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UK Spin-off Companies Spotlighted in Economic Report
Federally funded university research creating innovation, jobs
LEXINGTON, KY (May 11, 2010) — The University of Kentucky spin-off companies Allylix Inc., Mersive Technologies, and AllTranz Inc. are featured in "Sparking Economic Growth: How federally funded research creates innovation, new companies and jobs" released by The Science Coalition.
The three companies all were founded based on research done at UK.
The report identifies 100 "success stories" - examples of companies that are the result of federal investments in basic research. Collectively, these 100 companies employ well over 100,000 people and have annual revenues approaching $100 billion. The report further states that these companies are helping to address critical issues in the areas of medicine, technology, energy, the environment, and national security - leading the way toward a healthier, more sustainable, and secure future.
Allylix is a biotechnology firm co-founded by UK College of Agriculture faculty with a business office in San Diego, Ca., and research and development laboratories at UK's Coldstream Research Campus. The company has developed proprietary technology that allows it to produce a group of natural products called terpenes at low cost. Terpenes have significant commercial value to the flavor and fragrance, insect repellent, and pharmaceutical industries. Allylix has successfully scaled its technology platform to the industrial production level and this year will release three products in commercial quantities.
Mersive, a leading display technology company based on research from the UK College of Engineering's Center for Visualization and Virtual Environments, was recently named runner up in the Software category of The Wall Street Journal 2009 Technology Innovation Awards. Products developed by the company enable spectacular high-resolution displays featuring large-scale, lifelike images, videos, simulations, and computer desktops.
AllTranz, a specialty pharmaceutical company, recently was awarded a $4 million research grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to advance the company's transdermal tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) patch for the treatment of marijuana dependence and withdrawal. AllTranz leverages proprietary technology to modify existing chemical entities with proven clinical outcomes to produce important new pharmaceutical products that extend patent franchises. Another potential AllTranz product involves a gel-delivered treatment for pain associated with osteoarthritis. AllTranz founder and Chief Scientific Officer Audra Stinchcomb is a faculty researcher in UK's College of Pharmacy.
"By moving our innovations and technologies into the marketplace and creating new companies and new jobs, the University of Kentucky is a major catalyst for economic growth for the Commonwealth," said Len Heller, UK's vice president for Commercialization and Economic Development. "We're proud to showcase three of our successful spin-offs in this national report."
UK's Vice President for Research James W. Tracy added, "These successes show how federal support of basic research is translated by investigators at Kentucky's flagship, land-grant university into real world discoveries that benefit the nation and support economic development in the Commonwealth."
While the 100 success stories highlighted in the report are just a small sample of the many companies created from federally funded research, they highlight the exponential value of this investment.
The Science Coalition is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization of 45 of the nation's leading public and private research universities. It is dedicated to sustaining the federal government's investment in basic research as a means to stimulate the economy, drive innovation and secure America's global competitiveness.