competitive basis twice a year, in amounts up to $50,000, to validate the market potential of their inventions.

By permanently securing a portion of licensing income for the LSU LIFT2 Fund, LSU has ensured continual reinvestment in new innovation opportunities and affirmed its commitment to advancing discoveries for public benefit. Commercialization of academic innovations through technology transfer further enhances multiple aspects of LSU’s mission and creates new economic opportunity in Louisiana and elsewhere.

 

The 2015 LIFT2 funded projects:

·         Bone foam-synthetic composite bone graft led by Daniel Hayes, LSU AgCenter, and John Pojman, LSU Department of Chemistry

·         Generating nitrogen fertilizer prescriptions for crop production based on nitrogen algorithm using unmanned aircraft vehicle-                       acquired images and ground-based optical sensor led by Brenda Tubana, Dustin Harrell and Howard Viator, LSU AgCenter

·         Proof of concept for a new product allowing proteome-scale quantitation led by Imran Mungrue, LSU Health New Orleans

·         Novel vaccines and therapeutics for pneumocystis pneumonia led by Judd Shellito and Alistair Ramsay, LSU Health New Orleans

·         Development of a high throughput drug assay for E6AP/UBE3A oligomerization led by Arthur Haas, LSU Health New Orleans

·         Development of novel small molecule treatments for multi drug-resistant fungal infections led by Donna Neumann, LSU Health New           Orleans

·         The optimization of calculi treatment via a dissolution system as an effective and economical clinical alternative to surgical                         intervention led by Carlos Busso and Rohan Walvekar, LSU Health New Orleans

·         Space filling high-throughput microbubble generator led by Mayur Sathe, LSU Center for Computation & Technology, and                               Krishnaswamy Nandakumar, LSU Cain Department of Chemical Engineering

·         Circuit prototype implementation for switchable pins led by Lu Peng and Ashok Srivastava, LSU Division of Electrical & Computer               Engineering

·         Predictive algorithms and visual analytics for targeted campaigns led by David Sathiaraj, LSU Department of Geography &                             Anthropology

·         Hollow micro-carrier for shear-free culture of adherent cells in bioreactors led by Kidong Park, LSU Division of Electrical &                             Computer Engineering

·         A method to produce bioplastics from microalgal culture led by Naohiro Kato, LSU Department of Biological Sciences

·         Laser ablation nano-dissection for DNA sequencing led by Kermit Murray, LSU Department of Chemistry

·         The effect of sugarcane bagasse supplementation on glucose tolerance led by Frank Greenway, Pennington Biomedical Research             Center

·         A pilot study on the effect of albuterol and caffeine versus placebo on the body composition in adolescents led by Daniel Hsia, LSU           Health New Orleans

 

Second Phase of LSU LIFT2 Grant Program Awards 14 Projects

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 5, 2015

 

BATON ROUGE – The second phase of the LSU LIFT2 Grant Program has concluded, and 14 proof-of-concept grants totaling $500,000 are being awarded to faculty representing all five of LSU’s research campuses.

“With the second phase of LIFT2 grants being awarded, our faculty are showing that we are primed to be leaders in the technology transfer area,” said LSU President F. King Alexander. “The goal of the LIFT2 Grant Program is to help see many of these projects advance from basic research to market, and in today’s economic climate, investing in these research endeavors is more important than ever before.”

The LSU LIFT2 program was created by the LSU Board of Supervisors in January 2014 to help “Leverage Innovation for Technology Transfer” across all the campuses of the LSU system. Grants are awarded to faculty on a competitive basis twice a year, in amounts up to $50,000, to validate the market potential of their inventions.

During this phase of the LSU LIFT2 Grant Program, a total of 46 applications were received, and the 14 grants will be distributed as follows: six at LSU, four at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, two at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, one at LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport and one at the LSU AgCenter.

“We are pleased to see research from across the LSU System once again being awarded LIFT2 funds,” said Arthur Cooper, PCTT chair and CEO of the LSU Research & Technology Foundation. “The broad spectrum of disciplines represented with this phase of awards show that LSU’s innovation is coming from all areas of our campuses and from across the state. This continued support of LSU’s entrepreneurial enterprise increases the number of inventions that are available for licensing.”

The grants have been awarded after being scored by an external review panel on criteria related to primarily technical merit and commercial potential. Results of the research from these grants are expected within 12 months.

The following projects were awarded LIFT2 grants:

LSU

  • Arash Taleghani and Goqiang Li in Petroleum and Mechanical Engineering for “Shape Memory Proppants to Allow for Increased Production in Oil and Gas Wells”
  • Dandina Rao in Petroleum Engineering for “Enhanced Oil Recovery for Secondary and Tertiary Well Production”
  • Wanjun Wang in Mechanical and Industrial Engineering for “Laboratory Device and Media to Allow for Multi-step Laboratory Tests”
  • Shane Stadler, Tapas Samanta, Philip Adams and David Young in Physics and Astronomy for “Advanced Materials (Magentocaloric) for Improved Cooling to Reduce Current Refrigerant Needs”
  • Mandi Lopez in “Innovative Orthopedic Device for Improved Control in Tensioning and Attaching Tissue-to-Bone Grafts”
  • Edward Shihadeh and Anthony Reed in Sociology for “Student Retention Software and Predictive Modeling for Improved Student Success”

LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans

  • Charles Hilton and John T. Paige in the School of Medicine for “Development and Dissemination of a Software Interface”
  • Francesca Peruzzi in the Cancer Center for “Development of miR-3189-3p as a Therapeutic for the Treatment Glioblastoma”
  • Seth Pincus in MIP and Pediatrics for “Improved Double Variable Domain Antibodies to HIV”
  • Hong Xin in Pediatrics for “Peptide vaccines and related antibodies protect against fungal infections”

Pennington Biomedical Research Center

  • Thomas Gettys in Basic Science for “Signaling Defining the Ranges of Dietary Methionine and Cysteine Restriction Essential to Biological Efficacy”
  • Eric Ravussin in Clinical Science for “Effect of 2-week overnight moderate hypoxia on glucose tolerance in individuals with type 2 diabetes”

LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport

  • Gulshan Sunavala-Dossabhoy for “Optimizing delivery of a tumor-affecting protein via absorption through the mouth”

LSU AgCenter

  • Niranjan Baisakh in Plant, Environment and Soil Sciences for “Development of drought and salt tolerant corn with an actin depolumerizing factor gene from a Louisiana native extremophile smooth cordgrass”

The LSU LIFT2 Fund provides support to help transfer LSU technologies and innovations to the market – support difficult to come by through traditional means. By permanently securing a portion of licensing income for the LSU LIFT2 Fund, LSU has ensured continual reinvestment in new innovation opportunities and affirmed its commitment to advancing discoveries for public benefit.

Eight of the 14 recipients of these LIFT2 awards were aided by the Re- LIFT2 fund, which provided funds to assist the most promising applications that did not receive a LIFT2 Fund investment during phase one of the grant program. The Re- LIFT2 program, funded through an investment from the Research Park Corporation, or RPC, supports researchers in their efforts to better position their projects for success in obtaining proof-of-concept funding to advance innovations closer to commercialization.

“I’m thrilled our collaboration with the LSU Research and Technology Foundation, which resulted in the Re- LIFT2 program, is already bearing fruit,” said RPC President and CEO Byron Clayton. “The RPC is committed to accelerating the growth of technology-based projects like those receiving Re- LIFT2 and LIFT2 awards, and we look forward to high-impact partnerships to continue to fulfill this mission.”

 

 

Related:

LSU President’s Committee on Technology Transfer Recommends New Approach to Leverage Innovation

http://www.lsu.edu/ur/ocur/lsunews/MediaCenter/News/2014/01/item68160.html

 

LSU Proof of Concept Fund Launched with $2 Million

http://www.lsu.edu/ur/ocur/lsunews/MediaCenter/News/2014/01/item68270.html

 

LSU LIFT2 Grant Program Launches, Request for Proposals Due June 20

http://www.lsusystem.edu/index.php/2014/05/21/lsu-lift2-grant-program-launches-request-for-proposals-due-june-20/

 

Fifteen LSU LIFT2 Grants to be Awarded, Totaling $500,000

http://www.lsusystem.edu/index.php/2014/07/15/fifteen-lsu-lift2-grants-to-be-awarded-totaling-500000/

Professor uses x-ray technology to combat air pollution

Physics professor Guang Jia is using a new approach to combat an age-old issue: industrial air pollution.

With funding provided by the LSU LIFT2 Grant Program, a University initiative created to fund projects in various colleges and academic disciplines, Jia and his colleagues are designing a new industrial air purifier that uses X-ray technology.

Jia said the idea to apply his expertise in medical physics to design an air purification system occurred to him after he visited his native country, China, in December 2011.

In Beijing, one of China’s largest cities, the air pollution is so thick, inhabitants can only view the sunrise through a real-time television broadcast, Jia said.

“You might think this is horrible, but it turns out the Beijing situation is the best in China,” Jia said. “If you take the train to my hometown, which is eight hours by train, the air pollution gets worse and worse.”

Jia said a large device called an electrostatic precipitator, or ESP, is the current standard for industrial air purification. The device utilizes electrostatic poles to generate electrons, which attach to pollutant particles and keep them out of the air when attracted to a collecting plate.

The design Jia and colleagues have in mind would be smaller and attach to a chimney for easy installation.

Jia said the device would operate similarly to an ESP, but an X-ray tube would be used to ionize the pollutant particles directly, charging them either positively or negatively. The particles would then be attracted to a series of positively and negatively charged collecting plates.

By using X-ray technology, Jia said the charged particles will have a greater possible travel distance, and the X-ray tube can be designed to fit the specifications of any chimney to ensure pollutants are filtered thoroughly and efficiently. The device can also be engineered to filter based on the chemical composition of the pollutant particles a chimney expels.

The LSU LIFT2 Grant Program provides funding for one year to support projects prior to commercialization. In July, Jia and colleagues received a $22,145 award.

“This LIFT2 grant is basically providing the money to do some testing of the idea to give us enough data to be able to pursue funding to actually develop the idea for real,” said physics professor Kenneth Matthews, one of Jia’s colleagues.

Once the first year of funding ends in July 2015, Jia said the team will apply for a $500,000 grant through the National Science Foundation, which will provide funding for the project over five years.

Matthews, physics professor Wei-Hsung Wang and physics and astronomy post-doctoral student Wenhua Xu are working with Jia.

“I moved to Louisiana State last July, so I found here there was a really nice team for X-ray and medical physics,” Jia said.

While each of the professors on the project come from a radiation science background, each has an individual role in the project. Jia approaches the project from an analytical angle while Matthews handles the project’s instrumental aspects, and Wang is in charge of radiation safety.

Matthews said professors gather equipment and formulate the design for a project like this, but students are employed to do the testing and data collection. The team is now looking for an environmental science, engineering or physics student to assist Xu with practical testing.

“A lot of the background materials and facilities are here and in place,” Matthews said. “We have the labs to work in that are dedicated, outfitted for this sort of project.”

Research Park Corporation Approves $250,000 to Launch the LSU Re-LIFT2 Fund

Baton Rouge, La. –At a meeting of its board of directors today, the Research Park Corporation approved $250,000 to launch the LSU Re-LIFT2 program, in partnership with the LSU Research and Technology Foundation (RTF). Re-LIFT will compliment LSU’s LIFT2 Fund which funds research projects across the LSU System which have yet to be licensed, optioned or otherwise committed to a commercial partner. The Re-LIFT2 fund will assist the most promising applications that did not receive a LIFT2 Fund investment.  Up to $5,000 per company would be provided to improve the applications of those companies, ideally raising the likelihood of funding during the next LIFT2 round.

“The Research Park Corporation was created to promote the high-tech sector in Louisiana, as well as technology-led economic development, with the ultimate goal of creating new technology, high-tech jobs and promoting research in our great state, “ said RPC Chairman Terrell Brown. “Funding the Re-LIFT2 program is another step in the right direction is fulfilling that mission,” Brown said.

Re-LIFT2 will be a two-year program that will provide selected applicants from the first four rounds of the LSU LIFT2 program with assistance. The LSU Research & Technology Foundation in conjunction with the five research campus technology transfer directors (TTOs), will select the participants for Re-LIFT2from the pool of unsuccessful applicants of the-LIFT2 competition over the two-year life of the program.  The RTF and TTOs will collaborate to develop and customize the assistance needed by each project selected for Re-LIFT2 support.  The RTF will partner with the TTOs to develop educational and training workshops to help researchers improve their applications, and will directly engage service providers to assist the faculty participants in the Re-LIFT2 program.

“Re-LIFT2 will assist LSU in advancing its early-stage technologies,” said Arthur R. Cooper, CEO of the RTF. “These grant funds can provide competitive analyses, marketing studies or help strengthen other areas that will improve LSU technologies.  Re-LIFT2 can provide the stepping-stones toward successful commercialization,” Cooper said.

“We’ve had great interest and support of our LIFT2 fund, and now the Re- LIFT2 will further assist the transfer of innovation out of the labs and into market,” said LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander. “We are excited about building on our partnership with the Research Park Corporation and look forward to more opportunities to work together to support innovation and entrepreneurship across Louisiana.”

The RPC’s $250,000 in funding will support at least 30 projects which were not selected to receive a LIFT2 award. Those researchers will use the Re-LIFT2 awards to better position their projects  for success in obtaining proof-of-concept funding to advance innovations closer to commercialization.

It’s anticipated that the Re-LIFT2 program could begin making its first awards by the end of October. For more information on the Research Park Corporation, its mission, programs, etc., contact Jesse Hoggard.

###

Jesse T. Hoggard, APR
Director of Marketing & Business Development
Louisiana Technology Park
(225) 218-1100

Fifteen LSU LIFT2 Grants to be Awarded, Totaling $500,000

Posted on Jul 15, 2014 in NewsResearch & Innovation

The pilot phase of the LSU LIFT2 Grant Program has concluded, and 15 grants totaling $500,000 will be awarded to support proof of concept innovations. The LIFT2 grants will support projects ranging from a number of disciplines from all five of LSU’s research campuses.

“We are pleased to award the first ever LIFT2 fund grants at LSU,” said LSU President & Chancellor F. King Alexander. “The results of the pilot phase of the program indicate a tremendous interest in the program and show that there was a need for such proof of concept funding to support innovation and commercialization. This program will help to see many of these projects advance from basic research to market.”

The LSU LIFT2 program was created by the LSU Board of Supervisors in January to help “Leverage Innovation for Technology Transfer” across all the campuses of the LSU system. “Innovations” include creative and artistic works as well as devices, drugs, software and other more traditional inventions; thus, personnel from all disciplines on all LSU campuses are strongly encouraged to consider an application to further develop an invention which has been previously disclosed to their campus technology transfer office.

“The LSU Board of Supervisors is pleased to see so many researchers participate in the request for proposal process for the initial LIFT2 grants,” said LSU Board of Supervisors Chairman Robert “Bobby” Yarborough. “Every day we see the impact that LSU research is having on our state in addressing a number of areas like healthcare, the coast, workforce development, energy, agriculture and more. These initial grants are the first of many from this program, and we encourage more researchers to apply in the future.”

The LSU LIFT2 Grant Program pilot phase launched in May and applications for grants closed on June 20. A total of 47 applications were received, and the 15 grants will be distributed as follows: seven at LSU, three at the LSU AgCenter, three at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, one at LSU Health Sciences Center Shreveport and one at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center.

Some examples of the work being supported through the initial LIFT2 grants include a real-time, automated video analytics system; a novel chewing gum to prevent certain cancers; a system to manage irrigation at container plant nurseries; a biodegradable urethral scaffold; a method to reclaim treated wood and recycle it as a raw material for “green” spray foam insulation; and software enhancements to smartphone apps for weight management.

The grants have been awarded after being scored by an external review panel on criteria related to primarily technical merit and commercial potential. Results of the research from these first grants are expected within 12 months.

The LSU LIFT2 Fund provides support to help transfer LSU technologies and innovations to the market – support difficult to come by through traditional means. Providing a bridge over the critical gap between basic research and commercialization, the LSU LIFT2 Fund awards grants to faculty on a competitive basis twice a year, in amounts up to $50,000, to validate the market potential of their inventions.

By permanently securing a portion of licensing income for the LSU LIFT2 Fund, LSU has ensured continual reinvestment in new innovation opportunities and affirmed its commitment to advancing discoveries for public benefit. Commercialization of academic innovations through technology transfer further enhances multiple aspects of LSU’s mission and creates new economic opportunity in Louisiana and elsewhere.

The next round of applications for LIFT2 awards will open in November, for the semi-annual program.

LSU LIFT2 Grant Program Launches, Request for Proposals Due June 20

BATON ROUGE – The new LSU LIFT2 Grant Program has launched, just four months after creation of the new proof-of-concept program by the LSU Board of Supervisors.  The Request for Proposals, or RFP, for this pilot phase of the program was released today; applications for grants from the LSU LIFT2 Fund are due June 20, with awards to be made in mid-July.

“Research universities like LSU are critical to the local, state and national economy. The work done at LSU drives innovation, attracts industry and stimulates the entrepreneurial spirit,” said LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander. “LIFT2 is an excellent method for us to support our faculty as they take their discoveries down the long and winding path from basic research to market.”

The LSU LIFT2 program was created by the LSU Board of Supervisors in January of 2014 to help “Leverage Innovation for Technology Transfer” across all the campuses of the LSU system. “Innovations” include creative and artistic works as well as devices, drugs, software and other more traditional inventions; thus, personnel from all disciplines on all LSU campuses are strongly encouraged to consider an application to further develop an invention which has been previously disclosed to their campus technology transfer office.

The LSU LIFT2 Fund provides support to help transfer LSU technologies and innovations to the market – support difficult to come by through traditional means. Providing a bridge over the critical gap between basic research and commercialization, the LSU LIFT2 Fundwill award grants to faculty on a competitive basis twice a year, in amounts up to $50,000, to validate the market potential of their inventions.

“The LIFT2 grant funding will offer new resources for commercialization of academic innovation,” said Arthur R. Cooper, chief executive officer of the LSU Research & Technology Foundation. “Supporting LSU’s entrepreneurial enterprise will increase the number of inventions that are available for licensing.”

 

By permanently securing a portion of licensing income for the LSU LIFT2 Fund, LSU has ensured continual reinvestment in new innovation opportunities and affirmed its commitment to advancing discoveries for public benefit. Commercialization of academic innovations through technology transfer further enhances multiple aspects of LSU’s mission and creates new economic opportunity in Louisiana and elsewhere.

Applications to the pilot LSU LIFT2 Grant program will be scored by an external review panel on criteria primarily related to technical merit and commercial potential. In this pilot round of the LSU LIFT2 Grant Program $500,000 will be available to support proof-of-concept projects.

Faculty members wishing to submit an RFP, should do so online at http://lsurtf.submittable.com/submit by June 20.

According to Cooper, the LSU LIFT2 website was designed with an easy and efficient grant application process for LSU’s entrepreneurial and creative faculty to transition their innovations to the marketplace.

LSU Student Incubator Awards Cash

BATON ROUGE – The LSU Student Incubator awarded $25,000 cash to five student-run startups during the culmination of the third-annual Venture Challenge on April 25. This is the third year the Venture Challenge has showcased LSU’s brightest student entrepreneurs, and the LSU Student Incubator plans to continue providing student business with the total startup experience next year.

lsu-student-incubator-awards-cashThe $25,000 prize was distributed among the five student businesses, including the four Venture Challenge finalists and the two “Audience Choice” Startup Showcase displays. One of the four finalists also won the “Audience Choice” prize.

The final round winners were:
The Hospitality & Senior Care Institute, which set a new Venture Challenge record with a cash prize of $15,000. The startup provides training in professional and workforce development and specializes in short-term hospitality, school nutrition and senior care training programs;

Foundations Family Fitness, which received a $3,000 award. The startup is a fitness center that utilizes psychological research to maximize program adherence and optimize health and fitness for the whole family;

Environmental Robotics Institute, which received a $2,000 prize. The startup is committed to implementing and developing environmental robotics systems and networks to build a better world and support global environmental sustainability;

E T C H Studios, which received $4,500 total from the final round and as the Startup Showcase “Audience Choice” winner. The startup is a laser-cut jewelry business focusing on crafting unique, geometric and edgy accessories for the social media generation; and

Mashball, which received the $500 runner-up prize for the Startup Showcase “Audience Choice” display for their tailgate, beach and outdoor game.

A panel of 18 local judges from the professional community selected four of the 14 student teams to advance to the final live-pitch round of the Venture Challenge. The finalists pitched their business plans during the final round and answered questions from the four final judges including CFO of Louisiana Funds Richard Babb, local civil engineer Niraj Kumar, CEO and President of Forte and Tablada Inc. Ann Forte Trappey and Partner at Jones Walker Law Firm Robert “Bob” Tucker. The judges evaluated the finalist’s presentations and question response to determine the cash amount each finalist would receive from $23,500. The remaining $1,500 went to the “Audience Choice” winner and runner-up from the Startup Showcase.

The LSU Student Incubator assists students with business idea development to create a post-graduation career option. The program was launched in 2010 and has supported over 50 student-run startups annually. The incubator provides students with one-on-one consulting, business planning software, professional mentors and speakers, an Elevator Pitch Competition, the Annual Venture Challenge and other valuable resources needed to start and grow a business. The LSU Student Incubator is a program of the Louisiana Business & Technology Center at the LSU Innovation Park, which endeavors to enhance economic development in Louisiana by supporting and developing small businesses. For more information on the LSU Student Incubator visit www.studentincubator.lsu.edu.

04/30/2014 01:18 PM

LSU Proof of Concept Fund Launched with $2 Million

LSU LIFT, or Leveraging Innovation for Technology Transfer, Fund will support commercialization of faculty intellectual property through small grants for applied research on proof of concept

In addition to approving changes to its regulations governing technology transfer and commercialization at LSU, the LSU Board of Supervisors today approved the creation of the LSU LIFT Fund – Leveraging Innovation for Technology Transfer – and launched it with $2 million in restricted funds generated by previously-licensed LSU inventions.

“This is exactly the kind of resource we need to provide our faculty with momentum to more effectively transfer innovation out of the lab and into the market,” said LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander. “The LSU LIFT Fund will now support our faculty’s most promising inventions in that difficult-to-fund phase between basic research and commercialization.”

The LSU LIFT Fund will provide small grants to faculty on a competitive basis, twice a year, in amounts up to $50,000, to validate the market potential of their inventions; the first LIFT grants are expected to be awarded by July 1 of this year. This type of funding is typically very difficult to secure, creating a gap between basic research support and marketable products. The Board also approved a recommendation to permanently sustain the LSU LIFT Fund by allocating 5 percent of the university’s future intellectual property licensing income directly to the new fund.

“Our committee is proud to have served our university in this capacity, and we are thrilled that the Board has created the LSU LIFT Fund with such a significant balance,” said Arthur Cooper, chair of the LSU President’s Committee on Technology Transfer, or PCTT, and CEO of the LSU System Research & Technology Foundation. “Launching the LSU LIFT Fund this way sends a strong message to our faculty and our external partners that LSU is serious about innovation and entrepreneurship.”

The Board also received the report of the PCTT, which outlined a new approach to technology transfer at LSU in partnership with the LSU System Research & Technology Foundation, or RTF.  The RTF will provide centralized administrative support functions to each of the campuses, enhancing productivity while allowing each to manage its own operations. The budget for this partnership is expected to replace what the campuses currently spend on external legal fees each year, and will be shared according to a formula based upon each campus’ relative proportion of LSU’s total annual research expenditures.

“This new policy and LIFT Fund should greatly increase the number of inventions moving from the laboratory to the marketplace and create new opportunities for LSU students to find great jobs in Louisiana once they graduate,” said Stephen Waguespack, president of LABI. “We support LSU in making this and other changes that will have a major impact on our state’s workforce and innovation sectors.”

“This new, collaborative approach to commercialization at LSU will advance innovation while being more responsive to the needs of both faculty and business,” said J. Stephen Perry, member of the LSU Board of Supervisors and chair of its Research & Economic Development Committee. “The LSU LIFT Fund will provide our excellent faculty with a new means of advancing their innovative research towards the market and will support LSU’s critical role in building an innovation economy across Louisiana. I am thrilled that we can kick-start this initiative by launching the LIFT Fund with such a significant initial investment.”

The Board’s Research & Economic Development Committee  today recommended these new programs to the full board.

“Biomedical innovation – a key driver of economic development – will be greatly improved by the change in the tech transfer approach and new LIFT Fund,” said Michael Hecht, president and CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc. “Considering the prospect for biomedical research in New Orleans, this has real potential to help catalyze research, commercialization and new company formation.”

The full report of the technology transfer recommendations provided by the PCTT is available athttp://www.lsusystem.edu/docs/agenda/2014/20140131TechnlogyTransferReport.pdf.

“This streamlined approach to commercialization and technology transfer indicates an acceleration of LSU’s already considerable commitment to licensing intellectual property, and the LIFT fund provides the support necessary to sustain this effort,” said Joseph Lovett, managing director of Louisiana Fund I. “This is an exciting moment for Louisiana’s business community, and we look forward to working even more closely with LSU in the future.”

JANUARY 31, 2014