The Georgia Research Alliance (GRA) has disclosed the university-industry projects that will receive awards through its $2.3 million Innovation Fund.

New this year, the program is designed to foster long-term partnerships between companies throughout Georgia and the state’s research universities. Each project is expected to lead to the development of new technologies for growing the state’s economy.

“I have made a commitment through the Georgia Works economic development program to invest in Georgia, create jobs and build a strong 21st century economy for our state,” Gov. Sonny Perdue said. “We will accomplish this by helping existing industries grow, encouraging entrepreneurship and by investing in the jobs of the future. The projects that the Innovation Fund supports will play an important part in this process.”

The $2.3 million in awards from the GRA will be matched with $3.4 million from the 35 participating companies, for an award total of $5.7 million to researchers at four of the GRA participating universities.

Projects focus on a wide array of technologies in advanced communications and the biosciences, including new broadband telecommunications devices, manufacturing HIV vaccines, treatments for Parkinson’s disease, very fast and accurate speech analysis software and new forms of pest management in agriculture.

“Increasing and strengthening collaborations between Georgia’s businesses and our research universities is a critical goal of the Georgia Research Alliance,” said GRA President Michael Cassidy. “The Innovation Fund gives us new incentives for achieving this. It is exciting to see companies that have never before tapped into the research strengths of our schools begin to take advantage of this incredible asset.”

Both emerging and well-established companies are program partners. They include BresaGen of Athens, GeoVax in Atlanta, the Georgia Poultry Improvement Association in Gainesville, Athens-based InsectiGen and the Mobile Multimedia Consortium, in which three Atlanta-based firms (Air2Web, ExecuTrain, Xcellenet) and HP have partnered with researchers at the University of Georgia in Athens.

Other projects funded by GRA include those involving C.R. Bard of Covington and Atlanta-based Zygogen, who are working with Georgia State University, and Atlanta firms Sector Medical and geneRx+ with Emory University.

Teamed with researchers at Georgia Tech are Acuity Brands/Zep in Atlanta, Altea Therapeutics of Tucker, Atlanta-based BellSouth, Caterpillar of Griffin, Charmed Technologies in Atlanta, CytoDome of Atlanta, Rome-based Hydro Dynamics, King and Prince Seafood in Brunswick, Atlanta-based MetGen, Nexidia of Atlanta, TIMCO Aviation Service in Macon and the 12 Georgia companies that are part of the Georgia Electronic Design Center.

GRA: www.gra.org