Press Release

SHOT awarded $1.8 million grant to develop space program spin-off products

By SpaceRef Editor
October 2, 2001
Filed under , ,

Support from Indiana’s 21st Century Research and Technology Fund will
spur transfer of company’s space innovations to Earth-based laboratories.

GREENVILLE, Ind. — Space Hardware Optimization
Technology, Inc. (SHOT), has received a $1.8 million grant from Indiana’s
21st Century Research and Technology Fund to spur development of a line of
scientific research instruments for Earth-based laboratories using
technologies it developed for NASA.

“Earning this award is a significant step forward in the effort to diversify
SHOT’s revenue stream and expand its technology base to the private sector,”
said company President and CEO Mark S. Deuser. “Much work to this end has,
in fact, already been underway for some time. Much more now can begin in
earnest.”

Deuser says that SHOT has created a new corporate division dedicated to
finding terrestrial uses for the catalog of innovations it has developed in
more than a dozen years as a NASA contractor. The new division, known as
SHOT Scientific, will focus first on bringing three new products to the
commercial biotechnology and biochemical research markets.

The first product, a magnetically-assisted separator appropriately being
called MAGSEP, uses magnetic fields to sort cells, proteins, or other
particles. Like each of SHOT Scientific’s other separations devices, MAGSEP
uses multistage processes that produce more-highly-refined end products than
do current industry-standard single stage instruments.

Second is a multi-stage electrophoretic separator: ELECSEP. SHOT Scientific
has devised a purification method that combines free electrophoresis and
multistage extraction in an instrument capable of separating living cells,
particles and proteins in useful quantities and at high concentrations.

Lastly the company will market a multi-stage aqueous biphasic extraction
system under the name: BISEP. BISEP is a 22-stage apparatus that performs
repeated extractions for the refinement of chemicals and organic materials,
including cells and cell particles.

Deuser says MAGSEP, ELECSEP and BISEP naturally have inherited the most
desirable attributes of their spacefaring parents. “Because it costs
approximately $10,000 per pound to put a payload into orbit aboard the space
shuttle, we have by necessity developed scientific research hardware that is
miniature, lightweight, automated and extremely reliable. If an apparatus
malfunctions on orbit, it could take years to get another chance to launch
and repeat the experiment.”

Improved techniques for separating living cells and proteins are
increasingly important to biotechnology because separation is frequently the
limiting factor for harnessing many biological processes and products —
including receptor antagonists and transplantable cells. Among the fields
of study likely to benefit by the entry of MAGSEP, ELECSEP and BISEP are
diabetes research, immunology, pharmacology, endocrinology, gene therapy,
stem cell therapy, functional genomics and cancer diagnostics and treatment.

Researchers from Purdue University and Bangs Laboratories have been
contracted to help with the development of these new products for known and
novel applications. In West Lafayette, Ind., the Purdue department of food
science and nutrition and the university’s school of electrical and computer
engineering have been enlisted. Bangs Laboratories of Fishers, Ind., will
serve as a test site and will partner in the development of the devices’
market potential through customers already using Bangs products. Science
evaluation of prototypes of the MAGSEP cell sorter could begin by the end of
this year.

For more information about SHOT Scientific contact Nathan Thomas at
812-923-9591, or via e-mail at [email protected]
Or visit SHOT Scientific on the World Wide Web at
http://www.shotscientific.com .

As a NASA contractor, SHOT has designed, built, verified and integrated
hardware for three sub-orbital rocket flights and six space shuttle missions
and it is currently developing key payloads for the International Space
Station. Its Avian Development Facility will launch aboard the middeck of
space shuttle Endeavour in November 2001.

SpaceRef staff editor.