The purpose of Invented Here! is to celebrate New England innovators, their inventions, and the stories behind their innovations. Through the program, the Boston Patent Law Association (BPLA) is transforming the nation’s relationship with science and technology and providing educational opportunities that inform the public of these fascinating innovators and innovations.
Northeastern never fails to make a presence at Invented Here! and has successfully demonstrated the superior quality of work happening on campus. Last year, Ganesh Singh Thakur of Bouvé College of Health Sciences was awarded at Invented Here!, and this year, professors Barbara Lee Waszczak, Rebecca Carrier, and Jeff Ruberti are in the mix for recognition.
Northeastern 2019 Nominees
Barbara Lee Waszczak and her team have found a path breaking, revolutionary way of approaching gene therapy in respect to CNS related diseases. The novelty of her invention comes from administering nanoparticles coated with nucleic acids intranasally. Nucleic acids are the building blocks of DNA, and, thus, genes. The administered nanoparticle-nucleotide combination forms a sequence holding the code for a protein capable of upregulating the genetic function of the target gene or downregulating it. The route of administration, i.e., intranasal, and the one nucleotide per nanoparticle concept makes this a pioneering invention with solid contributions to the fields of genetics, therapeutics, personalized medicine, and beyond.
Click to read Dr. Waszczak’s Invented Here! nomination.
Joining Barbarba at Invented Here! is trailblazer Rebecca Carrier. A revolutionary. A believer. A scientist. Rebecca Carrier has been pushing boundaries, questioning the impossible, and solving complex problems. A tissue culture hero, she has empowered cells and engineered them to dance to her tune. But, this time around, she invented a device and stepped into the arena of cell culture inserts. Cell culture inserts are used in conjunction with well plates for the growth and differentiation of various cell types and find application in all fields of cell culture ranging from immune-oncology to stem cell research. Carrier’s cell culture insert provides access to both apical and basal domains of the cell culture, making it possible to study both sides of a cell monolayer, or to study a co-culture of two or more cell types by creating a biomimicry boundary. These inserts increase access to the area of the cell thereby disclosing more qualitative properties for analysis.
Click to read Dr. Carrier’s Invented Here! nomination.
Last, but not least – Jeff Ruberti, spearheading research in collagen. Until Ruberti, scientists failed to produce biocompatible collagen fibrils that matched native alignment. After 10 years of focused research, Ruberti discovered a simple, cell-free method to produce collagen fibrils from concentrated monomers, using a method that controls the initial organization of collagen fibrils. His revolutionary method sparks the production of collagen by precipitating fibrils from liquid crystalline collagen resulting in biocompatible fibrils with native organization and natural load-bearing structures. Aside from alignment, his method can control thickness, making it a superb candidate for artificial tissue engineering application.
Click to read Dr. Ruberti’s Invented Here! nomination.
Award Event Information
The 2019 Invented Here! Award Event will be held on November 6th from 6:00 – 9:00pm at the Exchange Conference Center. The evening includes a networking reception, interviews with Featured Inventors, and a chance to connect with forward thinking professionals from across the region.
Come join us as we celebrate Northeastern inventorship and New England innovation! Click here for more information.
Written by Divya Parikh.
Feature image by Camera Eye Photography. Some rights Reserved.