Pakistan's National University of Science and Technology Wins AUTM's 2023 Better World Project Award

AUSTIN, TX – February 23, 2023 – AUTM this week recognized Pakistan’s National University of Science and Technology (NUST) with its 2023 Better World Project Award for commercializing a vibrational-wave therapy to treat neurodegenerative disorders such as cerebral palsy and autism. The Award was announced on the final day of AUTM’s 2023 Annual Meeting in Austin, TX.
AUTM's Better World Project highlights the global impact of research commercialization and the vital role that technology transfer plays in that process. The annual Better World Project Award honors the exemplary work of one technology transfer office from the stories submitted during the previous year.
“Congratulations to our colleagues in Pakistan for work that truly is making the world a
better place for individuals with neurodegenerative conditions,” said Steve Susalka, CEO of AUTM. “NUST’s selection underscores the global nature of technology transfer and the impactful innovations that embody the Better World Project.”
The EKKO Wave Therapeutic Device, developed by NUST researchers, provides low cost and safe treatment of neurological disorders using vibrational waves that affect neural activity in the brain and body. The NUST Technology Transfer Office liaised with various departments and stakeholders from the kick-off of the project to the successful pilot testing of the technology, which was licensed to M/S RiseTech for commercialization.
“Taking EKKO from a very basic concept to an actual product being used by multiple families and those who are in need, is a matter of great satisfaction,” said Mehfooz Ahmed, General Manager, Technology Transfer, in the Innovation & Commercialization Office at NUST. “We feel honored to have won this prestigious Better World competition, which provided us with a platform to make a humble contribution as part of global efforts to foster a disability-free society with our product EKKO.”
More than 40 stories were submitted to the Better World Project last year. The Better World Project Committee narrowed them down to three very worthy finalists, and the winner was decided by a public vote in which 1100 ballots were cast. The Committee was co-chaired by Carlos A. Báez-Pagán, PhD, MBA, RTTP, Technology Manager in the Technology Transfer Office of the Puerto Rico Science, Technology & Research Trust, and George Chellapa, PhD, Research Licensing Lead for NVIDIA.
“Congratulations to our TTO colleagues at NUST in Pakistan and to the other finalists for showing the important role technology transfer professionals play in making for a better world,” Báez-Pagán and Chellapa said.
The other two finalists were:

The Invention Transfer Group at the University of California, Irvine, for partnering with Glaukos Corporation to commercialize iStent, a microinvasive surgical device for treating glaucoma.
BCM Ventures at Baylor College of Medicine for making available a patent-free, open-source COVID-19 vaccine technology that led to the development of CORBEVAX in India and Halal-certified INDOVAC in Indonesia.
Editor’s note: Photos of the winners and their technology, as well as a video, are available upon request.
About AUTM
AUTM is the nonprofit leader in efforts to educate, promote and inspire professionals to support the development of academic research that changes the world and drives innovation forward. Our community is composed of more than 3,000 members who work in more than 800 universities, research centers, hospitals, businesses, and government organizations around the globe.
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Download a PDF of the press release here.