Texas A&M Technology Commercialization (TTC) honored faculty across the Texas A&M University System whose inventions were granted patent protection in 2013 from the US Patent and Trademark Office on Friday, April 25, at the Annenberg Presidential Conference Center.

Among those honored was Dr. Magnus Hook, Ph.D., regents and distinguished professor at the Texas A&M Health Science Center (TAMHSC) Institute of Biosciences and Technology in Houston, whose work resulted in the granting of two patents. The first was for his research with monoclonal antibodies, found to be useful in the treatment and development of vaccines against the staph bacteria. This patent has been licensed to Inhibitex, Inc., a U.S. publicly-traded, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company which was acquired in February 2012 by Bristol-Myers Squibb. The second patent, in collaboration with Brook H. Russell, Ph.D., assistant professor at the Center for Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases at the TAMHSC Institute of Biosciences and Technology, is for the discovery of bacterial based collagen – produced inexpensively and without the use of animal facilities – that can be easily manipulated for various medical needs.  This work has been licensed to ECM Technologies, which was co-founded by Dr. Hook and Dr. Russell.

Also honored was Stephen Safe, D. Phil., faculty member in the Department of Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology at Texas A&M and director of the Center for Environmental and Genetic Medicine at the TAMHSC Institute of Biosciences and Technology, for his work on novel derivatives of glycyrrhetinic acid, which could be useful for the treatment of such diseases as cancer, diabetes and Huntington’s disease.

Additionally, Dr. Safe was the recipient of an Innovation Award in recognition of individuals whose research exemplifies the spirit of innovation within the Texas A&M System.

For further information on all Texas A&M System patent and innovation award winners, visit the Texas A&M System website.

— Holly Shive

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