Startup Receives FDA Clearance for Polymer to Aid Bone Regrowth
Charles Lee - Molecular Matrix
Molecular Matrix, a biotechnology startup enabled by UC Davis, has received Food and Drug Administration clearance for a carbohydrate-based polymer that can help injured bones heal and regrow. Osteo-P™, a synthetic bone graft substitute, supports and guides the growth of new bone (such as when there is a loss of bone due to injury or surgery) after which the biomaterial is resorbed and replaced with the patients’ own bone during the healing process. With the 510(k) FDA clearance, Molecular Matrix will now be able to take Osteo-P to market.... Read More
Collaboration Between Science Exchange and UC Davis Venture Catalyst
Through a new partnership with Science Exchange within the UC Davis Venture Catalyst VentureNet™ program, START™ participants now have access to a customized marketplace for outsourced research and development services along with dedicated concierge sourcing support and a special contracting structure. The Science Exchange platform integrates a network of more than 2,500 verified scientific service providers offering over 6,000 research services with a system for consolidated sourcing, contracting, and payment processing.

Read more about the collaboration here

Please contact Venture Catalyst to learn more about the marketplace
Announcing 2017-18 STAIR and DIAL Grants
The Science Translation and Innovative Research (STAIR™) and Data, Informatics & Application Launch (DIAL™) Grant programs are now accepting applications for the 2017-18 program year. Funded through the Office of Research and managed by Venture Catalyst, the STAIR and DIAL Grants provide funding to UC Davis researchers to support translational science and innovative research.
New for 2017-18: Venture Catalyst and the UC Davis Innovation Institute for Food and Health (IIFH) are partnering to make an additional $25,000 in salary support available for graduate student, post-doctoral scholar or staff (including applicable fees and benefits) for one or two STAIR grants whose scope aligns with the IIFH vision of enabling safe, sustainable, and secure nutrition for all. This complements the ongoing collaboration with TechAccel focused on the animal health and agtech space.

Learn more about STAIR grant and DIAL grant
2018 Chancellor's Innovation Awards Accepting Nominations
Nominations for the Innovator of the Year award are due by March 12th and can be submitted by anyone within the campus community. 
The UC Davis Chancellor’s Innovation Awards are intended to recognize faculty members, community partners, and innovative leaders for their success in developing new technologies, making a societal impact, or driving other innovations based on university research or academic endeavors in the preceding calendar year. These innovators play an essential role in translating university research to improve the lives of others and address the needs of our global society.
The Innovator of the Year award recognizes individual faculty or staff, or teams (which may also include students) whose inventive, innovative or entrepreneurial activities have had a measurable societal impact in the last year, or those whose activities or achievements in the last year have a very strong potential to make a significant impact in the future. 

The nomination form and program details can be found here.
UC Davis Venture Catalyst Knowledge Exchange: Platform Translational Science
UC Davis Venture Catalyst will be hosting a Knowledge Exchange workshop on Wednesday, February 21, 2018. During this event, Alyssa Panitch, PhD, Edward Teller Professor and Chair, Biomedical Engineering - UC Davis, and John Paderi, PhD, Sr. Director of Research - Symic Bio, will discuss their experience translating a platform from the bench to a startup, back to the bench and then back to a startup again. Both faculty and trainee perspectives will be shared.... Learn More and Register
Sacramento Kings CAPITALIZE Accepting Applications
The Sacramento Kings are looking for the most promising startups in the greater Sacramento area to compete in the third Capitalize startup contest. The Kings are committed to supporting local entrepreneurs, and growing the innovation economy of the Sacramento Region. Capitalize extends this commitment to the community by providing an opportunity for innovators to showcase new products and services on the NBA's global stage. The Kings will also host a workshop to help founders build and refine their pitches. Startups within 75 miles of Sacramento can submit applications through February 19, 2018. The winning company will receive a $10,000 prize and an opportunity to pitch to leading angel investors..... Read More
HaneyBiz: If You Build It, They Will Come - with Dushyant Pathak 
On January 22, 2018, Mark Haney of the HaneyBiz Project interviewed Dushyant Pathak, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research and Executive Director of Venture Catalyst at UC Davis. They discussed entrepreneurship, intellectual property, university technology commercialization. The HaneyBiz Project Radio Show, hosted by Mark Haney, is a platform focused on igniting the entrepreneurial revolution in Sacramento.... Watch the Interview
Seeds of Innovation (Comstock’s Magazine)
UC Davis is a world leader in plant and agriculture sciences research, which plays a vital role in making the Capital Region one of the most innovative hubs in the vegetable seed industry. Eight of the world’s 10 largest vegetable seed companies are strategically located near UC Davis. Additionally, more than 80 seed industry companies are within 100 miles, and 300 are within 300 miles of the university. Seed Central, a public-private partnership launched in 2010 by the UC Davis Seed Biotechnology Center and Francois Korn, CEO of SeedQuest, plays a key role in uniting region's seed industry. Another important regional driver is UC Davis' own plant varieties patents, which generate a large source of revenue for the university. The campus currently manages about 70 plant variety patents, bringing in about $14 million annually.... Read More
SmartFarm: Creating the Farm and Farmworkers of the Future
SmartFarm is a concept for the farm of the future that will develop new innovative smart machines, smart sensing of the environment, smart plants and smart farming methods, and will lead the way forward for world food security and the environmental, economic and social sustainability of the food production system by the year 2050. The SmartFarm initiative is led by UC Davis Biological and Agricultural Engineering Professor David Slaughter. Slaughter is working to attract funding that will move SmartFarm from a collection of ideas and programs to an integrated initiative. He hopes to establish a physical presence for the initiative on the UC Davis campus, with labs and workshops, experimental fields, educational space and a “droneport” for working with unmanned aerial vehicles.... Read More
Earth BioGenome Project to Sequence All Life
In an effort to protect and preserve the Earth’s biodiversity and kick-start an inclusive bio-economy, the World Economic Forum announced a landmark partnership between the Earth BioGenome Project, chaired by Harris Lewin, distinguished professor at UC Davis, and the Earth Bank of Codes to map the DNA of all life on Earth. The announcement was made at the 48th World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland. The Earth Biogenome Project aims to sequence the DNA of all the planet’s eukaryotes, some 1.5 million known species, including all known plants, animals and single-celled organisms. The ambitious project will take 10 years to complete and cost an estimated $4.7 billion.... Read More
California Energy Alliance Code Change Proposal Accepted (EC&M)
The California Energy Alliance (CEA) announced that its code change proposal — dedicated to improving the lighting control requirements for lighting alterations — was accepted by the California Energy Commission (CEC) in its recently published Draft Express Terms. This publication commences the formal rulemaking process for the 2019 updates to California’s Building Energy Efficiency Standards. CEA was a spin-off organization from UC Davis California Lighting Technology Center.... Read More
How Colleges Can 'De-Risk' Innovation (EducationDIVE)
Universities play an increasingly important role in de-risking innovation. Supporting innovation and technology commercialization from students to faculty is key to building successful startups. “It’s really critical that universities play a lead role in innovation and startups,” said William Tucker, executive director of Innovation Access at UC Davis. One example of the university playing a lead role is the case of Tony Simon, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral science at UC Davis. UC Davis helped Simon to launch a startup company to develop video games that act as “digital medicine” for treating children with cognitive impairments, as well as people with cognitive limitations resulting from brain injury or aging. Providing funding is another avenue where UC Davis 'de-risks' innovation. For example, UC Davis will provide up to $50,000 to promising research projects by faculty members seeking to move technology to commercialization. It also offers wraparound services, such as training in business development and proof of concept, to help attract outside venture capital.... Read More
News from our Startups
Sage Therapeutics Receives FDA Breakthrough Therapy Designation for SAGE-217 for the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder
Sage Therapeutics announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to SAGE-217 for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). This is the second Breakthrough Therapy designation granted to Sage since 2016.... Learn More
Sage Therapeutics Announces Positive Results from Placebo-Controlled Trial in a Model of Insomnia Demonstrating Activity on Sleep Parameters and Supporting Development of SAGE-217 as Potential Treatment for Sleep Disorders
Sage Therapeutics announced positive results from a Phase I/Phase II, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of SAGE-217 in the treatment of healthy adult volunteers using a 5-hour phase advance model of insomnia using polysomnography.... Learn More
Novoheart Files Patent Application on Three-Tier Drug Screening System After Successful Collaboration Contract with Global Pharma Company
Novoheart announced that it has filed a provisional patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for a three-tiered drug screening system with enhanced capability, sensitivity and accuracy for detecting pharmacological effects on heart contractility that cannot be achieved with conventional models. The application resulted from the company's collaborative contract with a multi-national global pharma company.... Read More
Novoheart Announces Successful Completion of Second Commercial Contract with Global Pharmaceutical Company
Novoheart announced the successful completion of a second commercial contract with a major global pharma partner. The second contract was initiated after a successful initial collaboration that validated the drug screening capabilities of Novoheart's proprietary MyHeart™ Platform.... Read More
Symic Bio Appoints Hicham Alaoui, Ph.D., as Senior Vice President of Discovery Biology
Symic Bio, a biopharmaceutical company developing novel matrix-targeting biotherapeutics, today announced the appointment of Hicham Alaoui, Ph.D. as senior vice president of discovery biology. With this appointment, Dr. Alaoui will lead research into the identification and characterization of novel therapeutics enabled by the Symic Bio platform..... Read More
Symic Bio Completes the MODIFY2 Phase 2 Trial of SB-061 for the Treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis
Symic Bio announced topline results from the MODIFY2 Phase 2 clinical trial of SB-061 for symptom management in mild-to-moderate osteoarthritis of the knee. The 12-week, multicenter, double-blind trial of 60 patients was designed to investigate the effects of SB-061 in the overall population, as well as a prespecified subpopulation of patients with knee effusions.... Read More
Molecular Matrix Adds Steve Whitlock To Management Team
Molecular Matrix, Inc., a biotechnology company developing an innovative tissue regeneration technology for orthopedic applications, announced the appointment of Steve Whitlock as Chief Commercial Officer. Steve has over 25 years of orthopedics industry experience and comes to MMI from Spindletop Capital of Austin, TX, a healthcare investment firm focused on providing expansion capital for commercial stage healthcare companies, where he was Managing Director for the past four years..... Read More
Evolve BioSystems Partners With King’s College London to Resolve Gut Dysbiosis in C-Section Delivered Infants
Evolve BioSystems announced a collaboration with King’s College London to study the effects of the probiotic Evivo TM  (Bifidobacterium longum subsp. infantis) in improving gut health in Caesarean-section delivered infants.... Read More
Evolve Biosystems Among AgFunder Innovation Awards Finalists
Evolve BioSystems was selected among the finalists for the AgFunder Innovation Awards in the "Most Innovative US Startup Series A and Beyond" category.... Read More
MUSE: Simple Slide-Free Microscopy (Photonics Media)
MUSE Microscopy introduced a new technique, which skips traditional histology steps, to speed up diagnosis and allow for views that are not possible with conventional sectioning.... Learn More
DialSource Raises $4.75 Million in Venture Capital (Sacramento Business Journal)
Sacramento-based tech company, DialSource, announced that it has raised $4.75 million in venture capital funding.... Read More
Efficient Drivetrains Delivers its Largest Electric Bus Order for Nantong, China
Efficient Drivetrains announced the successful fulfillment of its largest order of all-electric buses for leading manufacturer in China, Golden Dragon.... Read More
Regional Innovation News
State Treasurer Launches Website for Business Owners to Find Incentive Opportunities (Sacramento Business Journal)
The California State Treasurer’s Office launched the California Business Incentives Gate (CBIG) website for business owners to search for government and nonprofit incentive opportunities. Some of the incentive opportunities available on the site include sales tax exclusions, training grants, fee waivers, permit assistance, and reduced utility rates.... Read More
Higher Education R&D Expenditures Distributed Unevenly Across Metro Areas (State Science and Technology Institute)
Overall growth of higher education R&D expenditures rose by $7.6 billion from 2011 to 2016. Sacramento ranked in the Top 10 of Extra-Large Metro areas for expenditure with $62 million and in the Top 20 for expenditure by intensity, with $762.57 million in 2016.... Read More
Davis Solar Company Shines with Big-Name Projects (Davis Enterprise)
Davis-based Blue Oak Energy, a solar company that designs and installs solar panels for commercial, government, and agriculture, announced that it has signed large contracts with the Golden 1 Center, REI Stores, the Oakland International Airport, and Google headquarters.... Read More
Oak Park Wins the Bulk of the 2017 Creative Economy Grant for Food-Related Projects (Comstock’s Magazine)
The Sacramento City Council approved the Creative Economy Grant pilot project launched by Mayor Darrell Steinberg’s office in the summer of 2017. Sacramento’s Oak Park neighborhood won the bulk of the available funding. Other winners include the Sacramento Food Policy Council Sacramento High School community garden.... Read More
What's Next for Sacramento Region’s Economy? Here are Some Forecasts (Sacramento Business Journal)
During the release of the 2018 Sacramento Business Review event, Chase Armer (Planned Solutions Inc.), Elizabeth Lyon (California State University Sacramento), Joe Niehaus, (Golden 1 Credit Union), and Matt Cologna (Cushman & Wakefield) offered their outlook on the regional economy. The overarching sentiment was cautious optimism. Even though Sacramento’s economy seems to have recovered from the Great Recession, there may be a market correction in the offing. .... Read More
Greater Sacramento's Amazon Bid Gains Second Life as Marketing Blueprint (Sacramento Business Journal)
Despite not making Amazon’s cut for a potential second HQ, the Greater Sacramento Economic Council’s bid package remains as a resource in discussions with other companies. The proposal addressed the availability of talent in the region, its connection to the Bay Area tech industry, and its relative affordability in the state.... Read More
Innovation Insight
Venture Capital Investing Hits Highest Since Dot-Com Boom (Bloomberg)
According to Pitchbook, US venture capital firms invested over $84 billion in 8,000 companies in 2017 with companies deciding to stay private longer. The largest deals included Lyft Inc.’s two rounds, totaling over $2.5 billion, WeWork Cos.’s $3 billion, and $450 million by Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp.... Read More
$11 Billion Biotech Binge Fuels Forecasts of 2018 M&A Surge (Reuters)
Reports from Consultancy EY and law firm Baker McKenzie predict a large surge in life science deals and M&A by large pharmaceutical companies in 2018. Even though some bankers believe that the US tax overhaul had a relatively limited impact on deal negotiations, they do forecast that major biopharma companies may keep more cash reserved for mergers and acquisitions in 2018.... Read More
Brown Pushes Accelerator on Zero-Emission Vehicle Goals (Sacramento Business Journal)
Governor Brown signed an eight-year, $2.5 million executive order to increase the supply of zero-emission vehicles and charging stations all across California. The initiative is expected to continue the state’s rebates on zero-emission vehicles and promote infrastructure innovations with 250,000 new electric charging stations and 200 new hydrogen fueling stations by 2025.... Read More
Agtech Exits: 2017 Activity Generates Cautious Optimism for 2018 (AgFunder News)
Overall, 2017 was a good year for agtech exits - not only because exits in agtech have been more frequent, but because Deere & Company and Dow DuPont, major players in the agtech industry, made acquisitions. This could be a signal that the large strategic players will have more money and time to pursue more exits in 2018.... Read More
Funding Opportunities
Bay Area Global Health Innovation Challenge
Applications Open: February 16, 2018.... Learn More
M2D2 $200K Challenge
Application Deadline: February 19, 2018.... Learn More
Johns Hopkins Healthcare Design Competition
Application Deadline: February 19, 2018.... Learn More
QB3 Biotech/Biopharma Pitch Summit
Application Deadline: February 20, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Big Bang! Business Competition Prizes, Workshops, and Events
Application Deadline: February 21, 2018.... Learn More
Women’s Business Enterprise National Council Student Entrepreneur Program
Application Deadline: February 23, 2018.... Learn More
California Sustainable Energy Entrepreneur Development Initiative (CalSEED)
Application Deadline: February 28, 2018.... Learn More
Valley Ventures Cohort
Application Deadline: March 1, 2018.... Learn More
VentureWell BMEidea Competition
Application Deadline: April 4, 2018.... Learn More
Creator Challenge Series
Ideathon Date: April 28, 2018
Create-a-Thon Date: May 4, 2018... Learn More
Little Bang! Poster Competition
Event Date: May 24, 2018.... Learn More
California Technology Council First Pitch
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
Educational Opportunities
California CleanTech Grant
Date: March 1, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Ignite Conference
Date: March 7-10, 2018.... Learn More
AgStart Early-stage Financing for Technology-led Businesses Workshop
Date: February 21, 2018
Special Offer: Enter INNOV18-OTM for a 80% discount .... Learn More
VentureWell OPEN Annual Conference
Date: March 22-24, 2018.... Learn More
UC Davis Quantitative Health Research Symposium
Date: May 2, 2018.... Learn More
DOE Joint Genome Institute Genomics of Energy and Environment Meeting
Date: March 13-16, 2018.... Learn More
SBIR/STTR Spring Innovation Conference
Date: May 14-16, 2018.... Learn More
SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Regional Events
Startup Grind Sacramento, Ken Ouimet, Engage3
Date: February 20, 2018.... Learn More
Healthcare Leadership Forum
Date: February 23, 2018.... Learn More
Startup Weekend Rocklin
Date: February 23-25, 2018.... Learn More
CleanStart CleanTech Meetup! - Waste Conversion: BioMass, BioFuels, BioChem
Date: February 27, 2018.... Learn More
SVP Sacramento Fast Pitch
Date: March 8, 2018.... Learn More
Startup Grind Sacramento, Tyler Smith, SkySlope
Date: March 13, 2018.... Learn More
Hacker Lab Hands-On Education
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Small Business Development Center Workshops
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
Food Processing Expo (Sacramento, CA)
Date: February 21-22, 2018.... Learn More
Pittcon 2018 (Orlando, FL)
Date: February 26-March 1, 2018.... Learn More
Venture Summit West (Santa Clara, CA)
Date: March 13-14, 2018.... Learn More
World AgriTech Innovation Summit (San Francisco, CA)
Date: March 20-21, 2018.... Learn More
Analytica 2018 (München, Germany)
Date: April 10-13, 2018.... Learn More
Crop, Animal and Food Tech Showcase (Durham, NC)
Date: April 24-25, 2018.... Learn More
Xconomy Big Data Meets Big Biology (San Diego, CA)
Date: April 26, 2018.... Learn More
TechConnect World Innovation Conference & Expo (Anaheim, CA)
Date: May 13-16, 2018.... Learn More
BIO International Convention (Boston, MA)
Date: June 4-7, 2018.... 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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