IUPUI faculty members receive $85,000 in FORCES funding to commercialize research

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis researchers in the School of IUPUI Logo Engineering and Technology, School of Medicine, and School of Science have received a total of $85,000 in FORCES funding to support the development and commercialization of their work.

The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research oversees FORCES, or Funding Opportunities for Research Commercialization and Economic Success. The initiative has awarded more than $1 million to more than 30 faculty members since 2011.

Kevin Michael Berkopes, a mathematician in the School of Science and director of the Mathematics Assistance Center and Statistics Assistance Center, received $35,000 for “Virtual Learning Spaces: Creating Virtual Spaces for Future Teacher Support and Professional Exam Preparation.” The work could support future mathematics and K-5 general-education teachers.

“This FORCES funding will help researchers from the School of Science and the School of Education collaborate to create high-tech virtual learning spaces,” he said. “The intention is to create a virtual learning space that is embedded in the learning management system canvas and available free of charge to all IUPUI students enrolled in the elementary-education degree path.”

Berkopes founded Crossroads Education through the Spin Up program of the Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. to commercialize his work.

“Should the product prove impactful, we intend to apply for funding to investigate our virtual learning space design as something that is exportable to different sectors. We hope that we can research and investigate new technologies for providing quality interactions with mathematical content and to enable collaboration and professional development for current and future teachers of mathematics,” he said.

Dr. Elliot J. Androphy, the Kampen-Norins Professor and chair of the Department of Dermatology at the School of Medicine, received $25,000 for “Evaluation of Novel Compounds for Motor Neuron Disease.” The project will determine whether novel drug-like compounds being developed have activity in a human neurologic disease.

“The funding will allow us to purchase the mouse model of this disease, hire staff and perform experiments,” he said. “If successful, we will apply for additional grants to characterize the mechanism by which these drugs act. It could be advanced into a clinical trial for people afflicted with neurologic disease.”

Andres Tovar, assistant professor in the School of Engineering and Technology, received $25,000 for “Commercialization of a Topology Optimization Algorithm to Design Lightweight, Multi-Functional Components with Optimized Internal Cellular (Porous) Structure.” The project could provide engineering product designers with a tool that automatically synthesizes porous architectures.

“The FORCES funding will facilitate the commercialization of this design algorithm, which was disclosed to IURTC in 2014. The algorithm has also been developed from existing research sponsored by Honda R&D America and the Walmart Foundation,” he said. “The FORCES funding will support the development of an alpha version of the algorithm to make the design tool marketable.”

The next round of applications for FORCES funding are due Sept. 15. Contact Karen White, 317-274-1083, kfwhite@iupui.edu, for information.

About Indiana University Research and Technology Corp.

IURTC is a not-for-profit corporation tasked with the protecting and commercializing of technology emanating from innovations by IU researchers. Since 1997, IU research has generated more than 2,700 inventions resulting in over 3,900 global patent applications being filed by IURTC. These discoveries have generated $133 million in licensing and royalty income, including $111 million in funding for IU departments, labs and inventors.

IU McKinney School of Law announces IP Law Scholar partnership with Brinks Gilson & Lione

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law is proud to announce a Inlow Hall-McKinney School of Law Imagepartnership with the law firm of Brinks Gilson & Lione that will enable qualifying part-time IU McKinney students to work at the firm while in school and receive tuition remission.

To be eligible, students must already have a degree in engineering or science with a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Students who meet the criteria will be invited to apply to Brinks Gilson & Lione and, if selected, will become paid Brinks Gilson & Lione Scientific Advisors as well as Intellectual Property Law Scholars at IU McKinney. The program will begin with the incoming class in fall 2016 and will initially be limited to one recipient per year.

“Brinks Gilson & Lione is a recognized national leader in all areas of intellectual property. I am excited that the firm is taking the lead in attracting talented engineering and science graduates to study at McKinney School of Law to become IP attorneys,” said professor Xuan-Thao Nguyen, the Gerald L. Bepko Chair and director of IU McKinney’s Center for Intellectual Property Law and Innovation. “I am so thrilled for our students to become part of the prestigious Brinks Gilson & Lione Intellectual Property Scholars Program.”

“The IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law provides a solid foundation in intellectual property as well as many other areas of the law, and we are delighted to be partnering with the school to provide this opportunity,” said Sanders Hillis, managing partner of the Indianapolis office of Brinks Gilson & Lione.

“This partnership plays to the law school’s strengths in every way,” said IU McKinney Dean Andrew R. Klein. “It provides an opportunity for part-time students to gain practical experience putting their studies to work at a firm with a national reputation for IP law well before they graduate.”

Anyone interested in the specific criteria for the award as well as the application procedure should contact Julie Smith, director of recruitment at IU McKinney, at js216@iupui.edu.

About IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law

IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law has provided academic excellence and professional opportunities in the heart of Indiana’s capital city for over 100 years. Located on the campus of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, McKinney Law enjoys active collaboration with the IU schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing and social work; the Kelley School of Business; and the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health. A short walk from the state’s courts, the legislature and major law firms, IU McKinney Law is dedicated to preparing students to be successful, ethical professionals in law, business and public service in Indiana and around the world.

About Brinks Gilson & Lione

The attorneys, scientific advisors and patent agents at Brinks Gilson & Lione focus their practice in the field of intellectual property. Brinks is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the U.S. Clients around the world use Brinks to help them protect and enforce their intellectual property rights. Brinks lawyers provide counseling in all aspects of patent, trademark, unfair competition, trade secret and copyright law.

Art exhibit offers insights into movement to recognize 100th Indy 500 race

Several artists, including Herron School of Art and Design faculty member Danielle Riede, have their Danielle Riede Wingspan Series Painting Imagework on display at an exhibit in Indianapolis that takes as its theme the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.

The name of the show, “Asphaltum,” makes the connection between these two very different worlds: It is named for a component used both in pavement and in artists’ materials. In this case, Asphaltum is bringing together artists with work that expresses ideas related to auto racing and the Indianapolis 500.
Riede wingspan art piece

Danielle Riede of the Herron School of Art and Design created this piece for an exhibit connected to speed and movement, celebrating the 100th Indianapolis 500.

The exhibit is at the Schwitzer Gallery on the second floor of the Circle City Industrial Complex, at the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and 10th Street. The facility was constructed in the 1920s by Louis Schwitzer, winner of the first automobile race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the engineer behind the famous “Marmon Wasp” engine that propelled Ray Harroun to victory in the first Indy 500.

“Last year, I went to the Indy 500 for the first time and experienced the race,” said Riede, a painter/installation artist and an associate professor at Herron. “I was really blown away by the sheer speed of it, so much so that I almost felt like I was in a video game. It was just really shocking to me.”

“When I went, I really couldn’t believe it. I think maybe if you have grown up going to the race, maybe it wouldn’t feel so impactful, although I can’t presume to know how other people might feel about the race,” Riede said. “But it’s nearly impossible when you’re up so close to focus on the cars zooming by.”

The pieces Riede is showing are from her “Wingspan” series. Like the auto race, the pieces are about movement, but movement on a human scale. And in contrast to the video-game-like speeds of the race cars, the paintings are made quite slowly, she said.

Describing the paintings, Riede said the images have a lot to do with the scale of her own body to the frame of the canvas. “And the way I composed them is by coming up with a movement, so I don’t have a preconceived image,” she said.

The movements were inspired by a dancer Riede worked with last fall.

“I begin with an intuitive movement off of the canvas and then record that same movement in paint. This gesture morphs as I move across the surface of the painting and an image unfolds.

“In some way, my paintings look a little like the curve of a racetrack, but that’s not what I had in mind when I was making them,” she said. “So, to me, it’s more about the contrast of human scale or even the feasibility that someone could fly around the track so quickly in these amazing machines versus what your hands could do with an older tool, like a paintbrush.”

“I guess I sort of see my own body as a tool as well, for making these works,” she said. “What we can invent — these technological devices to propel us at different velocities versus what we can do on our own — is a really interesting point for me.”

Asphaltum will run through May 31.

Kathy Johnson appointed executive vice chancellor

Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar has announced the appointment of Kathy E. Johnson as IUPUI’s next Kathy Johnson Imageexecutive vice chancellor and chief academic officer effective July 1, pending approval by the Indiana University Board of Trustees.

Johnson, who was selected to serve a one-year term as interim executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer upon the appointment of Paydar as chancellor, was chosen for the position after an extensive national search chaired by Michael Patchner, dean of the School of Social Work.

As executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer, Johnson will play a key leadership role in developing and guiding the implementation of IUPUI’s academic plans and programs. Additionally, she will oversee the process for the recruitment, hiring and advancement of faculty, including promoting the continued success of the campus’s efforts to increase the quality and diversity of its faculty.

“In her service as interim executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer, Kathy has already played a vital role on the IUPUI leadership team,” Paydar said. “Her breadth of experience, collaborative and inclusive leadership style, and keen awareness of national trends and best practices in higher education will help cultivate faculty excellence and student success.”

Johnson joined IUPUI in 1993 as an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology. Since that time, she has risen through the ranks as a faculty member and held various administrative positions including department chair, associate vice chancellor for undergraduate education and dean of University College, and her current position as interim executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer.

Some of Johnson’s administrative accomplishments include restructuring the Office of Academic Affairs to increase efficiencies, improve communications and align positions with strategic needs of the office; creating the Office of Institutional Research and Decision Support, which combines the campus’s strength in institutional research with expertise in analytics, survey research and program evaluation; launching the Division of Undergraduate Education as a means of providing more coordination of the academic experience for undergraduates beyond the first year of college; expanding recruitment of students into targeted degree programs; improving support for the recruitment and retention of students from diverse groups in collaboration with the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; and leading planning to support the development of a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among students in partnership with faculty; staff; and organizations within business, industry and the community.

“I am humbled and honored by the opportunity to continue serving the campus in this role,” Johnson said. “I am eager to work with our outstanding campus community to help showcase IUPUI’s astonishing array of strengths and help foster an engaging student-centered learning experience and a dynamic educational environment in which faculty, staff and students can thrive.”

Johnson earned her B.S. and M.S. in psychology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and her Ph.D. in psychology from Emory University.

IAHI Learning Series | Remembering World War II

This class will explore the global history of World War II by examining the triumphs and tragedies of theIAHI Learning Series Remembering World War II Flyer conflict and how they have been remembered and represented in film, literature, and popular culture. Attendees will learn about the forgotten events of the war and develop a better understanding of how history is shaped and reshaped by the stories we tell.

Remembering World War II is a program offered by the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute (IAHI). Established in 2012, the IAHI supports research and creative activity across the Indianapolis University-Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI) campus; serves as a campus liaison to the central Indiana community; and fosters ongoing partnerships and ventures that advance arts and humanities endeavors at IUPUI and in Indianapolis.

Register at http://go.iu.edu/1fGf (course listed under “personal interest.”)

Technology Enhancement Awards to aid advancement of IUSM technologies

During the inaugural ceremony for the Indiana Center for Biomedical Innovation last month,Indiana University School of Medicine Logo Anantha Shekhar, M.D., Ph.D., executive associate dean for Research Affairs at IUSM and director of Indiana CTSI, announced the winners of the Technology Enhancement Awards, a grant program developed by the ICBI, Indiana CTSI, and IU School of Medicine’s Industry Collaboration Portal to fill a critical gap in commercialization by supporting advanced early stage technologies from IUSM academic labs. The TEA awards support technologies that include highly promising therapeutics (small molecule or biologics), diagnostics, or biomedical devices to achieve commercial attractiveness.

The TEA proposals were reviewed by a team of eighteen ICBI advisory council members consisting of leaders and entrepreneurs in life sciences arena. The winners are:

Milan Radovich, Ph.D., assistant professor of Surgery and Medical and Molecular Genetics, IU School of Medicine, for developing a precision medicine approach to personalized cancer treatment
Jian-Ting Zhang, Ph.D., professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Andrew and Peggy Thomson Professor of Hematology/Oncology, IU School of Medicine, for developing novel inhibitors targeting surviving stability for development of targeted anticancer therapeutics
Yvonne Lai, Ph.D., senior scientist of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University-Bloomington, for developing the first drug of its kind to block the target mechanism of PTSD in the brain without triggering others that cause crippling side effects

The TEA awardees will be funded at $50,000 for 12 months through a milestone-based project management mechanism. In addition, advice and mentorship from ICBI advisory council members will be available for these investigators.

About the ICBI

The Indiana Center for Biomedical Innovation, a newly created center located at the IU Health Methodist Hospital Noyes Pavilion, provides a platform for academic entrepreneurs to translate their discoveries into commercial products for health care and ultimately, improved patient care. “ICBI is a unique place for entrepreneurial researchers to transform their ideas and discoveries into products,” said Jaipal Singh, Ph.D., director of ICBI. To learn more about the center and its funding opportunities, visit the ICBI website.

Exhibition | Herron School of Art and Design Presents : “Look/See” 2016

Date: May 4, 2016Look See 2016 Image
Time: 4:00 PM-9:00 PM
Location: Herron Art School And Design, Eskenazi Hall – 735 W. New York St., Indianapolis, IN
Eskenazi Fine Arts Center – 1410 Indiana Ave., Indianapolis, IN

RSVP for free.

Herron’s biggest night of the academic year. Look/See recognizes the achievements of Herron’s graduating master’s degree candidates with the M.F.A. Exhibition, which will fill all the galleries in Eskenazi Hall and the Eskenazi Fine Arts Center. Come and celebrate with students, friends and family, faculty and guests.

Honors and Awards
To start the party, join us for the Honors and Awards ceremony in the IUPUI Campus Center at 4:00 p.m. Everyone is welcome to come and cheer the accomplishments of students and faculty alike.

M.F.A. Exhibition
Then it’s on to the 2016 M.F.A. Exhibition beginning at 5:00 p.m., which showcases pinnacle works by master’s degree candidates Greg Boll, Stephanie Cochran, Adam Dick, Emma Fiandt, Brandon Eugene Fields, Courtney Hacker, Chris Hill, Andrew Jacob, Jody Kinnermon, Shuyu Li, Kimberly Sue McNeelan, Mona Patel, Jennifer Qian, Ginny Taylor Rosner, Suzy Slater, Miranda Taylor, Ting Huang Waddles, Justin T. Walsh and Priya Ann Wittman.

Art Therapy
Herron master’s degree candidates in Art Therapy Shelbi Goble, Mohammad Kwesi Hammond, Elizabeth Jarrett and Courtney Williamson will display their theses for people to explore.

Visual Communication Design
Master’s degree candidates in Visual Communication Design Adrienne Brown, Galo Carrion and Rob Wessel, collectively known as Voltron, will have a poster display that highlights their thesis project contexts, processes, and outcomes.

This culminating exhibition uses all the available gallery space in both Eskenazi Hall and Eskenazi Fine Arts Center.

Think It Make It Lab
The public will also get a chance to see Herron’s Think It Make It Lab in Eskenazi Hall, which is chock-full of the latest in digital technology, from laser engravers and CNC routers to 3-D printers.

The festivities include:

  • Beginning to End, a Visual Communication Design senior show
  • open studios
  • tours
  • print and ceramics sale
  • refreshments

Series | The Polis Center presents new SMARTEDGE

Date: May 6, 2016
Time: 12:30 PM-3:00 PM
Location: Ambassador Meeting Room at Sleep Inn & Suites and Conference Center, 1244 W. 16th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202

Register here.

The Polis Center is pleased to announce SMARTEDGE: Smart Government, Smart Environment, Smart Communities, a series of presentations on the positive role of science and technology in support of sustainability and quality of life.

The first of these free public events, “The Evolution of Open Source GIS and Its Applications for Big Data Analysis and Smart City,” will be held Friday, May 6, from 12:30-3:00 p.m. in the Ambassador Meeting Room at Sleep Inn & Suites and Conference Center, 1244 W. 16th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202. Check-in will be held at 12:30, with the program beginning at 1:00 p.m. Beverages will be provided.

Featured Presentation:

The use of open source geographic information system (GIS) software is increasingly considered one of the GIS implementation options for local governments and companies in the USA. Over the past few years, the market share of open source GIS based solutions has gained momentum as more competitors are entering the field, providing better IT integration opportunities, and addressing such issues as the lack of proper software support.

This presentation will shed light on the current state of technology in open source software, and answer questions related to current situation and future technology trends in open source GIS. Topics include strengths and weaknesses of open source solutions, the extent to which open source GIS software is used in local government operations, big data, cloud architecture, and crowd sourcing. The talk will also feature technical demonstrations of successfully implemented real-world solutions based on open source GIS platforms.

Internationally-Recognized Open Source GIS Leader Presenters:

Anthony Calamito is the Federal Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Boundless, which is based in Canada. Anthony has more than 12 years of experience as a Lead Solutions Engineer and Solutions Architect with GIS for the Defense and Intelligence communities. He is also an adjunct instructor at George Mason University in Virginia, where he teaches Introduction to GIS and Geographic Theory and Analysis, and is an American Geographical Society Fellow. Anthony received his Bachelors of Science in geography with a focus on GIS from The Pennsylvania State University. In his role as CTO, Anthony helps guide the overall technical strategy for the company and serves as a bridge between customers and engineering to ensure development tasks and enhancements are documented and properly meet customer requirements. In addition, he helps to identify and qualify business development opportunities, as well as develop marketing materials in conjunction with overall marketing message framework.

Ahmed Osman is the Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Cartologic, based in Giza, Egypt, which is focused on bridging the gap between proprietary GIS and the freedoms offered by open source GIS. He has been involved in all phases of GIS-based information system development since 1993, including database automation development and management, and applications development and maintenance, database design, application and system design, systems integration, project management, and consulting. Prior to founding Cartologic, Ahmed worked at Esri–the market leader of GIS–for 10 years as an application developer where he implemented several successful applications and enterprise GIS-based projects.

About the Series

SMARTEDGE: Smart Government, Smart Environment, Smart Communities is sponsored by the Polis Center at IUPUI and its partners. The presentations are designed to share and discuss ideas and issues and/or expose the audience to solution and technologies pertaining to smart cities and their linkage to sustainability and resilience, policy and governance, and the overall well-being of communities.

SMARTEDGE guest speakers are thinkers, idea-generators, and implementers of smart city initiatives from industrial, research, governmental, and community entities. The series is geared for those with interest in any of the issues surrounding the concept of the smart city, whether technologic, economic, policy, service, or impact-wise.

Series presentations are expected to cover one or more of the following topics:

  • Issues and concerns related to the data infrastructure underpinning smart city solution (e.g. big data, standards, data interoperability, data privacy, security)
  • Capability of technologies (state-of-the-art, trends, integration, service scales, implementation issues, e.g.)
  • Economics of implementation (cost of infrastructure and technology, return of investment, e.g.)
  • Governance of the systems and adaptability to the changing demands of citizens, business, and political leadership
  • Technical demos
  • Any other topics that are deemed relative

Two IUPUI researchers receive 2016 Research Frontiers Trailblazer Awards

INDIANAPOLIS — Two Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis researchers were named recipients of the 2016 Research Frontiers Trailblazer Award during the IUPUI Research Day earlier this month.

Established in 2010, the Research Frontiers Trailblazer Award recognizes outstanding IUPUI researchers who are showing great promise in becoming nationally and internationally known for their accomplishments in advancing the frontiers of knowledge.

Specifically, the award is for outstanding accomplishments in research and creative activity by an associate professor within the first three years of promotion or appointment in the given rank.

This year’s Trailblazer Award recipients are:

Dr. Carmella Evans-Molina, associate professor, Department of Medicine, Indiana University School of MedicineDr. Carmella Evans-Molina Image

Carmella Evans-Molina is associate director of development of the Center for Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases, one of only 16 NIH-funded Diabetes Research Centers in the U.S. Her research focus is islet dysfunction in diabetes. At the IU School of Medicine, Evans-Molina holds two major NIH grants as a principal investigator; a VA Merit Award; and a major grant from JDRF, the leading global organization funding Type 1 diabetes research. She has published more than 40 papers in the highest-quality journals.

The combined syndromes of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus affect nearly 387 million people worldwide. If current trends continue, 1 out of every 3 persons born in the U.S. after 2000 will develop diabetes during his or her lifetime.

“As a physician-scientist and endocrinologist at the IU School of Medicine, I am committed to reversing these trends and improving the health of those affected by diabetes through basic, translational and clinical research,” Evans-Molina said.

“Carmella is a rising superstar, an academic leader and a role model for young trainees. She is actively publishing, gathering exciting data, writing successful grants, and training students and postdoctoral fellows,” said Dr. Anantha Shekhar, Indiana University associate vice president for clinical affairs, in a letter of recommendation. “She represents IUSM and IUPUI on the national and international levels. Carmella is diligent, methodical and careful, but importantly, she is personable. I have no doubt that she will rise to hold significant leadership positions within academic medicine.”

“Carmella’s research has provided novel insights into the common pathways leading to beta cycle dysfunction in Type 1 and 2 diabetes. She pioneered the concept that dysregulation of calcium homeostasis contributes to beta cell dysfunction in both disorders,” said Dr. Stephen R. Hammes, of University of Rochester Medical Center School of Medicine and Dentistry, in a letter of recommendation. “Her work is basic, translational, elegant and unique.”

Evans-Molina holds a bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from West Virginia University and an M.D. degree from Marshall University School of Medicine.

Gavriil Tsechpenakis, associate professor, Department of Computer and InformationDr. Gavrill Tsechpenakis Image Science, School of Science at IUPUI

“Dr. Tsechpenakis is an energetic, visionary and hardworking researcher. His expertise is in computer vision, biomedical imaging and computational biology,” Simon Rhodes, dean of the School of Science and professor of biology, said in a letter of recommendation.

The human brain has an amazing capacity to functionally recover from strokes that damage local neuronal circuitries, but little is known about the principles of such a highly adaptive system, according to Rhodes. Recent advances in imaging and computational technologies allow for visualizing and processing the small insect brain in its entirety; scientists most often use the Drosophia melanogaster, or fruit fly, for such studies.

“Using data acquired with state-of-the-art imaging techniques at two Drosophila neuroscience laboratories, Dr. Tsechpenakis seeks to pattern the detailed morphology and dynamics of individual neurons during development, and reconstruct neuronal circuits and model their changes during brain development,” Rhodes said.

Tsechpenakis received a $573,000 NSF CAREER Award for his “Modeling the Structure and Dynamics of Neuronal Circuits in the Drosophila larvae using Image Analytics” project.

Tsechpenakis’ research focus on the bottom-up reconstruction of a model brain is “an impressive line of research,” said UCLA computer science professor Demetri Terzopoulos. “It goes beyond the application of computer vision methods; it requires knowledge of basic neuroscience and a deep understanding of the biological problem, the data and data-acquisition issues. In this domain, [Tsechpenakis] is already considered a pioneer.”

“Given Dr. Gavriil Tsechpenakis’ scientific curiosity, creativity, critical thinking, research drive, strong work ethic and technical skills as a computer scientist, I am confident that he will continue to have a fruitful academic career at IUPUI, continuing to produce trailblazing research achievements that promise to bring international recognition to your university,” Terzopoulos said in a letter of recommendation.

The IUPUI professor earned his undergraduate and doctoral degrees in electrical and computer engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece.