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Interdisciplinary Collaboration Grants Program

The Division of Research established the Interdisciplinary Collaboration Grants (ICG) Program to provide funds to facilitate the development of collaborations at Binghamton University. This program is for investigators who seek to enhance their research opportunities through collaboration and may include projects that represent a new research agenda. Proposals from all areas of scholarship are encouraged.

Two projects received funding in the program's 2016-2017 round of awards:

"Optimization of Dye Nanoparticle Composites for Infrared Photodynamic Therapy Applications"

Principal Investigators and Departments: 

Amber Doiron (Biomedical Engineering) and
Wayne Jones (Chemistry)

Photodynamic therapy is a powerful treatment for cancer that relies on the co-localization of a photosensitizer and visible light at a disease site to kill targeted cells. However, this therapy is limited by the poor penetration depth of visible light into tissue, so it can only be used in a small number of cancers that are easily accessible. Our approach overcomes this limitation by using a photosensitizer that is sensitive to infrared light, which is capable of penetrating to deeper tissues. In the long-term, we seek to develop a novel, non-invasive disease treatment platform that allows for removal of diseased tissue based on infrared photosensitizers. Our previous work showed that the photosensitizer particles are moderately toxic towards cells, so our proposed studies include adding a biocompatible surface coating to the particles. Additionally, we will adapt the particles so that they actively target cancer cells and expose them to infrared light to evaluate their killing capacity. The project is a collaboration with ChromaNanoTech LLC, which will provide nanoparticles and associated formulation consultation. Our established record includes both the synthesis of infrared photosensitizer nanoparticles and the development and characterization of biocompatible nanoparticle therapies.


"Integrated Sustainable Power System Operation & Planning with Real-Time Population Estimates"

Principal Investigators and Departments:

Chengbin Deng (Geography);  Ganggang Xu (Mathematical Sciences) and
Xiang Zhang (Electrical & Computer Engineering

This project aims at integrating inter-discipline and cross-departmental expertise to develop a next generation real-time dynamic population estimation network and to apply such a network to designing smart and sustainable power system operation and planning platforms. By incorporating big geospatial data from multiple sources, including census, GIS and remote sensing data, and real-time human activity data, our goal is to build a new hybrid model for optimal electric power planning and operations with real-time population estimates in a large metropolitan area. This level of spatial and temporal detail can not only save the capital investment on transmission system upgrades but also significantly improve the situation awareness of power system operators. The real-time population estimates derived from big data fusion are also essential in many other applications, including emergency management and risk analysis (e.g., earthquake, hurricane, flooding, wildfire, and terrorist attack).

Last Updated: 10/23/17