MCIRCC members gathered on October 16 for Innovation: Sepsis, a 6th-grade-science-fair-style event featuring tabletop presentations by the six Grand Challenge teams. Members were welcomed by MCIRCC Executive Director, Kevin Ward, and Associate Director, Shuichi Takayama, who toasted to the significant impact the teams’ research will have on sepsis patients. The six teams devised innovative solutions to challenges faced in the treatment of sepsis, comprising:

  • a sensor that captures vascular dynamics information and analyzes data to determine signs of early septic shock;

  • a blood test to rapidly identify bacteria by reading its DNA “fingerprint”;

  • an endotheliopathy assessment panel, utilizing optofluidics, to monitor real-time endothelial cell damage to determine sepsis severity and progression;

  • a redox microfluidic device to detect sepsis severity and gauge response to therapy;

  • a unique sustained delivery and monitoring system for a protein (IL-15) that stimulates T cell production; and

  • ultrasound technology measuring lung strain to address fluid status and mechanical ventilation optimization.

The event also provided a forum for attendees from across disciplines to discuss their work and network with peers to foster collaboration and stimulate new ideas. Teams manned their stations, answering questions and conducting demonstrations of their work. Attendees saw first-hand the progress enabled by MCIRCC in getting medical innovations from the bench to bedside. As the evening concluded, members departed with not only a greater understanding of the Grand Challenge projects, but an excitement from sharing ideas and making connections with like-minded individuals looking to make a difference in critical care.