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ADVANCE Fund Awardee Announcement

Administered by Michigan State University and the Michigan Strategic Fund, through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the ADVANCE Grant Proof of Concept Fund provides an incentive for faculty with early stage technologies at Michigan public universities to engage with their university’s technology transfer office to advance their technologies toward commercialization. 

The following five awards were given in August and October, and represent the most recent list of awardees, as of October 2017.   

Awarded, August 23, 2017 – 3 funded 

Dr. Gregory Swain, Michigan State University | Next Generation Exhaled Breath Analyzer for Nitric Oxide and Peroxynitrite

$44,000 ($22,000 MEDC; $22,000 match)

This project will develop prototype electrodes and related sensor apparatus for medical detection. The electrodes and sensors incorporate electrically-conducing diamond to provide a detection platform. Use of these sensors will detect trace elements in exhaled breath for diagnosis and monitoring of lung-related conditions. 


Dr. Eric Nybo, Ferris State University | A Novel Metabolic Engineering Platform for Production of Anthracyclinones

$61,000 ($30,500 MEDC; $30,500 match)

The invention provides for genetically-engineered actinomycetes that produce novel anthracyclinone and anthracycline drug molecules useful for chemical starting materials, antibiotics, or anticancer agents.


Dr. Massood Atashbar, Western Michigan University | Impact Sensor and Rigid-flex Readout Electronic System

$80,000 ($40,000 MEDC; $40,000 match)

This project aims to develop an impact sensor and rigid-flex readout electronics system, which helmet manufacturers can use in existing helmets to automatically record and communicate the occurrence of potentially dangerous impacts. This reduces the chance of inaccurate judgments.


Awarded, October 10, 2017 – 2 awarded

Dr. Andre Bachmann, Michigan State University | TIR199:  A Novel Proteasome Inhibitor

$80,000 ($40,000 MEDC; $40,000 match)

TIR-199 is a structural analog of the naturally-occurring bacterial proteasome inhibitors called syrbactin. It is an excellent candidate as a new and improved proteasome inhibitor with high efficacy and high specificity.


Dr. Pavel Ikonomov, Western Michigan University  | 3D Metal Device and Process

$69,970 ($34,985 MEDC; $34,985 match)

This technology allows customers to eliminate the additional steps and costs of machining parts on separate stations. Machining immediately after each layer of metal is deposited enables the manufacture of 3D printed parts with complex geometries without using support structures required with existing 3D printing technologies.

Dr. Richard Chylla, Program Director, and Ann Spalding, Program Manager, are available to visit your Technology Transfer Office to present a short overview of the grant and to answer questions.  Contact msugrant@msu.edu to set up an appointment.  Both are also available for conference calls.

An initial review of draft proposals is available (budget review and suggestions, proposal review for eligibility, etc.) prior to a formal application.  

Click here for application information on the ADVANCE GRANT Proof of Concept Fund