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April 22, 2006

ULM, Tech Join Forces

You are working on an important project and run into an obstacle that you cannot clear by yourself. What do you do?

Logic dictates that you turn to a friend, colleague or expert to help the cause.

That's what the University of Louisiana at Monroe did recently in its quest to develop a Vitamin E treatment to help fight breast cancer. The meaningful initiative from the pharmacology program had a problem — how to deliver the treatment to the cancer cells. Enter Louisiana Tech University. Tech's Institute for Micromanufacturing and nanotechnology provides a natural fit with its research on nanocapsules to deliver targeted, time-release drugs. Now the schools are working together on the project. We like to see that kind of connection.

Our regional and state higher education institutions provide a wealth of knowledge, expertise and research. It only makes sense that they — whether Tech, ULM, Grambling, LSU or any other university — combine their strengths whenever possible to achieve positive results.

"We specialize in pharmacy research, but we have the potential to develop new research in nanomedicine,'' ULM College of Pharmacy Dean Lamar Pritchard told The News-Star. "Tech can blaze new trails in nanotechnology. The hope is to marry our two strengths and develop strong research collaboration necessary to apply for top-level grants.''

That union among "rival'' universities enables northeastern Louisiana to make inroads on a national level through its education and research assets. The two schools have also joined the 17-member Institute for Biomedical Sciences and Technology for research collaboration. That's impressive.

Tech and ULM also have other areas of research partnership or the potential for it with treatment for the herpes virus and insulin treatment. That provides more intriguing.

We hope this kind of cooperation is just one example of many more to come. A little collaboration can go a long way.

It's nice to think that two of this region's universities can work together with the potential to have a major effect on health issues.

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