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For more information about the Eshelman Institute for Innovation, download the institute’s impact report.

On June 1, the Eshelman Institute for Innovation (EII) awarded $3.5 million across 24 projects to support research and education at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

The EII, created in 2014 with a $100 million gift from alumnus and pharmaceutical executive, Fred Eshelman, serves as an engine for innovation within the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. Continuing on the previous theme, in this cycle the Institute is funding innovative solutions to address society’s pressing problems in healthcare, such as developing therapeutics for cancer, utilizing 3D approaches to treat osteoporosis, developing artificial intelligence to predict adverse drug events, and implementing telepharmacy healthcare models, among others.

“The EII exists to help our innovators and their collaborators take the next step forward in their journey in advancing medicine for life,” said Roy Zwahlen, associate director of the EII. “With the support of EII funding and enabling entrepreneurial infrastructure, we truly have the opportunity to improve healthcare worldwide.”

Since its launch, the EII has provided $25.4 million across 129 projects, and has enabled School faculty, staff, and students and their collaborators to pursue bold, novel ideas to solve problems in drug discovery, drug delivery, clinical pharmacology, pharmacy practice and pharmacy education.

As a clear sign of the impact of EII’s investments in innovative ideas, $13.8 million invested in 48 completed projects have produced 74 publications, 10 patent applications, 15 licenses, 12 startup companies, and $34.5 million follow-on funding.

For more information about the Eshelman Institute for Innovation, download the institute’s impact report.

2019 Awarded Projects Include:

Aaron Anselmo: “Evolving Therapeutic Microbes to Improve Colonization and Treatment of Microbiome Disorders”

Rahima Benhabbour: “Innovative Combinatory Biomaterials for Bone Repair in Osteoporosis and 3D Bioprinting”

Carrie Blanchard: “Driving Quality and Engagement Across a Comprehensive Medication Management Provider Network via a Novel Pay-for-Performance Strategy”

Albert Bowers: “Designer biocatalysts for nucleic acid-encoded peptide libraries”

Delesha Carpenter: “Creating the first multi-state rural community pharmacy research network: RURAL-CP”

Daniel Crona: “Chemically catalyzed epigenetic gene regulation in prostate cancer”

Gang Fang: “Advancing machine-learning for predicting individual risk of adverse drug event”

Shawn Hingtgen: “Harnessing synthetic biology to develop next-generation cell therapies”

Leaf Huang: “Targeting Tumor Associated Fibroblasts to Enhance Therapy”

Sasha Kabanov: “Targeting of inflamed monocytes for gene therapy of cancer”

Sam Lai: “Engineered cells for long-lasting and potent vaccination against HIV”

Sam Lai: “Dose ranging study for the use of high MW free PEG to reduce PEG-associated pseudoallergic response”

Melanie Livet: “Optimizing medications for complex patients: Scaling CMM to specialty clinics”

Melanie Livet: “Evaluating a CMM telepharmacy model: A new frontier for providers and patients in rural communities”

Ken Pearce: “Development of SETDB1 Inhibitors for Treatment of Hepatocellular Carcinoma”

Ken Pearce: “Molecular Control of the Gut Microbiome”

Mark Schoenfisch: “Nitric oxide-releasing hyaluronic acid for wound healing stimulation”

Paul Sapienza: “Drugging protein-protein interfaces of a supramolecular assembly as a means to overcome resistance to active site thymidylate synthase inhibitors”

Sarah Scarry: “Small molecule inhibitors of RAS proteins”

Mark Schoenfisch: “Osteogenesis modulation via co-delivery of nitric oxide and hesperidin”

Casey Tak: “Improving rates of audiology screening for pediatric cystic fibrosis patients exposed to high-dose aminoglycosides through pharmacist administered testing”

Charlene Williams: “Experiential Teaching Assistant: A Preceptor’s Rapid Resource for Clinical Teaching”

Stephen Eckel: Creation of a hands-on aseptic technique simulator”

Nathaniel Moorman: “ID3@UNC: the Infectious Disease Drug Discovery program at UNC”

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