drawing of lightbulbs on blackboard with Block M

Eleven of the new startups based on research by CSE faculty, students, and alumni

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (08/15/2017) — The University of Minnesota announced today that it launched a record 18 startup companies in fiscal year 2017 based on discoveries and inventions by its researchers. Eleven of the 18 new startups are based on research by College of Science and Engineering faculty, students, and alumni.

Launching new companies through the Office for Technology Commercialization’s Venture Center is one of the primary ways the University brings cutting-edge research beyond the lab and into the marketplace. The new startups, 16 of which are based in Minnesota, will help fuel the economy and contribute to the public good, both in Minnesota and in regions across the globe.

“It’s our mission, and part of our responsibility as a land-grant University, to help the great research minds at the U of M navigate the path from lab to market,” said Russ Straate, associate director of the Venture Center. “We are excited by the potential these 18 new companies hold to improve society by bringing research-based solutions to the public in a wide range of fields, from energy storage to agriculture technology.”

In addition to fostering new discoveries, the University strives to develop technology resulting from its research and transition it to the market. The University provides collaborative research spaces, cutting-edge lab equipment, and a range of workshops and programs that support entrepreneurship and business development.

Since its founding in 2006, the Venture Center has launched a total of 119 startups, 78 percent of which are currently active. The majority of the startups, 79 percent, are based in Minnesota, with the rest spread between 14 other states across the U.S. and four other countries. Together, the 119 companies have generated approximately $400 million in outside investment.

The 11 new startup companies with ties to CSE are:

Aerem (MN) — Advanced gas particulate filter system for vehicles to address stringent emissions requirements, such as those in China. University researcher: David Pui

Cell Therapy Solutions (MN) — Device that reduces cell loss, processing time and labor costs for multiple types of preserved cells. University researcher: Allison Hubel

Cleanair-CARE LLP (MN) — Renewable, energy-efficient method for cleaning large amounts of outside air in urban settings. University researchers: Charles Lo, David Pui, Tom Kuehn, and Sheng-Chieh Che

Ensor Inc. (CA) — Battery chemistry and manufacturing process for a silicon dominant-based anode that will triple the anode energy density and provide minimal loss in capacity retention. University researcher: Uwe Kortshagen

enVerde LLC (MN) — Converts various solid biomass components to syngas, used to make synthetic natural gas, ammonia, methanol, and other chemicals. University researchers: Lanny Schmidt and Paul Dauenhauer

Farm Vision Technologies Inc. (MN) — Imaging software that works with existing drones and their imaging technology to provide farmers a view on crops and to aid in preparation for harvesting. University researchers: Volkan Isler and Patrick Plonski

General Probiotic (MN) — Producer of probiotics for farm animals that fight gastrointestinal infections, such as E. coli and salmonella. University researchers: Yiannis Kaznessis, K. Volzing, J. Del Pino, G. Dunny, B. Forcus, and K. Geldart

Sironix Renewables (MN) — Combines plant-based ingredients into functional chemicals for use in creating safer products, including laundry detergent and agricultural pesticides. University researchers: Paul Dauenhauer and Christoph Krumm

Soundly (MN) — Simple, noninvasive way to reduce snoring using a smartphone app. University researchers: Brian Krohn, Adam Black, and Medical Devices Center fellows

Turing Tumble, LLC (MN) — Educational gaming company teaching children the first principles of how to code software using a mechanical computer. University researcher: Paul Boswell

VirtusAero (MN) — Support for corporate, government, and academic users of US3D, software that models heat flows at supersonic flight speeds for research, military, and commercial applications. University researchers: Graham Candler, Heath Johnson, Pramod Subbareddy, Loannis Nompelis, and Travis Drayna

Other FY17 University of Minnesota startups are:

Antibiotic Alternatives (MN) — Novel antimicrobial agents that thwart infection by augmenting the production of naturally occurring antimicrobial proteins in mucosal epithelial cells. University researcher: Mark Herzberg

Carponentry (MN) — Unique residential housing product for the single-family detached home market. University researcher: Patrick Donahue

MerTron (MN) — A technology that captures mercury when a human body is cremated, preventing mercury from escaping into the atmosphere. University researcher: Sandra Myers

OX2 Therapeutics (MN) — A highly effective treatment against solid-tumor cancers. University researcher: Michael Olin

R5VR (MN) — Software interfaces and service that take architectural drawings and create a virtual reality experience. University researcher: Lee Anderson

Resynergi (CA/WA) — Converts waste plastic to oil using microwave pyrolysis technology. University researcher: Roger Ruan

Sustainalytics (MN) — Assists cities and communities in assessing environmental and social impact of infrastructure projects. University researchers: Rylie Pelton, Andrew Fang, and Mark Reiner

For more information on the Venture Center or to see a full list of startups launched through the center, visit the Venture Center website.

Infographic of startups in fiscal year 2017