Rotary Club of South Bend


President Jackie introduced Professor of Chemistry at St. Mary’s College, Dr. Toni Barsitis, as our program speaker.  Dr Barsitis is part of an inter-disciplinary team that developed P.A.D. and was granted the first patent for St. Mary’s College.  P.A.D. stands for Paper Analytical Devices.  These paper devices were designed and developed to provide screening to qualify the purity of pharmaceutical products. Pharmaceutical purity is a serious global issue; in developed countries compromised pharmaceuticals represent about 15% while in underdeveloped countries compromised pharmaceuticals can represent an astounding 50% to 80%.  So there was a need to develop a low cost, quick and accurate screening method to detect counterfeit pills and medications.  The P.A.D. protocol was developed by St. Mary’s, Notre Dame Undergraduates and some Trinity students.  St. Mary’s owns the patent of P.A.D. and was just awarded a second patent in January for developing an enhancement to P.A.D. utilizing a “vessel” that Dr. Barsitis termed “a glow stick” concept.  Notre Dame is working on the licensing and the P.A.D. product is going to be produced by a local start-up company.  Dr. Barsitis also related her team’s experience in Nepal and how they used P.A.D. to expose massive irregularities in medications.  The P.A.D. team is currently working on applications to test water and air quality, while other features used could include food quality.