Sunday, March 1, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Personalized chemotherapy technology wins honors at UCD

By
May 21, 2011 |

By Karen Nikos

A technology that could allow cancer specialists to better determine the most effective chemotherapy treatment for a given patient won the $10,000 first prize in the 11th annual Big Bang! Business Plan Competition at UC Davis.

A money-saving innovation that decreases the amount of rare and expensive platinum needed to make fuel cells won both the second-place $3,000 prize and the audience-selected People’s Choice
award of $2,000.

MBA students in the Graduate School of Management run the contest.

“This personalizes chemotherapy,” said Paul Henderson, an assistant adjunct professor of hematology and oncology at UC Davis Cancer Center and CEO of the winning company, Accelerated Medical Diagnostics.

About 70 percent of lung cancer patients, for example, get no benefit from chemotherapy, he explained in his presentation, “and they endure these terrible side-effects.”

The innovation, based on a technology called accelerator mass spectrometry, can trace a small dose of an anti-cancer drug in a patient prior to treatment, enabling doctors to determine if the treatment will work before administering a full dose. The approach could save billions of dollars in medical costs for ineffective treatments, and spare patients unnecessary side-effects.

“Our goal is to get the right therapy for the right tumor,” Henderson said. The procedure is now in early clinical testing in bladder and lung cancer patients.

Students helped Henderson obtain patents and develop a business plan. He said the technology could be on the market in two to four years, pending regulatory approval. He estimates that each test would cost the insurer or patient about $4,000 each.

ECO Catalytics, which has developed a nearly platinum-free fuel-cell catalyst material, won not only second prize, but the People’s Choice award, selected by a vote of the audience of about 120 at the final awards presentation. The presentation took place Thursday evening at the UCD Conference Center.

The ECO Catalytics technology reduces by 95 percent the amount of high-cost platinum used in electricity-generating fuel cells, potentially reducing fuel cell costs by a third. Fuel cells are used
in various industries, including as back-up power for cell phone towers, in forklifts used by retailer Walmart and others, and in the U.S. military, explained John-Paul Farsight, the UCD MBA student who delivered the presentation.

The team of MBA students and campus researchers also recently won third place in the 2011 Walmart Better Living Business Plan Challenge, which honors student entrepreneurship in environmental sustainability. That prize was worth $5,000 in seed funding.

Steven Currall, dean of the UCD School of Management, said the competition epitomizes what the school teaches its entrepreneurial students.

“Students learn to solicit funding, market their product nd engage customers,” he said. “The Big Bang! exemplifies what happens when you mix cutting-edge technology, a solid business plan
and prize money.

“It is the confluence of our students’ ingenuity, campuswide partnerships and the region’s business community.”

The competition brings together interdisciplinary teams of students, university researchers and faculty, with mentors from the region’s business community. Some of Northern California’s largest employers, venture capitalists and law firms provide the prize money, coaching and volunteer judges.

The Big Bang! has produced many teams that have become successful start-ups since its founding in 2000.

This is the second year Big Bang! organizers welcomed top teams from the Sacramento State College of Business Administration, which had a student on the winning team, and the Sacramento Entrepreneurship Academy.

Farsight said he and his team are excited to develop something that is both economically solid and ecological.

Although developing the fuel-cell technology commercially will cost millions at the outset, there is a promising market for the product, Farsight said.

“The amount of platinum in the world would only fill an Olympic-size swimming pool up to a little above your ankles. And that’s all there is. That is not sustainable,” he said.

Other final-round presenters included KardiaGenics, a biotech company developing a therapeutic treatment for heart failure using a proprietary screening technology; Fliksense, a company that licenses software technology to online video providers that enables them to offer better searches of video content; and Zinapt, which has developed a platform that could accurately detect infectious diseases for faster diagnosis at a lower price.

— UC Davis News Service

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Sheriff: Mother ‘sole person responsible’ for infant’s death

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Rifle Team has a blast with competitive shooting

    By Savannah Holmes | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Child abduction case in jury’s hands

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

     
    Pipeline project will soften water in 2016

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

    Pig out at Farmers Market’s Pig Day

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1

     
    Weekend storm drops snow, rain, hail in California

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Christie to Republicans: No rush to pick 2016 nominee

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Bob Dunning: Colon prep can be hard to swallow

    By Bob Dunning | From Page: A2

    Scouts help fill STEAC’s pantry

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Explore Asia at Arboretum storytime

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    MU Games closing in late March

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Still no parole in toddler case

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    City offers wetlands tour

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Parole denied in 1987 killing spree

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Young patients bond with special stuffies

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Diversity theater group continues creativity workshops

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Radio talk show moves to Mondays

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Assault awareness campaign kicks off

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A4

    UCD student with meningococcal disease is recovering

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    UCD student panel to cover anti-Semitism, Islamophobia

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

    Yolo Food Bank hosts thank-you breakfast on Pig Day

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    .

    Forum

    Milt Priggee cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: B4

     
    Rowing: PE as well as life skills

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

    Police complaint procedures drafted

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    Clarifying energy update letter

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

    Weekly claw pickup necessary

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    Mars or ISIS? Similar outcome

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

    City may get charged up over energy choices

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B4

     
    Design innovation centers for the 21st century

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B5

     
    Speak out

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B5

     
    A new perspective on life

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: A7

    Distant water crisis has lessons for Davis

    By Marion Franck | From Page: A7

     
    Call for study to settle if anesthesia poses risk to babies

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

    .

    Sports

    Winning close games is the key for DHS softballers

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Aggie men get a bounce-back win at Cal Poly

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    The mystery continues: lowly Gauchos upset UCD women

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Devils get a soccer win despite finishing woes

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Sports briefs: Razo throws well as Aggies get a baseball win

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Defending champion Blue Devils have diamond holes to fill

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    Republic FC falls to storied New York Cosmos

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B10

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Yolo Federal Credit Union honored for supporting business education

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

     
    Online store will celebrate, mock People’s Republic of Davis

    By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A10 | Gallery

    .

    Obituaries

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, March 1, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: B8