Derek Eberhart has been appointed director of the university’s Technology Commercialization Office, which is under the auspices of the Office of the Vice President for Research. Eberhart has served as interim director since July; his appointment was effective Jan. 1.
Through intellectual property licensing and other efforts, TCO serves the UGA community by connecting industry with university expertise and inventions for the public good, promoting economic development and increasing research visibility.
TCO evaluates inventions for patentability and commercial potential, protects intellectual property rights, negotiates all IP-related agreements and facilitates strategic partnerships with universities, industry and government. In pursuing these goals, TCO works closely with UGA’s business incubator, the Georgia BioBusiness Center.
Eberhart received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in poultry science from UGA in 1986 and 1991, respectively. He earned his doctorate in genetics and molecular biology at Emory University, where he studied the molecular basis of a common form of mental retardation known as Fragile X syndrome.
As an American Cancer Society postdoctoral fellow at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Eberhart conducted research that focused on the generation and analysis of mouse cancer models.
Prior to joining UGA in 2008, Eberhart served as director of alliance and portfolio management at Lexicon Pharmaceuticals in Texas, where he was involved in alliance management, technology licensing and business development activities.