TTUHSC Commercial Venture TKQuant Receives European Patent

three men smiling, standing in a hallway at TTUHSC

Suhas Pol, Ph.D., Phil Sizer Jr., P.T., Ph.D., and Kerry K. Gilbert, P.T., Sc.D.

In 2018, TKQuant LLC, a company formed through Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC), created a software algorithm that measures tissue kinematics, a field associated with biomechanics that measures human motion and the tissue’s response to the stress created by the motion.

The company, established and trained through the National Science Foundation’s Innovation Corps (also known as I-Corps) program and related offerings at the Texas Tech University (TTU) Innovation Hub at Research Park, uses existing video or images to decrease the risk of injury and misdiagnosis, and to reduce injury-related costs by improving diagnostic parameters.

More specifically, TKQuant’s image-based technique quantifies a tissue’s kinematic response to a procedure in real time while providing directions to clinicians regarding potential therapies and interventions for individual patients.

With guidance from TTU’s Office of Research and Commercialization, the TKQuant co-founders — Kerry K. Gilbert, P.T., Sc.D., and Phil Sizer Jr., P.T., Ph.D., from the TTUHSC School of Health Professions; Suhas Pol, Ph.D., from TTU; and Richard Ellis, P.T., Ph.D., from Auckland University of Technology (New Zealand) — began the patent filing process in the United States and Europe.

Logo that reads "TKQUANT" in black on white background

TKQuant LLC was formed through TTUHSC

In November 2023, the team was awarded the European patent (EP3678536 – System and Method for Measuring Real-Time Body Kinematics) for Germany, France, the United Kingdom and Netherlands. The United States patent is pending.

Gilbert said receiving the European patent is an important step for TKQuant because it allows the company to continue to develop, test and market their technology without concern of another group trying to copy or use it without a licensing agreement from Gilbert, Sizer and their co-inventors.

“The EU patent also provides additional opportunities for TKQuant to develop the use of that technology in countries that have the potential for its use,” Gilbert added.

Sizer agreed and said the company’s technology has the potential to make a transformative impact on people who may otherwise suffer significantly over a long period of time.

“Use of the technology could additionally help health care delivery systems efficiently manage patients at a considerably reduced cost,” Sizer said.

While they await the results of their U.S. patent application, Gilbert said the TKQuant team is very thankful to the Innovation Hub and to TTUHSC for their continued support and leadership through the development of the company’s technology and business structure. He also credited several members of TTUHSC’s leadership, including President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D., Senior Vice-President for Research and Innovation Lance McMahon, Ph.D., and Provost and Chief Academic Officer Darrin D'Agostino, D.O.

“The transition that TTUHSC is undergoing with leadership has been tremendous,” Gilbert said. “This transformation is providing faculty the opportunity to develop technology in partnership with our colleagues at TTU and the Texas Tech University System Office of Research Commercialization that can advance their license and entrepreneurial launch options for commercialized innovations. This truly has the potential to meet the university’s mission to ‘Transform Health Care through Innovation and Collaboration.’”

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