Goethe University: Unibator Innovation Prize awarded to three scientific projects


On September 13, 2022, the Unibator Innovation Prize was awarded to scientific projects with start-up potential for the first time. At the awards ceremony organized by Innovectis, the university’s technology transfer company, three winning teams received prize money of €2,500, €1,250 and €750 respectively, as well as a right to participate in the Goethe Startup School. The prize was donated by Mrs. Dr. Frederike Lohse. She is a member of the Innovectis supervisory board and has been involved with the Goethe-Unibator start-up center for many years.

After an exciting pitch competition, first place went to Marcel Walther and Felix Rohde from the Institute for Pharmaceutical Chemistry (Faculty 14). They are developing drug-loaded solid polymer nanofiber networks that can be used as eye inserts in the form of flat, round patches. The patches allow precise dosing of active ingredients and dissolve immediately in the tear fluid when applied in the eye, which means that there is no foreign body sensation.
Ben Weitzman’s team from the Department of Linguistics and Cultural Studies took second place. The team is developing an innovative platform that will bring the benefits of digital art to the streets and to our communities. Virtual works of art are anchored in specially selected, real places and thus enable the viewer to see the interaction between the virtual object and a physical place. Maria Zisiopoulou from the medical department. Together with her colleagues at the University Hospital, she is developing a personalized preoperative prediction of hospital stays using an algorithmic human-machine interface using the example of interventional cardiology.

“For the first time, we can use this prize at the Goethe University to reward and support start-up ideas at a very early stage,” says Dr. Martin Raditsch, Managing Director of Innovectis. “In addition, we reach students and researchers across departments, which reflects the whole variety of exciting ideas from the university,” adds Dr. Kirstin Schilling, who has been co-managing director of Innovectis for a few weeks.

After the award ceremony, the founding teams met mentors from the Unibator network while networking at the buffet. Including Mr. Dr. Hans-Otto Maier, who was introduced as a new mentor at the event and would like to pass on his experience from his many years of work in the field of medical technology to founders. Prof. Dr. Michael Huth, Vice President and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Innovectis emphasizes: “Thanks to the commitment of Ms. Lohse, the founder of the Innovation Award, and the numerous mentors, it is possible to create an environment in the Goethe-Unibator that supports young people in the long term in realizing their start-up ideas .”

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