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22 November 2017

NGFI balances additional licence

Medical University of Graz spinout NGFI has licensed additional research conducted by its scientific founders that enables the determination of potassium levels in the human body.

Author: Thierry Heles, editor

Next Generation Fluorescence Imaging (NGFI), an Austria-based biotech services and products provider spun out of Medical University of Graz, yesterday licensed additional research from the institution.

The licence relates to DNA-coded sensors that are able to precisely determine potassium levels inside of cells and outside of them, such as in blood.

Well-balanced potassium levels are essential to a healthy human body and an imbalance can be indicative of underlying problems. An imbalance can be the cause for malfunctioning kidneys causing heart problems, epilepsy, cancer or neurodegenerative diseases.

Graz has filed a patent application for the technology, which was created by researchers at the university’s Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry. Helmut Bischof, a doctoral candidate in the research group of Roland Malli and Wolfgang Graier, developed the approach.

The three researchers collaborated with Alexander Rosenkranz and his team at the Division of Nephrology to validate the technology, before a collaboration with Nikolais Plesnila, professor at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich’s Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research, tested the approach in animal models.

Founded in 2016, NGFI provides a range of services and products to the life sciences community, with tools including genetically encoded fluorescent probes and affordable research reagents. The potassium sensors are expected to be offered in the near future.

The spinout was co-founded by Wolfgang Graier, Roland Malli, Emrah Eroglu and Markus Waldeck-Weiermair.

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