With research and technologies holding a higher impact on society, scholars and practitioners note innovation solutions combined with knowledge management are the key to improving global health care and human wellbeing. California-based entrepreneur and philanthropist, Kenneth Slaught, acknowledges the value of scientific innovations in addressing international development needs. Having earned a degree in business and economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, he has served on the UCSB Foundation Board of Trustees since 1996. The prominent real estate developer has recently praised the University on his blog at KennySlaught.com, as the notable institution was announced the Grand Challenges Explorations grant winner last year in May.
David Low, a professor in UCSB’s Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, will pursue an innovative global health and development research project titled “Strategy for development of enteric pathogen-specific phage”. Low’s research focuses on a new way to deal with serious bacterial pathogens that are becoming resistant to many once-powerful antibiotics. He will engineer phage to selectively target and destroy several pathogenic bacteria to prevent enteric diseases in infants. They will engineer different versions of the T2 lytic bacteriophage that bind multiple different regions of the BamA protein found on the surface of several pathogenic bacteria, which will ensure they only infect these target bacteria. They will test the different phage for capacity to kill pathogenic E. coli and Shigella, and whether they cause resistance.