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Interdisciplinary Collaboration Grants Program

The Division of Research established the Interdisciplinary Collaboration Grants (ICG) Program to provide funds to facilitate the development of collaborations at Binghamton University. This program is for investigators who seek to enhance their research opportunities through collaboration and may include projects that represent a new research agenda. Proposals from all areas of scholarship are encouraged.




Two projects received funding in the program's 2012-13 round of awards:

Karin Sauer (Biological Sciences), James Turner (S3IP), and Omowunmi Sadik (Chemistry)
“Flexible Electronic Sensor for Early Detection and Development of Biofilms“

Persistent and chronic infections within the human body and those on medical devices are often the result of bacterial biofilm formation, a process by which bacteria establish complex, multi-cellular communities encased in a protective self-produced matrix. Once established, biofilms are intolerant to antimicrobial agents, rendering biofilms and biofilm-related infections extremely problematic to eradicate by conventional antimicrobial treatment strategies. In addition, biofilm detection by conventional microbiological techniques is time consuming, often unreliable, and more importantly, not suitable for early detection. Thus, early detection of biofilm formation would allow the development and application of new mitigation techniques. The goal of this research is to develop a flexible electronics bio-functional biosensor to detect biofilm colonization and development via biofilm-produced metabolites.

Paul Chiarot (Mechanical Engineering), David Schaffer (Bioengineering), Pong-Yu Huang (Mechanical Engineering)
“Collaborative Investigation of Blood Flow-Driven Waste Molecule Removal from the Brain and Its Relationship to Alzheimer’s Disease”

Little is known about the fluid mechanics and flow patterns inside the perivascular space (PVS) of the brain and how they might correlate with the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. This project will combine numerical and experimental techniques to study fluid flow in the PVS. We will build a computational model in ANSYS Fluent, an advanced fluid engineering software package, to investigate the flow. This model will be used to explore the impact of various physiological parameters, including the arterial pressure, blood vessel stiffness, PVS size and shape, and fluid properties. The use of a computational model is important as it provides important physical insights and a low-cost approach to investigating the role of the governing parameters. To confirm the validity of the numerical model, we will build a fluidic device of the artery-PVS system (i.e., mini-brain model). This mini-brain device will also become an important tool for studying Alzheimer’s disease treatment options.


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