Download the newly released Innovation & Technology Commercialization Annual Report and the Venture Catalyst Infographic , which highlight progress in advancing innovation, startup development, and technology commercialization at UC Davis .
Venture Catalyst Launches Collaboration with Neuma LLC as a VentureNet TM Program Partner
Neuma LLC is the newest partner in the Venture Catalyst VentureNet program and will be offering participants in the Smart Toolkit for Accelerated Research Translation (START TM ) program access to a unique structure for engaging in medical device engineering services. Neuma LLC focuses on design for production, and leveraging the team’s experience developing electromechanical systems to produce robust, verifiable, reliable and manufacturable devices. Through the VentureNet package, Neuma LLC will provide a wide range of support including consultation, prototype and product development services, SBIR grant proposal assistance for engineering resources, and flexible engagement options.

To learn more about Neuma LLC, click here
Three UC Davis-Associated Innovations Recognized at Sacramento Region Innovation Awards
UC Davis-associated teams and their innovations were named as the winners in three categories for the fourth annual Sacramento Region Innovation Awards organized by Stoel Rives LLP, Moss Adams LLP, and the Sacramento Business Journal. The UC Davis-associated winners were:

Food & Agribusiness:
Government & Civic:
  • Small Molecule Drug Discovery and Development by EicOsis
UC Davis Venture Catalyst Knowledge Exchange
Pitching 101 – How to Present Your Startup and Technology Innovation to Potential Funders
Pitching an early-stage science- and technology-based startup to potential funders can be intimidating. Learning how to tailor your presentation and understanding what motivates funders to say yes are important aspects of preparing for your initial pitch. This talk, led by Kirsten Leute, Senior Vice President for University Relations at the venture fund Osage University Partners (OUP), will be structured around the firm’s many years of experience in hearing pitches and reviewing pitch decks to provide insight on creating and presenting an initial startup pitch to funders. The talk will delve into the venture capitalist mentality and will discuss the following areas:

  • Pitching guidelines and suggestions
  • Who pitches?
  • Essential elements of the deck – and how much of each element to present
  • Example slides
  • What next?

WHEN: Monday, December 16, 2019, 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

EVENT COST: Free (Registration Required)
EicOsis Receives $15M to Help Fund Human Clinical Trials of Non-opioid Pain Therapy
EicOsis LLC, a UC Davis-associated startup, has been awarded a $15 million grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to support human clinical trials of a non-opioid pain therapy. The technology of the lead compounds was developed at UC Davis in the lab of Professor Bruce Hammock. Hammock co-founded EicOsis in 2011 to provide a new analgesic solution for neuropathic pain management without the side effects of opioids and other standard pain therapies.... Read More
A Breath Test for Opioids
A test to detect opioid drugs in exhaled breath has been developed by engineers and physicians at UC Davis. A breath test could be useful in caring for chronic pain patients as well as for checking for illegal drug use. While the blood tests are the current gold standard, a reliable, noninvasive test would be a useful alternative. For this test, a mass spectrometry is used to identify compounds from the droplets in breath, which are condensed and are stored in a freezer until testing.... Read More
Aggie Square Launch Headquarters Opens
UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Aggie Square’s new launch headquarters on Stockton Boulevard in Sacramento. The headquarters is home to Aggie Square staff, the UC Davis Office of Public Scholarship and Engagement, and technology specialists from IBM. Construction for Aggie Square is planned to begin in mid-2021.... Read More
A Psychology Professor Researches Link Between Memories and Music
Petr Janata, professor in the UC Davis Department of Psychology and the Center for Mind and Brain, and colleagues have received a $274,750 grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke to explore these links between music and memory. The experiments are designed to demonstrate, using behavioral and brain imaging approaches, that music repeating in one's mind serves to strengthen memory, both for the music itself as well as non-musical information that has been associated with the music. Although music therapy has been in practice for many years, sound health research aims to advance understanding of music’s mechanism of action in the brain and how it may be applied more broadly to treat symptoms of diseases and disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, stroke, chronic pain and others.... Read More
New $1.5M Institute Will Harness the Data Revolution
A new institute at UC Davis will advance the fundamentals of data science and prepare students to solve data analysis and machine learning problems in diverse fields. Focusing on research and education, the UC Davis TETRAPODS Institute of Data Science (UCD4IDS) will collaborate with the recently-announced IMPACT Data Science Center and will serve as a hub for faculty, scholars, and students with interests and expertise in data science. Research at UCD4IDS will focus on fundamentals of machine learning directed toward biological and medical applications,optimization theory and algorithms for machine learning, and high-dimensional data analysis on graphs and networks.... Read More
$7M Grant to Study Cooperative Automated Vehicles in Rural and Multimodal Environments
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering professor Francis Assadian is a co-PI on a $7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation to study cooperative automated vehicles (CAVs) in rural and multimodal environments. CAVs interact with their environments, reading signals from other vehicles, road signs, road infrastructure, and objects in the road and respond in real time by alerting the driver of danger or automatically performing a safety maneuver such as braking or swerving to prevent accidents. Since most of the data collection for CAVs has been completed in big cities, the vehicles simply aren’t reliable on rural roads, which often have low-quality maps and lack markings and road signs.... Read More
New Law Sponsored by UC Will Allow Commercialization of Discoveries in State Parks
California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law a bill that creates a new way for researchers to commercialize scientific discoveries made at California state parks. Authored by Bill Dodd, D-Napa, Senate Bill 442 allows the state Department of Parks and Recreation to issue commercialization permits and set associated fees that can be used for the protection, conservation, and restoration of resources of the state park system. UC Davis became a major driver for the new legislation after Johan Leveau, a professor in the Department of Plant Pathology, discovered a anti-fungal microbe in soils from the Jug Handle State Natural Reserve along the Mendocino Coast but ran into hurdles translating his discovery into a public benefit because existing state law did not allow the commercialization of research materials from state parks.... Read More
Young Investigator Awarded $1 Million for Prostate Cancer Research
Tsung-Chieh (James) Shih has been awarded a $1 million Idea Development Award from the U.S. Department of Defense to study whether a novel combination drug therapy can be effective against advanced prostate cancer. Shih, a scientist in the UC Davis Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, hopes his research in mice will lead to a new weapon against metastatic prostate cancer.... Read More 
Startup News
EicOsis Awarded SBIR Grant from the NCI/NIH to Evaluate the Potential of Drug Candidate, EC5026, to Treat Cancer-associated Pain
EicOsis LLC, a pharmaceutical company developing a new oral non-narcotic analgesic has been awarded a $268,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The grant funding will support preclinical testing of EicOsis drug EC5026, an inhibitor of the soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) enzyme, for chronic neuropathic pain associated with certain chemotherapy drugs.... Read More
Shasqi Completes $10 Million Series A Financing
Shasqi, Inc., a privately held company focused on improving the localized delivery of cancer drugs to tumors, announced the completion of a $10 million Series A financing. The proceeds of the financing are being used to complete GMP manufacturing for the company’s lead drug candidate and to support a Phase 1 human trial, expected to commence in Q2 2020.... Read More
Arcadia Biosciences Announces Wheat Purchase Commitment, Significant Increase in GoodWheat™ Harvest Acres
Arcadia Biosciences announced it has secured its first purchase commitment for its high-fiber bread wheat for 2020 through its North American partner Bay State Milling Company. Arcadia also announced the successful harvest of its GoodWheat non-GM wheat varieties on 4,000 acres across Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon and Arizona.... Read More
Barobo Launches RoboBlockly Website for Learning Math and Coding through Robotics and Arduino
Barobo announced the launch of the latest version of its RoboBlockly online software for K-12 students learning math and coding through its innovative Linkbot robotics and Arduino physical computing programs.... Read More
Raydiant Oximetry Raises Series A Funding; Graduates from Fogarty Institute
Raydiant Oximetry, a startup that is developing an innovative fetal monitor to improve outcomes for mothers and babies during childbirth, closed a $5.6 million Series A funding round led by VCapital. The funding will go towards conducting a 60-patient study during labor and delivery.... Read More
Engage3 Moves Into New Office
Engage3 has moved into a larger office space in Downtown Davis, marking a new period in the company’s continuing expansion. The new location is larger than the two previous office spaces combined and gives the company room to grow and build on its engagement with UC Davis.... Read More
Startup Career Opportunities
Career Opportunities at Evolve Biosystems
Evolve Biosystems is currently hiring for two medical sales management positions.... Learn More
Career Opportunities at Chirp Microsystems
Chirp Microsystems is hiring for a director of marketing position.... Learn More
Career Opportunities at Sage Therapeutics
Sage Therapeutics is hiring for a wide range of positions from quality control internships to senior-director level positions.... Learn more
Career Opportunities at Novoheart
Novoheart is hiring for scientist and engineer positions.... Learn More
Regional Innovation News
SMUD to Seed Venture Capital Fund to Back Mobility Technology Startups (Sacramento Business Journal)
The Sacramento Municipal Utilities District or SMUD is raising a $100 million venture fund to support companies developing mobility technology. SMUD earlier launched the California Mobility Center with a $5 million investment. The California Mobility Center is a joint effort of local organizations including SMUD, the city of Sacramento and local universities, including UC Davis, to develop autonomous vehicle, electric vehicle and other low-carbon-emission transportation technology. .... Read More
Sacramento Municipal Utility District Named Innovator of the Year in 2019 Sacramento Region Innovation Awards (Stoel Rives LLP)
The 2019 Innovator of the Year for the Sacramento Region Innovation Awards has been awarded to the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD). SMUD has been very active in the community with its involvement in the California Mobility Center, the Powerhouse Science Center, HackerLab, CleanStart and other organizations, working to the progress region's innovative ecosystem.... Read More
Cesca to Launch Immune Cell Banking Service (Sacramento Business Journal)
Rancho Cordova-based Cesca Therapeutics has announced its joint venture with Irvine-based HealthBanks Biotech to create the first immune cell bank in the U.S. This venture would utilize Cesca’s CAR-TXpress platform..... Read More
City to Ante Up $1M for Tech, Startups (Techwire)
The Sacramento Urban Technology Lab (SUTL) is placing $1 million in grant funding to support an ecosystem that builds out IoT, cybersecurity, mobility and health, IT and life science verticals in Sacramento region. The grants are being awarded in three general categories: 1) Ecosystem Building Grants ($500,000), 2) SUTL Ecosystem Marketing ($150,000), and 3) Startup Sacramento Competition ($300,000).... Read More
PowerSchool Makes Its 10th Acquisition in Education Technology (Sacramento Business Journal)
Folsom-based PowerSchool acquired Schoology, a New York-based student learning technology company. This is PowerSchool's 10th acquisition in the education technology space. PowerSchool provides innovative, K-12 education technology software fueling better school management, student growth, and family engagement..... Read More
Innovation Insight
Data Show that Gender-Inclusive Founding Teams Have Greater Success in Fundraising and Innovation (Kauffman Fellows)
Research funded by Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation shows that startups with at least one female founder raise more investment funding than companies with only male founders. While the difference is notable for early stage rounds, it grows larger for further rounds of capital.... Read More
Perception is Reality: Data Reveal Gender Bias in Agri-Foodtech Investing (AgFunder)
A report published by AgFunder, Karen Karp & Partners and The New Food Economy in collaboration with S2G Ventures, discusses biases that impact access to capital for female founders and CEOs. The report states that only 7% of agri-foodtech deals and 3% of the investment amount went to female-founded teams in the agriculture and food technology space..... Read More
Pharma, Biotech VC Investments Continue Shift to Early Stage Deals ( Xconomy)
Venture Capital investments in biotech and pharmaceutical startups continue to shift towards early-stage deals. According to a report published by Pitchbook and the National Venture Capital Association, over half of the funding invested in startups since 2016 have been in the angel, seed, Series A, and Series B stages. This is a shift, where funding was previously focused towards more later stage deals.... Read More
Innovation on Hold For 1-out-of-4 SBIR Winners (State Science and Technology Institute)
On average, federal agencies fail 24% of the time to inform small businesses applicants of award decisions within required deadlines. The General Accounting Office found that the average days of late notification across all agencies was 46 days. The National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation were among the agencies with the best performance while the Department of Agriculture fell toward the lower end of the spectrum..... Read More
Five Years After Y Combinator First Admits Biotechs, They’re Dug In (Xconomy)
In 2014, the tech incubator Y Combinator began accepting life science startups into its program and, at the same time, raised its standard investments into admitted startups in recognition that life science companies generally need larger initial investments than most tech startups. Today, life science companies represent a notable percentage of accepted startups and, in recent years, some of these life science companies have been among the most successful graduates of the program.... Read More
Funding Opportunities
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship 20th Annual Big Bang! Business Competition
Early Application Deadline: December 11, 2019.... Learn More
VentureWell E-Teams Grants
Qualification Deadline: December 11, 2019.... Learn More
M12 Female Founders Competition
Application Deadline: December 15, 2019.... Learn More
Rice Business Plan Competition
Application Deadline: January 27, 2020.... Learn More
Arrow Capital Student-Run Venture Fund for UC Startups
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
USAID Development Innovation Ventures
Application Deadline: Ongoing.... Learn More
IndieBio Accelerator
Application Deadline: Currently accepting.... Learn More
Open SBIR/STTR Grant Topics. ... Learn More
Educational Opportunities
UC Davis Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship 20th Annual Big Bang! Business Competition Workshops Series
Workshop Dates: Through April, 2020.... Learn More
The Forum: The Essential Networking Event Powered by Seed Central
Date: Monthly, every second Thursday.... Learn More
Global Entrepreneurship Week at Sacramento State
Date: November 18-22, 2019.... Learn More
Johnson & Johnson Innovation Quick Pitch Competition
Application Deadline: November 22, 2019.... Learn More
2020 Sacramento Entrepreneurship Academy
Application Deadline: Early December, 2019.... Learn More
Regional Events
EmTech Ag Forum
Date: December 9, 2019.... Learn More
Greater Sacramento Economic Council Annual Dinner
Date: December 12, 2019.... Learn More
Hacker Lab Hands-On Education
Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
Bay Area NSF Innovation Corps Immersive Short Courses
 Date: Ongoing.... Learn More
AgStart Office Hours
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
Small Farm Tech Expo (Forestville, CA)
Date: December 9, 2019.... Learn More
Antibody Engineering and Therapeutics Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: December 9-13, 2019.... Learn More
Precision Ag VISION Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: January 14-16, 2020.... Learn More
Non-Dilutive Funding Summit (San Francisco, CA)
Date: January 15, 2020.... Learn More
Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening Annual Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: January 25-29, 2020.... Learn More
Pharmaceutical Market Research Conference (Newark, NJ)
Date: February 5-6, 2020.... Learn More
BIO CEO and Investor Conference (New York, NY )
Date: February 10-11, 2020.... Learn More
Startup Grind Global Conference (Silicon Valley, CA)
Discount Code for UC Davis Students: UCDavisStudent
Date: February 11-12, 2020.... Learn More
Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy (Chicago, IL)
Date: March 1-5, 2020.... Learn More
Analytica 2020 (Munich, Germany)
Date: March 31 - April 3, 2020.... Learn More
World AgriTech Innovation Summit (San Francisco, CA)
Date: March 17-18, 2020.... Learn More
Indoor Ag-Con (Las Vegas, NV)
Date: May 18-20, 2020.... Learn More
American Society for Mass Spectrometry Annual Conference (Houston, TX)
Date: May 31 - June 4, 2020.... Learn More
BIO International Conference (San Diego, CA)
Date: June 8-11, 2020.... Learn More
TechConnect World Innovation Conference & Expo (National Harbor, MD)
Date: June 29 - July 1, 2020.... 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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