The Office for the Vice President for Research (OVPR) has awarded 2022 Minnesota Futures Grants to two projects. This program offers funding each year to promote research that incorporates new, cross-disciplinary ideas. OVPR granted nearly $500,000 to two projects this year.
The University of Minnesota is establishing a center to develop antiviral drugs for pandemic-level viruses such as SARS-CoV-2. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has awarded the U of M a $66 million grant for the new Midwest Antiviral Drug Discovery (AViDD) Center, which is part of a national network of nine such centers established by NIAID.
Catalytic converters use precious metals – for example, platinum and palladium – to remove toxins from exhaust because of their unique electronic surface properties. New research published in JACS Au shows that it is possible to electronically convert other metals, ones that are less expensive and rare, so that they mimic those properties. This research could advance energy technologies and reduce reliance on precious metals.