Technology developed by the state's academic community could provide the Kansas economy with a needed boost, a local venture capitalist said Monday.
Sam Campbell, a principal in Campbell-Becker Inc., a Lawrence company that provides capital and management services for fledgling companies, said support for Kansas University and its research community is tantamount to investing in the state's economic future.
Campbell made his remarks to the Lawrence Rotary Club in a luncheon program on 3D Biomedical Imaging Inc., a company Campbell-Becker has taken under its wing.
The firm, Campbell explained, was started to commercialize technology for rendering three-dimensional images of internal organs, which was developed by Michael Gordon, a professor of pharmacology at KU Medical Center, and Glen Deloid, a physician. The technology is considered an improvement over two-dimensional images such as X-rays, CAT scans and magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI.
Campbell said the company has begun licensing the technology and expects to begin receiving substantial revenue from it.
"WE FEEL it's the leading technology of its kind anywhere in the world," he said. He added that one of the investors in the company is the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System, which has come under fire for backing high-risk, unsuccessful ventures.
"They're going to make so much money on this it will make up for a lot of other mistakes," he said.
Campbell noted that the state faces rising costs for social programs and infrastructure improvements. Those issues shouldn't take precedence over economic development concerns, he argued.
"We have to think, too, about how we're going to be generating revenues to pay for those sorts of things," he said. "I think the answer really lies in technology and the development of technology."
3-DBI IS ONE of several companies Campbell cited in which technology developed by KU researchers is being tranferred to the private sector where it can be further developed for commercial applications.
Others include Oread Laboratories, Midwest Superconductivity, Cyprus Systems and Star Corp.