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Biochemist Ron Taylor Named Inventor Of The Year

May 3, 2000 -- The University of Virginia Patent Foundation has named Ronald P. Taylor, professor of biochemistry and molecular genetics and a member of the Beirne Carter Immunology Center, as the Christopher J. Henderson Inventor of the Year.

Taylor, a faculty member in the U.Va. School of Medicine since 1973, is being recognized for inventions related to his research into the treatment of diseases associated with pathogens in the bloodstream.

"Ron Taylor spent years struggling to find funding for his research because many people were skeptical that this technology could work," said Robert MacWright, executive director of the U.Va. Patent Foundation. "But his patents now prove that it does. We are confident that EluSys Therapeutics Inc., a company formed to complete the process of bringing this technology to market, can apply his clever designs to saving lives and reducing suffering in unprecedented ways. We are very pleased to recognize Ron’s passion and his tenacity, and to honor him now at the beginning of what we believe will be an exciting story of commercial and medical success."

Taylor has studied the natural mechanisms by which white and red blood cells work to rid the bloodstream of disease. Taylor’s inventions, which mimic this natural process, have potential uses in routine health care, and in coping with diseases that currently have no known treatment, as well as in treating victims of biological warfare, according to MacWright.

Taylor’s research has been funded in part by the National Institutes of Health and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. To date, his inventions have been licensed to EluSys Therapeutics Inc. of Pinebrook, N.J.

Taylor insists on sharing credit for his scientific progress with other researchers in his laboratory who have contributed to the effort in many ways. He notes in particular his gratitude to William M. Sutherland for his scientific and moral support. "Sutherland created the monoclonal antibodies needed for our experiments and has played an integral and essential role in our work from the very beginning," he said.

Taylor also expressed his appreciation for the support and advice offered by the U.Va. Patent Foundation.

"Many of my colleagues are working with the U.Va. Patent Foundation to pursue the practical applications of their research," Taylor said. "I hope that younger investigators will do so as well. Such efforts have the potential to bring credit to the University and enhance its well-deserved national reputation."

The U.Va. Patent Foundation award recognizes an invention of notable value to society. The criteria for selection include commercial success (or commercial potential) and the invention's value in treating disease, protecting the environment, as a tool for research, in education and training, in the development of a field of science or technology, or in helping the disadvantaged, the disabled and the elderly.

The Patent Foundation named the Inventor of the Year Award after Christopher J. Henderson, president and chief financial officer of Robbins & Henderson, a New York firm specializing in financial and related services for institutions, in recognition of Henderson’s interest in technology transfer and commitment to the University of Virginia. Established in 1992, the award program was conceived by Dr. Richard Edlich, a professor of plastic surgery and biomedical engineering at U.Va. Dr. Edlich will present the annual award to Taylor at a dinner to be held in his honor tonight at Ednam Hall.

The University of Virginia Patent Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation affiliated with U.Va. that is responsible for licensing to business and industry the intellectual property discovered and created in University laboratories.

"The Foundation has had an impressive year as a catalyst, firing up new activities to assist high-technology entrepreneurs," said Gene D. Block, vice president for research and public service. "The Corridor 1 office suite, established last fall on West Main Street, and the soon-to-be-created Spinner Technologies, a for-profit company, are helping to launch University-related startups and further extend the economic benefits of University research around the greater Charlottesville region."

For more information, contact Robert MacWright at (804) 982-0378 or at rsm7x@virginia.edu.

Contact: Charlotte Crystal, (804) 924-6858

University of Virginia scientists who have won U.S. patents since Jan. 1, 1999

    1. S. Ray Taylor, et al., "Chromate-Free Protective Coatings," patent held by The Boeing Co., Seattle, Wash., patent issued 2/2/99
    2. Martin Chapman and L. Karla Arruda, "Molecular Cloning of Cockroach Allergens, Amino Acid and Nucleotide Sequences Therefore and Recombinant Expression Thereof," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 2/9/99
    3. Leland W. K. Chung, Haiyen E. Zhau and Shi-ming Chang, "Androgen-Repressed Metastatic Human Prostate Cancer Cell Line," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 2/23/99
    4. Joel M. Linden and Gail W. Sullivan, "Method for Treating Inflammatory Diseases with A2A Adenosine Receptor Agonists," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 3/2/99
    5. Ronald P. Taylor, Polly J. Ferguson, Edward N. Martin Jr., William M. Sutherland, et al., "Antigen-Based Heteropolymers and Method for Treating Autoimmune Diseases Using the Same," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 3/9/99
    6. Kevin C. Hazen, et al., "Antifungal and Antibacterial Susceptibility Assay," The Research and Development Institute Inc., Bozeman, Mont., U.Va. Patent Foundation, 3/23/99
    7. Julia W. P. Hsu, Mark Lee and Bascom S. Dearer Jr., " Nanometer Distance Regulation Using Electromechanical Power Dissipation," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 3/23/99
    8. William A. Petri Jr., R. Randolph Vines, Jay E. Purdy and Barbara J. Mann, "Transfection of Enteric Parasites," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 4/6/99
    9. Gordon W. Laurie, Rebecca A. Ogle and J. Douglas Glass, "Diagnostic for Sjogren’s Syndrome," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 4/20/99
    10. S. Ray Taylor and Patrick A. Cella, "In Situ Sensor for Critical Corrosion Conditions in a Material," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 4/20/99
    11. Steven L. Gonias and Donna J. Webb, "Chemically Modified A-Macroglobulins, Methods of Making, and Methods of Using the Same in Anti-Cytokine Therapy," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 5/11/99
    12. Richard L. Guerrant, Guodong D. Fang, et al., "Method of Inhibiting Secretory Effects Caused by Cholera," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 7/27/99
    13. Fabio Cominelli, Theresa Pizarro, et al., "Method of Diagnosing Predisposition for Ulcerative Colitis in Jewish Population by Detection of Interleukin-1 Receptor Antagonist Polymorphism," Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif., 8/24/99
    14. Peter I. Lobo, "Method for Detection of Anti-HLA Antibodies," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 10/5/99
    15. Hong Liu, "Radiation-Shielding, Interpolative-Sampling Technique for High Spatial Resolution Digital Radiography," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 10/12/99
    16. Michael O. Thorner, Bruce D. Gaylinn, et al., "Isolation and Characterization of the Growth Hormone Releasing Hormone Receptor," U.Va. Patent Foundation and American Cyanamid Co., Wayne, N.J.,10/26/99
    17. Charles D. Teates, "Reusable Shielded Marker for Nuclear Medicine Imaging," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 11/16/99
    18. Giuseppe Lanzino, et al., "Method for Treating Cerebral Vasospasm and Cerebral Ischemia Using Iron Chelators and Pharmaceutical Compositions Therefor," U.Va. Patent Foundation, 12/21/99

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: please contact the Office of University Relations at (804) 924-7116. Television reporters should contact the TV News Office at (804) 924-7550.
SOURCE: U.Va. News Services

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