DURHAM, N.H. – A University of New Hampshire School of Law student with a biomedical engineering background who invented a clip to stop brain aneurysms has won this year’s UNH Paul J. Holloway Prize Innovation-to-Market competition, which includes a grand prize of $25,000 in celebration of the competition’s 25th anniversary.
Hosted by the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics Wednesday, May 8, 2013, the competition is the oldest business plan competition in the state and one of the first in the nation.
Craig Litherland of Concord won the competition for his zero artifact aneurysm clip, which can significantly reduce the cost of treating brain aneurysms and save lives. According to Litherland, subarachnoid hemorrhage or bleeding on the brain is a significant problem and typically caused by leaking aneurysms in brain arteries. About 5 percent of the U.S. population harbors these ticking time bombs.
In clip ligation, the surgeon manually places a titanium clip across the aneurysm to prevent it from bleeding. However, today’s titanium clips can cause blurred images on medical scans, preventing accurate diagnosis and treatment. Litherland’s zero artifact clip, CranioVation, remedies this problem.
Litherland said he got the idea for the clip after his best friend Dr. Vijay Agarwal, who is a neurosurgeon, told him about the problem and the need for a clip that would not obscure medical scans. He has been working on the design for a year and decided to enter the Holloway Competition after learning about it from last year’s winner Andrew Jaccoma, for whom he provided patent consulting advice about Jaccoma’s winning idea, Sensible Spreader System.
“I was really surprised to win because there were so many good ideas. I was happy just to run the idea through the process and in front of the judges,” said Litherland, who will use his $25,000 in prize money to develop prototypes of the zero artifact aneurysm clip.
Six finalists competed for more than $75,000 in prize money and consulting services provided by the Paul College and the event sponsors: Paul and Anna Grace Holloway, the Paul J. Holloway Prize Fund, the Albin Entrepreneurship Fund, the Nelson Fund for Business Innovation, PixelMEDIA, the New Hampshire Innovation Commercialization Center and Devine Millimet Attorneys at Law. More than 80 teams entered the competition.
The competition is designed to stimulate entrepreneurship. Open to all University System of New Hampshire graduate and undergraduate students who have a proposal for bringing an innovative product or service to market, the competition helps students gain firsthand experience in commercializing new products and services, and provides access to faculty advisors and industry experts.
Second place went to Dry Technology, a technological process that, when applied to any fabric, makes it highly water resistant, odor resistant, and stain resistant without changing the breathability and feel of the fabric. Third place went to SunDensation, a product that converts brackish ground water to potable water using a nonelectric solar system.
Established in 1988 by Paul J. Holloway's family, the business plan competition honors the business leader's entrepreneurial spirit by stimulating and recognizing outstanding business strategies. Holloway began his career in the automotive industry and, starting in 1967, shaped a multi-franchise dealership emphasizing customer service and satisfaction. Holloway then extended his business skills to the development and management of eldercare facilities.
After the competition, Holloway was awarded the 2013 Paul College Entrepreneur of the Year. In his remarks, Holloway stressed the need to support public higher education in New Hampshire and said that the foundation of the New Hampshire advantage is having an educated work force. If the state does not support public higher education, Holloway said “we will all pay the price.”
The UNH Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics offers a full complement of high-quality programs in business, economics, accounting, finance, information systems management, entrepreneurship, marketing, and hospitality management. Programs are offered at the undergraduate, graduate, and executive development levels. The college is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the premier accrediting agency for business schools worldwide.
Craig Litherland of Concord won the competition for his zero artifact aneurysm clip CranioVation. Here he is pictured with, from left to right, Mark W. Huddleston, UNH president; Michael Merenda, Holloway Prize Competition director and professor of strategic management and entrepreneurship; entrepreneur and philanthropist Paul Holloway; and Daniel Innis, dean of Paul College. http://www.unh.edu/news/img/2013hollowaycomp.jpg
UNH Holloway Competition 25th Anniversary