What The University of Wisconsin Is Actually Doing:

As Madison continues to debate cuts to the University of Wisconsin system as part of the state budget, there have been a couple of news items coming out of the university. One that is pretty important on the world health stage and one that is actually helping Governor Walker ‘create’ jobs.

Health: Group led by UW scientist develops whole virus Ebola vaccine

Another vaccine has joined the race against the often fatal Ebola virus, and this one was developed by a group led by a University of Wisconsin-Madison scientist internationally known for his bird flu research.

The whole virus vaccine that Yoshihiro Kawaoka and his colleagues developed was constructed using a novel experimental platform, and it has been shown to effectively protect monkeys exposed to the Ebola virus at a top biosafety-level National Institutes of Health laboratory in Montana, according to an article published Thursday in the prominent journal Science.

This vaccine differs from other Ebola vaccines in development because, as an inactivated whole virus vaccine, it can prime the host immune system with the complete range of Ebola viral proteins and genes, which makes it more likely to trigger a robust immune response, according to a news release from UW-Madison.

Jobs: UW alums’ technology firm SnowShoe makes tracks to angel investors

The company creates pieces of plastic that can unlock digital content when touched to the screen of a smartphone or tablet, acting like a series of human fingertip touches that tell the phone what to do.

The devices, called SnowShoe Stamps, are created by 3-D printers at the company’s Madison facilities and have a wide range of uses.

“It’s the link to real-world objects and digital assets,” Moberg said.

The stamp costs about $1 to make, although the company is working to cut that down to about 50 cents. The young company has grown to eight full-time employees and a handful of contractors.

Yeah, so let’s cut state support of our world class university…makes all the sense in the world (sarcasm)!


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