University of Colorado
Technology Transfer Office
Monthly Newsletter
January 2009 - Vol 5, Issue 7
TTO Logo & CU Logo
What's Inside
CU Technology in the News
CU Resources
Upcoming Events
Innovation in the News
External Resources
Parting Quote
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Spotlight On:

CU-Boulder Technology of the Month:

CU1144B - Affinity Tag-Based Purification Method for Native RNA Molecules


UC Denver Technology of the Month:

CU1658H - MicroRNA Assay Kit


CU Licensee Company of the Month:

ColdQuanta, Inc. is a Boulder-based company formed in 2007 to develop CU technology related to ultracold devices, instruments and systems, making them accessible to a wide range of research, educational, and industrial institutions. The company's first product, the RuBECi™, streamlines the formation of ultracold matter and dramatically reduces research and development time, clearing the way for commercial application of Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC), a new form of matter discovered at CU-Boulder in 1995, as well as related forms of ultra-cold matter. Ultracold states of matter such as BEC have potential applications in a wide range of research and commercial settings, ranging from atomic clocks, inertial sensing instruments and the improvement of frequency standards, to magnetic field sensing, or further out, quantum computing.


The technology underlying the RuBECi™ was developed over the last decade by CU-Boulder faculty member Dr. Dana Z. Anderson, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer of ColdQuanta. Dr. Anderson's collaborators have included Dr. Eric Cornell and Dr. Carl Wieman, recipients of a 2001 Nobel Prize for the achievement of BEC in an atomic vapor. In 2007 the company received a $100K Proof of Concept investment from TTO to support the development of the commercial prototype.

Today at the TTO

2009 TTO Awards

CU Announces Annual Technology Transfer Award Winners
On January 12 TTO presented its annual awards to researchers working in areas ranging from cancer treatments to vascular imaging to fuel cells, and to companies and business advisors supporting innovation:

-Distinguished Interdepartmental Inventors:
 Dr. Theodore W. Randolph & Dr. John F. Carpenter

-Inventor of the Year, CU-Boulder: Dr. Richard D. Noble

-Inventors of the Year, UC Denver:
 Dr. John D. Carroll & Dr. Shiuh-Yung (James) Chen

-New Inventors of the Year, UC Denver:
 Dr. Heide L. Ford
& Dr. Rui Zhao

-New Inventor of the Year, CU-Boulder: Dr. Hang (Hubert) Yin

-New Inventor of the Year, Colorado Springs: Dr. Sara Honn Qualls

-Business Advisor of the Year: Boulder Innovation Center,
 Executive Director Tim Bour

-Physical Sciences/Engineering/IT Company of the Year: KM Labs, Inc.

-Bioscience Company of the Year: Taligen Therapeutics,Inc.

-Lifetime Inductee into the Pinnacles of Inventorship: 
 Dr.V. Michael Holers

(Photos of the awards event are available via

ION Engineering to Commercialize CU Carbon-Capture Technology
TTO recently executed an exclusive option agreement with ION Engineering for the right to commercialize technology enabling efficient and economical capture of CO2 and other contaminants from natural gas wells and coal-fired power plant emissions. The technology was developed by Jason Bara, Dean Camper, Richard Noble and Douglas Gin, all researchers in CU-Boulder's Department of Chemical & Biological Engineering. ION Engineering will also receive a $100K Proof of Concept Investment from the CU Technology Transfer Office and the CU-Boulder Energy Initiative. Using this funding, ION Engineering has constructed a continuously operating demonstration unit, and is scaling the technology for industrial CO2 capture and natural gas processing. Based in Boulder, ION Engineering was formed in 2008 by Bara and Camper, along with Christopher Gabriel, a research associate at CU. The company is headed by Dr. Alfred "Buz" Brown, also a founder, who brings more than 30 years of technology commercialization and venture creation experience.

LineRate Systems Options CU Software Acceleration Technology, Receives POC Investment
Newly-formed LineRate Systems recently secured an exclusive option for high-rate software processing technology developed at CU-Boulder by LineRate Systems co-founders John Giacomoni (Dept. of Computer Science) and Manish Vachharajani (Dept. of Electrical & Computer Engineering). LineRate Systems' initial products will be network appliances designed to optimize web delivery in data centers or the cloud for enterprise and mid-market customers. The company plans to introduce its first product targeted at load balancing in mid-2009, with the help of a $50K Proof of Concept Investment (POCi) from the CU Technology Transfer Office. (Read the full press release by following the link above.)

TTO and Energy Initiative Announce Renewable Energy Proof-of-Concept Grants
The University of Colorado has selected four projects for funding under a new partnership between the TTO and the CU-Boulder Energy Initiative (EI). These grants, known as 'proof of concept' grants, are designed to fill a funding gap between basic research funding and industrial commercialization of technology, and will help move CU-Boulder renewable energy and cleantech inventions towards commercial readiness. Projects were selected for POC funding by the TTO and EI using a competitive internal application process. The winning grant proposals were:

-Conrad Stoldt, "Optimization of Silicon and Germanium Nanocrystal Solar Cell Architecture for Large Scale Manufacturing and Commercialization" - improved nano-scale materials for solar photovoltaics.

-Chen Li, "Micro-scale Hybrid Wick Heat Pipe Cooling System for High Concentration Photovoltaic Cell" - micro-scale heat management for more efficient solar cells.

-Will Medlin, "Bifunctional Catalysts" - efficient production of fuels and chemicals from renewable biomass feedstocks.

Additionally, one proposal was funded as a $100,000 proof of concept investment to ION Engineering, a newly-formed company based on technology from CU-Boulder. The proposal, "Continuous Process for the Removal of Carbon Dioxide from Natural Gas and Fossil Fuel Power Plant Emissions" (Jason Bara, Dean Camper, Christopher Gabriel, Richard Noble and Douglas Gin) provides for a more efficient and effective approach to the capture of CO2 and other contaminants in natural gas processing and coal-fired power plant emissions (see press release above).

TTO Releases Working Paper: Entrepreneurial Handbook
TTO, in collaboration with contributors from Snell & Wilmer L.L.P. and  the Entrepreneurial Law Clinic at CU's School of Law, has developed a new publication for CU faculty entrepreneurs, entitled 'Starting a Startup: Successfully Managing the Dynamics of a New Company'. The working paper version was released in January 2009, and is available in PDF format by following the link above. By releasing the document in this form, TTO is soliciting feedback from the entrepreneurial technology community - please address any comments on this working paper to David Allen (email). Based upon community input and revision, TTO will announce the release and availability of the final document on our website and in our monthly newsletter.

Pre-proposals Being Accepted for Renewable Energy Proof of Concept Grants
The TTO and the Energy Initiative at CU-Boulder will soon announce the spring 2009 solicitation for Proof of Concept proposals of up to $50,000 in all areas related to the development of renewable and sustainable energy sources as well as efficient utilization of energy. In order to be eligible, CU-Boulder investigators must complete an invention submission and a one-page pre-proposal by Friday, February 20, 2009 and attend at least one meeting with representatives from the TTO, EI and the Boulder Innovation Center prior to submitting a full proposal in March.  The one-page pre-proposal should be a preliminary description of the research project and an explanation of how the project would enhance the commercial potential of the invention. More information will be posted at by the end of this week.

CU Technology and Licensee Companies in the News

Sierra Neuro a BusinessWeek Top Startup of 2008
CU licensee Sierra Nueropharmaceuticals, Inc.was named one of BusinessWeek magazine's Most Successful Startups of 2008. The company was founded in 2005 based on drug reformulation technology developed by UC Denver's Dan Abrams, and received a $21.5M VC investment in 2008.

Archemix Forges $1.42B Collaboration with GSK
In late December CU licensee Archemix Corp. inked a deal to collaborate with GlaxoSmithKline to develop new aptamer drugs. Archemix gets $27.5M in upfront payments from GSK, and is eligible for up to $200M in development, regulatory and sales milestone payments for each of seven aptamer therapeutics.

RealD Takes 3D Spotlight at CES
CU licensee RealD showcased its innovations in 3D entertainment at the 2009 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January, including the first live 3D broadcast of the college football FedEx Bowl Championship Series (BCS) title game. In 2007 RealD acquired ColorLink, Inc., a company founded around technology from CU-Boulder, to supply the key technical components for the next generation of 3D movies.

BiOptix: Small Steps to Big Dreams with Biomolecule Detection System
The excitement is evident in Founder and CEO Dr. Misha Plam's eyes when he talks about the 2009 launch of the BiOptix biomolecule detection system, which creates possibilities in many markets - from fast and accurate point of care diagnostics to biological warfare agent detection and forensics.

C2B2 Announces 2008 Seed Grant Funding Awards
The Colorado Center for Biorefining and Biofuels (C2B2), a partnership of four Colorado institutions headquartered at CU-Boulder, has announced 12 proposals that have been selected for $50,000 grants through its 2008 seed grant program. The seed grant funding is awarded annually with the objective of furthering fundamental understanding and developing new technologies relevant to the commercialization of sustainable biorefining and biofuels processes.


UC Denver Researcher to Receive 2009 Crafoord Prize in Polyarthritis
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences recently announced that it will award its 2009 Crafoord Prize in Polyarthritis to Charles Dinarello (UC Denver School of Medicine), along with Tadamitsu Kishimoto and Toshio Hirano (both of Japan's Osaka University), for their pioneering work to isolate interleukins, determine their properties and explore their role in the onset of inflammatory diseases.

Biotech Executive John Collar Named Executive Director of the Colorado BioScience Association
Following an extensive national search, John Collar, Chief Operating Officer of Westminster-based Matrilinex, has been named Executive Director of the Colorado BioScience Association (CBSA). A seasoned senior executive, Collar has a background of solid corporate experience with a proven track record for strategic planning, managing to metrics, and c-level operational responsibilities. He succeeds Denise Brown, Founding Executive Director of CBSA, who retired from the association in September after six years of dedicated service.

Do you know of a recent award, new position or transition of interest to the CU tech community? Please send information to
TTO's Learning Laboratory: The Student Connection

TTO Seeking Summer Business, Law and Technology Interns
TTO offers CU students an exciting internship experience very different from a typical internship with an established company. TTO intern projects may be focused on a start-up company focused or related to the broader duties of TTO such as assessing intellectual property (IP) and securing licensees for CU IP.  Depending on skills, knowledge and interest, interns may be assigned to technologies with "startup potential" or to inventions submitted by CU research investigators. CU student interns are given considerable autonomy and structured mentoring on projects through TTO.  During the course of the summer, interns meet with inventors, TTO licensing staff, business drivers and advisors, depending on the focus of their internship. Most interns are first-year MBA students; however, upper class undergraduate and graduate students in business, law and technology related majors are also encouraged to apply. Interns receive unparalleled exposure to interesting early-stage technologies and the Front Range professional business community.   Some interns will work with technology entrepreneurs who are potential CEOs for new ventures. Interns will work at the TTO offices in Boulder (CU Foundation Building) and Aurora (adjacent to Anschutz Medical Campus).  For more information or to submit your resume and cover letter, contact CU-Boulder TTO Director Kate Tallman or UC Denver TTO Director Rick Silva .

CU Resources

CU Cancer Center DNA Sequencing & Analysis Core Lab
The CU Cancer Center DNA Sequencing Core was established in the fall of 1995, and offers rapid sequencing of DNA to UCCC members as well as to academic and industrial researchers in Colorado.  The Core started with two automated single-lane, four-color fluorescent slab-gel automated sequencers (ABI 373A-XL and ABI 377-XL), which have now been replaced with two automated DNA sequencers; a 16-capillary (ABI 3100) and a 48-capillary (ABI 3730, the only one in Colorado), which can provide over 650 and 900 bp of usable DNA sequence, respectively.  The Core also offers DNA profiling for identification and authentication of cell lines.  In the near future, the Core will start to offer CAP-approved screening of clinical samples for mutations in the exons of specific genes implicated in cancer (e.g., VHL, p53, pTEN, FLT3).

The Core offers expert technical advice on the best strategy for individual sequencing projects, troubleshooting of PCR and DNA sequencing projects, and analysis of sequences with a suite of computer programs.  The results are provided, in confidence, as chromatograms and computer disk files, with backup copies kept in-house.  These services are priced very competitively for both academic and industrial researchers. Contact online or via email.
Upcoming Events

BioBreakfast and Bioscience Day at the Capitol
January 23, Colorado State Capitol, Denver

Join CBSA at the Colorado State Capitol for a day of activities celebrating the bioscience industry. Mingle and listen to state legislators as they discuss their vision for the industry and learn about the accomplishments and discoveries made in our state. A press conference will also be held by the CBSA and the Governor's Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) to publicly release the Colorado Bioscience Roadmap 2008 to conclude the day's events.


CU New Venture Challenge Crash Course: Marketing for Web-based Startups
January 27, CU-Boulder

As part of its initiative to further information technology related-innovation and galvanize entrepreneurship in the region, the Silicon Flatirons Center is offering a Crash Course Series for Entrepreneurs to the outside community and students and faculty. This series provides focused discussion on legal and business topics that entrepreneurs will confront when launching new ventures (part of the CU New Venture Challenge.)


Protecting Intangible Assets: Strategies for an Ever-Changing Legal and Business Landscape

January 28, Patton Boggs LLP, Denver

This panel discusison will offer conclusions and proactive strategies for building simple yet effective approaches to identifying, evaluating, protecting and - most importantly - exploiting companies' assets (intellectual, intangible and tangible) in today's climate. The panel will touch on several topics including "freedom to operate" vs. "gotcha" on infringement, as well as license in, license out or cross license.


Feld-Weiser One-on-One: Feld on Finance

February 3, CU-Boulder

Over the next year, Phil Weiser, Professor of Law and Telecommunications, will interview local venture capitalist Brad Feld on topics ranging from financing strategies for start-ups to the nature of innovation to what makes a successful entrepreneurial ecosystem to managing work-life balance. The first interview (immediately preceding the Boulder/Denver New Tech Meetup) will focus on basic questions around the state of corporate finance and what it means for start-ups, evaluating the role of angel financing, venture capital, private equity as well as the public debt and equity markets.


Boulder/Denver New Technology Meetup Group
February 3, CU- Boulder
This ongoing event provides a forum for technologists and entrepreneurs to showcase the new (especially web-based) technology developing in Boulder/Denver tech community. Five companies have five minutes each to demonstrate their new technology, followed by five minutes for Q&A from the audience.


Metro Denver WIRED Initiative Technology Translation Workshop

TBD (February 9 or 16), Location TBA

A key part of taking a discovery, invention or technology innovation to market is overcoming a very real communication barrier. This Technology Translation Workshop will focus on translating the scientific and patent language descriptions of technologies available from federal, university, and private laboratories into the language of business and marketing.


Rocky Mountain Sustainability Summit: Forging Solutions at Colleges and Universities

February 11-13, CU-Boulder
The 2009 Rocky Mountain Sustainability Summit (RMSS) will provide a learning and networking forum for students, faculty, staff, administrators, community members and state leaders from campuses in the Rocky Mountain region learn from each other, replicate successful initiatives and innovate effective programs to make the region's higher education institutions national leaders in campus sustainability and climate action.


Colorado Green Tech Meetup

February 12, CU-Boulder

An ongoing event to support eco-entrepreneurs and others people involved and/or interested in green tech: energy generation, transportation, construction, and efficiency technologies. Businesses and researchers present new technologies, and attendees may announce business news, job openings, fundings, etc.


Entrepreneurs Unplugged

February 18, CU- Boulder

Ongoing networking event hosted by CU's Silicon Flatirons Center, providing faculty, students and community members with technical backgrounds the opportunity to learn about entrepreneurship through the experiences of a successful local entrepreneur.


Concentrated Solar Power and Thermal Storage Conference

February 18-19, Westin Hotel, Westminster

Featuring a presentation from New Energy Finance, a recognized world leader in renewable transactions. Learn what has happened to liquidity, players and transactions, find out how deals are and will be done in the future, and learn how to finance your renewable project in today's turbulent financial markets.


Invention to Venture: Colorado Springs

February 27, CU-Colorado Springs

Hosted by the El Pomar Institute for Innovation and Commercialization (EPIIC), this a one-day biomedical technology entrepreneurship workshop will help participants gain insight into the processes necessary for taking medical technology from design to implementation and commercialization.


C-Level @ A Mile High

March 5, Invesco Field, Denver

Hosted by CSIA, this event brings together high-profile CIOs/CTOs/CEOs with technology companies and professionals here in Colorado. For C-Level tech executives, C-Level @ A Mile High is the perfect opportunity to meet and build relationships with your peers as well as be introduced to new technology companies and professionals.


To have your event featured here, please send an email to
Innovation in the News

Innovation Figures Prominently In Federal Recovery Plans
Several years of virtually flat and occasionally declining federal funds for the nation's research and economic development communities could end abruptly with passage of an economic recovery plan resembling either of the proposals released by President Obama or Congressional Democrats. Both call for unprecedented public investments to stimulate the economy out of its worst recession since the Great Depression, while at the same time moving the country dramatically toward a national innovation strategy mirroring the priorities of most state and regional technology-based economic development programs across the country.

NIST Technology Innovation Program Seeks Critical White Papers
The National Institute of Standards and Technology's (NIST) Technology Innovation Program (TIP) announces that it is seeking white papers from any interested party, including academia; federal, state, and local governments; industry; national laboratories; and professional organizations/societies, to help identify and select areas of critical national need to be addressed in future TIP competitions.

American Kids Interested in Careers in Innovation, But Lack Role Models
Some 85% percent of kids ages 12-17say they are interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, according to survey results released in January. But nearly two-thirds polled said they may ultimately pursue other professions because they don't have a mentor or understand what's involved in a science, math or engineering career.

Roundup: University, Community, State, National and International Initiatives

Stanford Launches $100M Energy Research Institute
In January Stanford University announced the creation of a $100M energy research institute to focus on sectors including solar photovoltaics and carbon sequestration. The Precourt Institute for Energy is expected to fund seven or eight new faculty positions and create fellowships to support graduate students in the sector.

U of Texas Approves $15M Program to Recognize Tech Commercialization Efforts
The University of Texas System Board of Regents recently approved details of a $15M initiative that will encourage and recognize extraordinary efforts in undergraduate teaching and commercialization activities at the System's nine academic institutions.

North Carolina Report Calls for State Funding of UNC Technology Transfer
Among seven major recommendations the report calls for "Repurposed UNC technology transfer offices- Offices would focus less on licensing and more on industry engagement and job creation. Estimated cost- $3 million annually."  Download Advancing Innovation in North Carolina at:

U of Toledo Forms $10M Fund for Research Commercialization
The University of Toledo has committed $10M to its non-profit regional economic-development and tech-commercialization arm to establish a fund that will invest in promising university technologies, likely through support of federal grant-matching programs and proof-of-concept awards.

J&J, Vanderbilt Ink Rich Partnering Deal
Johnson & Johnson's Janssen Pharmaceutica is teaming up with Tennessee's Vanderbilt University to discover and develop new schizophrenia treatments. The extensive relationship calls for Vanderbilt to receive $10 million over three years and up to $100 million in milestone payments.

U of Michigan to Buy Pfizer's Former Ann Arbor Property
The Univeristy of Michigan Board of Regents approved in mid-December the purchase of the
Ann Arbor property of pharmaceutical firm Pfizer Inc. The nearly 174-acre site, which includes
almost 2 million square feet of laboratory and administrative space in 30 buildings, is ideal
for the University's growing research activities in health, biomedical sciences and other

External Resources

OnBioVC: New Colorado Biobusiness Resource
Published by longtime TTO friend Adam Rubenstein (of the now-defunct Colorado Life Science Deal Flow blog) and headquartered in Boulder, OnBioVC provides timely coverage and comprehensive analysis of global bioscience venture capital investment activity. In addition to the free web-based resource, where data can be indexed in myriad ways, Adam's Trend Analysis studies provide cumulative analytical color by month and quarter. (For those who are unaware, the CLSDF banner has been picked up by, who have expanded the mission to include Colorado tech startup activity in IT and cleantech, as well as bioscience.)

University Spin-out Veteran Shares Experiences in New Book
Professor Graham Richards, former head of the chemistry department at the University of Oxford, has authored a new book, "Creating Businesses from University Intellectual Property," to be published on January 19th by Harriman House. Richards has worked with spin-out companies since 1988, when he was involved in the founding of Oxford's technology transfer company, Isis Innovation Ltd, where he served as director for 20 years.

Record 2008 for Cleantech with $8.4B in Investments
The global cleantech sector pulled in $8.4B in investment in 2008, marking a seventh straight year of growth, according to findings released in early January by the Cleantech Group. While fourth quarter deals were down 4 percent from the same period in 2007 to $1.7B in 99 companies, the sector finished the year 38% above 2007 totals.

Parting Quote
"The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act - not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age."
President Barack Obama, Inaugural Address, January 20, 2009

University of Colorado's Office of Technology Transfer Mission Statement

The mission of the CU Technology Transfer Office is to aggressively pursue, protect, package,
and license to business the intellectual property generated from the research enterprise,
and to serve faculty, staff, and students seeking to create such intellectual property.

(303) 735-3711