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University of Oklahoma

In response to a shortage of COVID-19 testing kits, University of Oklahoma researchers collaborated with IMMY, a Norman-based company that manufactures and markets diagnostic tests and reagents for infectious diseases. By sharing equipment and expertise, this team developed testing kits to bolster the state’s ability to test and process tests more quickly.

OU researchers at IMMY.
OU researchers Emily Junkins and Bradley Stevenson at IMMY to develop alternate COVID-19 testing options.

Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores and the Tom and Judy Love Foundation are longstanding supporters of OU and the Michael F. Price College of Business. In 2018, OU announced a leadership gift from the Tom and Judy Love Foundation in support of Price College’s entrepreneurship initiatives. OU honored the Loves’ donation by naming the Division of Entrepreneurship and Economic Development, Tom Love Innovation Hub, the Center for Entrepreneurship, and the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence Program in their honor. The Loves’ contribution also supports a scholarship endowment and funds at least 20 annual student scholarships or proof-of-concept grants. Additionally, Tom Love has served as the lead sponsor for Price College’s annual Business Week activities. Members of Love’s corporate leadership team also provide mentorship, internships and career opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students.

In response to talent needs in Oklahoma’s second-largest industry, OU recently announced it is launching new graduate programs in aerospace and defense (external link) through the Gene Rainbolt Graduate School of Business, beginning fall 2020. The executive MBA in aerospace and defense is a one-year, 32-credit-hour degree, and the graduate certificate in aerospace and defense is a six-month, 12-credit-hour program. Both programs are designed to develop the managerial and leadership skills of the A&D workforce, including those without a business education. The program was developed with guidance from the newly formed Aerospace and Defense Industry Roundtable, a group of private company and government executives. The Industry Roundtable will continue to provide input on industry-specific skills and strategies as the program develops.

The Advanced Radar Research Center at OU recently hosted Industry and Governments Days at the National Weather Center. Ninety guests representing more than 30 industry and government partners attended, including Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, L3 Harris, BAE Systems, Collins Aerospace, Vaisala, AT&T, Leidos, First RF, SRC, NSSL, NOAA ROC, DARPA, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and others. Faculty, students, staff engineers, and company representatives presented the latest radar technology and applications. Students participated in a poster and demo session, where they could interactively and informally describe their research projects as the visitors toured the lab.

Attendees at the 2020 Industry and Governments Day.

In the past year, more than 400 economic development leaders in the U.S. completed coursework in the OU Economic Development Institute certification program. OU EDI was the first economic development professional training, with more than 5,500 graduates since 1962. OU EDI offers preparation for the International Economic Development Council’s Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) certification exam, along with practical best-practices strategies that can be put to use immediately.

OU partners with Weather Decision Technologies Inc. to provide the most accurate high-resolution weather information content with detections, predictions and forecasts for its customers using sophisticated and proven weather technology systems.

SouthWest NanoTechnologies Inc. (SWeNT), established by OU, is a development-stage specialty chemical manufacturer, commercializing Single Wall Carbon Nanotubes for high-volume specialty applications. Earlier this year, ConocoPhillips invested capital and intellectual property rights in SWeNT to construct a pilot plant to manufacture single-wall carbon nanotubes at a cost low enough to accelerate their commercialization in several specialty applications.

Photo of Invoveon researchers.With an initial funding from a group of private investors, OU and the Presbyterian Health Foundation, two OU Health Sciences Center physicians established a company based on their invention — a Digital Disease Management System to monitor diabetic patients for diabetic retinopathy. The Invoveon system was successful, and in 1999, a large, publicly traded Chicago-based company took a 30% interest in the company.

OU has partnered with Pure Protein Inc. to produce a product based on a breakthrough life sciences technology. Developed by OU Health Sciences Center scientist Dr. William Hildebrand, the technology utilized a method by which certain protein molecules can be mass-produced for use in screening organ transplant recipients’ blood to ensure that the recipients’ defense mechanisms are compatible with the donors. With Hildebrand’s technology, Pure Protein expects to produce such testing substrates at a fraction of the present cost and capture more than half of this market.

Technology developed at OU for systems that produce soluble-form proteins in the bacterium E. coli. has been licensed to Novagen Inc. of Madison, Wisc., giving Novagen exclusive world rights to the technology. Doctoral, graduate and undergraduate students as well as interns served on Dr. Roger Harrison’s research team to develop this technology.

In 2001 Oklahoma City-based Hyalose LLC partnered with Novozymes A/S to produce Hyaluronic Acid (HA) using technologies developed by doctors at the OU Health Sciences Center. Medical uses of HA include treatment of variations of arthritis and joint disease as well as wide ranging applications in ophthalmology, urology, skin care and wound healing. The total market for HA products is $3.8 billion annually.

Photo of a bridge with the SAVA system.Scrub Oak Technologies Inc. manufactures a patented semi-active vibration absorber (SAVA), an electronically monitored “shock absorber” for bridges invented by the late Bill Patten, an OU engineering professor. The SAVA system compensates for the pounding bridges get from heavy traffic and could extend the lives of thousands of aging highway bridges throughout the country.

OU and NanoBioMagnetics Inc. (NBMI) of Oklahoma City established a Collaborative Research Agreement under which the two organizations are exploring the use of magnetically responsive nanoparticles in a range of human health applications. NBMI is developing proprietary technology in the use of magnetically responsive nanoparticles as Organ-Assisting-Devices in the emerging field of nanomedicine. NBMI is focusing on OADs for drug delivery and organ bioswitches and will work with OU in validating developed technologies in human health applications.

USDA Rural Development (external link)

Oklahoma City Human Resources Society (external link)

Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance (external link)

i2E (external link)

Resources for Student Veterans and Active-Duty Military

Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council (external link)