If you can make it there: Microfluidics in New York

Since I’m located in Boston, it’s easy to get surrounded by Massachusetts-based efforts to promote innovation. But it’s also great to see similar efforts in others locations.  For example, I ran across this 2009 report on microfluidics research in New York State published by the New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR).  Like many of us, they want to support “technology development, innovation and commercialization leading to economic growth.” The report summarizes academic work in the state, with a goal of enhancing research and encouraging partnerships.

If you’re at an academic lab or company in New York State, you should also be aware that NYSTAR runs a number of funding initiatives, including research grants and technology transfer incentives.  For example, in 2005 the Sachs Lab was awarded $750,000 in a partnership with Reichert to develop and commercialize a microfluidic cell volume measurement device. In the excerpt below from the 2009 report, we see that this partnership grant eventually led to a successful licensing deal with Reichert (links added):

University at Buffalo has three technology disclosures involving microfluidics that were combined into a single patent application:

  • #5850 Microfabricated device for monitoring cell volume
  • #5912 High Throughput Bacterial Screening Device: Microfluidics Biosensor
  • #5913 High Throughput Screening Device for Crystallography

This intellectual property is licensed to Reichert, Inc., a Buffalo‐based company. This microfluidics technology is directed to measuring cell volume changes, initially for use as a research tool. It may also be used for studying drug activity since many drug reactions have an immediate impact on cell volume. The primary inventor was Dr. Fred Sachs, SUNY Distinguished Professor of Physiology and Biophysics, 716‐829‐3289 x105 or sachs@buffalo.edu.

Are there similar programs where you are?

Check out the full report here: Inventory of Research Expertise in Microfluidics at New York’s Universities and Labs

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