Promising Innovations Receive Funding from Springboard Atlantic Inc.



    HALIFAX, Aug. 6 /CNW/ - Fifteen researchers from nine Atlantic
universities and colleges have been awarded $296,855 to help their research
advance from the laboratory to meaningful innovations. The projects involved
range from biotechnology and medical research advances to structural materials
and environmental advances.
    The funding will come from Springboard Atlantic's Proof-of-Concept
program and its Patent and Legal funds program.
    "Both of these programs support the development of new research that
shows great promise for commercialization," says Dr. David Shindler, Executive
Director of Springboard. "The research being conducted in Atlantic Canada's
universities and colleges is relevant to the issues and challenges facing
society today. We want to convert this knowledge into real applications and
put it into the hands of those who need it the most."
    "Springboard Atlantic plays an important role in driving Atlantic
Canada's growing innovation and research capacity, which in turn is vital to
our region's long-term prosperity and competitiveness," said the Honourable
Keith Ashfield, Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency). "The
Government of Canada is committed to maintaining this strategic investment in
innovation and the competitive advantages and downstream benefits it will
confer on the business, institutions and communities of Atlantic Canada."
    The Minister applauded Springboard's focus on supporting more linkages
and collaboration between post-secondary institutions, including community
colleges, and the private sector. "With the help of ACOA's Atlantic Innovation
Fund, Springboard is assisting talented researchers to turn their ideas into
innovations and move their discoveries into the marketplace," he said.
    "Each research advance represents a potential commercial opportunity,"
explains Shindler. To develop them and find the right corporate partner or to
create a new spin-off venture takes specific skills and expertise. Springboard
is able to take advantage of a wide range of commercialization skills
available through the tech-transfer and business development offices of
Atlantic Canada's universities and colleges. "Access to this wide range of
professional and scientific expertise combined with Springboard funding
support, increases our chances of developing successful new products and
services" continued Shindler.
    The winners were selected by an independent Review Panel comprised of
academic and business experts. The Proof-of-Concept Fund helps to accelerate
the pre-commercial development phase of a project by providing up to $20,000
in support, while the Patent and Legal Fund program provides up to $10,000 per
invention to protect technologies that may interest a new or established
company.
    Springboard Atlantic members includes Atlantic Canada's 14 universities
and the four provincial networks of community colleges.
    In April 2008, the Government of Canada renewed support for Springboard
Atlantic through a commitment of $8.5 million under ACOA's Atlantic Innovation
Fund (AIF). This strategic investment is helping to build business development
capacity in Atlantic Canada, based on the collaborative linkage between the
research capacity of Atlantic Canada's university and colleges and the private
sector.

    
                             Media Backgrounder
                             ------------------

    The institutions, project fields and amounts provided are:

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Institution           Technology/ Field                   Amount Awarded
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Acadia University     Biomolecule lithography
                          (biotechnology, nanotechnology)     $30,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dalhousie University  Skin graft technology (medical)     $20,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dalhousie University  Biomolecule separation technology
                          (engineering)                       $10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dalhousie University  Damage detection in pipes
                          (engineering)                       $10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Dalhousie University  Decontamination using marine
                          bacteria (marine and aquaculture
                          technologies)                       $10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Memorial University   Metering of compositions
                          (engineering)                       $20,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NS Agricultural       Health-Management Technology for
    College               Agricultural Animals (agriculture)  $16,855
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NS Agricultural       Natural pesticide for insect pest
    College               management on vegetable crops
                          (biotechnology- natural products)   $20,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NS Community College  Surgical support and lift for
                          Canines (engineering and
                          veterinary)                         $20,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    University of         Advanced technology for identifying
    Prince Edward Island  Immunoglobulin  disorders
                          (diagnostics)                       $30,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    St. Francis-Xavier    Gas flux detection technologies
    University            (environmental engineering)         $10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    St. Mary's            Crop inoculant for improving
    University            production (agriculture)            $30,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    University of         Environmentally friendly cleanser
    New Brunswick         (green chemistry)                   $10,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    University of         Motion sensor technology
    New Brunswick         (engineering)                       $30,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    University of         Structural materials testing
    New Brunswick         (imaging)                           $30,000
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                      Total  $296,855
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    




For further information:

For further information: Dr. David B. Shindler, Executive Director,
Springboard Atlantic Inc., (902) 444-3288, dshindler@springboardatlantic.ca;
www.springboardatlantic.ca

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