Researchers from three universities in Illinois have received the first batch of funding from IllinoisVentures, a University of Illinois-born fund that launched in October and aims to accelerate the commercialization of new technologies.

Five researchers from the University of Chicago, Northwestern, and the University of Illinois at Chicago received a total of $125,000 in grants from the program. The fund focuses on IT, physical sciences, life sciences and clean technology companies.

While the fund is managed by the University of Illinois, IllinoisVentures is a joint effort by Argonne National Laboratory, Illinois Institute of Technology, Northern Illinois University, Northwestern University, Southern Illinois University, University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, as well as the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and the Illinois Science & Technology Coalition.

Here are the grant winners:

Bellur Prabhakar (University of Illinois at Chicago): Prabhakar is developing a novel treatment for Type 1 diabetes using a recombinant human OX40L/Jag-1 chimeric protein.

Peter O’Donnell (University of Chicago): O’Donnell’s new tool allows health care providers find the best medication for their patients by harnessing the patient’s unique genetic profile and drug-efficacy studies to provide physicians personalized drug prescription guidance.

Alexander Langerman (University of Chicago): ExplORer is a mobile app that provides a surgical “playbook” for the operating room, displaying pertinent information for each team member for each step of the surgical case.

Jonathan Leis (Northwestern): Leis is working to fight against HIV, Herpes, and Ebola with small molecule inhibitors that block replication of pathogenic enveloped virus infections.

William Klein (Northwestern): Klein’s new imaging technology that can detect Alzheimer’s Disease at a very early stage of development.

“IllinoisVENTURES is excited to be partnering with the State, ISTC, and research institutions across Illinois to help catalyze new ventures from the world-class research occurring in the universities and federal labs across the state” Nancy Sullivan, CEO and Managing Director at IllinoisVENTURES said in a news release. “It takes an enormous amount of time and money to commercialize laboratory research and this program helps identify technologies with the highest potential for success and provides additional funding to accelerate commercialization. We are excited to announce these initial award winners and look forward to continuing to grow the Regional Proof of Concept Matching Fund Program.”

Funding will be awarded twice a year.

via Illinois Ventures Fund Grants Money to University Researchers | Chicago Inno.