BOREJDO RECEIVES GRANT FROM SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION FOR NEW COMPUTER MICROSCOPE

July 22, 2005

Julian Borejdo, PhD, has received a grant for $100,000 to create a prototype and test a new computer microscope he invented. The money is thanks to the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The new microscope is highly sensitive, allowing scientists to use it in low-light settings.

â??Traditionally, cells seen under a computer microscope must be illuminated using lights in order to see detail,â? said Dr. Borejdo, professor of molecular biology and immunology. â??The light can kill the cells, rendering them useless for further research. This new microscope is more sensitive, allowing cells to be seen with little light.â?

The new microscope converts images differently, going from photons to pulses of electricity rather than photons to voltage, Borejdo said. â??This conversion method is more efficient and brings the cost of the microscope down.â?

Dr. Borejdoâ??s business partners include Optical Finesse, a computer programming company in Boulder, Colo., and LSM Technology, a manufacturing company in Pennsylvania.

STTR is a highly competitive program that reserves federal research and development funding for awards to small business and nonprofit research institution partners. Its role is to foster innovation to meet the nationâ??s scientific and technological needs in the 21st century.

STTR is a three-phase program that takes an idea from planning to fruition. Phase I awards up to $100,000 for one year to explore the scientific, technical and commercial feasibility of an idea. Phase II awards up to $750,000 for as long as two years of continued research and development, focusing on the commercial potential of the idea. Only Phase I award winners are considered for Phase II awards. Phase III, which includes no funding, moves the innovation from the lab into the marketplace where the company can seek private or other government funding.

Dr. Borejdoâ??s grant is a Phase I award.

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Contact: Kay Colley 817-735-2553, cell 817-980-5090, e-mail kacolley@hsc.unt.edu.

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