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Coral Tissue Engineering for Mass-Production of Coral for the Recreational Marine Aquarium Trade

Award Information
Agency: Department of Commerce
Branch: N/A
Contract: WC133R09CN0107
Agency Tracking Number: 09-60
Amount: $90,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: 8.1.2
Solicitation Number: NOAA-2009-1
Solicitation Year: 2009
Award Year: 2009
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
United States
DUNS: 197507291
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Craig Downs
 Executive Director
 (434) 263-5740
Business Contact
 Craig Downs
Title: Executive Director
Phone: (434) 263-5740
Research Institution

<p>Over 10 million coral specimens a year are traded in the +$100 million/year ornamental-recreational aquaria industry.&nbsp; Over ninety percent of commercial coral specimens come from some form of mass harvesting of wild corals from coral reefs.&nbsp; This can have a detrimental impact to coral reefs.&nbsp; We have invented a method of perpetual propagation of corals through tissue engineering.&nbsp; Hundreds to thousands of microscopic tissue explants are generated from a single coral polyp.&nbsp; These explants can be induced to undergo &ldquo;remorphogenesis&rdquo; and develop into primary coral polyps and colonization.&nbsp; In Phase I, it&rsquo;s proposed to optimize this technology for mass-production and to augment cryo-preservation methods to control production rates.&nbsp; Culture media and environmental conditions will be tested for optimal productivity.&nbsp; Phase II will expand this technology to a wide-range of coral species, and to establish a DNA &ldquo;fingerprint&rdquo; system to certify specimens that are tissue-engineered vs. wild-collected specimens.</p>

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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