Three OSU teams win federal technology commercialization grants – Oklahoma State University

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Media Contact:
Harrison Hill | Research Communications Specialist | 405-744-5827 | [email protected]

Three research teams at Oklahoma State University have won National Science Foundation
Partnerships for Innovation Technology Translation grants (NSF PFI-TT) — worth $250,000

  • Dr. Kitty Cardwell, Dr. Andres Espindola and team — MiFi: Next-generation pathogen
    detection tool
  • Dr. Stephanie Link — Dissemity: Research writing software
  • Dr. Raj Singh — Nanodiamond Process Technology Development for Thermal Management
    of Power Electronics

Daniel Will, executive director for Cowboy Innovation’s Brightest Orange Ventures,
said the funding windfall is the result of researchers’ groundbreaking projects and
the support of their colleges and OSU’s Cowboy Innovations (CI).

“These grants are awarded for translational research and technology development,”
Will said. “Cowboy Innovations helps identify and apply for commercial grant funding
that matches OSU technologies at particular development stages. 

“These grants can come from many places, such as the National Science Foundation’s
PFI grants, but may also be the Oklahoma Center for Advancement of Science and Technology’s
or various federal agencies.”

Russell Hopper, senior licensing associate for Cowboy Innovations, said the CI team
exists “to support OSU innovators with any grant that involves intellectual property
protection, marketing, and licensing.”

One example is Cardwell’s NSF PFI-TT grant, which is going to a partnership involving
OSU; University of California, Riverside; and the Wonderful Fruit company — which
markets Cuties brand tangerines, among other things.

The team is focused on speeding up development and production processes for new citrus

“To move new citrus germplasm, i.e. new varieties, into the U.S., it has to go through
years of testing to prove freedom from about 30 citrus diseases,” Cardwell said. 

Their technology — called MiFi, short for Microbe Finder — will do just that. 

“Wonderful Fruit would really like for that process to be faster and more efficient,”
Cardwell said. “Oklahoma State and the Institute of Biosecurity and Microbial Forensics
have developed a next-generation diagnostic technology that will allow the Citrus
Clonal Protection Program at UC Riverside to test for all pathogens at once in the
same citrus sample.”

This NSF grant will support developing and testing MiFi pathogen detection probes
for all of the citrus pathogens, Cardwell said. 

“Cowboy Innovations, through its …….


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