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VABeachBio Innovation Challenge Unveils 26 Inventions

Wednesday, February 28, 2018  
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The Center for Advancing Innovation, the world's largest virtual startup challenge-based accelerator, and the City of Virginia Beach announced the inventions targeting veteran-related illnesses that will be commercialized through the VABeachBio Innovation Challenge.

As CAI's sixth challenge to date, the VABeachBio Innovation Challenge is the first-of-its-kind to focus on building upon the biomedical ecosystem in one community. This challenge has the potential to create as many as 2,000 knowledge-based jobs and 20 veteran-led startups within a new 150-acre VABeachBio Innovation Park in the City's biomedical corridor.

The 26 breakthrough inventions came from more than a dozen leading institutions, many from the Commonwealth of Virginia, including the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Tech and NASA Langley as well as the National Institutes of Health. To identify these breakthrough inventions, CAI reviewed over 120,000 technologies from more than 150 universities, hospitals and federal laboratories in the United States spanning cardiovascular health, neurological disorders, diabetes, oncology, mental health and regenerative medicine.

Examples of inventions include a portable device for non-invasive cancer screening from NASA Langley, a miniature brain stimulation device to treat neurological disorders from Virginia Tech and a portfolio of best-in-class drugs to treat diabetes from the University of Virginia. The challenge features 26 inventions at present and may continue to accept promising inventions. For the complete list of inventions and to enter the challenge, visit

Entrepreneurs may also apply to commercialize their own inventions that can make a positive impact on veterans' health through the challenge.

"Hundreds of thousands of inventions at various federal labs, hospitals and universities go uncommercialized every year," said Rosemarie Truman, founder and CEO of the Center for Advancing Innovation. "With the VABeachBio Innovation Challenge, entrepreneurs, industry, inventors and academia are coming together to turn some of the most dynamic and promising inventions into successful startup companies that will accelerate new treatments to improve veterans' health and the health of their families." 

Virginia Beach Economic Development Director Warren D. Harris added, "The challenge will boost the biomedical business profile in Virginia Beach and will benefit the large concentration of veterans in health, employment and education. Veterans, a cornerstone of our community, will be given priority when competing to run the companies."

Jim Greenwood, BIO's president and CEO, said, "CAI's track record in launching life science startups is outstanding. This new initiative has great potential to contribute to the life sciences ecosystem in Virginia Beach."

The VABeachBio Innovation Challenge is open for entry. Anyone with an entrepreneurial spirit and drive to positively affect veterans' health should form a team and enter. Teams may enroll in the challenge until May 2018. In-person roadshows will be held throughout Virginia to provide an in-depth overview, and the schedule can be found on the roadshows page.

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