NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Radiation Health
PROPOSAL TITLE:Cell/Tissue Culture Radiation Exposure Facility

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Payload Systems, Inc.
247 Third Street
Cambridge, MA 02142-1129
(617) 868-8086

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Liping   Sun
247 Third Street
Cambridge, MA  02142-1129
(617) 868-8086

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
We propose the development of automated systems to improve radiobiology research capabilities at NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL). Current radiobiology experimentation at the NSRL is limited primarily by the amount of time required to manually move samples to/from the radiation target area. Additionally, the NSRL facility currently does not support processing of samples during or directly after radiation exposure, or long duration radiobiology studies. Our proposed automated system will address the above issues as follows. First, an automated sample movement system will be developed to reduce the overhead time of the current manual system of moving samples to/from the radiation target area. Second, an Online Assay System will be designed to provide immediate sample analysis, such as sample fixation and freezing, to allow a better understanding of the radiation effects on the samples. Third, the Single Loop for Cell Culture (SLCC, developed by Payload Systems Inc. for NASA) system design will be modified to support long duration radiobiology research. In addition, the system will also support animal experiments.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed CTC-REF will significantly improve the efficiency and throughput of radiobiology studies at NSRL with a fully automated biological sample handling system, including automated sample movement between different batch radiation exposures, on-line sample fixation, etc. The CTC-REF will support both short and long duration radiation exposure studies. A variety of cell/tissue cultures, including mammalian, plant, microbial cells, and tissues, both in suspension and attachment culture modes, and rodent experiments will be supported in CTC-REF, making CTC-REF a flexible tool for NASA radiobiology research at NSRL to increase its efficiency and throughput and help achieve the goals of NASA's Vision for Space Exploration.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
In recent years, high throughput technologies have been playing an ever-increasing role in biotechnology and pharmaceutical research, and still the technology demand outstrips technology development. Cell/tissue culture innovations are required to handle the immense work load to match the current industry trend of high throughput screening. CCT-REF automated cell/tissue culture handling system through a robot is such an innovation. In addition, the automated cell/tissue bioreactors (e.g. CSC) technology that is utilized by CTC-REF sits in a unique niche, between low culture volume, high throughput automated systems used primarily in drug discovery, and large culture volume systems used in actual bioproduction. The underlying technologies in the proposed work therefore can be used in a wide range of ground-based biotechnology and pharmaceutical applications, including the optimization of cell/tissue culture processes and media, selection of cell strains, high throughput drug screening at the cell/tissue level, etc. In addition, the proposed CTC-REF is expected to increase the efficiency and throughput of medical radiation research in a similar way as it does to NASA's radiation research.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Biomedical and Life Support
Operations Concepts and Requirements
Radiation Shielding Materials
Radiation-Hard/Resistant Electronics
Testing Facilities
Testing Requirements and Architectures
Thermal Insulating Materials
Training Concepts and Architectures

Form Printed on 07-25-06 17:04