At Governor Mike Rounds' request, the 2004 Legislature authorized funding for specialized research on public university campuses leading to commercialization of new ideas or products. Research centers were created in infectious disease research and vaccinology, signal transduction, nanoscale applications, and light-activated materials.
The Board of Regents heard reports Oct. 21 from the four research centers on their progress. The total value of grants awarded to the centers now exceeds $14.7 million, with another $15.2 million in grant applications pending.
Among the developments reported by the 2010 research centers:
? A cooperative agreement between the Center for Accelerated Applications at the Nanoscale and Zyvex Corp. to exclusively provide integrated circuit testing to the semi-conductor industry.
? Development of a genetically engineered porcine virus replica by the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Vaccinology opens the door to a new generation of vaccines using reverse genetics.
? Work on tissue glues by the Center for the Research and Development of Light-Activated Materials will provide doctors with an alternative to staples and stitches in closing wounds and drawing tissues together.
? Grant support from the National Institutes of Health and private health agencies is funding research by the South Dakota Signal Transduction Center in cell growth and differentiation in four projects is opening up new avenues to combat cardiovascular disease and cancer.