Innovations in Medicine

Innovation requires that we put aside 
what we think we know and start fresh.

Today’s medical science creates effective treatments for diseases and injuries by building on existing discoveries and knowledge. This incremental, improvement-focused approach is a useful means of meeting the urgent needs of patients diagnosed with life-threatening diseases. Equally important, however, is research that attempts to transform our understanding of disease.

This is the tactic used by our center. With such an unconventional approach, the possibilities are limitless, from creating a single vaccine that prevents virtually all types of cancer to treating oncoming illness before experiencing any of the symptoms. This methodology allows us to approach problems in ways that have never been attempted before.

The expertise of the Center for Innovations in Medicine is built on a history of innovation. Our efforts focus on the improvement of medical diagnostics and treatment, and the prevention of disease. Significant innovations, inventions and discoveries by the Center’s investigators and collaborators include:

  • Mitochondrial transformation: First stable introduction of DNA into this organelle.
  • Pathogen-derived resistance: Simple method to make cells resistant to viral infection.
  • TEV protease: A widely used protease for proteomic research.
  • Gene gun: a simple device to “shoot” gene-coated gold microprojectiles into cells of intact animals.
  • Genetic immunization: Method to immunize by shooting in plasmids encoding antigens.
  • Expression Library Immunization: Technique to reduce a pathogen genome to vaccines.
  • Linear Expression Elements: System to transform cells without cloning genes.
  • High-throughput antibody production: System to make antibodies in high number. 

Like all research, the ultimate importance lies in our potential to save lives and improve the quality of life.