Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tech Spotlight: Improved Treatment of Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) with Ergothioneine


Injury to the alveolar capillary membrane, a thin tissue barrier between the alveolar sacs of the lungs and pulmonary capillaries, can have serious consequences resulting in syndromes such as Acute Lung Injury (ALI) and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). ARDS is the more severe of the two, often resulting in multiple organ failure and fatality. The only medicinal treatments available for the treatment of ARDS at this time are anti-infectives, used for treating the pathogen infection, and agents which relieve pain or discomfort. Current treatments of ARDS typically involve mechanical ventilation performed in an intensive care unit, but this treatment can result in complications leading to significant morbidity in ALI and ARDS patient populations.

A University of Colorado research group led by John Repine has developed an improved method for treating subjects with alveolar capillary membrane injury (ACMI) by administering Ergothioneine, a naturally-occurring antioxidant found in bacteria, plants and animals. This compound can be administered prior to an incident resulting in ACMI, reducing the risk of such injury, or it can be administered after the subject has developed symptoms (such as shortness of breath or rapid breathing) of ACMI, reducing the severity and consequences of future syndromes. This treatment meets the needs of current problems by providing a safe, effective means of helping to either prevent or treat patients with alveolar capillary membrane injuries.

To read a non-confidential summary of this technology, including links to key documents, please click the image above. For more CU technologies available for licensing, please visit our Tech Explorer site.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Tech Spotlight: Inter-chip and Intra-chip Nanophotonic Communication Technology for Core-based Integrated Circuits

Current technology surrounding on-chip electrical packet-switched networks causes long latency as the core count for the system increases. Thus, on many-core systems and designs, this type of electrical interconnect will cause latency-critical messages such as synchronization protocols and coherence messages to become the performance scaling bottleneck.

A research group at the University of Colorado has developed a communications solution utilizing silicon photonics and electrical technologies for inter-chip and intra-chip communication for core-based integrated circuits. This technology, called Spectrum, is a hybrid nanophotonic-electric network that addresses the current challenges of latency and throughput scalability. Experimental results show that a conservative implementation of Spectrum can significantly improve on-chip cache transaction performance compared to an aggressive electric-only on-chip interconnects, and has the potential to scale to future technology.

To read a non-confidential summary of this technology, including links to key documents, please click the image above. For more CU technologies available for licensing, please visit our Tech Explorer site.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tech Spotlight: MHC-II-related Protein Mediates Apoptotic Cell Death

Dr. John Cambier of the University of Colorado has identified and cloned a novel plasma membrane tetraspanner (MPYS, or MPHS in human), and determined that it is essential for induction of the MHC II mediated apoptotic death response. Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC)-encoded molecules are key components of immunity; these genes, also known as immune response or IR genes, and their protein products are responsible for all graft rejection and are used or targeted by a wide variety of infectious organisms.

Dr. Cambier has further shown that MPYS mediates its effect in part through activation of p44/p42 MAPK. Reduction of this protein’s expression by using short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) dramatically reduces anti-MHC II mAb-induced death of lymphoma cells. Thus, MPYS may function in cell death responses by activating signaling pathways that impinge on survival signaling. CU has filed for patent protection for this protein and antibodies against this protein, as well as its use as a therapeutic target in lymphoma and mastocytoma (and perhaps other tumors), and for inflammation and immunosuppression. 

To read a non-confidential summary of this technology, including links to key documents, please click the image above. For more CU technologies available for licensing, please visit our Tech Explorer site. 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Tech Spotlight: Discovering Novel Combination Therapeutics Against Cancer

Dr. Tin Tin Su of the University of Colorado and colleagues have developed a novel drug screen to discover and develop novel combination therapeutics for treatment of cancer. This novel three-dimensional technology platform recreates the microenvironment of the cancerous tissue, allowing for the ability to identify small molecules that are synergistic in activity and that preferentially target mutant tissues harboring an oncogenic mutation. The screen has been used to identify several lead candidates for combination therapy; the resulting intellectual property includes both new use of characterized compounds and also novel compositions-of-matter.

This technology uses wildtype and mutant Drosophila, in which the Drosophila mutants carry a mutation in, for example, a checkpoint gene. The wildtype and mutant fruit fly larvae are first exposed to low doses of radiation to induce genotoxic stress, then exposed to libraries of chemical compounds. For survival after genotoxic stress, mutants have an increased need for cell growth than do wildtype. Compounds that arrest development of mutated Drosophila without affecting the viability of wildtype are chosen for further analysis as anti-cancer agents.

To read a non-confidential summary of this technology, including links to key documents, please click the image above. For more CU technologies available for licensing, please visit our Tech Explorer site.