June Network News

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Around The District | Across the Affinity Network | Opportunities | Resources | What We're Reading & watching | Events

We’re in the middle of the Texas heat. Take a break and check out our roundup of news in our network from this past June and see upcoming events and opportunities for the rest of this summer and into Fall.

Around The District

#AustinInnovates to Highlight Success and Progress

#AustinInnovates is a hashtag we use to highlight regional stories of health and life science success, partnership, and work that is contributing to community vitality.

You can check out our first #AustinInnovates blog post on ABHI and see why these international innovators have landed in Austin to develop their inaugural ABHI Innovation Hub in the United States.

Austin’s Health Heroes Highlighted

On June 6, 2019, Dell Med celebrated 55 individuals and organizations who were nominated by the community as health heroes for the inaugural Health Leadership Awards, demonstrating that #HealthisHappeningHere. 

Categories and awardees are as follows: 

  • Educator: Jessica Davis & Sanford Jeames, Ph.D.

  • Student : Ben Hofer & Jose Ponce

  • Community Volunteer: Susan Dawson

  • Transformational Leadership: Rhonda Mundhenk, J.D., MPH

  • Health Care Practitioner: Dana Saltalamachia, LCDC

  • Public Service Health Leader: Sen. Kirk Watson

  • Health Ecosystem Leadership Award: Austin Recovery & People’s Community Clinic

Learn more about the 9 selected awardees and nominees and selection criteria. Will you be next year’s health hero?

Clinics Go Mobile in Austin

CommUnityCare Health Centers, funded by Central Health, launched their mobile clinic to serve Travis county residents with limited access to health services such as Creedmoor, Del Valle, and Colony Park. 

This clinic will offer primary care, preventive care, vaccines, lab services, chronic disease management, and limited pharmacy services. See the video.

Across The Affinity Network

There’s a lot going on with our Affinity Partners! Our Affinity Network comprises six of the region’s premier hosted programs for health and life science companies in Central Texas. They provide wet and dry lab space, office and coworking, access to specialized equipment, mentorship and access to professional services, workforce support, and a sense of community. 

ACC Bioscience Incubator Companies Forge Ahead 


Lung Therapeutics, a member company at the ACC Bioscience Incubator just closed a Series C fundraising round of $36M. This financing will be used to fund the completion of Phase II Clinical Trial for drug candidate LTI-01 in Loculated Pleural Effusions and Phase I Clinical Trial for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) candidate LTI-03.

Food and Ag Lab received their A2LA Accreditation to the International Standard ISO/IEC 17025:2017! This is an accreditation for its abilities in the field of biological testing. We are excited for them as it will open the door to many new potential customers.

CATALYSTedu and former member company KJ Scientific have both been selected for the 2nd cohort of Mass Challenge Texas. View the full list of accepted startups for 2019 Mass Challenge Texas. 

And last month we said, Farewell to Tyler Drake. This month we greet Kelly Harper who is joining the Bioscience Incubator as the lab support. Kelly has over 13 years of experience managing labs at ACC and is a great addition to the staff. Say hello to her if you see her around. 

STAR One Prepares New Ventures to Launch

On May 4, we helped STAR Park review eight teams who pitched for acceptance into the New Ventures program. The program assists in creating scalable business enterprises that are launched by the end of the program year. Each participant receives a year of free space in the STAR One technology business incubator, access to STAR Park’s Entrepreneurs in Residence and up to $20,000 in funding support. 

The three top-ranked teams were:

  • Herder: Building herd management tools which combine GPS tracking with vital signs data collection allowing identification of unusual stress in animals.

  • Nabaco: Developing edible nanomaterial coatings which are impervious to moisture, air, and bacteria, and which extend the shelf life of fruits and vegetables.

  • Surge Power: Creating graphene materials from plant sources that can be used to make higher-performing batteries.

All eight teams were admitted into the local NSF I-Corp program where they will receive mentoring support, business workshops and access to up to $3,000 in funding for market validation.

In addition to the three New Ventures participants, the teams participating in the I-Corps cohort are:

  • Kosmic Energy: Developing containerized plant growth powered by fiberoptic-delivered natural sunlight.

  • Augmented Training Systems: Creating AR-based first responder training content and programs.

  • CytoSource: An intrapreneurship team from an established biotech firm exploring the development of a new product line which could become the basis of a new division.

  • Happy + Healthy Toolkit: Creating tools for self-directed activities that promote mental, emotional and physical calm.

  • My Colony: Creating a curated professional platform for information sharing and community building among licensed special educators.

Steve Frayser, executive director of STAR Park said, "We were particularly gratified by the quality of the submissions and the active engagement of faculty at Texas State. A total of 15 faculty were involved representing all seven academic colleges. The positive response indicates strong interest across the institution and the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem."

Prosodio Inc. Joins THBD, Advanced Scanners Graduates, & more

A new tenant joined the Temple Health & Bioscience District(THBD) in May, Prosodio Inc. They are creating a device and accompanying software that provides a content-aware, real-time speech recognition platform to help children read. We welcome them to the ecosystem!

And as a new company joins we celebrate the graduation and advancement of another. Advanced Scanners is the first alumni startup company for Temple Health & Bioscience District. They have developed a new 3D Optical Vision Platform that tracks brain movement during medical procedures.

They left THBD in January and moved into their own R&D/prototyping space on W Anderson Lane, in north Austin. In total they have raised over $1.5 Million in their seed round and we look forward to their growth in Austin's innovation ecosystem

And speaking of the ecosystem, Temple welcomed 8 new college interns to their newly launched THBD Scholars Program this past May. The scholars attend universities across Texas including the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, the University of Texas at San Antonio, the University of Texas at Dallas, and Texas A&M University.

“We have seen the growth of the biotechnology industry in central Texas over the years and want to prepare these students for the future of the industry by fostering STEM-related education and hands-on research opportunities,” said Tami Annable, co-founder of the Central Texas Scientific Advocacy Group and executive director of THBD. The programs ends this August and you can check out their upcoming poster show on Friday, August 2nd.

Ready to explore joining our network with one of these partners? Learn more on on ‘For Companies’ page. You’ll be in great company!


From leadership development to funding, don’t miss these opportunities.

Register for the Health Care Startup Boot Camp

The Texas Health CoLab at Dell Medical School invites startups in the health and life sciences to attend a free boot camp in collaboration with Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR). The boot camp will empower you with the necessary information to create and develop your startup, with topics such as business plans, fundraising, intellectual property strategies, valuations and term sheets, and preparing and executing your investor pitch.

Breakfast and lunch are provided, and a networking reception will follow. Register today for the September 16th workshop. 

Austin Chamber Announces 2019 Intercity Visit

Join the Austin Chamber and meet with key leaders to discuss how Minneapolis-St. Paul addresses topics that affect the Austin Region on the 2019 intercity visit. Discussion topics include:

  • High capacity transit

  • A regional collaboration featuring Twin Cities Mayors

  • Workforce development

  • Affordability and land development

  • Addressing homelessness

  • Welcoming Major League Soccer 

Learn more and register for the trip

& Don’t forget to see #ATXBound for upcoming delegations you can join for a deep dive in foreign business ecosystems. All Upcoming trips have their target industries outlined online and anyone can apply to join the delegation. These trips provide the perfect opportunity to show the world how #AustinInnovates.

Get Free 1:1 Regulatory Consulting from Emergo By UL, brought by Dell Medical School’s Workspaces @ Texas Health CoLab

WorkSpaces @ Texas Health CoLab has partnered with Emergo by UL to provide free 1:1 regulatory consulting opportunities for Health Care Startups.

An Emergo representative will be on-site at WorkSpaces @ Texas Health CoLab on July 17th and 23rd in the afternoon. You may sign up for a 30 or 60-minute session (book two adjacent 30-minute sessions) by booking your session here

Who is Emergo by UL? Emergo by UL is a global medical device regulatory consultancy based in Austin, Texas with over 20 years of experience serving clients ranging from startups to fortune 500 companies. 

Emergo offers guidance on global medical device regulatory requirements, human factors engineering and design, cybersecurity, device testing, as well as clinical design, management, and auditing.

Community-Driven Initiatives Call for Ideas

Got an idea to transform community health?  The Community-Driven Initiatives team at Dell Med is pleased to announce their third Call for Ideas, which will run through August 11.

Call for Ideas asks Central Texans to identify health challenges, needs, and opportunities and to create ideas to address them. This is a great opportunity for individuals in Central Texas (Bastrop, Caldwell, Hays, Travis, and Williamson counties) to get the resources they need to get their ideas off the ground – using local solutions to solve local problems. 

Community-Driven Initiatives selects ideas that can become projects that improve community health.

During their first two cycles, 192 Central Texans submitted 208 ideas aimed towards improving community health. Several of those ideas turned into pilot programs and initiatives. Current pilot projects include: 

  • Intergenerational gardening teams which include financial literacy and food justice classes to create a positive social network and access to healthier more nutritious foods.

  • Traditional healing workshops and practices for a more inclusive and culturally relevant health care ecosystem and clinical services

Their website has more information about the top idea originators.

Central Texans can submit ideas online, or print out a form that can be dropped off or mailed to the Health Discovery Building at 1601 Trinity Street, Bldg. B, Austin, Texas, 78712 (Attention: Call for Ideas) or faxed to 512-495-5477 (Attention: Call for Ideas).

CPRIT Product Development Program Applications Still Open

Last post we shared the announcement of CPRIT’s release of three Requests for Applications available to oncology-focused startup companies. This time we’re reminding you the deadlines are approaching (August 7th to be exact)!

Through Product Development grants, CPRIT invests in startup and early-stage companies in Texas (and those willing to relocate to Texas) to foster the development of novel cancer therapeutics, medical devices, diagnostics, tools, and other non-traditional oncology products. 

To date, CPRIT has awarded more than $400 million to 34 startup and early-stage companies developing novel products to address unmet clinical needs in cancer. 

CPRIT’s Product Development Program offers three grant funding mechanisms: 

  • SEED, for startups, up to $3 million

  • TXCO, for early-stage companies located in Texas, up to $20 million, 

  • RELCO, for early-stage companies willing to relocate to Texas, up to $20 million. 

The current application cycle began on June 27, 2019, and awards will be announced in February 2020. Check out the CPRIT site for more details.

Get on Board with CommUnityCare

Interested in giving back to your community and have a passion for health care? CommUnityCare is looking for patients and professionals to join their board. See the current board and details on their website.

Submit a proposal for EquitySpace 2019 in ATX

EquitySpace 2019 will be hosted on September 19, 2019, at the Hilton Austin, showcasing nationally and regionally recognized leaders in the social equity and inclusion space. You have until Friday, July 19th to submit a proposal for this one-day cross-industry event. 

They are seeking solution-focused approaches in the five following areas: business, education, government, nonprofit/philanthropic, and health industries.Learn more and submit your proposal.

Apply for the Cartier Women’s Initiative 2020 

The Cartier Women’s Initiative is a worldwide program supporting over 200 female entrepreneurs since 2006. The deadline to apply is August 14 and prizes include mentorship, funding, and more. 

Applicants are open for early-stage businesses that are impact-driven and align with one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, such as Goal 3: Good Health & Well-Being.  

Learn more and apply now.

Create a Healthier Internet with Mozilla

Want to tackle the health of the internet? Apply for Mozilla's Open Leader cohort. They’re looking for individuals ready to make openness the norm in innovation and research. Areas of focus include: Healthier Artificial Intelligence, Open Science, Open Source, and more!


Discover the latest findings from our community and beyond

Need Help navigating the health startup space?

Check out these videos by our Affinity Partners.

What We're Reading & Watching

A round-up of articles and videos to spark insight and innovation.

  • Austin’s Capital Factory and Plexal, a London Accelerator, Join Forces to Foster International Ties for Tech Startups (Silicon hills News)

  • See 1 Million Women in STEM (1 MIL Women in STEM)

  • Austin ranks second in women-led startups, according to new report (Built in ATX)

  • The History of Texas’ Startup Ecosystem (UT News)

  • Austin’s Food and Ag Lab: Keeping Your Meals Safe (The Austin Chronicle)

  • Austin’s Santé Ventures raises $250M to invest in medical startups (Statesman)

  • Report: Tech Workers in Austin Have It Extremely Good (Again) (AustinInno)



Opportunities to meet, learn, and celebrate with our network and the broader community

Texas Health CoLab Learning Series Continues

The Texas Health CoLab Learning Series invites you to the July seminar “Key Issues for Health Care Startups in Employment Law Compliance”. 

Jason Storck, J.D. will discuss employment law compliance. Emphasizing the impact on health care startups, this presentation will provide an overview of such employment issues, including wage and hour compliance, classification of workers, the impact of restrictive covenants and more.

RSVP on Eventbrite and find previous recordings from the series here.

THBD Monthly Lunch & Learns Continue

Temple Health and bioscience District invites you to their July lunch and learn “Benefits and Challenges of Cloud Connectivity in Digital Healthcare”. 

Aging populations, rising chronic diseases, global pandemics, and cost are some of the biggest challenges in our healthcare system. Better data collection, intelligent analysis, and utilization of cloud-based technologies can help address some of these challenges. However, cloud connectivity has some challenges in terms of security, privacy, cost, and time.

Join their lunch and learn to learn more about the benefits of cloud connectivity and how to navigate the challenges for a successful outcome.

Learn more to register for the lunch and learn or join the webinar version. Previous recordings webinar recordings here.

The AI & Blockchain Summit

Join Health Tech Austin this Thursday for The AI & Blockchain Summit at Capital Factory. Hear practical applications of new tech in healthcare and explore future innovations and emerging trends.

There are a limited number of comp RSVPs available! Email hello@healthtechaustin.com today 7/17 with the headline “CCI blockchain” to request a ticket. Registration is on a first-come first-served basis.

See more events from the network and community below!

Find more events on our events page!


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Victoria O'Dell, Program and Communications Manager, Capital City Innovation
As program and communications manager of Capital City Innovation, Victoria facilitates channels for collaborative work around Austin's emerging Innovation district in downtown Austin and beyond. Previously, she was a freelance designer working with non-profits, small businesses, and startups across Austin.

Follow Victoria on Twitter @victoria_odell