IRIS Newsletter #38 – February 2023

Newsletter #38

Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer

Top innovations for 2023, by In-Part

Biopharma & life sciences innovations

Enzymes that target biofilm-associated infections

Resistant bacterial wound infections are a global burden, complicating healing and increasing the cost of treatment. Texas Tech University System researchers have developed a combination of enzymes that dismantle the physical and chemical barriers a biofilm has to antibiotics, avoiding the need for debridement and allowing the more effective use of antibiotics.

Hitting the target with gene editing

CRISPR-Cas9 has become an essential tool for genetic engineering, but it still has limitations such as low target specificity. Researchers at DKFZ, the German Cancer Research Center, have discovered an approach that increases DNA editing specificy, by using anti-CRISPR proteins to fine-tune Cas9’s activity, thus opening the door for gene editing to be used in a wider range of applications such as research, medical diagnostics, therapies or agriculture.

Material innovations

Bio-based heat-reflective coatings for buildings

Heat-reflective coatings are helpful tools to aid in the energy management of buildings. However, they incur expensive production and application costs. To make the coatings more accessible, researchers at the University of California, Irvine have developed energy-efficient coatings made from a naturally occurring, inexpensive biomolecule that meets the requirements of functional infrared coatings for buildings.

Safe and biobased resins made from natural products Phenol formaldehyde resins are used in a wide range of products, from coatings and adhesives to laminates and plastics, but traditional manufacture of resins has associated environmental and health risks. To overcome these risks, scientists from Western University have devised a novel, one-pot approach to produce bio-based resins that can replace their traditional dangerous counterparts.

Physical and computational sciences

Cheap high-yield hydrogen

A hydrogen fuel economy could be a part of the solution to phase out the use of fossil fuels for powering homes, industry and transport. To support this, a new low-temperature approach to the hydrolysis of sodium borohydride, developed by scientists at the University of Kentucky, offers a cheap, high-yield route to hydrogen production with improved safety.

Powerful alternatives to lithium-ion batteries

Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have been working on new components to improve all-solid-state batteries power output, energy volume, lifecycle and safety as alternatives to lithium-ion batteries. Specifically, the battery materials enable chemical stability, eliminate material cracking that can often be associated with battery cycling, and offer increase power output.

Biopharma & life sciences innovations

Bigger seeds, more product

As the global population of humans increases and the demand for food with it, there is a crucial need to effectively use the finite land available for food production. With this goal in mind, researchers at Saint Louis University have controlled gene expression and epigenetic pathways to increase the size of seeds in order to increase crop produciont using the same amount of space.

Kinder pesticides

The use of pesticides have huge disadvantages to plants and the environment, from low specificity to high toxicity and a risk of creating pesticide resistances. To address these issues, researchers at the Max Planck Society have developed compounds that target the growth of pathogens by inhibiting the aggregation of amyloid-like proteins that contribute to extracellular, adhesion and other pathogenicity-related infection structures.

Biopharma & life sciences innovations

Turning waste into aromas Low value agricultural biomass, lignin, is often burned to produce energy however, there is potential to use lignin in the development of renewable fuels and speciality chemicals. University of Kansas researchers are onto a sweet idea with their lignin depolymerization method, allowing high-value products such as vanillin to be isolated from agricultural waste.
High-efficiency blades to get electric flights taking off Utilising rotary wings and electric propulsion, eVTOLs (electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles) are at the forefront of research attempting to make the aviation industry more sustainable. On this flightpath, researchers at the University of Glasgow have developed and validated a ready-to-use computational design tool, offering aerospace and wind energy companies accurate methods to enhance efficiency of propellers, rotors and wind turbine blades without sacrificing acoustics, structural dynamics, or safety.

Business Development and Funding

Science Business’ publication – What the first two years of Horizon Europe look like in numbers

Success rates are up, UK and Swiss participation down, and Widening countries edge up to the EU 27 average. And on the third anniversary of Brexit, the UK’s five top universities, usually among the biggest winners of EU R&D funding, are feeling the pinch.

Horizon Europe is heading into its third year, and the latest statistics offer a glimpse of how the EU is spending its €95.5 billion research funding pot.

To date, the Commission has disbursed €11.83 billion, or around 12.4% of the budget, in the first two years of the seven-year programme. Click here or the image on your left to check the complete analysis.

EIC Work Programme 2023 The EIC Work Programme opens funding opportunities worth over €1.6 billion in 2023. For the EIC Pathfinder, €343million is available for multi-disciplinary research teams to undertake visionary research with the potential to lead to technology breakthroughs. (click the image above for more information)


Now, you have a dedicated tool which can help you on creating the Data Management Plan (DMP). DMP is a current obligation in several funding agencies such as Horizon Europe. By using ARGOS researchers are able to create their DMP and facilitating data management activities. ARGOS is help you managing, validating, monitoring and maintenance of DMP. ​

The main features are:​

EASY ACCESS – You can login with ORCID.​

START WIZARD – ARGOS helps the plan creation with guiding steps.​

DMP TEMPLATES ACCESS – You can upload, and use, various types of templates, inc. FCT (Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia) and Horizon Europe models.​

INTERAOPERABILITY – You can export the DMP to RDA JSON, and it can be uploaded in repositories, like ZENODO.​

Business Development and Funding
Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer