June  2015 E-News Wrap-up from the Georgia Research Alliance

Help GRA build on 25 years of research impact

You may not know it, but even a small gift has great value for the Georgia Research Alliance. It signals to our larger funding sources that GRA has a broad base of support among individuals, companies and philanthropic partners. As a new fiscal year dawns in July, please take a moment to make an online gift — in any amount — to support GRA's lean (but effective) operations. We promise to put your gift to good use as we build on our first quarter-century of growing Georgia's economy through university research and entrepreneurship. And thank you.Make your secure, tax-deductible gift online now >

Invention grows here: Georgia prominent in top 100 patent list

Poultry vaccines discovered at The University of Georgia. A new device from Emory to treat kidney failure. Technology developed at Georgia Tech to harvest and re-use energy from portable devices. 
These are just a few of the 143 combined total patents issued to those three Georgia universities in 2014 — numbers that propelled each of the universities into the top 100 nationwide.

Based on data provided by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the analysis was conducted by the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association. Georgia Tech ranked 25th on the top 100 list, followed by Emory (58th) and UGA (73rd).

"These rankings affirm that our state's research universities are a major engine of marketable discoveries and inventions," said Michael Cassidy, GRA's president and CEO.

U.S. Patent No. 8,808,225 is especially noteworthy: It was awarded to both Georgia Tech and Emory for a method and device to deliver medications to a previously unaccessible area of the eye. The technology is being marketed by Clearside Biomedical with investment from GRA Ventures and GRA Venture Fund, LLC.

National initiative launched to spur U.S. innovation 

The organizations and enterprises at the core of America's innovation economy have a wealth of knowledge about how to drive innovation. Now, the Council on Competitive-ness is tapping and sharing that knowledge in a new national initiative. GRA was joined by Georgia Tech and the Metro Atlanta Chamber June 9 to host a daylong dialogue to kick off the initiative. The Council is a non-partisan leadership organization of corporate CEOs, university presidents, labor leaders and national laboratory directors committed to advancing U.S. competitiveness in the global economy. • More >

Rewind to 2009: Video spotlights Emory team's heroic efforts

The 2009 outbreak of the H1N1 flu strain required countries and companies to move faster than ever to develop and test vaccines. On the front lines of this international effort was Emory University's Hope Clinic. Scientists there raced against time to evaluate the safety and efficacy of vaccines to fight the flu outbreak — all under the glare of the international news media. The Hope Clinic is one of a handful of NIH-certified research facilities authorized to conduct such evaluations. GRA's "Breakthroughs in Georgia" video series — developed as part of the Alliance's 25th anniversary celebration — captures the Hope Clinic's heroic efforts in a 90-second clip. • Watch it now >

Study: Startups need 'joiners' as well as founders

A GRA-backed study shows that launching and developing a start-up company is attractive not only to risk-taking founders but also professionals who seek to play a functional role. These professionals, aka “joiners,” are open to risk but prefer R&D and other functional roles to management, according to the study, which explored the entrepreneurial mindset of more than 4,000 Ph.D. candidates. Among the implications: Start-ups may have broader appeal as places to work than previously thought. GRA was a co-sponsor of the study along with the National Science Foundation and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. • Read a news report on the study >
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