“When you need to innovate, you need collaboration.” — Marissa Mayer
UofL diabetes therapy attracts new partner
Better testing to attack cancer
A car vending machine?
Helping others through app development
Know Your City!
August 18, 2020
Louisville is home to some of the best healthcare—related companies in the country. And we're not resting on our laurels—the healthcare community here continues to build partnerships and foster innovation. Here are a couple of examples of how we're doing that:
A therapy for Type 1 diabetes, co-invented at UofL and the Georgia Institute of Technology, now has a commercial partner. The therapy helps people with Type 1 diabetes stay off immunosuppressants by re-educating the body’s immune system to accept transplanted insulin-producing cells.
iTolerance Inc., a San Mateo, Calif.-based biotech company, has signed an exclusive license for the therapy, through Georgia Tech and the UofL Commercialization EPI-Center, which works with startups and industry to commercialize university-born technologies.
“We look forward to leveraging the technology in order to locally and durably induce immune tolerance of organ transplants,” said Cameron Gray, PhD, J.D., founder and chairman of iTolerance. “We believe the technology has potentially far-ranging implications for engraftment."
The technology was pioneered by Haval Shirwan, PhD, and Esma S. Yolcu, Ph.D., a gratis faculty member at UofL.
“Our goal is to help people with Type 1 diabetes, so they don’t have to suffer the side effects that come with immunosuppressants,” said Haval Shirwan, PhD, inventor and professor in the UofL Department of Microbiology and Immunology.
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Norton Cancer Institute debuts genomic testing lab
The onsite lab offers the benefit of a faster turnaround time, which is a godsend to patients with fast-growing tumors. Officials also expect the lab to help Norton recruit top molecular pathologists and other lab personnel.
Bringing this state-of-the-art technology in-house has allowed Norton Cancer Institute to cut in half the time it took to get test results from an outside laboratory.
“When it comes to cancer, we often don’t have the time to try one treatment and wait to see how it responds, then try a different one,” said Joseph M. Flynn, D.O., MPH, FACP, chief administrative officer, Norton Medical Group, and physician-in-chief, Norton Cancer Institute.
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Louisville welcomes first car vending machine
Photo courtesy Carvana
We're pretty sure this is how George Jetson buys his cars.
Carvana, an e-commerce platform for buying and selling used cars, has brought its unique "Car Vending Machine" concept to Louisville. Located at Lake Shore Court just off Linn Station Road, the structure stands eight stories tall and has a 27-vehicle capacity. This is how it works:
Users can browse more than 15,000 cars on the company's website and secure financing, sign contracts, and arrange trade-ins. They can then elect to either have their car delivered to their home or pick it up at the vending machine at no charge.
If they choose to pick it up, they need to make an appointment. Only one customer will be inside the facility at a time. They'll be greeted by a customer advocate and given an oversized Carvana coin to activate the automated vending process.
“Car buyers can then get an immersive, central view of their vehicle descending through the structure from the heart of the all-glass tower,” the company stated in a news release.
Carvana’s newest Car Vending Machine is the first of its kind in the state of Kentucky, and the 25th in the US.
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PAYING IT FORWARD
Slingshot builds custom app for Louisville nonprofit
In 2018, Louisville tech innovation company Slingshot started a charitable program called Launch, with a plan to develop a custom mobile app to help a local nonprofits “drive their mission.” After reaching out to the community for nominations, it selected New Roots, which provides organic produce to underinvested, food-insecure neighborhoods in Kentuckiana.
Slingshot worked with the future end users—“shareholders” who buy shares of food at biweekly Fresh Stop Markets—to find out what features they needed in the app, soliciting feedback throughout the development process.
It's expected to launch soon and will greatly simplify the process of signing up, ordering food shares, paying via credit card, ACH, and SNAP, and making donations to New Roots. It will also provide order reminders and alert users that a market is coming up.
KNOW YOUR CITY
Have you checked your "Louis-Q" recently?
This week we turn our trivia to The Kentucky Derby.
What horse won the very first Kentucky Derby?
Bubbling Over was the first horse to be retired immediately following a win in the Kentucky Derby. Who was the second?
What was the biggest upset in Kentucky Derby history?