Morgan Awarded $1.2 Million in Federal Science, Tech Grants

(Photos Courtesy of Morgan State University)

Morgan State University Obtains $1.2 Million in Federal Science, Technology Grants

NSF and NIH Funding Boosts Morgan’s School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences

BALTIMORE — Morgan State University’s (MSU’s) School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences (SCMNS) has announced the receipt of four federal grants totaling more than $1.2 million, awarded in the spring and summer of 2020. The funds are supporting important research in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields ranging from pharmatechnology to advanced computing to meteorology to computer science instruction. Collectively, the grants indicate steady progress toward Morgan’s goal of attaining an R1 (“very high research”) designation from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. MSU was elevated to an R2 (“high research”) Carnegie classification in December 2018.

“Receiving four grants by four different faculty members testifies to the quality of the faculty and their devotion to the research and education mission of the University,” said Hongtao Yu, Ph.D., dean of Morgan’s SCMNS. “All four faculty members are relatively new to the University, and I am so proud to see them having a great start at Morgan.”

(Photos Courtesy of Morgan State University)

Synopses of the recently funded grant projects follow:

Alexander Samokhvalov, Ph.D., assistant professor of Chemistry at MSU, has been awarded a $326,128, three-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study complexes that slowly release the widely used anti-cancer drug gemcitabine. His research project, “Encapsulation and Delayed Release of Gemcitabine by Aluminum Metal-Organic Frameworks,” is studying aluminum metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) for use as a matrix for drug encapsulation and delayed release. The use of aluminum MOFs in implants offers a promising alternative to traditional chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer, potentially resulting in fewer side effects and greater effectiveness.

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McAfee Sets Terms of IPO, Hoping to Raise Up to $682 Million

McAfee, the cybersecurity company founded by tech eccentric John McAfee, has set the terms for its initial public offering, hoping to raise as much as $682 million in a deal that could value the company at $3.64 billion.

McAfee, based in San Jose, plans to sell 37 million shares at a price of $19 to $22 each. The stock will trade on Nasdaq, with the ticker symbol MCFE, the company said in an SEC filing.

Of the 37 million shares, 30,982,558 will come from the company and 6,017,442 from existing stockholders. McAfee expects to have 165.44 million Class A shares outstanding after the IPO.

In the six months through June 27, McAfee posted profit of $31 million, swinging from a loss of $146 million in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose 9% to $1.4 billion from $1.29 billion.

John McAfee founded McAfee Associates in 1987 and ran it until 1994, when he left the company.

McAfee’s anti-virus software was a market leader along with Norton in the 1990s and 2000s. It sold itself to Intel INTC for $7.7 billion in 2011.

In 2016, Intel sold a 51% stake to the San Francisco private-equity firm TPG for $1.1 billion. In its IPO prospectus, McAfee cites TPG and Chicago PE firm Thoma Bravo as investors.

After leaving McAfee Associates, John McAfee founded a raft of companies, including Tribal Voice, which offers the PowWow chat program; QuorumEx and Future Tense Central. 

In 2016 he sought the Libertarian Party nomination for president, losing to former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson. He gave it another shot this year, to no avail.

McAfee was arrested last week in Spain and is facing extradition to the U.S. on tax evasion charges. In a statement announcing the charges, the Department of Justice noted “The indictment does not allege that

Alion Awarded $73 Million Task Order to Provide Joint Training Synthetic Environment Research and Development

WASHINGTON, Oct. 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The U.S. Navy has awarded Alion Science and Technology a $73 million task order with a 60-month period of performance to provide Joint Training Synthetic Environment (JTSE) Research and Development (R&D) for Joint Staff J7, Deputy Director Joint Training (JS J7 DDJT) Environment Architecture Division (EAD). Alion was awarded this contract under the Department of Defense Information Analysis Center’s (DoD IAC) multiple-award contract (MAC) vehicle. These DoD IAC MAC task orders (TOs) are awarded by the U.S. Air Force’s 774th Enterprise Sourcing Squadron to develop and create new knowledge for the enhancement of the DTIC repository and the R&D and S&T community.

(PRNewsfoto/Alion Science and Technology Co)

“We are dedicated to our continued customer partnership to develop joint virtual environments to prepare for Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2),” said Katie Selbe, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Alion’s Cyber Network Solutions Group. “Alion has a deep understanding of the JTSE program and its requirements. Our team has been at the forefront of developing Joint Synthetic Training Environments for over 20 years and provides a seamless transition for on-going capability development.”

The JTSE is one of the critical enablers that supports the delivery of trained, capable, and interoperable Joint Forces. The scope of this effort includes providing a full range of application design, development, and integration efforts to modernize the technical architecture supporting joint forces training exercises. The architecture must enable the use of current technologies to assist with information management as well as an evolutionary transition from the Joint, Live, Virtual and Constructive (JLVC) Federation to a data-centric, web-based single digital environment that supports collaborative exercise planning and execution.

ABOUT DOD IAC PROGRAM

The DoD IAC program operates as a part of Defense Technical Information Center and provides technical data management and research

Kummers Give $300 Million to Expand Missouri U. of Science and Technology Programs (Gifts Roundup)

A roundup of notable gifts compiled by the Chronicle:

Knight Foundation

Nike co-founder Phil Knight gave $900.7 million to his and wife Penelope’s foundation. The couple primarily support scientific and medical research at the University of Oregon, Oregon Health and Science University, and other large institutions. They have also given extensively to Stanford University, where Phil Knight earned an MBA in 1962.

University of Oregon

Phil Knight gave $300 million for ongoing support for many of the university’s programs to which he has donated in recent years. With this latest gift, he and his wife, Penelope, have donated at least $1.1 billion to the university since 2007, with much of it directed to scientific research and related programs.

Phil Knight earned a journalism degree from the university in 1959 and went on to co-found Nike, the sports-apparel company.

Kummer Institute Foundation

Fred and June Kummer gave $300 million to establish this foundation that will, in turn, support new programs at the Missouri University of Science and Technology. One of the primary programs is set up an independent research institute that will house research centers on infrastructure, advanced manufacturing, artificial intelligence and autonomous systems, and environmental and resource sustainability.

Through the new foundation, the Kummers will also launch the Kummer School of Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development. The foundation will back a variety of other programs, including scholarships and fellowships for undergraduate and graduate students, expansion of the university’s online degree programs, new research faculty positions, new construction and renovation projects, and more.

In 1960, Fred Kummer founded the company that would become HBE Corporation, a St. Louis construction company that primarily builds and renovates hospitals. His early work included some buildings on the S&T campus, including the Gale Bullman Building and Curtis Laws Wilson Library. He attended the university in

Vivos Therapeutics Seeks $20 Million IPO

Vivos Therapeutics (VVOS) intends to raise $20 million in an IPO of its common stock, according to an S-1 registration statement.

Highlands Ranch, Colorado-based Vivos was founded to develop customized oral devices designed to help people who suffer from mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea [OSA].

Management is headed by co-founder, Chairman and CEO R. Kirk Huntsman, who was previously founder of Dental One Partners, a large dental service organization.

Below is a brief overview video of Vivos Therapeutics:

The company’s primary offering is the Vivos System, composed of a nighttime appliance and a daytime/nighttime appliance.

Vivos has received at least $21 million from investors.

The firm sells its systems to dental practitioners via a direct sales force that targets prospects in the U.S. and Canada.

In the future, and with some of the proceeds from the IPO, the firm intends to develop strategic partnerships, connect with key opinion leaders, attend trade shows and use digital advertising platforms to introduce practitioners to the system.

Sales and Marketing expenses as a percentage of total revenue have dropped as revenues have increased.

The Sales and Marketing efficiency rate, defined as how many dollars of additional new revenue are generated by each dollar of Sales and Marketing spend, dropped 1.4x in the most recent reporting period.

According to a 2019 market research report, the global market for sleep apnea devices is expected to reach a value of $12.6 billion by 2025.

This represents a forecast CAGR of 6.8% from 2019 to 2025.

The main drivers for this expected growth are an increasing prevalence of sleep disordered breathing, growing awareness of the condition and a higher treatment rate in regions such as North America.

Also, therapeutic devices accounted for 65% of the market in 2018 and are expected to grow at a CAGR of