Heikenfeld Wins Technology Commercialization Award

By:         Ashley Duvelius
Date:      October 16, 2017

Electrical engineering and computer science professor honored for his non-invasive sweat biosensing technology.

Dr. Jason Heikenfeld

Dr. Jason Heikenfeld

Jason Heikenfeld, PhD and University of Cincinnati (UC) College of Engineering and Applied Science (CEAS) Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, has been honored with the second annual Technology Commercialization Award from the Ohio Faculty Council. Heikenfeld is recognized for his ingenious technology for non-invasive sensing of analytes (sweat biosensing technology).

“This award aligns with something I have always been deeply passionate about, commercialization of university innovation,” says Heikenfeld. “Even years ago in my PhD dissertation, I built a manufacturing cost model into the last chapter.  I have found that this outward focus on how innovation can impact society and commerce, has made me more effective in every aspect of faculty life.  It even changed the way I teach, by reaching deeper into understanding what the needs really are on the client (student) side as well.  I'm thrilled to now be Assistant Vice President for Commercialization at UC, where I hope more faculty, staff, and students can benefit from the same professional growth that I have experienced due to the external engagement that commercialization requires.”

In 2016, the OFC launched a Technology Commercialization Award that is presented annually to recognize a faculty member in the state university system in Ohio for exceptional research discoveries and the role they have played in supporting the translation of those discoveries into marketable products and/or services.  

Dr. Amit Sheth

Dr. Amit Sheth

The award celebrates the successes of faculty like those of the 2017 winner, Dr. Jason Heikenfeld, and award runner-up, Dr. Amit Sheth, LexisNexis Ohio Eminent Scholar and executive director of Wright State University’s Ohio Center of Excellence in Knowledge-Enabled Computing. Twitris technology developed under the leadership and guidance of Sheth is computer software that employs a sophisticated algorithm that analyzes words, emotions and other factors in Tweets on a massive scale to provide unprecedented insights, suggestions, actions or predicted outcomes.

Heikenfeld’s sweat bio-sensing technology has wide market applicability in many aspects of medicine, industry, and sport.  He has been able to leverage the technology and 26 associated patents into the creation of a start-up company, Eccrine Systems, which has already grown to several dozen employees and has been recognized by Bloomberg as one of the fifty best startups in the country. 

“The public university system of Ohio is a key incubator for innovation and the OFC embraces the opportunity to spotlight the role that our phenomenal faculty play in economic development,” notes Dan Krane, Chair of the Ohio Faculty Council and Professor of Biological Sciences at WSU. “Heikenfeld has demonstrated a commitment to help others develop commercialization activities, by helping create entrepreneurial educational programs, and by recently taking on the role of Assistant Vice President for Commercialization at UC.  His work is an outstanding example of how faculty across the state are working to create a collaborative and resourceful statewide entrepreneurial ecosystem that allows high-potential companies to grow and prosper.”

About the Ohio Faculty Council

The Ohio Faculty Council represents the faculty at all of the four-year public universities in the State of Ohio. It addresses concerns common to faculty members across Ohio and presents a faculty perspective on major issues affecting higher education. It is committed to supporting and bringing attention to the critical role that Ohio’s institutions of higher education play in revitalizing the economy of the State and the nation by attracting and training an educated workforce. Learn more at www.ohiohighered.org/ofc.