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Taking the sting out of canker sores
Taking the sting out of canker sores
Stephen Patterson, Patrick Gosselin, Matt Cara and Stephanie Bowen
•  enexra  video
Team name: AiB Pharma

School name: Texas A&M University, Mays Business School

Team members: Patrick Gosselin, Stephen Patterson, Matt Cara, Stephanie Bowen

Concept: Canker sores might hurt a little, but they hurt a lot of people. By one estimate, the tiny mouth ulcers make 20% of the population miserable. So far, no one has figured out what causes them or how to cure them. Available products that claim to reduce the pain and duration of the sores are often so nasty that about 80% of afflicted people choose to grimace and bear the pain without attempting treatment.

The members of AiB Pharma believe a chemical cocktail invented by Dr. Phil Campbell (who serves as an advisor to the company), a professor at the Baylor College of Dentistry, can soothe millions of mouths and make this early-stage pharmaceutical company millions of dollars. A double blind study at Baylor showed the product's efficacy to be "statistically significant," while 14 private practice dentists used the formula on more than 2,000 patients with "enormous success." The company claims the drug speeds healing by up to 86%.

Timeline: The founders of AiB Pharma believe they can have a product on the market in about four years. - Shara Rutberg

NEXT: A nanotherapy for liver cancer

Last updated May 02 2008: 11:51 AM ET