PInCh 2015: Healthy lives matter beginning to end

Innovative solutions to improve health with a focus on connections that bridge the lifespan.

The third Pitt Innovation Challenge focused on ideas for how to enhance health by bridging factors that impact different life stages. Innovative solutions included interventions, provider or patient tools, community programs, and other approaches that linked two life stages (including predictive solutions, preventative ideas, and diagnostics across the lifespan and multiple generations).

$100,000 Award Winners


Team MembersFred Kimock, PhD, Michael Balsan, MD, Jeanne Burns, BSN, RNC-NIC, Emily Hirsch, MSN, NHA, RNC-NIC

Description: A hearing protection device for babies in neonatal intensive care units that blocks noxious noise, and promises to reduce infant stress, improve sleep, and promote brain development.


Team Members: Noah Snyder, PhD Student, Andrew Glowacki, PhD Student, James Eles, PhD Student, Kasey Catt, PhD Student,  Zhanhong Du, PhD Student

Description: A team of bioengineering and chemical engineering graduate students from the University of Pittsburgh that developed a coating to solve the problem of dental implant inflammation


Team Members: Yadong Wang, PhD, Prabir Roy-Chaudhury, MD/PhD, Daniel Long, Eric Jeffries, PhD, Piyusha Gade, Chelsea Stowell 

Description: Our bio-inductive vascular graft combines the wide applicability of an off-the-shelf prosthetic graft with the in vivo performance of an arteriovenous fistula.

$25,000 Poster Session Award Winners

Feet for Life

Team Members: Jeffrey Gusenoff, MD, Beth Gusenoff, DPM, Kacey Marra, PHD 

Description: This project uses your own fat to cushion painful feet so you can walk for a lifetime with less pain and suffering.


Team Members: Richard Debski, PhD, Volker Musahl, MD

Description: This technology quantifies the pivot shift test that evaluates knee ligamentous injuries. The pivot shift test is associated with future development of osteoarthritis in these patients.

Working Together for Kids: A Community Solution

Team Members: Judy Cameron, PhD, Jeanette Trauth, PhD, Neal Ryan, MD, Tom Akiva, PhD, Martica Hall, PhD, Meryl Butters, PhD

Description: A community training to teach senior citizens, adults and teens how to provide young children in underserved communities with critical skills for school success, and to assess health benefits to all involved.



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