Springdale, AR, United States
Springdale, AR, United States
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Grant
Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 225.00K | Year: 2014

This Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project aims to develop an efficient, rapid, and eco-friendly approach for mass production of highly conductive solution phase graphene with controlled structures. Most of the commercial available solution phase conductive graphene sheets are either highly defective reduced graphene oxide (r-GO) or non-defective pristine graphene sheets. They are either dispersed in special organic solvents or aqueous solutions with the help of surfactants for stabilization. Most of the production processes involve toxic chemicals or release toxic substances as byproducts, causing potential hazard to our environment. The study of novel green microwave oxidation chemistries proposed in this project will lead to rapid (tens of seconds), direct (without requirement for post reduction), and low cost fabrication of highly conductive, clean (without requirement for surfactants and stabilizers), and low oxygen containing graphene sheets with controlled lateral dimensions and molecular structures. The success of the project will leads to a series of new graphene products which are different from both rGO and pristine graphene sheets while combining many of their merits and can be used for the research society to fabricate highly conductive graphene sheets with tailored structures for best fit a broad spectrum of applications. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is the great potential to enable cost effective mass production of highly conductive graphene sheets with unique molecular structures and controllable sizes. Given the known wide potential application of graphene in energy generation and storage, catalysts, electronics, coating, sensors, etc, the commercial available of these graphene sheets with well-defined structures will speed up the scientific understanding and technological developments in these broad areas. This project could also greatly benefit our society with the environment friendly and low energy consumption approach for the mass production of these materials.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 2.05M | Year: 2012

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Chest pain in patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) present a clinical dilemma: transfer for emergent coronary revascularization, admit overnight for cardiac telemetry and stress testing, or discharge home with medical follow-up. In this proposal, we hypothesize that a novel thrombus-specific Spectral Computed Tomography (Multicolored CT) nanoparticle (i.e., NanoK) approach for direct rapid assessment of coronary disease in the ED could help resolve this clinical dilemma. This project, which is led by Ocean NanoTech in collaboration with Washington University, will complete development of a GLP-/GMP-ready 1- fibrin NanoK product candidate suitably advanced for GLP stability and toxicity testing to support an FDA IND. This NanoK platform technology offers unique benefits for diagnosis and treatment of acute coronary disease that could improve healthcare outcomes and reduce costs. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Chest pain in patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) present a clinical dilemma: transfer for emergent coronary revascularization, admit overnight for cardiac telemetry and stress testing, or discharge home with medical follow-up. While the emergent need for cardiac catheterization is selfevident from the presentation of some individuals, the determination of whether to admit or discharge a patient with an equivocal history and physical is often problematic. In lieu of missing a critical cardiac diagnosis, patients are admitted for myocardial evaluation and stress testing, which is inconvenient, costly and unnecessary in the majority of cases. In this proposal, we hypothesize that a novel thrombus-specific Spectral Computed Tomography (Multicolored CT) nanoparticle (i.e., NanoK) approach for direct rapid assessment of coronary disease in the ED could help resolve this clinical dilemma. This project describes the demonstration of the prototype concept in Phase 1 and the development, demonstration, and characterization of the clinical productcandidate in Phase II. The overarching goal of this project, which is led by Ocean NanoTech in collaboration with Washington University, will be to complete development of a GLP- /GMP-ready 1-fibrin NanoK product candidate suitably advanced for GLP stability and toxicity testing to support an FDA IND. This NanoK platform technology offers unique benefits for diagnosis and treatment of acute coronary disease that could improve healthcare outcomes and reduce costs.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.50M | Year: 2014

This DAPPA SBIR proposal will develop a new class of voltage-sensing probes, type-II semiconductor nanorods with asymmetric band structure, to assay the bioelectrical states of human cells. Our previous study has demonstrated that nanorods can self-insert into the cell membrane and optically and non-invasively record action potentials (AP) at the single particle level. These nanoparticles, operating via the Quantum-Confined Stark Effect (QCSE), could offer unique advantages for AP recording, including: (1) much higher voltage sensitivity than conventional voltage-sensing dyes or fluorescent proteins; (2) exceptional brightness enabling single-molecule detection; (3) a large spectral shift as function of voltage; (4) a very fast (nanosecond) response; (5) do not bleach; (6) have very large Stokes shifts; (7) large two-photon cross sections; (8) excellent performance in the NIR; (9) superresolution imaging; and (10) able to be used at very low concentration.. In this phase II project, we will further optimize the structure of the voltage-sensing nanorod to achieve large QCSE; improve the surface coating of vsNRs for high efficient cell membrane insertion; and develop a voltage recording method. In our phase II option, we will study target-specific voltage sensing and finalize the voltage sensing probe and assay.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: National Institutes of Health | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2015

DESCRIPTION provided by applicant Treatment of patients with primary and metastatic liver tumors is a challenging unsolved problem Only of patients with tumors in the liver are surgical candidates and systemic chemotherapy alone has been demonstrated to be of limited efficacy in treating hepatocellular carcinoma and liver metastases Minimally invasive image guided interventional techniques including transarterial interventions and percutaneous interventions e g radiofrequency ablation laser ablation have been introduced into the clinic for the treatment of patients with liver tumors However these techniques are limited by incomplete elimination of cancer cells which can lead to local tumor recurrence Therefore there is an urgent need to develop innovative local treatment approaches for liver tumors We believe that intraarterially delivered nanoparticles offers a unique opportunity for highly concentrated local delivery of heat and chemotherapeutic agents and thus may significantly improve the efficacy of treatment for liver tumors We have developed an innovative proprietary technology that is capable of mediating simultaneous near infrared laser triggered photothermal ablation PTA and local release of doxorubicin DOX Our DOX loaded polyethylene glycol coated hollow gold nanospheres DOX@PEG HAuNS have demonstrated low systemic toxicity under normal body temperatures and significantly enhanced antitumor efficacy when combined with laser exposure under hyperthermia and ablative temperatures In this SBIR program we have assembled a multidisciplinary team to implement a coherent strategy to address developmental and translational challenges Our specific aims are To synthesize and characterize high quality DOX@PEG HAuNS in large scale and under Good laboratory Practice GLP production conditions To determine the pharmacokinetics PK and biodistribution of DOX@PEG HAuNS after IA injection in rats and to demonstrate the feasibility of concurrent PTA and DOX chemotherapy in an orthotopic rat liver cancer model and a clinically relevant large animal liver cancer model rabbit VX model We believe that the proposed dual modality treatment strategy will offer superior local tumor control while reducing the likelihood of adverse events Success of the proposed work will pave the way for future clinical trials of DOX@PEG HAuNS PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE The mortality associated with primary and metastatic liver tumors remains high and novel treatments for liver tumors are urgently needed The current project offers a minimally invasive treatment strategy that combines image guided photothermal ablation with chemotherapy This strategy when successfully introduced into the clinic will fulfil the unmet clinical need for better treatment for unresectable primary and metastatic liver tumors


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 594.66K | Year: 2011

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Our goal is to develop easy to use, inexpensive, and sensitive quantum dots beads (QDBs) based strip test for multiplex diagnosis of human malaria infection called MAL-QDBTest that can detect as low as 1 parasite/uL ina lt 20 min assay. The MAL-QDBTest consists of 1) multiplexed strip test for qualitative visual detection (Fig. 1), 2) reagents for the strip test, and 3) an optional a handheld fluorescence reader called QD-Analyzer . The MAL-QDBTest uses novel quantumdots beads in a multiplex strip test that is used both for a) qualitative detection using visual inspection and b) quantitative detection using the QD- Analyzer . The MAL-QDTest uses novel quantum dots beads (QDBs) that can be used to differentiate a) Pfalciparum from Pvivax; b) detect other Plasmodia causing malaria; c) differentiate live from dead parasites through the detection of pGluDH; and d) quantify the number of parasites present with the use of the QD- Analyzer. It uses quantum dots beads (QDBs)which are nanoparticles (NPs) containing hundreds of quantum dots that exhibit color stability and high light intensity greater than organic dyes. Quantum confined properties of quantum dots with a few atoms to 10,000 atoms can enable single molecule detection. Interfaced with the QD-Analyzer, the QDB-based multiplex detection will provide higher sensitivity, greater reproducibility, lower detection limits, and increased diagnostic accuracy. The proposed multiplex MAL-QDBTest uses patented QDBs that canbe conjugated to selective and specific antibodies for the capture and detection of antigen biomarkers of malaria infection. To date, there is no existing malaria assay that uses QDBs which are sacs of hundreds of NPs that exhibit color stability and highlight intensity that are 100% greater than organic dyes with the potential to detect a single molecule. There is a great need for developing better detection methods for malaria parasites because not only does current diagnosis suffer from sensitivity andreliability of results, these cannot detect lower than 100 parasites /uL may be fatal. The sensitivity of current rapid diagnostic tests may be gt85% but only at 200 parasites/uL or higher. These cannot be used for drug/vaccine development that requires 1parasite/uL detection. The proposed MAL-QDBTest is anticipated to alleviate the diagnosis of gt 500 million cases of malaria each year with 1-3 million deaths and the drug and vaccine development hurdles. Currently, there is no no licensed vaccine against this disease. In the US, malaria may re-emerge due to increased travel to endemic countries as well as the deployment of the gt300,000 US military personnel worldwide. Furthermore, the number of blood donors who had been refused as a result of recent travel to endemic countries has been gt 10% that may have caused shortage at blood banks around the country. Thus, there is a need to develop the proposed MAL-QDBTest interfaced with the QD-Analyzer for fast, easy to use, reliable, quantitative, and inexpensive methods for malaria diagnosis and to quickly validate drug and vaccine candidates. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: The proposed quantum dots based strip test for multiplex diagnosis of human malaria infection is anticipated to alleviate the diagnostics as well as the drug and vaccine hurdles that affect gt 500 million cases of malaria each year and 1 to 3 million deaths, majority of whom are young children. Although there are recent advances in medicine, science, and technology, there is no licensed vaccine against this disease that is a major infectious disease threat to U.S. forces deployed worldwide. In the US, malaria is recently considered to have a high potential to re-emerge due to the spread of drug resistant parasites and insecticide-resistantmosquitoes and as a result the number of blood donors who had been refused as a result of recent travel to endemic countries has been more than 10% possibly causing shortage at blood banks around the country.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 225.00K | Year: 2014

Not Available


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: National Institutes of Health | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 265.00K | Year: 2014

DESCRIPTION provided by applicant Tumor microenvironment TME makes an essential contribution to tumor progression recurrence and metastasis Currently there is no standardized method to quantify major components of TME simultaneously such as lymphovascular invasion and to predict locoregional recurrence and metastasis of cancer The primary goal of this project is to develop a technology for quantification of the TME signatures by using quantum dot QD based immunohistofluorescence IHF We expect that either single or multiplexed biomarkers for the TME components can be used to assess prognosis including risk of the locoregional recurrence and metastasis We have recently developed QD based IHF technology for quantification of multiplexed biomarkers Our preliminary study support us to accomplish the objective of this study that is to develop a molecular imaging technology for quantification of major signatures of TME as a tool for assessment of the prognosis and prediction of the recurrence and metastasis In this project we will focus on technique development using head and neck cancer HNC It is anticipated that using this technology HNC pathologists will be able to more accurately identify patients who are at high risk for poor prognosis This would provide valuable information to head and neck cancer surgeons radiation oncologist and medical oncologists to make appropriate treatment decisions This technology also has the potential to be applied to the treatment and care of other types of cancer with appropriate modifications The project will involve Specific Aims with measurable milestones Aim To prepare and validate QD antibody Ab conjugates which specifically recognize blood and lymphatic vasculatures and EGFR in formalin fixed and paraffin embedded FFPE cancer tissues Milestones for this aim are completion and optimization of QD Ab conjugates with high binding affinity and selectivity establishment of the quantification method for both density of the TME signatures and their distance to tumor nests validation of the QD based IHF by comparing this method with the conventional IHC Aim To examine whether microvessel density and tumor proximity can serve as a prognostic biomarkers and correlate them with locoregional recurrence and lymph node metastasis of HNC Milestones for this aim are completion of staining and quantification of the TME signatures using FFPE samples from HNC patients with and without lymph node metastasis and recurrent disease completion of statistical analysis to correlate microvessel density and tumor proximity with clinical characteristics of HNC patients PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE The proposed project will develop a quantum dot based multiplexing technology to quantify tumor microenvironment with a focus on blood and lymphatic vasculatures which may help pathologists to accurately identify patients who are at high risk for poor prognosis We will use head and neck cancer for technology development but this technology can also be applied to prognosis of other cancers and provide valuable information to cancer surgeons radiation oncologists and medical oncologists to help them make appropriate treatment decisions


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.20M | Year: 2012

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death among women with more than one million new cases and 370,000 deaths worldwide yearly. Chemotherapy drugs, such as Doxorubicin, have been used in both pre- and post-operative adjuvant therapy or as the main therapeutic option for breast cancer patients with metastatic disease. Although recent advances in the combination of chemotherapy drugs have improved survival for breast cancer patients, a high percentage of patients develop resistance to chemotherapeutic agents and fail treatment. Therefore, novel approaches for the effective treatment of breast cancer are urgently needed to improve the therapeutic response. This project aims to develop a Doxorubicin loaded and target specific magnetic iron oxide nanoparticle (IONP) platform for targeted therapy of breast cancer. The proposed nanodrug can be systemically delivered and selectively accumulated at the primary and metastatic tumor sites and subsequently internalized into breast cancer cells via endocytosis. Selective enrichment of the IONP in tumor cells and the tumor environment produces strong MRI contrast for the detection of drug delivery and response in the tumor lesions by MR imaging. After demonstration of the feasibility that the engineered nanodrug can target the tumor in an animal model, the goal of this SBIR Phase II project is to extend the investigation of the successes in the Phase I study and move closer to translating this platform into preclinical trials and commercialization by further optimizing the targeted theranostic nanodrug platform for efficacy, biodistribution, toxicity, pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamic studies, and future clinical trials.


Grant
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2012

The goal of this project is to develop multiple-biomarker imaging for detection of human papillomavirus (HPV) associated human cancer. Quantum dots (QDs) with multiple emission colors were chosen as optical probes to label the biomarkers on tissue. Attribute to the unique optical properties of QDs, they can be used as powerful cancer diagnostic tools providing the molecular profiles of cancer cases based on common clinical biopsies and allowing the tumor cell detection and analysis in highly heterogenous samples and rare cell populations. In Phase I study technical issues have been solved, such as optical stability of fluorescence intensity of QDs under light irradiation, binding stability of QD-antibody conjugates on tissue during the staining process, imaging process method and optical readers. To develop practicable clinical products, there are some remaining issues will be resolved in this continuation Phase II studies. Our SBIR team assembled material sCientist, cancer biologist, pathologist, oncologist, and imaging expert to address the key issues in the quantification of the expression level of HPV-associated biomarker. Aim 1 is to identify additional HPV-specific biomarker to improving prediction power as compared to using p16 alone. Aim 2is to optimize QD product and construction and validation of 3 pairs of antibody-hapten and hapten-QD conjugates for detection of HPV-associated cancer. Aim 3 is to optimize the staining and quantification procedure using the QD-based 3 marker system. Aim 4 is to standardize operating procedure and perform final validations for clinical application.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: | Award Amount: 225.00K | Year: 2014

This Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I project aims to develop an efficient, rapid, and eco-friendly approach for mass production of highly conductive solution phase graphene with controlled structures. Most of the commercial available solution phase conductive graphene sheets are either highly defective reduced graphene oxide (r-GO) or non-defective pristine graphene sheets. They are either dispersed in special organic solvents or aqueous solutions with the help of surfactants for stabilization. Most of the production processes involve toxic chemicals or release toxic substances as byproducts, causing potential hazard to our environment. The study of novel green microwave oxidation chemistries proposed in this project will lead to rapid (tens of seconds), direct (without requirement for post reduction), and low cost fabrication of highly conductive, clean (without requirement for surfactants and stabilizers), and low oxygen containing graphene sheets with controlled lateral dimensions and molecular structures. The success of the project will leads to a series of new graphene products which are different from both rGO and pristine graphene sheets while combining many of their merits and can be used for the research society to fabricate highly conductive graphene sheets with tailored structures for best fit a broad spectrum of applications.

The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is the great potential to enable cost effective mass production of highly conductive graphene sheets with unique molecular structures and controllable sizes. Given the known wide potential application of graphene in energy generation and storage, catalysts, electronics, coating, sensors, etc, the commercial available of these graphene sheets with well-defined structures will speed up the scientific understanding and technological developments in these broad areas. This project could also greatly benefit our society with the environment friendly and low energy consumption approach for the mass production of these materials.

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