OVCI announces $230K in grants from the UIC Innovation Fund to support translational research

The UIC Office of the Vice Chancellor for Innovation is pleased to announce the 2021 Chancellor’s Translational Research Initiative (CTRI) program awardees. Each recipient will receive up to $25,000 to prove the viability of their concept and advance their research towards commercialization.

The 2021 CTRI award recipients and their projects are:

Faculty Project Title
Kamran Avanaki


Department of Bioengineering;
Department of Dermatology

BGscope: a non-invasive, continuous blood gas measurement device
Deepak Shukla


Department of Ophthalmology
Visual Science

Repurposing PBA as a potent anti-herpes agent
Vinay Aakalu 


Department of Ophthalmology
Visual Science

Peptide treatment of corneal wounds
Peter Gyarmati 


Department of Cancer Biology
and Pharmacology

Point-of-care detection of bloodstream infection
Luisa DiPietro


Department of Periodontics  

Novel NRF2 activators as wound healing therapeutics
Meenesh Singh 


Department of Chemical Engineering

Sensor-integrated microfluidic device for automated screening of active pharmaceutical ingredients
X. Joe Zhou


Center for Magnetic Resonance Research; Department
of Neurological Surgery

Method for producing 3D magnetic resonance images with reduced field-of-view
Sangil Kim 


Department of Chemical Engineering

Development and commercialization of a low-cost and high-performance blood separation device for diagnostics
Peggi White 


Regional Nursing Program – Urbana

JP wound drain holder device
Xin Huang 


Department of Pharmacology

Developing RT-LAMP assays for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in saliva

The UIC Innovation Fund supports the commercialization of technologies developed by faculty, staff, and students at UIC. Through programs such as the Chancellor’s Translational Research Initiative (CTRI) and the Proof of Concept (POC) Awards, the fund helps university-based technologies reach important milestones critical to commercialization. To date, the UIC Innovation Fund has awarded over $5 million in funding to advance UIC innovations. The fund is managed by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Innovation in partnership with the Office of Technology Management.

We would like to thank the many faculty who served on the review committee and evaluated the CTRI applications. We would also like to acknowledge the Office of Technology Management. This program is not possible without their continued support.

For more information on the CTRI program and the UIC Innovation Fund, please visit https://innovation.uic.edu/.

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