A New Jersey professors interest in transgenic tomatoes won him a share of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundations $100 million effort to improve global health.
Eric Lam, a professor in Rutgers Universitys School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, and 80 other scientists scored $100,000 each in the latest round of awards in the foundations five-year initiative to spur innovation. Grants ranged from those indecipherable to the layman (a scientist at the Pasteur Institute in France landed funding to study vaccine discovery by mapping quasi-species sequence space) to the more accessible (one award will fund an air pollution study of a newly designed indoor cooking stove).
Lamms tomato is among the latter.
According to the foundation, Lam will seek to turn tomatoes into anti-viral drug delivery devices as one possible route to a low-cost and easily transportable therapeutic.