by Richard J. Alley
Today we celebrated the 2016 Innovation Awards winners from Inside Memphis Business with a breakfast held at the Holiday Inn-University of Memphis. Partnering with the university’s Fogelman College of Business & Economics, the awards presentation this year was sponsored by Waddell & Associates LLC. Our emcee for the event was Anne Pitts, executive director of the Levitt Shell, a winner of the 2015 Innovation Awards.
This year’s winners are BRIDGES, SweetBio, Dr. Guy Reed with the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and Code Crew.
Nobody likes to be in the chair when it’s time for oral surgery, but the team at SweetBio is working to make that situation just a little bit sweeter. They have created a membrane made of medical grade manuka honey and proteins used to fill in the gaps after oral surgery. This membrane allows the bones to regrow and the gums to regenerate while preventing infection. Dr. Isaac Rodriguez began development of the idea at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2013 after an oral surgeon came to him needing a solution to the problem of nearly 50 percent of adults aged 30 or older — about 65 million people — having signs of gum disease. Later, the effort moved to the University of Memphis and Memphis Bioworks Foundation’s ZeroTo510 medical device accelerator program, allowing the fast track to market.