Research Innovation Spotlight Series

The Research Innovation Spotlight Series presented by the Alliance for SoCal Innovation in partnership with BioscienceLA

The Research Innovation Spotlight Series is an invite-only virtual program led by the Alliance in collaboration with BioscienceLA (for Life Science) that connects industry with researchers developing innovative technologies and life science breakthroughs at Southern California’s top research universities and institutions. These highly technical presentations provide corporate leaders and early stage investors an early look at the innovations entering the potential pipeline of market-moving, disruptive developments and thus inform decision makers as well as create valuable connections to researchers and the universities before they enter the market.

Each spotlight session consists of 4 presentations where each researcher gets 20 minutes of ‘airtime’ of which 10 minutes is a technical presentation followed by 10 minutes for audience Q&A.


Contact us to learn more about how we can help your company get connected to breakthrough university research.


How the Research Innovation Spotlight Series program works

The Alliance goes through the following steps:

  1. Identify compelling research topics that match corporate and investor innovation agendas and R&D focus.
  2. Recruit a subject matter expert to moderate and curate the virtual mini-showcase
  3. Reach out to our participating research institution (mostly R1 universities) tech transfer offices to solicit appropriate projects
  4. Select the 4 most compelling projects to present
  5. Identify and invite 20-30 attendees from our network
  6. Host the virtual mini-showcase (via Zoom) where partners and researchers connect

Why should industry leaders participate?

  • Better understand compelling innovative solutions that are being created at the university level – as well as the trends that are driving them
  • Discover curated research and innovators that match your corporate innovation priorities without having to visit multiple universities or develop those relationships directly
  • Virtual demo day benefits:
    • See multiple solutions and technologies in one virtual session
    • Interact directly with the innovators to discuss possible future applications and build future relationships
    • Engage critical stakeholders in these discussions without travel/time hurdles

Why should research institutions/principal investigators participate?

  • Introduce their research to knowledgeable corporations and VC’s that could help fund their innovation
  • Receive valuable feedback from the commercial sector and insights into the commercial applicability of their work
  • Virtual demo day benefits:
    • Engage with a small group of directly relevant corporate innovation leaders and venture investors
    • Initiate valuable long-term relationships that are relevant to current and future research

Program Format

The 2 hr program will feature virtual (via Zoom) presentations from four Principle Investigators working on important research that fits that spotlight’s focus e.g. Immunology, Robotics, Rare and Orphan Diseases, Energy Storage, etc.

Each mini-showcase is moderated by an expert with deep industry and technical expertise who curates which research projects are presented and helps lead the Q&A with attendees.

Each presenter is given 20 minutes of “airtime” of which we recommend 10 minutes for the presentation and the remaining 10 minutes for moderator-led Q&A to maximize engagement with the attendees.

Life Science Program Sponsor

About BioscienceLA

Founded in 2018, BioscienceLA is the innovation catalyst for life sciences and health innovation in the greater Los Angeles region, accelerating the growth of funding, space, and talent, as well as messaging and awareness-building. The independent not-for-profit organization was seeded by LA County and has backing from Amgen, PhRMA, Richard Lundquist, Richard Merkin, City of Hope, and Cedars-Sinai, among others.

Its mission is to ensure that Los Angeles has a collaborative, well-coalesced ecosystem that encompasses biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, medical diagnostics, bioinformatics, healthcare IT, medtech, digital health, and more. BioscienceLA aims to advance the region’s capacity and pace of innovation by harmonizing the efforts of all stakeholders, including academic institutions, research hospitals, investors, startups, mature companies, trade associations, and public and quasi-public agencies. 

Visit to learn more.


Watch full length recordings of recent Research Innovation Spotlights. You can also see all of them on our YouTube Channel.

Most Recent Spotlight

Genomics | October 10, 2023

Presenting Researchers

Dr. Matteo Pellegrini; Professor, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA (profile). Research presenting: targeted bisulfite sequencing as a platform to measure DNA methylation for epigenetic studies.

Dr. Paul Boutros; Professor, Human Genetics, Professor, Urology, Director, Cancer Data Science at UCLA (profile). Research presenting: AI-based technology platforms for genomic analyses, including biomarker discovery, integrating diverse datatypes like EMR, pathology, radiology, genomics, mHealth.

Dr. Wei Li; Grace B. Bell Endowed Chair and Professor of Bioinformatics, Division of Computational Biomedicine, Department of Biological Chemistry, School of Medicine at UC Irvine (profile). Research presenting: MESA liquid biopsy tests (Multimodal Epigenetic Sequencing Analysis; patent pending) designed for either cancer prognosis or the early detection of brain disorders.

Event Moderator: Michael Hultner, SVP Corporate Development at Velsera (profile)

​Velsera connects healthcare and life sciences to reveal the true promise of precision medicine—a continuous flow of knowledge between researchers, scientists, and clinicians around the world, fueling innovation and creating insights that radically improve human health.


Oncology | November 8, 2022
Cell Therapy | March 28, 2023
Regenerative Medicine | September 7, 2022
Tools & Diagnostics | May 3, 2022
Rare & Orphan Diseases | March 1, 2022
Immunology | November 16, 2021
Neuroscience | September 14, 2021
Small Molecules in Oncology | May 18, 2021


Understanding & Influencing Human Behavior | October 26, 2021
Energy Storage | August 31, 2022
Applied Robotics | July 13, 2021
AR/VR | November 17, 2020