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The announcement of the 2009 McMaster Innovator Awards closed the 2009 McMaster Innovation Showcase (June 18-19) on a dramatic note.

From a pool of 12 outstanding nominees, Mehran Anvari, professor of surgery, was chosen as the McMaster Innovator of the Year and Jack Hirsh, professor emeritus of medicine, was honoured with the 2009 McMaster Lifetime Innovator Award.

Both men were presented with elegant glass sculptures to acknowledge their achievement.

The McMaster Innovator Awards recognize researchers who have contributed to McMaster University's ongoing efforts to build a culture of innovation, commercialization and entrepreneurship by creating a product or service that transfers their research discoveries and inventions to society.

As one of the first surgeons in Canada to use robotics in surgery, Anvari has consistently used his research findings to improve patient care. This year he received more than $14 million in funding to establish a centre to develop and commercialize robotic platforms for targeted, minimally invasive surgical and medical interventions.

For four decades Hirsh has performed ground breaking research and transformed his discoveries into products available to patients. His work on low molecular weight heparin changed the standard of care for thrombotic patients and he helped develop devices for bedside monitoring of anticoagulant treatment. He was the founding scientist of Vascular Therapeutics Inc. and led the creation of the Henderson Research Centre.

Biosensing Paper, Health Monitoring and Solar Windows Win Awards for McMaster Researchers

A poster detailing the commercial potential of paper-based biosensing devices developed by researchers in McMaster's biochemistry department took the top prize at the 2009 McMaster Innovation Showcase.

"Paper-based Biosensing: An Easy-to-use and Inexpensive Alternative" by Sergio Aguirre and Yingfu Li won the first place prize of $1,000, "Design of an Electro-ocular and Temperature Sensing Device for a Non-invasive Health Monitoring System" by Aiyush Bansal received the second place prize of $500 and "Solar Window" by Wei Zhang and Adrian Kitai won the third place prize of $250.

In addition to the poster competition judges recognized three additional posters with honorable mentions: "PatraTec: The Bioactive Paper Company," by Mercedes Salas and Chris Hall, "Healthcare Integrated Database Solution for Developing Countries," by Rosemary Mohammed and David Chan and "Adding Post Consumer Waste material in Concrete Masonry Blocks," by Sylvia Mihaljevic and Samir Chidiac.

The poster competition awards were presented at the closing reception of the 2009 McMaster Innovation Showcase.

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