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2013 Innovation Showcase Award winners

The sixth annual McMaster Innovation Showcase featured the presentation of thirteen awards, recognizing everything from the potential of budding entrepreneurs and their commercial prospects, to a lifetime innovation award.
2013 Innovation Showcase Award winners

Synergy Award winners from the McMaster Community Poverty Initiative


Below are the nominees for the six award categories and the winners from each. 

The Lifetime Innovator award was given to Dr. Salim Yusuf, professor of medicine, who was recently elected as the new president of the World Heart Federation, a leading NGO partner to the World Health Organization in cardiovascular disease prevention. Dr. Yusuf currently leads the Population Health Research Institute, which has established an international program of research in heart disease and prevention, involving some 85 countries.

He has published more than 600 articles, and is among the top 1% of cited medical scientists, with several articles deemed to be citation classics. He has led clinical trials that have resulted in better health outcomes for Canadians and has been funded for clinical research by some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical and health care companies. Dr. Yusuf has been described as "the most prominent, impactful Canadian researcher".  Frank Graham (University Professor, pathology & molecular medicine) and John Bandler (Professor Emeritus, electrical & computer engineering) were also nominated for the Lifetime Innovator award.

Nathan Magarvey

Innovator of the Year - Nathan Magarvey

(Fellow nominees Abigail Payne, economics; Xiaolin Wu, computing & electrical engineering)

Among Nathan Magarvey's accomplishments this year was being named the Canada Research Chair in Natural Product Drug Discovery.  The chair will allow him to use a number of integrated tools and technologies – from genomics to small molecules – to target drugs from nature.  A member of the Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research, Nathan had two high impact publications in significant journals that were related to technologies disclosed to MILO, and patent applications have since been filed on both technologies.

McMaster Synergy Awards

The first ever Synergy awards were established with the support and counsel from the Associate Deans of Research. The creation of the new Synergy Awards highlights research achievement beyond industry partnerships, and is intended to recognize interdisciplinary research excellence. There were seven nominees: John Connolly, linguistics & languages; David Earn, mathematics; Allison Williams, Geography;Laurel Trainor, Psychology; the McMaster Community Poverty Initiative; Bob Pelton, chemical engineering; Qiyin Fang, engineering physics. The three winners are described below:

 Synergy Award Winners 2013

John Connolly, professor and chair of the department of linguistics and language and the Senator William McMaster Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience of Language was honoured for his fascinating research in brain injury, the vegetative state, locked in syndrome and coma undertaken in his Language Memory & Brain Lab, and for his collaborations with colleagues in science, health science and engineering. John Connolly
David Earn, professor of mathematics, is an expert in mathematical biology -- a field which suggests more than one discipline and – if you’re David – means that you pursue projects and collaborations with researchers from multiple disciplines, including clinical epidemiology and biostatistics, pathology and molecular medicine, anthropology and economics, to name just a few.  Professor Earn has said that “the genuine spirit of enthusiastic interdisciplinary collaboration at McMaster is outstanding”. Researchers like Prof. Earn  serve as a catalyst --sparking the ideas and solutions that are a hallmark of the Synergy Awards. David Earn
The McMaster Community Poverty Initiative was formed in 2007 by a diverse group of individuals interested in expanding McMaster’s role in addressing local conditions of poverty. Co-Chaired by Sheila Sammon from Social Work and Carol Wood, one of McMaster’s chaplains, with Jeff Wingard serving as its Coordinator, the Poverty Initiative has membership from Faculties across campus, community members and students, whose interconnecting activities include research, education and advocacy, to inform and advocate for the systemic changes needed to eliminate poverty. MCPI

Innovators of Distinction

The McMaster patent awards recognize those who, having achieved notable success in research, further worked to bring the benefits of discovery and invention to our society, resulting in the issuance of a patent. Last year McMaster University was awarded four patents. The inventors of the technologies that formed the basis for these patents will each receive an Innovator of Distinction certificate.

  • Methods and Compounds for Controlling the Morphology and Shrinkage of Silica derived from Polyol-modified Silanes; Inventors: Michael A. Brook, John D. Brennan, Zheng Zhang, Yang Chen;
  • Operating Environment Analysis Techniques for Wireless Communication Systems; Inventor: Simon Haykin
  • Optical modulators Employing Charge State Control of Deep Levels

    Inventors: Paul Jessop, Andrew P. Knights, Gregory L. Wojcik, Andreas Goebel, Dylan F. Logan

  • Catecholamine regulated protein; Inventors: Joseph Gabriele, Ram Mishra,  Zdenek Pristupa 

Industry Award - Bombardier Inc.

The Industry Award, recognizes a company who has demonstrated a commitment to collaborating with academic researchers and, by so doing, made a significant contribution to developing the University’s research mandate. This year’s nominations included Luminex Corporation, Syncrude and  Bombardier Inc.  – each of whom shares a strong R&D connection with McMaster researchers.  This year's winner was Bombardier Inc., a world leader in the design and manufacture of innovative aviation and rail equipment and has manufacturing, engineering and services facilities in 25 countries. They are mobilizing the future in more than 60 different countries; McMaster is extremely proud of its long time collaboration with Bombardier, and their support of our University’s research, funding multiple projects. One notable project was supported by the Ontario Centres of Excellence, which helped the McMaster RFID Application Laboratory – or MRAL – and Bombardier Transportation develop a method to protect transit track workers, a product called TrackSafe.

Poster Competition

 There were 38 posters submitted for this year's competition, with winners chosen in three categories:

Popular vote and the poster with the Best Commercial Prospects:

NEOTRACE: Neonatal Movement Monitoring System

Authors: Aditi Chemparathy, Akalvizhy Elanko, and Anuja Goyal Poster winners

Greatest Social Impact:

An Affordable Front-line Tool: Preventing the Devastating Impact of Tuberculosis

Authors: Rachel Gysbers, Kha Tram and Lida Wang Poster winners

Most Ground breaking Research

Intranasally Administered Lectin Functionalized PEG-PLGA Nanoparticles for the Treatment of Schizophrenia

Authors: Justin Piazza, Todd Hoare PhD, and Ram K Mishra PhD Poster winners