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Biotech Leader to Speak at UCR

Biotech Entrepreneur is Keynote Speaker at Regional Undergraduate Research Conference Hosted by UC Riverside

Tina Nova will address the Southern California Conference on Undergraduate Research

(November 11, 2005)

Tina Nova

Tina Nova

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — — Biotechnology executive and entrepreneur Tina Nova, a 1982 Ph.D. recipient of the University of California, Riverside, will give the keynote address at the 13th Annual Southern California Conference on Undergraduate Research, scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 19 at UCR. The public is invited but must register for the event. To register, visit the conference Web site.

Nova is the chief executive officer of Genoptix, Inc., the fourth biotechnology firm she has co-founded in the San Diego area. She will address more than 600 students plus their faculty mentors gathered at the largest SCCUR conference so far, according to conference organizer Chris Foster, director of undergraduate research at the Bourns College of Engineering at UCR.

Judges have accepted 525 research presentations in disciplines ranging from art history to zoology, submitted by students at more than 90 colleges and universities across the nation.

“Dr. Nova exemplifies the drive, intelligence and excellence we hope that events such as this will nurture in the young people who participate,” Foster said. “I think the conference experience will also make some of these excellent students consider UCR for their graduate careers.”

Nova returned to Southern California in 1984 from postdoctoral work at New York University Medical School to work for the start-up company Hybritech, which was sold to Eli Lilly two year later for $400 million. She was also part of the start-up team at Ligand Pharmaceuticals and Nanogen, Inc.

Adding to her entrepreneurial success, Nova was appointed In January 2005 to the Independent Citizen’s Oversight Committee that will oversee $3 billion in funding for stem cell research.

UCR Conference supporters include the Office of Research, the Office of Undergraduate Academic Programs, the Graduate Division and the campus academic colleges. Organizers have received a $25,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to help pay for the conference, which includes oral and poster presentations of original research, scholarly activities and creative endeavors.

“Who knows if a future Nobel Prize winner will get his or her start here,” Foster said. “After all, Richard Schrock (2005 Nobel Laureate in chemistry) got his start doing undergraduate research in atmospheric chemistry at UCR.”
Schrock, a professor at MIT, received a Bachelor of Arts degree in chemistry from UCR in 1967.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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