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    Duquesne University Receives Two More Patents

    Duquesne University has received two more patents, based upon faculty research.


    A patent was recently granted for making materials that are capable of detecting lead and quantifying how much lead is in water. These compounds developed by Dr. Partha Basu, award-winning professor of chemistry, are his first innovations leading to a patent.

    These extremely selective compounds can identify as little as 10 parts per billion of lead—thus, are more sensitive than the limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. This new material can identify and quantify lead in the presence of other metal ions—an important differentiation from other lead sensors currently on the market.

    The substance, which selectively detects lead, provides results within an hour and is easily read by a fluorescent violet glow that shows detection of lead, which presents a health problem, especially to the brains and nervous systems of children.

    The compound could be useful to consumers as well as to industrial and municipal water system monitors. Basu is interested in seeing a startup company form around this technology.

    Another patent, one that involves a sequence of peptides related to proteins and protein structures, was created by former chemistry and biochemistry faculty member Charles Dameron. This novel biological technology provides ways to examine pathways within cells. This sequence has a potential value for drug discovery.

    Duquesne University

    Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic research universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. The University is nationally ranked by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review for its rich academic programs in nine schools of study for nearly 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, and by the Washington Monthly for service and contributing to students' social mobility. Duquesne is a member of the U.S. President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction for its contributions to Pittsburgh and communities around the globe. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Princeton Review's Guide to Green Colleges acknowledge Duquesne's commitment to sustainability.