IURTC is on the move!

Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. has moved its Indianapolis office to 518 Indiana Ave., near the School of Informatics and Computing building on the IUPUI campus.

Bill Stephan, IU’s Vice President for Engagement, said the move aligns with the Bicentennial Strategic Plan.

Bill Stephan, IU Vice President for Engagement
Bill Stephan

“One of the goals set forth in the plan is to strengthen the university’s role in the economic development of the state. We can do this by accelerating the transformation of innovations developed by IU researchers into new products and services,” he said. “The move to 518 Indiana Ave. brings IURTC closer to researchers on the IUPUI campus, which will help facilitate disclosing innovations and encouraging startup activities.”

You can read a full news release about the move here. And if you’re on or close to the Bloomington campus, you can still visit IURTC at its office in Simon Hall!

IU Northwest School of Medicine researchers win $1.5 million NIH grant to study how certain proteins ‘trick’ bacteria into killing themselves

(L-R): Ivan Nunez, post-doctoral fellow; Roman Dziarski, Ph.D., Professor of Microbiology and Immunology; Dominick Kowalczyk, IU Northwest student; Dipika Gupta, Ph.D, Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology,; Iztok Hozo, Ph.D., Professor of Mathematics and Chair of the Department of Mathematics and Actuarial Science; Des Kashyap, Ph.D., Research Associate in Microbiology. (Photo by Erika Rose, IU Northwest)

Throughout the next four years, researchers at the Indiana University Northwest School of Medicine in Gary will use a $1.5 million National Institutes of Health grant to explore how a group of proteins within the body employ a “molecular trick” that causes bacteria to destroy itself.

The grant, awarded recently to principal investigator Roman Dziarski and his team, enables them to follow up on their 2011 discovery. They found that proteins from human immune cells known as PGRPs (short for Peptidoglycan Recognition Proteins) bind to bacteria, but instead of inhibiting synthesis as penicillin and other antibiotics do, the bacteria becomes increasingly stressed as it attempts to dislodge the PGRPs.

“As they try to do this, they become more and more stressed and eventually use up all their energy and die. But how exactly this happens is not known,” Dziarski said. “The aim of this newly funded research project is to answer this question and solve the biochemical mechanism for how bacteria treated with PGRPs kill themselves … so in the future we can design simpler drugs that use the same trick to kill bacteria.”

The study carries particular commercial relevance because traditional antibiotic development has slowed in recent years and those that do exist are increasingly harder to improve, Dziarski said.

“There is a need to discover alternative approaches to prevention and treatment of bacterial infections, to find new types of antibacterial agents and identify new mechanisms that can kill bacteria or prevent bacterial infections.”

Read more about Dziarski and his research team’s efforts here.

Three career fairs/job expos set at IUPUI for the week of Sept. 26-30


Finding one’s career path in college is not easy — and navigating that path in a way that maximizes one’s credentials for prospective employers is more difficult still.

That said, IUPUI offers three opportunities in the coming week for students to learn more about career paths, where their planned or ongoing studies fit within that path and new career options that may have gone unnoticed before.

IUPUI Fall Career Week (Sept. 26-30)

Throughout all of next week, Fall Career Week will offer a variety of sessions that allow IUPUI students to learn more about their majors, career paths, job searching, networking and other skills. Some sessions focus on specific degrees or occupations, while others are more general.

For further details and a detailed schedule, click here.

Health and Life Science Experience Expo (Sept. 27)

This event offers focused opportunity for pre-health students to explore opportunities to gain experience through health-related academic programs, student organizations and community partners.

Organizers caution that “this is not a career fair,” but a venue where students can learn about various health care careers and network with organization that offer volunteer and internship opportunities.

The expo takes place Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Campus Center 450. For more information, click here and here.

Career Connection STEM Career Fair (Sept. 29)

More than ever, Indiana needs more college graduates with STEM-related skills (science, technology, engineering and math). This event — organized by IU’s School of Informatics, the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology and the Purdue School of Science — offers numerous opportunities for students to meet prospective employers and discuss internship, co-op and full-time career opportunities.

This is a recruitment event, so students are urged to research their companies and topics of potential discussion, dress professionally (business formal) and bring several copies of resumes. Last year’s event hosted 86 companies, with more than 700 students in attendance.

This event takes place Thursday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., again at Campus Center 450. For more information, click here.

Another highlight for IURTC: $7+ million in generated revenue last year!

Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation seems to be on a roll: a record number of issued U.S. patents last year, a 72 percent increase in licensing agreements and now $7.03 million in generated revenue in 2015-2016, representing the third consecutive year-over-year increase.

Marie Kerbeshian
Marie Kerbeshian

In a news release distributed September 21, IURTC’s Marie Kerbeshian noted businesses across all industrial sectors are finding increased value in commercializing inventions by Indiana University researchers. She credits the work of those inventors and the technology managers at IURTC. But despite the excellent year that IURTC had in 2015-2016 with increased metrics and record totals, the overall goal is much different:

“The greatest results are when IU innovations reach the market and strengthen the lives of people around the world,” said Kerbeshian, VP of Technology Commercialization.

Read the news release here. And remember, statistics are only a small part of the story.


Nobel laureate Robert J. Lefkowitz to receive CTSI’s Watanabe Prize in Translational Research on Friday

Dr. Carl H. June of the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine gives an address on Sept. 11, 2015, after winning Indiana CTSI’s 2015 Watanabe Prize in Translational Research. This year’s award goes to Dr. Robert J. Lefkowitz of Duke University Medical Center. Lefkowitz was a co-recipient of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

It’s time once again for the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute’s annual meeting and Watanabe Prize Lecture, set this year for Friday, Sept. 23 at Hine Hall, located at 875 W. North St. on the IUPUI campus.

Dr. Robert J. Lefkowitz

This year marks the eighth annual meeting and third awarding of the Watanabe Prize in Translational Research, which goes to Dr. Robert J. Lefkowitz. Lefkowitz is the James B. Duke Professor of Medicine and professor of biochemistry at Duke University Medical Center — and is best known for his research into G protein-coupled receptors. Such work earned him the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2012 along with Brian K. Kobilka of the Stanford University School of Medicine.

The Watanabe Prize is named after the late August M. Watanabe, an IUSM alumnus whose career spanned academia and the pharmaceutical and life science industries. It recognizes a member of the scientific or medical community who has achieved outstanding accomplishments in translational research.

The meeting also includes a poster competition open to CTSI trainees, supported researchers, program services, program partnerships and other categories. Winners of the Watanabe Translational Scholars prize, which recognizes two outstanding young investigators, will be announced as well.

Information on the meeting’s full agenda is available here.

IPFW, Indiana National Guard launch innovative leadership partner program

Students congregate outside Kettler Hall on the IPFW campus

It’s being called the first collaboration of its kind in Indiana — one that brings higher education and the military together to grow student skills ranging from leadership, ethical behavior and civic engagement to cultural awareness, critical thinking and problem solving.

Announced earlier this fall, the partnership between Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne and the Indiana National Guard, which invested $50,000 into the effort, involves a series of six programs that began with the 2016-17 school year.

“This partnership with the Indiana National Guard will bring very exciting opportunities for our students to grow in leadership and civic service,” said IPFW Chancellor Vicky L. Carwein. “It will also touch our campus community, alumni, and region by supporting nonprofits and recognizing the ways that our people invest their time and talent here in northeast Indiana.”

“We were looking for new ways to tell people about our programs and IPFW really stepped up,” Guard Lt. Col. Todd Norris said. “We’re using this partnership with IPFW as a model for university programs around the state.”

Additional information on the six program areas is available here.

IURTC’s Katherine Moynihan is off to Duke to speak about internship programs

Katherine Moynihan, technology manager at Indiana University Research and Technology Corp., will travel to Durham, N.C., on September 21 to train Duke University’s Office of Licensing and Ventures on establishing an internship program.

Moynihan will speak about graduate and post-doctorate students conducting early stage assessment of new inventions disclosed by researchers.

Katherine Moynihan
Katherine Moynihan

“They conduct the initial search to determine the competitive landscape and potential patenting pitfalls and search for companies that potentially could be interested in licensing or developing the work,” she said. “This is the model I implemented when I worked at the University of Michigan. I’ve previously been invited to present on this topic to Texas Tech University and the University of Arkansas-Little Rock.”

Moynihan said there are many benefits to establishing an internship program in university technology transfer offices.

“It expands the capabilities of our workforce and provides skill-building opportunities for students interested in scientific opportunities within the commercial world,” she said. “Also, technology transfer offices are engaging with students working in labs that may then make an invention disclosure since they have personnel knowledgeable about intellectual property protection and commercialization. These students can be ambassadors for technology transfer offices.”


Mastodon Job & Internship Fair set for Tuesday afternoon at IPFW


More than 150 local, national and international employers will descend upon Fort Wayne for the fall’s biggest job fair in northeast Indiana as IPFW hosts its Mastodon Job & Internship Fair from noon to 3 p.m. Tuesday at IPFW Fieldhouse in the Gates Sports Complex.

More than 100 regional companies will be recruiting to fill more than 2,000 open positions, with opportunities that range from internships to full-time employment. The event is free, with free lunch provided to students and alumni.

For more information, read here: