Johns Hopkins students take home silver in Inventors Competition

Johns Hopkins students take home silver in Inventors Competition (ABC7)

The Collegiate Inventors Competition in Alexandria, Virginia attracted promising young innovators from around the country.

Clay Andrews and his team from Johns Hopkins University known as AssistENT submitted an invention for people who have difficulty breathing through the nose. It's called Schnozzle. "It's basically a silicone kind of tube that's specifically engineered to fit well within the nasal passage. Just stick something completely invisible inside your nose and breathe better instantly," he shared.

The product worked for Andrews, who suffers from nasal obstruction; so he and the team decided to enter it in the annual competition. Linda Hosler, Deputy Program Manager at the United States Patent and Trademark Office told ABC7 News, "We have graduate and undergraduate students who submit their amazing inventions of cutting-edge technology in fields from biotech to medicine to chemistry and agriculture."

On November 3, the Hopkins inventors gathered at the Patent and Trademark Office to compete against 11 other teams. Each group presented their invention to a distinguished panel of judges.

AssistENT Member Pooja Nair is a junior at Johns Hopkins and expressed, "I think it was kind of a litmus test for the team to take something we've spent so much time working on and throw that out there and see if people who have invented successfully think it's worth pursuing." The judges embraced Schnozzle awarding the four-person team a silver medal and a $5,000 cash prize. The next step is to test Schnozzle in clinical trials next year.

The invention that won gold and $10,000 on the undergraduate level is called SwineTech which prevents pigs from crushing their offspring.

This story has been updated Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017

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