Rutgers School of Engineering professor Fernando Muzzio accepted the 2018 Chairman’s Award, presented as part of the Research & Development Council of New Jersey’s 39th annual Edison Patent Awards on November 1. Muzzio, a distinguished professor of chemical and biochemical engineering and director of the Center for Structured Organic Particulate Systems (C-SOPS), was recognized along with a cross-disciplinary team of researchers from major universities who are working to improve the way pharmaceutical and food products are manufactured. The event was held at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City.
The Chairman’s Award honors individuals for outstanding effort and leadership in uniting industry and academia in the pursuit of creating a research-based economy in New Jersey. This is the first time the award was presented to an entire organization or team rather than an individual. Accepting the award on behalf of the C-SOPS team, Muzzio recognized the contributions of the center’s university partners from NJIT, Purdue University, and University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, along with industry partner Janssen Pharmaceuticals.
Other honorees recognized at the event included BASF, Celularity, Ethicon, part of Johnson & Johnson Medical Device Companies, ExxonMobil, Honeywell, Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc., Merck, NJIT, Princeton University, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, Rutgers University-New Brunswick, Siemens Corporate Technology, Siemens Healthineers, Stevens Institute of Technology and SubCom.
Founded in 2006, Rutgers’ C-SOPS has designed and implemented continuous manufacturing methods for powder-based pharmaceutical products, a technology that enables much faster production of more reliable products through an uninterrupted process that enables real-time quality control of every product unit. Continuous manufacturing offers a number of significant benefits, and over time, is likely to replace conventional batch processing for many products. C-SOPS has been instrumental in advancing this technology within the pharmaceutical industry with the pace accelerated in recent years, following explicit support from the FDA for these processes.
According to Muzzio, “As C-SOPS moves into its second decade and having secured strong support from our members, growing partnerships with leading adopters of continuous technology, and FDA approval, we are in an excellent position to continue to drive innovation in pharmaceutical manufacturing.”
The Research & Development Council of New Jersey established these awards to memorialize the state’s most prolific inventor, Thomas Alva Edison, and to highlight New Jersey’s continuous pipeline of exceptional innovation work. Previous recipients of the Chairman’s Award include Caren Franzini, former CEO of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, P. Roy Vagelos former chairman and CEO of Merck and chairman of the board at Regeneron, and former New Jersey Governor James J. Florio.