GRCC graduate’s product makes Time Magazine’s Top 100

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David Edwards, left, tests FEND on a GRCC student last week. Courtesy GRCC

A Grand Rapids Community College alum’s product was named one of the top 100 inventions of 2020 by Time Magazine.

Aerosol scientist David Edwards founded the company Sensory Cloud, a Boston-based technology startup company that designs solutions focused on respiratory biology.

The company developed the product FEND, a drug-free, salt- and calcium-based nasal mist that strengthens the mucus lining, helping it trap and flush out tiny pathogens.

It was initially developed to combat anthrax, but Edwards returned to GRCC’s campus last week to conduct a study on the air particles breathed in and out by students, employees and community members to learn how the product impacts the spread of COVID-19.

“FEND can be effective in slowing the spread of COVID-19, especially when used in conjunction with face coverings, social distancing and other precautions,” Edwards said.

FEND was only one of three products listed in Time Magazine’s Home Health category.

Edwards graduated from what was then Grand Rapids Junior College in 1981. He earned a Bachelor of Science from Michigan Technological University and a doctorate from the Illinois Institute of Technology, both in chemical engineering.

He taught at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Penn State University before joining Harvard University’s faculty in 2002. He taught at Harvard’s John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences before becoming the CEO of Sensory Cloud.

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