Berkeley-Haas Entrepreneurship

Startup Marketplace


Startup Marketplace is back! We connect UC Berkeley grad students with top faculty and researchers for multidisciplinary, 40 hour projects to be completed any time during the school year (preferably by end of April).

Typical teams include students Berkeley Haas (FT, EW & EMBA), the joint MBA/MPH program, M.Eng., I-School and the Masters of Translational Medicine (MTM).

We’re partnering again with UC Berkeley Bakar Fellows, UCSF and QB3.  New partners include Berkeley Labs (aka LBNL) and the NSA’s Tech Transfer Office.

What’s in it for you?  Great startup experience and a fancy title (UCSF Startup Fellow, Berkeley Labs Startup Fellow, etc.) upon successful completion of the project.  Top teams will be selected to pitch on LAUNCH Demo Day @ the Expo.  Some students have gone on to join teams/companies after project completion, but there are no guarantees or expectations.

What types of projects? Three categories: Healthcare/Medtech, Genomics/Environmental Engineering and Data Cybersecurity. Stages range from early stage faculty projects to companies prepping for fundraising to funded companies preparing to launch.

Get involved! Fill out the form by 9/30 and we’ll start contacting you with suggested team assignments on 10/2. Most teams include at least two disciplines (some with up to four), so this is a great opportunity to connect with your peers across campus.


Daniela Kaufer (Bakar Fellow, Professor of Integrative Biology and Helen Wills
Neuroscience Institute)
Diagnostic for blood brain barrier intervention after traumatic brain injury (TBI), stroke
and early onset Alzheimers
Project: Assist the inventor in generating/testing hypotheses around TBI vs. Alzheimers
as the best initial market segment; identify the associated value propositions and
satisfaction with existing solutions; identify ecosystem players and dynamics

Kevin Healy (Professor, Departments of Bioengineering and Materials Science &

Bio-gel for skeletal and muscle self-repairs
Project: Assist the inventor in generating/testing hypotheses around cosmetic vs. non-
elective repairs as the best initial market segment; identify the associated value
propositions and satisfaction with existing solutions; identify ecosystem players and

Sara Photiadis (UCSF Surgical Innovations Fellow)
Development of an intravascular bioartificial pancreas (with specific focus on
construction of the scaffold/housing of the device) to serve s as a treatment/cure for
Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus.
Project: Assist the inventor in generating/testing hypotheses around who the ultimate
paying customer will be—insurance companies, health systems, etc. and identify the
associated value propositions with each; identify ecosystem players, understand the
role of influences (physicians, patients) and how these dynamics will impact market

Andrew Voyles, (Berkeley Labs, Chemical Sciences Division)
Deployment of new production method for cancer treating/curing isotope
Project: Assist the inventor in understanding the cancer treatment ecosystem as well as
the dynamics/constraints around production/storage of isotopes—centralized or
distributed? Generate/test business model hypotheses—who will ultimately pay for both
the treatment and any capital investments such as a mini-cyclotron?

Genomics/Environmental Engineering

Markita Landry (Bakar Fellow, Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering)
Accelerated plant breeding by nanomaterial-delivered gene-editing (CRISPR-Cas9)
Project: This is an existing project in Lean Transfer (MBA 295T); assist the team in
generating/testing hypotheses around the best initial market segments and associated
value propositions; identify ecosystem players and dynamics. [Teams are welcome to
attend Lean Transfer (Wed. 4-6 PM) and/or receiving training through NSF I-Corps
described below.]

Ernst Oberortner (Berkeley Lab, Joint Genome Institute)
RNA, DNA & protein sequence design tool to optimize production at scale
Project: Assist the inventor in generating/testing hypotheses around the best initial
market segment—academic or industry? Identify the the associated value propositions
for each segment as well as satisfaction with existing solutions; identify ecosystem
players and dynamics.

Kenichi Soga (Bakar Fellow, Professor Geosystems, Civil & Environmental Engineering)
Wireless sensor networks for civil infrastructure monitoring
Project: This team has been through the 7-week (100 customer discovery interviews)
National I-Corps program. You will assist this experienced team in generating/testing
hypotheses around additional market segments, associated value propositions and key
partners in the search for a scalable business model.

Gary Andersen/Take Ogawa (Berkeley Labs, Biosciences Division)
Increased accuracy of water quality testing using microbiome for source detection of E. coli
Project: The inventor has received global requests for this tech that IDs the source of E.
coli so that it can be eliminated/mitigated. Assist the inventors in generating/testing
hypotheses around which one of these potential segments (municipalities, beachfront
hotels, farmers, etc.) is the best initial market segment; identify ecosystem players and
dynamics such as ability to pay, sales cycles, etc.


5 Unclassified Patents from NSA Tech Transfer—these projects are available for
customer discovery within the industries suggested below or others decided
upon by the Fellows team.

US PATENT 7,827,408: Device and method of authenticated cryptography
(potential use cases for exploration: Protecting Election, HIPAA compliance, auto
encryption of shared personal documents, software development, etc.)

US 8,326,579 and US PATENT 7,904,278: Method and System for Program Execution
Integrity Measurement

Tech is currently deployed on US Navy ships and lends itself to multiple other use
cases/verticals.  This Linux Kernel Integrity Measurer (LKIM), verifies that running
system software has not been modified and is authorized to run on the system. Unlike
other system integrity technologies like antivirus programs, LKIM does not require a
database of known malware signatures and is capable of detecting modifications
resulting from previously unknown attacks. Originally designed for Linux, there are
variations that extend to other OS.

US PATENT 9,754,020: Method and Device for Measuring Word Pair Relevancy
This technology enables a user to find relevant documents within a large set of data
without requiring the keyword to appear in the document. By auto-associating words
and documents with a keyword, this method spares the user from needing to know
precise terms when searching in a large database or network. Requiring only a large
corpus of reference text, this technology is language agnostic and ranks the relevancy
of documents to a keyword based on word pair relevancy estimated from the corpus of
reference text.

• Knowledge discovery applications
• Reference material search tool (medical, legal, academic journals/books)
• Document prioritizes
• File management

US PATENT # 8,001,137″ Method of Identifying Connected Data in Relational Database
This technology leverages Structured Query Language (SQL) in relational databases to
discover connected data. Because the data does not need to be transformed, the
algorithm is able to operate in the database’s natural information storage format. This
also enables efficient discovery of connected data and easy identification of common
labels. This approach is limited only by the processing capacity of the database and
delivers results faster and more accurately than other methods.

• Genetics
• Epidemiology
• Social media
• Retail
• Telecommunications

US PATENT # 8,886,952: Method of Controlling a Transaction
Note that this technology does not have an accessible inventor but we would love to
learn if there’s interest or relevance in any of the use cases below. This technology
provides additional security to a computer transaction by projecting a summary of
transaction details onto a user’s face, then capturing the user’s spoken or gestured
acceptance. The distortions created by projection onto the user’s face combined with
facial recognition make it harder to forge a fraudulent transaction record for
unauthorized use. With the number of electronic transactions growing every day,
traditional security methods such as passwords or PIN-based controls may become
more prone to hacking attacks and other vulnerabilities. This capability can enhance the
security of transactional activity in practically any field, including banking, e-commerce,
and access control.

• E-commerce
• Identity authentication
• Financial/banking transactions
• Access control