OCAST Board Approves 13 Projects

The Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST) this week awarded $1.9 million to 13 research applicants who are required to match the funding dollar for dollar. The research and development projects will be completed within the next three years.

External peer reviewers evaluate the applied research applications and collectively place them in order of the project’s expected ability to achieve commercialization through sound scientific investigation.

“Our peer review process coupled with our match requirements make OCAST-funded applied research projects among the most respected in the nation,” said Michael Carolina, executive director of OCAST. “The value of our selection process also helps validate the investment worthiness of our research projects. That is the reason our $196 million investment over the last 23 years has yielded $3.9 billion of leveraged or outside money for Oklahoma research.”

OCAST applied research funds target accelerated and proof of concept technology that has significant potential for producing a commercially successful product, process or service with high potential to benefit the state’s economy.

Projects range from thermoelectric power generation to new research for diabetic retinopathy.

The applied research award winners include the following:



University of Oklahoma and Phononic Devices Inc. – Patrick McCann, investigator; Thermoelectric materials and devices: $90,000 for two years


Oklahoma City

Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation and Crescendo Biosciences – Michael Centola, investigator; Assessment of CVD risk in patients with RA: $300,000 for three years


ICx Nomadics Inc. – Lena Flood, investigator; Biosensor system for food-safety testing: $90,000 for two years


University of Oklahoma and U.S. Department of Energy – Zhili He, investigator; HuMiChip to detect and characterize the human microbiome: $293,017 for three years

Energy Resources/Petroleum


Cal-Tech Global LLC – Mike Callaway, investigator; Sulfabate – improved H2S filtering media: $228,375 for two years

Advanced Materials/Chemicals


Oklahoma State University and Oklahoma Department of Transportation – Yu Mao, investigator; Magnetically recyclable biocatalysts for biofuel production: $90,000 for two years

Diagnostic and Therapeutic Biotechnology

Oklahoma City

Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation – Yunzhou Dong, investigator; Drug development for prostate cancer: $90,000 for two years

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences – Muna Naash, investigator; Non-viral gene therapy for diabetic retinopathy: $90,000 for two years

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center – Jay Hanas, investigator; Technology development for early detection of lung cancer: $90,000 for two years

DormaTarg Inc. – Michael Ihnat, investigator; Role of DT-320 in triple-negative breast cancer: $91,570 for two years

Other – Materials


Xplosafe LLC – Allen Apblett, investigator; Colorimetric pellets for peroxide prevention: $73,600 for two years

Information Technology – Security and Biometrics


True Digital Security – Jerald Dawkins, investigator. TokenEx – Compliance avoidance through tokenization: $300,000 for two years

Separation Technology


University of Oklahoma and MicroChem Solutions – Shaorong Liu, investigator; A miniaturized HPLC coupling with a mass spectrometer: $90,000 for two years

Source: OCAST

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