Collegiate Inventors Competition

2013 Finalists

Meet the students who will compete in Washington D.C., and find out why their inventions stand out among this year’s most inspiring entries.

Undergraduate FINALISTS

Nikhil Mehandru
Aaron Perez
Alydaar Rangwala
Brandon Sim
ENTRY NAME:
ChemoPatch: A Next-Generation Cancer Chemotherapy Patch
SCHOOL:
Harvard University

ADVISOR NAME:
Sujata Bhatia
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The ChemoPatch is a low-cost, electronic patch-based system that facilitates home-based chemotherapy which has not been extensively implemented because of the need for reformulated drugs and the inability to deliver complex treatment regimens. The ChemoPatch solves this problem through the automated delivery of soluble medication and will allow high-quality home-based cancer care to become a reality.
Lauren Davis
Michael Kofron
Stella Latscha
Anthony Stroffolino
ENTRY NAME:
H.E.R.A.L.D.: Hybrid Exploration Robot for Air and Land Deployment
SCHOOL:
University of Pennsylvania

ADVISOR NAME:
Mark Yim
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The H.E.R.A.L.D. system combines two very different form factors: a quadrotor and a light-weight, nimble snake; the snake robot is designed to maneuver both over and through rubble, while the quadrotor provides aerial surveillance. H.E.R.A.L.D. operates in three modes: separated mode, where all three robots operate independently; tank mode, where the two snakes carry the quadrotor to save battery life; and carrying mode, where the quadrotor carries a single snake at a time over impassable obstacles.
Matthew Nojoomi
Michael Pan
Kamal Shah
Erica Skerrett
ENTRY NAME:
IV Drip
SCHOOL:
Rice University

ADVISOR NAME:
Rebecca Richards-Kortum
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
IV DRIP is a simple, mechanical, and automatic volume regulator designed to enable clinicians in developing countries to provide dehydrated children with life-saving intravenous fluids without the risk of overhydration. With an accuracy of 14 ml throughout the clinical range of volumes and flow rates; requiring just 30 seconds to set up; and at a parts cost of less than $80 per unit, IV DRIP has the potential to help save the lives of over 1 million children annually who suffer from diarrhea, malaria, and cholera.
Scott Ho
Jessica Kuhlman
Andy Thompson
ENTRY NAME:
Mechanical Leech
SCHOOL:
University of Utah

ADVISOR NAME:
Jayant Agarwal
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The Mechanical Leech is a medical device that will replace biological leeches in post-surgical treatment of tissue reattachment patients; alleviating venous congestion. The device will greatly improve controllability, patient appeal, and convenience while lessening the costs associated with live leeches.
Aaron Chang
Kevin George
Piyush Poddar
Sandya Subramanian
ENTRY NAME:
PrestoPatch
SCHOOL:
Johns Hopkins University

ADVISOR NAME:
Robert Allen
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The PrestoPatch Integrated Electrode System allays the two major shortcomings of cardiac arrhythmia treatment: 1) Difficulty in switching the shocking vector (path the shock takes through the body) between shocks and 2) Difficulty in applying standardized external pressure to the patches to reduce transthoracic impedance (resistance to the electrical shock). The PrestoPatch system saves lives by solving these problems via two separate components: 1) The Tri-Patch, a disposable three-patch electrode that allows for a instantaneously switchable shocking vector 2) The PrestoPush, an ergonomic, hand-held pressure applicator that can quickly reduce transthoracic impedance on all electrode patches.
Elizabeth Beattie
Nicholas McGill
Nicholas Parrotta
Nikolay Vladimirov
ENTRY NAME:
Titan Arm: A Powered Upper Body Exoskeleton
SCHOOL:
University of Pennsylvania

ADVISOR NAME:
Jonathan Fiene
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The Titan Arm is a powered, upper body exoskeleton developed for physical therapy and occupational lifting applications. This tetherless device is capable of adding forty pounds of additional curling strength to the user through a cable-drive system and can track joint angle and motor current data in real-time.

GRADUATE FINALISTS

Nisarg Shah
ENTRY NAME:

A Bioactive Interface for Implant Bonding and Tissue Repair

SCHOOL:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

ADVISOR NAME:
Paula Hammond
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
This invention is a material based structured bioactive interface that enables a new generation of biomedical implants to directly interact with the human body for long-term functionality. The interface is easily tunable and biologically programmable with broad applicability giving rise to new therapeutic options and cures for debilitating diseases, thus increasing patient survival and improving their quality of life.
Aaron Ring
Kipp Weiskopf
ENTRY NAME:

Engineered SIRPα Variants as Immunotherapeutic Adjuvants to Anti-Cancer Antibodies

SCHOOL:
Stanford University

ADVISOR NAME:
Irving Weissman
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
Cancer is a leading cause of death, and many cancer treatments exhibit substantial toxicity despite minimal efficacy; we invented “high-affinity SIRPα variants” that bind cancer cells and stimulate attack by patients’ own immune systems. By themselves, the SIRPα variants produce no toxicity to normal cells, but when combined with tumor-specific therapeutic antibodies, they exhibit remarkable synergy by stimulating immune cells called macrophages to engulf and destroy cancer cells.
Arlyne Simon
ENTRY NAME:

Highly Accurate, No-Wash, Bioassay for Multiplexed Detection of Plasma Proteins

SCHOOL:
University of Michigan

ADVISOR NAME:
Shuichi Takayama
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
This invention is a diagnostic platform that can detect graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) in patients who underwent bone marrow transplantation. The test uses aqueous two-phase system microdroplets to inherently prevent false positive signals, enabling accurate quantification of GVHD protein biomarkers in minute biological samples.
Nigel Reuel
ENTRY NAME:

Label-Free Nanosensors to Control Antibody Drug Production and Quality

SCHOOL:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

ADVISOR NAME:
Michael Strano
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
Carbon-nanotube-based optical nanosensors measure the quality of biologic drugs such as antibodies. The invention can help speed up the development and control the production of these drugs to make a more safe and efficacious product.
Isaac Kinde
ENTRY NAME:

The PapGene Test: Early Detection of Ovarian and Endometrial Cancers

SCHOOL:
Johns Hopkins University

ADVISOR NAME:
Bert Vogelstein
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
The PapGene test is a DNA sequence-based invention for the early detection of ovarian and endometrial cancers. Its underlying technology is scalable and generalizable to the early detection of many other types of cancer as well.
Brian McVerry
ENTRY NAME:

A Scalable Method to Produce Anti-Fouling Reverse Osmosis Membranes

SCHOOL:
University of California, Los Angeles

ADVISOR NAME:
Richard Kaner
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
Large scale reverse osmosis is the most-efficient method of converting seawater to usable, potable water; unfortunately, surface fouling of reverse osmosis membranes greatly increases energy and maintenance costs by blocking the flow up water through the porous membranes. This invention modifies the surface of reverse osmosis membranes to prevent surface fouling, while maintaining the high performance and scalability of current reverse osmosis membranes.
Alexander Richter
ENTRY NAME:

Silver Nanoparticles Without Metal – A New Generation of Environmentally Benign Antimicrobials

SCHOOL:
North Carolina State University

ADVISOR NAME:
Orlin Velev
ENTRY DESCRIPTION:
Environmentally benign Nanoparticles (EbNPs) have a biodegradable core of a natural material and can be produced with the functional equivalency to antimicrobial silver nanoparticles. EbNPs combine high efficacy with high post-utilization safety and are likely to drastically decrease the environmental impact of a broad range of products.
  • National Inventor's Hall of Fame
  • Collegiate Inventors Competition
  • Camp Invention
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