News

NSF Grant to Fund Cross Country Collaborations for UH Researchers

By: 

Erin D. McKenzie
Sharma
Sharma
Krishnamoorti
Krishnamoorti

Tunisia, on the Mediterranean coast of North Africa and its close neighbor, Egypt, will each become regular stamps in the passports of two engineering faculty members during the next three years.

A nearly $60,000 grant received in early August from the National Science Foundation will afford both Pradeep Sharma, Bill D. Cook associate professor of mechanical engineering and physics, and Ramanan Krishnamoorti, M.D. Anderson Professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, yearly trips to Ecole Polytechnic of Tunisia and Egypt’s Bani Suef University.

The federal funding is intended to support travel primarily to these two universities and possibly other institutions for these professors and their graduate students. Two professors from Rice and Texas A&M universities are also partnering in the endeavor.

“The grant will be used to help establish research and education collaborations with the countries of Egypt and Tunisia,” Sharma said, noting the trips are intended not only to strengthen ties with high-quality institutions abroad, but help to increase research activity at UH.

“One of the benefits, once we determine our research collaborations, is we will be able to share our research tasks, thus, increasing our productivity,” Sharma said. “Another one of the auxiliary, but important benefits of this program is an increased inflow of high quality graduate students to the college of engineering.”

The first trip, Sharma said, is expected to take place in December. Sharma, who will travel with two graduate students, is planning to give a lecture at Ecole Polytechnic as well as begin making arrangements for future research collaborations with the institution.

Trips lasting no longer than one week are expected to take place once a year for the duration of the grant.

Faculty: 

Department/Academic Programs: 

Related News Stories

University of Houston Partners with AuraVax Therapeutics on COVID-19 Vaccine

Navin Varadarajan, M.D. Anderson Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, has created a nasal vaccine for COVID-19 and a company to market it in partnership with the University of Houston.

The University of Houston has entered into an exclusive license option agreement with AuraVax Therapeutics Inc., a Houston, TX based biotech company developing novel vaccines to help patients defeat debilitating respiratory diseases such as COVID-19. Under terms of the agreement, AuraVax has the option to exclusively license a new intranasal COVID-19 vaccine technology developed by Dr. Navin Varadarajan, M.D. Anderson Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.

Faster swimming bacteria could help with spills

Narendra Dewangan, a graduate student of Dr. Jacinta Conrad, has completed work with the Conrad Research Group on how faster swimming bacteria could be used to help with removal of pollutants.

A new paper and research from the Conrad Research Group of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Houston’s Cullen College of Engineering looks at how bacteria could be used to help with removal of pollutants, like in oil spills and wastewater treatment.

Rapid tests for COVID-19 now, other diseases later the goal for Kourentzi

Dr. Katerina Kourentzi, Research Associate Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, is developing a saliva-based lateral flow assay rapid test for COVID-19 detection. The test strips for the assay are designed using the Biodot XYZ3060 Dispensing Platform.

The development of point-of-care tests – and as of late, for COVID-19 – has been the primary focus of Dr. Katerina Kourentzi, Research Associate Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering in the William A. Brookshire Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Houston's Cullen College of Engineering.