Penn's Weiss Tech House Announces Student Inventors Headed to PennVention Competition Finals

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Media Contact:Jenny Brennan | jennycb@seas.upenn.edu | 703-919-6292March 13, 2007

PHILADELPHIA -- Ten teams of student inventors have been selected to present their prototypes of innovative technologies at the University of Pennsylvania's third annual PennVention competition on April 6 at Penn's Weiss Tech House. Finalists will compete for more than $60,000 in cash and prizes and a chance to launch their products to market.

The finalists, chosen for ingenuity and commercialization potential are:

CircuMed: Proprietary drug delivery platforms that offer novel approaches to treat thrombotic diseases.  CircuMed was also selected as a semi-finalist in this year's Wharton Business Plan Competition.

Fodius: Beneficiary-notification services technology that alerts people to their entitled financial assets upon someone's death.

imageTHIS: A more efficient, less intrusive radiofrequency probe for clinical magnetic resonance imaging.

Innovative Protein Technologies:  Provides a fully automated solution for western blot protein analysis.

Lab Aide: Academic tool that trains future researchers in exploiting electronic notebook technology for recording research data in commercial labs.

Movement Quantifier: Pressure sensing technology to guide training and correct wrong movements in athletes by quantify the dynamic force strength and positions.

NexGel: Nuclear prosthetic used to replace the damaged nucleus of an intervertebral disc.

Quicker Kicker: Mechanical football holder for field goal kickers that replicates a holder catching the ball and placing it down in one smooth motion.

Radiosonde Recovery: Autonomous GPS-based robot that recovers instruments sent to near-orbit altitudes.  A member of this team was also on last year's first-place team, MuscleMorph.

Ultra Slim Card and Key Holder: A slim, professionally styled device that allows for one-handed access to essential cards and keys.

Open to all Penn students, the PennVention competition teaches students how to turn a good idea into a commercial product through three distinct rounds.  Participants can access the feedback and guidance of more than 40 industry experts as they learn about issues like patenting, product design and manufacturing.

"Past PennVention winners have been able to incorporate businesses, secure venture capital funding and launch products to market," Anne Stamer, Weiss Tech House director, said.

Leading up to an Invention Fair, each finalist will receive one-on-one product development mentoring from Bresslergroup, $250 in cash to build a prototype and a chance to apply to the Weiss Tech House Innovation Fund for a grant of as much as $1,000.

At the finals, a panel of expert judges will award more than $60,000 in cash and prizes, including $2,500 worth of product development advice from Bresslergroup; $2,500 in cash and a meeting with industry buyers from QVC Inc.; $1,000 worth of Selective Laser Sintering prototyping services from Paramount Industries Inc.; pro bono legal consultation from Lowenstein Sandler PC; and a full-day session on branding, positioning and communications consultation from Tierney Communications.

The Weiss Tech House is a student-run hub of technological innovation at the University of Pennsylvania that supports students in the creation, development and commercialization of innovative technologies.  Inventor profiles and additional information are available at www.tech-house.upenn.edu.

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