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UNT System: Resource magazine >> Alumni Spotlight

Photo of Richard BorgensRichard Borgens
Director, Purdue University Center for Paralysis Research

Richard Borgens, Ph.D., decided to devote his life to the treatment of spinal cord injuries after receiving a postdoctoral fellowship from the National Paraplegia Foundation for study at Yale University. He attended the foundation's annual convention and saw several hundred people in wheelchairs.
    "A lot of them were in bad shape," says Borgens, who earned his bachelor's degree in psychology and master's degree in biology from UNT.
    After completing the fellowship, Borgens returned to Purdue University, where he had earned his doctoral degree. He founded the university's Center for Paralysis Research in 1987.
   
The center recently received FDA approval to implant devices producing weak electrical fields about 1/250,000 of a volt into humans with spinal cord injuries. Situated near the area of an injury, the device, known as an extraspinal oscillating field stimulator (OFS), will help to regenerate and guide growth in the damaged nerves. It will stay in the body for 14 weeks, with the electrical flow periodically reversed to guide nerve growth in both directions.
   
"Our bodies produce natural electrical fields that control growth and development. OFS units provide a way to generate growth when the natural fields are disrupted through nerve injury," Borgens says. Borgens and his researchers first tested OFS units on 13 dogs paralyzed by natural causes. Seven of the dogs were walking within six months of receiving the implants, and two walked as well as healthy dogs.

Photo of Ray PageRay Page
Research director, Texas Cancer Care

At Texas Cancer Care in Fort Worth, Ray Page, D.O., Ph.D., brings his love of research and medicine to a clinical research practice that attracts some of the nation's leading studies of new drug therapies.
    "The therapies we have available to our TCC patients are amazing," Page says. "This is the stuff you could usually only get at a large academic medical center."
   
Page, who earned his degrees in osteopathic medicine and pharmacology from the UNT Health Science Center at Fort Worth in 1991, started the clinical research program at Texas Cancer Care in 1998. The clinic now offers pharmaceutical and government agencies one of the largest clinical oncology patient bases available in one setting for studies of new drugs and treatments.
   
Among the novel drugs currently being tested at TCC is a one-time, one-dose therapy for treating lymphoma. The drug is showing great success and should be FDA-approved by the end of the year, Page says.
   
His patients are benefiting from a career decision he made some time ago.
   
"I always intended to do research as my life work," he says. "I went into oncology as a specialty because it was more amenable to trying out new drugs so I could really use my pharmacology background.
   
"It was the right choice."

Photo of Linda Truitt CreaghLinda Truitt Creagh
Business development director, Spectra Inc.

Crisp, clear documents delivered from ink jet printers and digital displays on cell phones, watches and laptops are possible thanks in part to the research of Linda Truitt Creagh, Ph.D.
   
Creagh, who earned her doctoral degree in chemistry, is a second-generation UNT graduate. Her father, Price Truitt, received degrees from North Texas and served as a distinguished faculty member in the chemistry department.
   
Creagh began her own research career at Texas Instruments in 1966.
   
"I was the first technical professional woman employed by TI," she says. "The first project I worked on at its research laboratories dealt with chemical lasers."
    She also participated in the development of liquid crystal displays used for calculators and watches.
   
After her successful career with TI, Creagh accepted a position at Xerox, where she led a project team in developing liquid crystal displays. After transferring to the ink jet technology department, she worked on the development of inks for printheads.
   
In 1984 Creagh co-founded Spectra Inc., a developer of ink jet printheads, in Hanover, N.H. She has served the company as director of ink development and director of engineering. She is currently business development director.
   
"No matter what my job title has been, my greatest accomplishment is my role as a mentor of engineers," she says.

 


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