Two University of Cincinnati (UC) faculty members have been
named Charter Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI).
Sandra Degen, PhD, associate chair for academic affairs in
the College of Medicineís pediatrics department and interim chair of the
molecular genetics, biochemistry and microbiology department, and Dharma Agrawal,
DSc, Ohio Board of Regents (OBR) Distinguished Professor of Computing Sciences
and Informatics in the College of Engineering and Applied Science, were awarded
the distinction in an announcement today (Tuesday, Dec. 18) from NAI.
Degen and Agrawal are among 98 innovators elected to NAI
Fellow status, representing 54 universities and nonprofit research institutes. They
were nominated by their peers for outstanding contributions to innovation in
areas such as patents and licensing, innovative discovery and technology,
significant impact on society and support and enhancement of innovation. Selection
was by a 14-member committee comprising distinguished inventors, researchers
The charter class includes eight Nobel Laureates, two
fellows of the Royal Society, 12 presidents of research universities and
nonprofit research institutes and 29 American Association for the Advancement
of Science (AAAS) Fellows, including Degen and Agrawal.
Degen, who was instrumental in the formation of UCís NAI
chapter, served as vice president for research for UC from September 2004 to
June 2011 before stepping down to return to the faculty. Her scientific
interests include the biological function of the blood coagulation agent
prothrombin, as well as a protein identified in her lab that is involved in
growth control. She holds three patents for her discoveries.
Agrawal has been an OBR Distinguished Professor at UC since
August 1998. His research interests include resource allocation and security in
wireless mesh and sensor networks, heterogeneous wireless networks and use of
sensor networks in biomedical applications. He holds six patents, with an
additional 24 invention disclosures.
The National Academy of Inventors is a nonprofit
organization that was founded in 2010 to recognize investigators at
universities and nonprofit research institutes who translate their research
findings into inventions that may benefit society. It was founded at the
University of South Florida, with UC as one of five charter members.
The NAI Charter Fellows will be inducted by the U.S.
commissioner for patents, Margaret Focarino, during the second annual Conference
of the National Academy of Inventors Feb. 22, 2013, at the University of South
Florida Research Park in Tampa. Fellows will be presented with a special trophy
and rosette pin.