Innovative Biotech Startup, TheraCea Pharma, Wins a Year in UACI at Oro Valley Sponsored by BIOSA

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is pleased to announce the winning startup of the UACI Sponsored Launch Fueled by BIOSA competition. TheraCea Pharma will receive a sponsored year’s admission at the new biotech incubator, UACI at Oro Valley. Program entrance will grant this winning startup with the resources, facilities, services and expert guidance to grow their business. Included with entrance into the program and space at the new biotech incubator, the startup will also be awarded a cash prize of $5,000. The total package value is $15,000 and funded by the Bioindustry Organization of Southern Arizona (BIOSA). TheraCea Pharma is an R&D stage Arizona-based biotechnology company that develops diagnostic positron emission tomography (PET) imaging agents for the detection of cancer, cardiology, neurology, and infectious diseases. The company's platform is a novel chemical process enabling efficient, quick, and high yield preparation of diagnostic agents. TheraCea Pharma’s management team consists of Chief Executive Officer, Iman Daryaei, Business Development Officer, Justin Jeffery, and Chief Technology Officer, Arthur Shaw. The underlying technology was developed at the University of Arizona and licensed through Tech Launch Arizona. TheraCea Pharma founders also took their business through the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Arizona Eller College of Management.


AURP Deems UACI Executive Director a Rising Star

UACI Executive Director Eric Smith was awarded the Association of University Research Parks (AURP) Rising Star Award. The Rising Star Award recognizes an individual exhibiting significant contributions to the development and success of communities of innovation. The news was revealed earlier this month at AURP’s digital international conference where experts within the research park ecosystem shared their knowledge, including Smith, who presented “Taking Your Incubator Program to the Next Level”, a talk centered on his knowledge on supporting startups toward success.  


UACI Sponsored Launch Fueled by R&A CPAs 

We are pleased to announce UACI Sponsored Launch Fueled by R&A CPAs competition. One startup will recieve a sponsored year admission into the UACI incubation program through the generous sponsorship of R&A CPAs. In addition to entrance into the program, R&A CPAs will also provide the winning startup with hours of accounting services which brings the total prize package valued to $15,000. Applications are open from Nov. 9-Dec. 2. Don't delay, apply today!


Startup Cell Work, LLC Joins UACI 

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation welcomes Cell Work to the incubator. Cell Work is on a mission to bring a tangible and educational cell model to the market that both instructors and families can use to visualize the essential components of a cell. Cell Work founder Junnis Hugger is leveraging UACI’s incubation program by utilizing all the resources offered and is working closely with the startup incubator team to identify and survey potential customer segments, continue product development and to advance their business model.


UACI Noontime Knowledge - Entrepreneurial Aptitude 

Kara Festa, a civil engineer turned business coach and consultant, shared during UACI's virtual Noontime Knowledge session. Festa presented "Entrepreneurial Aptitude" to placing a spotlight on taking care of self so that one can take care of business. She is passionate about supporting a global community of entrepreneurs, business owners and organizational leaders by helping them thrive personally and grow healthy, profitable companies.  


The Sherbrooke - Rennes - Arizona Entrepreneurial Triangle

A new international collaboration has been established, aiming to fostering growth for innovative companies: The Sherbrooke – Rennes – Arizona Entrepreneurial Triangle. The initiative held its major virtual launch event, Disruptive Technologies, earlier this month. UACI and Tech Parks Arizona are proud to be part of this exciting initiative. 


Constructing The Refinery

Construction at the UA Tech Park at The Bridges is well underway for Tucson’s newest innovation hub. A four-story, 120,000 square-foot building, named The Refinery, is coming out of the ground and taking shape. It is being developed by the Boyer Company and a strong foundation is being established using quality-minded contractor CORE Construction and Swaim Associates Architects. The Refinery will serve as an innovation and commercialization hub anchored by UArizona providing the ideal platform for technological advancements and business growth. Alongside the UA technology transfer office, Tech Launch Arizona will operate in collaboration with UACI.


Startup of the Year Award Winner - Reglagene

We're proud to celebrate the inagural Tech Parks Arizona Startup of the Year Copper Cactus Award winner. Congratulations to Reglagene, an innovative company that developed a drug that aims to shorten the lives of cancer cells. Reglagene's technology was invented at the University of Arizona and licensed through Tech Launch Arizona. The company founders have chosen to grow their business at the University of Arizona Center for Innovation. 


Global Entrepreneurship Week - Innovating Across Borders

UACI will be pairing up with Startup Tucson to bring Global Entrepreneurship Week to Tucson and focus on what it means to build a truly international startup. Join us to explore the world of international incubation from the perspective of global entrepreneurs that have made that jump and those working in these incubators to create on-ramps to make expanding operations into the States easier for these companies.


IMERSHEN Empowers High School Students

Founder of UACI startup IMERSHEN LLC, Dave Cornelius, is raising funds to empower high school students. By supporting the JCWALK 5 Saturdays STEAM program, STEAM students receive tools for success. At 5 Saturdays, IMERSHEN strives to help students enter the workforce with confidence. The STEAM-based curriculum teaches young people essential skills that will serve them in the IT industry and beyond. Students learn agile coaching, design thinking, and coding, as well as skills like resume writing and interviewing.

November 12, 2020

Robert Lusch McGuire Lecture

Tune into the Robert Lusch Lecture Series hosted by the University of Arizona McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship on Nov. 12 from 12 to 1:30 PM. Learn how COVID-19 has impacted entrepreneurship with a focus on equity, access, and resilience. Speakers include Robert Fairlie, Sameeksha Desai and Michael Peel.

November 15, 2020

2021 E Forum Applications are Open

Barrio + CO have opened up applications for their 2021 E Forum! The forum offers monthly meetings, deeper engagement with local founders interested in scaling their business and growing their leadership skills as well as connections to business leaders and resources to assist with company and personal growth.

October 6-7, 2021

Venture Madness Pitch Competition Dates Moved

The Venture Madness pitch competition, presented by Invest Southwest in partnership with the Arizona Commerce Authority, has announced new dates of Oct. 6-7, 2021. Next year’s event will also accept applications from early-stage companies nationwide.


Searching for an experienced medical device or pharmaceutical sales professional to join a team and assist with business development efforts as a 1099 contractor. Healthy commissions for every signed purchase order or letter of intent obtained. Each purchase order would represent about $1600 in commission to the right person. Connections to OBGYN offices would be a major plus.


Searching for a PhD level engineer or scientist who is creative, innovative, thrives on technical challenges, and is comfortable merging concepts from different technical disciplines to be part of the founding team, launching new instrumentation that will change how the world is seen.



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The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is a key component of Tech Parks Arizona which brings together university, industry and community to advance technology innovation. UACI is the University of Arizona's startup incubator network with outposts across the Southern Arizona region with a mission to grow scalable startup ventures that fuel the Arizona ecosystem.