A Catheter That Kills Bacteria With Light

After hearing his aunt, a primary care nurse, tell stories of catheters causing clotting and infections, Nate Rhodes, a recent graduate, decided to come up with a solution. With a few classmates, he developed a new type of catheter — a tube inserted into patients to remove and deliver fluids — that emits bacteria-killing light to prevent infections from occurring. The product is called the Light Line Catheter, and the team of bioengineering and medical students has gone on to win substantial grants and accolades, including: first place and $75,000 at the International Business Model Competition hosted by Brigham Young University; $20,000 in grants from the U’s Bench-to-Bedside competition, Utah Entrepreneur Challenge and Entrepreneur Club milestone funding program; and second place among graduate students and $15,000 in the Collegiate Inventors Competition in Washington, D.C. “Our invention started with a goal to help primary care providers reduce the risk of infection when using catheters,” Rhodes said. “The Light Line Catheter has the potential to save thousands of lives every year.”

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