Texas Tech University

Ultra-Fast COVID-19 Sensor Invented at Texas Tech Gets Boost Into International Markets

The startup launched by Gerardine “Gerri” Botte has received a $4 million investment.
7-May-2021 8:55 AM EDT, by Texas Tech University

Newswise — A COVID-19 diagnostic tool invented at Texas Tech University is getting a big push into global markets.

EviroTech LLC announced today (May 7) a $4 million investment into the company by 1701 Ventures GmbH of Göttingen, Germany, which will allow EviroTech to complete the final design, production startup and market introduction of its Ultra-Fast COVID-19 detection sensor.

The Ultra-Fast COVID-19 detection sensor is a rapid and portable tool for COVID-19 diagnosis with the ability to sense the presence or absence of the virus SARS-CoV-2 in a saliva sample within seconds. The portability and speed of results makes this sensor a transformational diagnostic tool for rapid initial screening and continuous monitoring of an individual.

“This is a very exciting partnership that will accelerate access of the Ultra-Fast COVID-19 sensor worldwide,” said Gerardine “Gerri” Botte, who invented the sensor and founded EviroTech to commercialize it. A professor and Whitacre Department Chair in the Department of Chemical Engineering within the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering, Botte also is EviroTech’s chief technology officer.

She notes the presence of COVID-19 variants around the world will make the need for testing even more important going forward.

“We are more than excited to accompany EviroTech on this amazing journey,” said Felix Dossman, CEO of 1701 Ventures GmbH and a member of the EviroTech board of directors. “It is a rare opportunity to not just invest but help bring a product to life that will have such a big, positive impact for so many people.”

The entrepreneurial programs available through Texas Tech’s Innovation Hub at Research Park aided in the early growth and development of EviroTech. An initial $13,000 awarded through the Prototype Fund helped launch the startup. The company received $25,000 through the Presidents’ Innovation Award then became an Innovation Hub tenant. Participation in the National Science Foundation’s I-Corps program provided $50,000 and helped EviroTech focus on its market fit.

“Texas Tech supports innovation and entrepreneurship of its faculty, staff, students and community,” said Kimberly Gramm, associate vice president for innovation and entrepreneurship. “EviroTech is a perfect example of how our West Texas innovation ecosystem helped reduce risk, validate the technology and ensure product-market fit, which resulted in its ability to quickly raise the necessary capital to enter the market. We have seen this team accelerate its growth and development over the past year, and we are extremely excited to see its growth and impact in the years to come.”

EviroTech is dedicated to the development of transformational technologies to combat infections and viral transmitted diseases. Electrochemistry is its core technical competency, with an approach that integrates electrochemical technology and biomedical engineering.

The Ultra-Fast COVID-19 sensor is an antigen-based electrochemical device, meaning it can detect SARS-CoV-2 spike proteins at an early stage of infection, unlike its antibody-based testing counterparts. The technology has been patented and EviroTech is seeking Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

“Dr. Botte’s innovative technology is a wonderful example of the impact higher education research has on global societal issues,” said Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec. “This valuable diagnostic tool was born in the research labs of Texas Tech University and raised in our very own entrepreneurial system. We are proud of the example Dr. Botte sets for our students and the manner in which she represents the institution through her groundbreaking research.”

 

About Gerardine “Gerri” Botte

Gerardine “Gerri” Botte joined the Texas Tech Department of Chemical Engineering in 2019. She has more than two decades of experience in the development of electrochemical processes and advanced water treatment systems, and is a visionary and recognized leader in electrochemical science and technology.

She has served in leadership roles for the International Society of Electrochemistry and currently serves as the third Vice President of the Electrochemical Society. She also is the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Applied Electrochemistry. In 2014, she was named a Fellow of the Electrochemical Society for her contributions and innovation in electrochemical processes and engineering. She became a Chapter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors in 2012. In 2010, she was named a Fellow of the World Technology Network for her contributions on the development of sustainable and environmental technologies.

Prior to Texas Tech, Botte was a University Distinguished Professor and Russ Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Ohio University, the founder and director of Ohio University’s Center for Electrochemical Engineering Research, and the founder and director of the Consortium for Electrochemical Processes and Technology, an industry university cooperative research center. Botte also is an entrepreneur; she has been involved in the commercialization of technologies and has founded and co-founded companies.

 

About the Innovation Hub at Research Park

This 40,000-square-foot facility is designed to be a resource for the faculty and students of both Texas Tech and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center as well as community members interested in launching new ventures. Texas Tech is a national research university, and the Innovation Hub at Research Park is critical to building the knowledge-based economy of West Texas through the development of innovators and entrepreneurs who solve society’s problems and develop innovations to make impact.

 

 



Filters close

Showing results

110 of 5845
Released: 17-Jun-2021 4:15 PM EDT
UNC Researchers Lead Study of Diabetes Treatment of COVID-19 Patients
University of North Carolina School of Medicine

Diabetes is one of the comorbidities most strongly associated with severe COVID-19 in the US, and data from early in the pandemic suggested individuals with type 2 diabetes faced twice the risk of death from COVID-19 and a greater risk of requiring hospitalization and intensive care. A new study shows best treatment options.

Released: 17-Jun-2021 4:10 PM EDT
Vaccination, Previous Infection, Protect Against COVID-19 gamma/P.1 Variant in Animal Model
University of Wisconsin-Madison

In a new study using variant virus recovered from one of the original travelers, researchers in the U.S. and Japan have found that vaccination with an mRNA vaccine induces antibody responses that would protect humans from infection with the gamma/P.1 variant.

Newswise:Video Embedded virtual-event-for-june-17-11am-edt-covid-19-vaccines-and-male-fertility
VIDEO
Released: 17-Jun-2021 3:20 PM EDT
VIDEO AVAILABLE: Vaccines and Male Fertility Event for June 17, 2021
Newswise

This upcoming JAMA-published study examined whether the COVID-19 vaccine impacts male fertility.

Released: 17-Jun-2021 1:30 PM EDT
Hackensack Meridian Doctors, Student Help Establish Way to Prioritize Surgeries During COVID-19 lockdown
Hackensack Meridian Health

The MeNTS method of prioritizing surgeries during the height of pandemic, developed by University of Chicago, helped procedures continue during time of need

Released: 17-Jun-2021 12:55 PM EDT
‘Nanodecoy’ Therapy Binds and Neutralizes SARS-CoV-2 Virus
North Carolina State University

Nanodecoys made from human lung spheroid cells (LSCs) can bind to and neutralize SARS-CoV-2, promoting viral clearance and reducing lung injury in a macaque model of COVID-19.

access_time Embargo lifts in 2 days
Embargo will expire: 21-Jun-2021 11:00 AM EDT Released to reporters: 17-Jun-2021 12:10 PM EDT

A reporter's PressPass is required to access this story until the embargo expires on 21-Jun-2021 11:00 AM EDT The Newswise PressPass gives verified journalists access to embargoed stories. Please log in to complete a presspass application. If you have not yet registered, please Register. When you fill out the registration form, please identify yourself as a reporter in order to advance to the presspass application form.

Newswise: Blood Cancer Patients with COVID-19 Fare Better with Convalescent Plasma
Released: 17-Jun-2021 11:55 AM EDT
Blood Cancer Patients with COVID-19 Fare Better with Convalescent Plasma
Washington University in St. Louis

A large, retrospective, multicenter study involving Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis indicates that convalescent plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients can dramatically improve likelihood of survival among blood cancer patients hospitalized with the virus. The therapy involves transfusing plasma — the pale yellow liquid in blood that is rich in antibodies — from people who have recovered from COVID-19 into patients who have leukemia, lymphoma or other blood cancers and are hospitalized with the viral infection.

Released: 17-Jun-2021 11:05 AM EDT
Stress during pandemic linked to poor sleep
Washington State University

Many people likely lost sleep over COVID-19. A study of twins led by Washington State University researchers found that stress, anxiety and depression during the first few weeks of the pandemic were associated with less and lower quality sleep.

Newswise:Video Embedded university-of-miami-miller-school-study-shows-covid-19-mrna-vaccines-do-not-impact-male-fertility
VIDEO
Released: 17-Jun-2021 11:00 AM EDT
University of Miami Miller School Study Shows COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines Do Not Impact Male Fertility
University of Miami Health System, Miller School of Medicine

The Pfizer and Moderna mRNA COVID-19 vaccines is safe for male reproduction, according to a new study by University of Miami Miller School of Medicine researchers published in JAMA , the most widely circulated general medical journal in the world.

15-Jun-2021 1:20 PM EDT
Higher COVID-19 Mortality Among Black Patients Linked to Unequal Hospital Quality
Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

If Black patients were admitted to the same hospitals that serve a majority of White patients, researchers showed their risk of death would drop by 10 percent


Showing results

110 of 5845

close
1.3147