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Law Student One of Five Tulanians Applying for Patent to Aid Safe Childbirth

August 21, 2009

Second-year law student Stephanie Roberts may find herself multi-tasking during this academic year. Roberts and a group of fellow Tulane bioengineering graduates, along with associate professor David Rice, have applied for a patent for an inexpensive device that could prevent millions of infection-related neonatal deaths in developing countries. 

The small device, called SafeSnip, is designed for use in regions like Southeast Asia and Africa where home births are common and infants are susceptible to infections caused by unsanitary birth conditions. SafeSnip is a three-inch disposable, plastic clamp that cuts, seals and disinfects an umbilical cord in one step. 

The students developed the device in Rice's class as part of a course project and won $5,000 in funding from the Wal-Mart Foundation through the Clinton Global Initiative University; they also got $500 from the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance. 

The students hope to start field-testing the device once the patent is approved.

Read this story in its entirety as featured in the NewWave: News From Tulane University.


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