UArizona Launches Patent Coin Recognition Program

Oct. 5, 2021

First coins presented to inventors at Colleges of Pharmacy and Science

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Patent coins presented to College of Science inventors on September 30, 2021.
Photo credit: Paul Tumarkin/Tech Launch Arizona Patent coins presented to College of Science inventors on September 30, 2021.

Tech Launch Arizona has kicked off a new UArizona program to recognize inventors who are named on issued patents. At two events – a September 24 meeting of the faculty of the College of Pharmacy and a September 30 meeting of the faculty of the College of Science – the first ever UArizona patent coins were given to 14 inventors.

TLA, the UArizona office that commercializes inventions stemming from university research and innovation, launched the program just this past fiscal year, and will be participating in college-focused events to distribute the coins to inventors.

“The goal is to recognize the contributions of each inventor,” said TLA Assistant Vice President Doug Hockstad, “as well as elevate the visibility of patents and the impact of commercialization throughout our campus community.”

Each coin bears the UArizona logo, along with the Tech Launch Arizona and Research, Innovation and Impact names, and the inventor’s name, patent name and patent number.

In the first distribution of coins at the College of Pharmacy, Katie Kuhns, TLA Licensing Manager for UArizona Health Sciences, and Dean Rick Schnellmann, presented coins to three recipients:

  • Bernard Futscher, Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Patent #10,870,851, ncRNAs Linked to Immortality
  • Christopher Hulme, Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Patent #10,730,842, Small Molecule Inhibitors Of DYRK1A
  • Yeng-Jeng Shaw, Researcher in Pharmacology and Toxicology, Patent #10,730,842, Small Molecule Inhibitors Of DYRK1A

At the second event for the College of Science, TLA Director of Licensing Rakhi Gibbons presented coins to inventors, some of whom had their names on multiple patents:

“Having a patent issued with your name on it is a huge accomplishment,” said Gibbons. “It’s a years-long process and highlights an inventor’s dedication and innovative work.”

TLA provides a variety of services to help secure patents and commercialize UArizona inventions, from performing market and patent landscape research to services to protect intellectual property. Beyond that, they also market UArizona technologies to help match inventions with licensees who can take them out into the world, offer funding to help advance early-stage inventions, and provide a variety of services to support inventors who want to launch startups.

Keep an eye out for more events throughout the fall when TLA will be presenting coins to UArizona inventors. In all, 126 university innovators were listed as inventors on the 100 patents issued to the university in FY2021. Each of those inventors will be receiving a coin in the coming months.