The University City Science Center's QED Proof-of-Concept program said this week it will help fund researchers developing technologies for high-speed eye exams, cancer treatment, stem cell growth and healthcare sanitation.

The total of $650,000 in funding is part of a program started in 2009 to help novel university technologies with market potential, according to a center statement. The Science Center and the schools of the winners will each contribute half of the money. The four were chosen from a pool of 68 applicants and nine universities in the Philadelphia region.

The QED grants went to researchers at Lehigh University, Rutgers, Temple University and Thomas Jefferson University. The Science Center also has business advisors who might lend a hand. This is the seventh round of funding and 24 previously-funded QED projects amounted to $14.8 million in follow-on funding and led to six licensed technologies, according to the Science Center.

This group of recipients was:

  • Dr. Chao Zhou of Lehigh University, who is developing a diagnostic instrument that will allow faster, more sensitive eye exams for macular degeneration and glaucoma, improving an approach known as optical coherence tomography (OCT).
  • Dr. Steven Levison of Rutgers, who is developing a new product for culturing neural stem cells that simplifies and improves the ability of researchers to grow these cells for experimental and therapeutic use.
  • Dr. William Wuest of Temple University, who is developing the next generation of disinfectants for a variety of commercial industries including healthcare, transportation, water, and energy.
  • Dr. Sunday Shoyele of Thomas Jefferson University, who is developing a product for delivering highly-degradable gene inhibitors to cancer and other cells using antibody-based nanoparticles.

The QED program has received support from the U.S. Economic Development Administration, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Department of Health, the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, William Penn Foundation, and Wexford Science and Technology, a BioMed Realty Company.

"QED continues to resonate with both the academic and funding community," Science Center President and CEO Stephen S. Tang said in a statement. "The number of submissions continues to increase round over round as academic researchers identify ways to commercialize their emerging technologies. At the same time, the support of our funders enables us to continue to facilitate the development of these exciting technologies and contribute to the robust life science ecosystem in the Greater Philadelphia Region."

Though there are a few more modern - and sometimes snarky - translations, QED often is the abbreviation for Latin translation of Quod Erat Demonstrandum - proven as demonstrated.