UC Davis Innovators Honored for Contributions in Agriculture, Pathology
2018 Innovator of the Year — DryCard™
2018 Innovator of the Year — Richard Levenson
University recognizes recipients of the 2018 UC Davis Chancellor’s Innovation Awards at its third annual awards evening. Established in 2016, the awards recognize faculty, community partners and industry leaders for their work, dedication and success in improving the lives of others and addressing the needs of our global society, either through innovations in technology or innovative societal engagement. The university’s Venture Catalyst team manages the Chancellor’s Innovation Awards as part of its broader mission to enable innovative students, faculty and staff to engage effectively with the innovation community both within and outside the University.
  • The two awardees for Innovator of the Year were the DryCardTM team from the Horticulture Innovation Lab and Richard Levenson, Professor and Vice Chair for Strategic Technologies in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.
  • Seed Central was the recipient of the Innovative Community Partner of the Year award, given in recognition of significant contributions to driving regional economic impact through innovation, entrepreneurship and support for growing the startup ecosystem in collaboration with the university.
  • Gurdev Khush, a world-renowned plant geneticist, was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award for Innovation for his extraordinary leadership in developing rice strains that have enhanced the quality and quantity of global rice supplies.

Venture Catalyst Knowledge Exchange: What the Beatles Can Teach Us About Intellectual Property Strategy
Featuring Erica Pascal, PhD, Esq - Founder of Ingensity TM IP

This talk will use case studies to illustrate common issues start-ups face in developing a strong IP portfolio, and provide tips on creating a differentiated and competitive IP strategy. Come find out how “Let It Be,” “Revolution”, “All You Need Is Love”, and “The Long and Winding Road” can guide you in your start-up journey.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018, 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Join us for Lunch @
UC Davis Office of Research
1850 Research Park Drive
Davis, CA 95618
Map and Directions: Click Here or visit https://goo.gl/maps/Ztsp2o3oayC2
Parking Information: Free parking - no permit required.

Lebrilla Wins Senate Research Award
In recognition of his quarter-century of pioneering work on how complex sugars affect health and nutrition, Carlito Lebrilla’s colleagues in the Davis Division of the Academic Senate have chosen him as the 2018 recipient of the division’s highest honor: the Distinguished Research award, known up until this year as the Faculty Research Lecture award. Carlito Lebrilla is a distinguished professor at UC Davis in the Department of Chemistry, and Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine in the School of Medicine. He is one of the founders of Evolve Biosystems, a UC Davis-affiliated startup located in Davis that focuses on products to establish, restore, and maintain infant gut microbiome.... Read More
New Technology for Measuring Brain Blood Flow with Light
Wenjun Zhou, a postdoctoral researcher, working with Vivek Srinivasan, associate professor at the UC Davis Department of Biomedical Engineering at UC Davis, have developed a new technique for measuring blood flow in the human brain, which could be used in patients with stroke or traumatic brain injury. The new technique, based on conventional digital camera technology, could be significantly cheaper and more robust than prior methods.... Read More
Vasopressin, a Possible Biomarker for Social Deficits in Autism
One of the characteristics of children with autism spectrum disorder is reduced social ability. It is difficult to study the possible causes of social impairment in children, but a new study shows that rhesus macaques with low sociability also had low levels of the peptide vasopressin in cerebrospinal fluid, as did children with autism spectrum disorder. The study conducted by researchers at the California National Primate Research Center at UC Davis and Stanford University, was published on May 2 in the journal Science Translational Medicine.... Read More
UC Davis Becomes Only Veterinary Hospital in the World with a Volumetric PET Scanner
UC Davis Veterinary Hospital started imaging patients on a new PET/CT scanner known as the Mini Explorer II. This advanced imaging system, the first of its kind in the world, is designed to provide veterinarians with both anatomic and physiologic information. Typical scans can take up to 30-45 minutes to get the information needed to make a proper diagnosis, though radiologists believe that the increased sensitivity of the new scanner may allow them to reduce this time to as little as 5-10 minutes for some types of studies. These faster scans reduce patient anesthesia time and provide outstanding image quality to evaluate disease processes with greater sensitivity and precision.... Read More
UC Davis World Food Center Relaunches
UC Davis has renewed its World Food Center within the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. The World Food Center’s mission is to mobilize the research, educational and outreach resources of UC Davis to promote innovative, sustainable and equitable food systems.... Read More
Earth BioGenome Project Aims to Sequence DNA From All Complex Life
The central goal of the Earth BioGenome Project is to understand the evolution and organization of life on our planet by sequencing and functionally annotating the genomes of 1.5 million known species of eukaryotes, a massive group that includes plants, animals, fungi and other organisms whose cells have a nucleus that houses their chromosomal DNA. The benefits of the monumental initiative promise to be a complete transformation of the scientific understanding of life on Earth, and a vital new resource for global innovations in medicine, agriculture, conservation, technology and genomics. In a perspective paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), 24 interdisciplinary experts comprising the Earth BioGenome Project Working Group, provide a compelling rationale on why the project should go forward and outline a roadmap for how it can be achieved. Harris A. Lewin, a distinguished professor of evolution and ecology at UC Davis, chairs the working group and is the lead author of the paper.... Read More
UC Davis Signs Agreement with Australian National Science Organization to Enhance Global Cross-Disciplinary Research
UC Davis announced a partnership with CSIRO, Australia’s preeminent national science organization. The partnership marks the first major collaboration agreement between CSIRO and an American university. The five-year partnership agreement encourages scientists and research facilities across the globe, including more than 4,500 CSIRO scientists, to seamlessly collaborate across disciplines including, but not limited to agricultural and environmental sciences, engineering and veterinary medicine. The collaboration was initiated by a joint effort involving the Office of Research and Office of Global Affairs.... Read More
News from our Startups
Landmark Study to Address Global Malnutrition and Restorative Effect of Infant Probiotic
Evolve BioSystems, Inc. and the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh announced a new collaboration, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, to study the use of Evivo in infants to aid in recovery from severe acute malnutrition (SAM)..... Read More
Symic Bio Announces 12-Month Results from the SHIELD Trial of SB-030 in Peripheral Vascular Disease
Symic Bio, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel matrix-targeting biotherapeutics, announced 12-month results from the Phase 1/2 SHIELD trial evaluating SB-030 in patients with peripheral vascular disease undergoing angioplasty.... Read More
Results from Symic Bio Liver Fibrosis Program Presented at the International Liver Congress 2018
Symic Bio presented results from a lead candidate therapy for liver fibrosis at the International Liver Congress 2018, the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver. Results demonstrated that treatment with matrix-targeting therapeutic candidate SBR-294 resulted in decreased liver fibrosis in two distinct preclinical models of liver fibrosis.... Read More
Novoheart Files Patent Application on Disease Modeling Based on Landmark Research Conducted During Second Contract with Global Pharma Partner
Novoheart filed a patent application on the use of its proprietary MyHeart™ Platform of human bioengineered heart tissues to create models for neurological diseases in which afflicted patients suffer and often die from cardiac dysfunction.... Read More
Sapience Therapeutics Enters into Drug Discovery Pact with the University of Bath
Sapience Therapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing peptide therapeutics to address difficult to treat oncology indications, announced that it has entered into a research collaboration agreement with the University of Bath to discover new therapeutic agents.... Read More
Sage Therapeutics Submits New Drug Application to U.S. FDA for Intravenous Brexanolone in the Treatment of Postpartum Depression
Sage Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel medicines to treat life-altering central nervous system (CNS) disorders, announced that the company has submitted a New Drug Application (NDA) to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its lead product candidate, an intravenous formulation of brexanolone (SAGE-547), for the treatment of postpartum depression (PPD).... Read More
Sage Therapeutics Presented at Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2018 Health Care Conference
Sage Therapeutics announced that members of the Sage management team participated in a fireside chat presentation at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2018 Health Care Conference.... Read More
Arcadia Biosciences’ Traits Increase Rice Yields By Double Digits
Arcadia Biosciences announced field trials results from the past two crop seasons showing significant yield gains in rice with three of Arcadia’s proprietary input traits stacked together.... Read More
Albert D. Bolles, Ph.D. Joins Arcadia Biosciences Board Of Directors
Arcadia Biosciences announced that Albert D. Bolles, Ph.D., a leading consumer food industry executive, has joined its board of directors. Bolles is the former executive vice president, chief technology and operations officer at ConAgra Foods.... Read More
Efficient Drivetrains Announces Industry-First Zero Emissions Agriculture Vehicle Application
Efficient Drivetrains announced the integration of its EDI PowerDrive™ 4000 into a Class-4 General Motors Low Cab Forward platform, creating an industry-first electrified work truck for agriculture applications.... Read More
Efficient Drivetrains Announces Production Release of Its EDI PowerDrive7000ev
Efficient Drivetrains announced the production release of its EDI PowerDrive™ 7000ev. The system has already been integrated by leading OEMs, and is suitable for school and mass transit buses, work and utility trucks, as well as logistics vehicle applications.... Read More
Efficient Drivetrains Expands Global IP Portfolio with Newly Granted Patent Awards
Efficient Drivetrains announced the significant expansion of its global patent portfolio, demonstrating the company’s strong commitment to innovation and technology leadership. The two patents are: US 9914361, Vehicle with AC-to-DC inverter system for vehicle-to-grid power integration, and US 9849869, Systems and methods for implementing dynamic operating modes and control policies for hybrid electric vehicle.... Read More
Regional Innovation News
Charting a Course to the Sacramento Region’s Future Economic Prosperity (Brookings Institution)
The six-county Sacramento Region is relatively prosperous compared to other large metro regions and has established a series of steps to reverse the troubling economic trajectory of 2006. These steps include focusing on the drivers of the region, such as innovation, talent, infrastructure and the built environment, and governance.... Read More
Marrone Bio Raises $12 Million in Secondary Stock Offering (Sacramento Business Journal)
Marrone Bio raised $12 million in a recently priced public offering. The company sold 7.275 million shares at $1.65 each. Marrone’s last public offering and debt to equity conversion covered $45 million of previous debt.... Read More
Marrone Bio Inks Pact with Israeli Agricultural Distributor (Sacramento Business Journal)
Marrone Bio announced a partnership Israeli agricultural products distributor, Lidorr Chemicals Ltd., to distribute 3 of Marrone’s environmentally responsible pest management products in Israel.... Read More
Davis Private Equity Firm Leads $75 Million Investment in Wine Distributor ( Sacramento Business Journal)
Davis-based private equity firm AGR Partners lead with a $75 million investment in Santa Rosa-based Vintage Wine Estates that has been acquiring wine brands to consolidate them under one name for marketing, distribution and sales. AGR Partners manages over $400 million, providing equity to food and agribusiness companies.... Read More
Another Merger Proposed for Folsom's PowerSchool, Along with a Partial Sale (Sacramento Business Journal)
PowerSchool, an online education technology provider for schools, will be merging with Austin, Texas-based PeopleAdmin, Inc. a talent-management provider for schools.... Read More
Startup of the Month: Trifecta (Comstock’s Magazine)
Trifecta, a Sacramento-based meal delivery service, was named the May Startup of the Month by Comstock's Magazine. Launched in 2015, Trifecta's meal delivery service caters to a wide range of dietary needs including paleo, vegan, and vegetarian, in addition to offering a number of a la carte offerings.... Read More
Central Valley Fund III Closes $200 Million Mezzanine Fund
CVF Capital Partners, the manager of the Central Valley Fund, announced the final closing of its latest mezzanine fund, The Central Valley Fund III. The Fund has $200 million of total committed capital, which it will deploy as mezzanine debt and equity capital to the lower-middle market. CVF will invest across a broad range of sectors and geographies in the Western U.S., with a particular focus on California and the Central Valley.... Read More
Innovation Insight
Expectations Rise on Q1 Surge in Venture Funding (Xconomy)
Venture Capitalists have invested over $28.2 billion into US companies in Q1 2018, making it the strongest first quarter in more than a decade. The nearly 1700 venture deals in Q1 2018 is also the lowest number of Q1 deals in over 5 years.... Read More
The USDA Says Crispr-Edited Foods are Just as Safe as Ones Bred the Old-Fashioned Way (Quartz)
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) will no longer regulate crops that have been genetically edited, including using CRISPR techniques. The USDA’s decision only applies to crops that have had some genes taken out, or which have had genes that are endemic to the species added to them. The decision about whether companies will have to disclose if foods the sell have been gene-edited is yet to be announced.... Read More
New Research Shows Successful Founders are Far Older Than the Valley Stereotype (TechCrunch)
In a new National Bureau of Economic Research working paper, researchers found that the average age of a founder among all startups that hire at least one employee is nearly 42 years. Researchers also found a correlation between founder's age and startup's strategic performance.... Read More
Angel Deals See Big Increase in Female Firms and Greater Geographic Diversity, According to HALO Report (State Science & Technology Institute)
According to the 2017 Angel Resource Institute’s (ARI) HALO Report, over one-fourth of the 2017 startup founders were female, up nearly 9% from the year prior. The geographic diversity of deals also continued to increase with an 8.7% bump in Texas, 9.8% in Southwest, and 13.4% in Southeast.... Read More
Funding Opportunities
VentureWell Faculty Grants
Application Deadline: May 23, 2018.... Learn More
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering-VentureWell DEBUT Challenge
Application Deadline: May 31, 2018.... Learn More
JLABS Mobile Wellness Challenge
Appilcation Deadline: June 1, 2018.... Learn More
Terra Accelerator - Cohort III
Application Deadline: June 8, 2018.... Learn More
Power Inn Alliance Making Your Mark Micro-Manufacturing Business Competition
Application Deadline: June 29, 2018.... Learn More
2018 Request for Innovators: IIFH FoodShot Fellowship
Application Deadline: June 30, 2018.... Learn More
VentureWell E-Team Grant Program
Application Deadline: July 10, 2018.... Learn More
Moneta Ventures Accepting Applications
Application Deadline: Ongoing... Learn More
UC Santa Cruz SVLink Accelerator
Application Deadline: Rolling Applications accepted on 15th of each month.... Learn More
California Technology Council First Pitch
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
Educational Opportunities
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Big Bang! Business Competition Finalist Presentations and Awards Ceremony
Date: May 24, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis World Food Center - Food for Thought Showcase
Date: June 4, 2018.... Learn More
Rosenman Institute D-Series: Forum on Medical Device Development
Date: June 5, 2018.... Learn More
CLSI Innovation Series: How to Find the Right Lab Space for Your Startup
Date: June 19, 2018.... Learn More
CLSI Professional Development Course: Understanding Drug Pricing and Reimbursement
Date: June 20, 2018.... Learn More
Rosenman Medical Device Symposium
Date: June 20, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Biomedical and Engineering Entrepreneurship Academy
Date: June 26-28, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Graduate School of Management Pitching Creative Ideas
Date: August 14, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship UC Entrepreneurship Academy
Date: September 12-14, 2018.... Learn More
Central Valley Entrepreneurship Academy
Date: October 2-4, 2018.... Learn More
SBIR/STTR Fall Innovation Conference
Date: October 23-25, 2018.... Learn More
Valley Ventures Spring 2018 Cohort
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Regional Events
Startup Grind Sacramento, Nicole Froker, Google for Entrepreneurs
Date: May 22, 2018.... Learn More
CleanStart Cleantech Meetup
Date: May 24, 2018.... Learn More
Greater Sacramento Economic Council Competitiveness Forum
Date: May 31, 2018.... Learn More
CALpital Connections: Increasing Global Fluency and Export Readiness
Date: June 7, 2018.... Learn More
Startup Grind Sacramento, Startup Summer Party
Date: July 10, 2018.... Learn More
Hacker Lab Hands-On Education
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Small Business Development Center Workshops
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Silicon Valley USPTO Workshops
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
1 Million Cups
Date: Weekly (Wednesdays).... Learn More
Industry Events
Drug Delivery West (San Francisco, CA)
Date: May 21-22, 2018.... Learn More
Redefining Early Stage Investments Conference (Boston, MA)
Date: June 4, 2018.... Learn More
American Association of Mass Spectrometry Annual Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: June 3-8, 2018.... Learn More
BIO International Convention (Boston, MA)
Date: June 4-7, 2018.... Learn More
2018 Deshpande Symposium for Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Higher Education (Lowell, MA)
Date: June 11-13, 2018.... Learn More
Future Food-Tech (New York, NY)
Date: June 19-20, 2018.... Learn More
Indoor AgTech Innovation Summit
Date: June 20-21, 2018.... Learn More
FOCiS Transnational Immunology Conference (San Francisco, CA)
Date: June 20-23, 2018.... Learn More
Date: July 10-12, 2018.... Learn More
New York Venture Summit (New York, NY)
Date: July 10-11.... Learn More
Seed Central
Date: Monthly, every second Thursday.... Learn More
About Venture Catalyst 
UC Davis Venture Catalyst facilitates the translation of University research and technology by enabling the development of new ventures. Venture Catalyst engages with the Davis and Sacramento business, governmental and economic development community to highlight the development of technologies and ventures coming out of UC Davis that will drive tomorrow’s regional job creation. Working closely with these partners, Venture Catalyst is invigorating the technology-based entrepreneurial ecosystem of the entire region. 
The Venture Catalyst START™ Suite of programs and services provides the ABCs to equip UC Davis entrepreneurs with the tools they need to form and grow robust startups. The program gives founders the START they need to create a well-structured company and ensure the company is prepared for success. 
Contact Venture Catalyst 
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