Sethuraman "Panch" Panchanathan

A message from Panch

Learn about recent awards, our success in patent rankings and newly appointed National Academy of Inventors Senior Members. 

Welcome back!

Welcome back!

As we begin a new semester, I’d like to share some useful resources, upcoming events and news with you.

First of all, congratulations are in order. Drs. Jennifer Barrila, Yuji Zhao and Sefaattin Tongay were awarded the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in July. These awards are the highest honor the U.S. government grants to young scientists and engineers at the outset of their individual research careers. In addition, Drs. Terry Alford, Devens Gust and Andreas Spanias were recently named Senior Members by the National Academy of Inventors. They are among the 54 academic inventors named to the Spring 2019 class of NAI Senior Members, recognized for their efforts to cultivate an innovative mindset and mentor the next generation of inventors.

If you didn’t hear the news earlier this summer, ASU moved into the top 10 for universities worldwide for U.S. patents awarded in 2018. We’re now ranked No. 10 — a jump from No. 17 — by the U.S. National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association. This accomplishment is a testament to the culture of innovative entrepreneurship and problem-solving driven by our faculty, students and researchers.

In award news, the Biodesign Institute was awarded a major grant by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The project aims to build a field-deployable point-of-care device to rapidly determine if a person has been exposed to weapons of mass destruction or their precursors. The project will be led by Biodesign Executive Director Joshua LaBaer and co-principal investigator Vel Murugan, and is a reflection of ASU’s ability to forge partnerships capable of solving grand challenges on a global scale.


Sethuraman “Panch” Panchanathan
Executive Vice President, ASU Knowledge Enterprise
Chief Research and Innovation Officer

TEC Talk Genomics: An introduction to Next Generation Sequencing Applications and Methods

ASU Core Research Facilities is launching “TEC (Technology, Expertise, Collaborations) Talks.” These will be a series of short talks, demos and hands-on learning opportunities to inspire ideas about how core resources can be leveraged to solve research questions.

The first TEC Talk will feature Jason Steel, and will cover ASU Genomics and Mass Spectrometry Core Facilities Genomics. This is an interdisciplinary science that focuses on organisms’ genomes and the DNA within those genomes. Steel will explore genomic applications including, Whole Genome, Sequencing (WGS), RNA-Seq, CHIP-Seq, de novo sequencing, metagenomic and microbial sequencing in this TEC talk.

Date: Tuesday, Oct. 9
Time: 3 – 4 p.m.
Location: Biodesign Institute L1-10/14

Tools and training
Women of Color STEM Entrepreneurship Conference: Governance and Innovation in STEM

ASU’s Center for Gender Equity in Science and Technology is hosting the third annual Women of Color STEM Entrepreneurship Conference focusing on governance and innovation in STEM. This confrence aims to highlight the accomplishments of women and girls from diverse communities, educate women and girls of color through knowledge sharing and capacity building, as well as encourage institutions and industries to recruit women and girls of color in STEM fields. 

There will be five plenary sessions featuring three keynote speakers, two panels and four breakout sessions with three workshop tracks. The keynote speakers will include founder and CEO of Respira Labs Maria Artundauga, MD, MPH, MTM; Coral Evans, mayor of Flagstaff; and Sian Proctor, PhD, professor of geology, sustainability and planetary science, South Mountain Community College. Food and drinks will be provided along with opprotunities for networking. 

Dates: Thursday, October 4 through Saturday, October 6
Times: 4-6 p.m. on Thursday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday
Location: Beus Center for Law and Society, ASU Downtown Phoenix Campus

Tools and training
ASU I-Corps: research commercialization program info sessions

ASU's Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Site provides training, coaching and financial support to faculty and graduate students working to translate university research to the marketplace and to become successful I-Corps Teams. The next I-Corps training series will run from October 16 through November 13.

Attend the next information session on September 20 to learn more about the upcoming series. Held on the third Thursday each month, the info sessions are facilitated by I-Corps co-PI Dr. Brent Sebold and will provide faculty and graduate researchers with information about the program and its history as well as current discovery grant offerings. 

Date: Thursday, September 20
Time: 3 – 4 p.m.
Location: College Avenue Commons, room 335

Date: Thursday, October 18
Time: 5 – 7 p.m.
Location: 1951 @ Skysong

Date: Thursday, November 15
Time: 3 – 4 p.m.
Location: TBA

Date: Thursday, December 20
Time: 3 – 4 p.m.
Location: TBA

Tools and training
XSEDE HPC monthly workshop: Big data

ASU Research Computing is hosting a free, hands-on XSEDE big data workshop for faculty, staff and students who work in high-performance computing.

Date: Wednesday, Sept. 5
Time: 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Location: Biodesign Auditorium B105

Tools and training
Cynthia Sagers to join ASU as new vice president of research

Cynthia Sagers will join Arizona State University’s Office of Knowledge Enterprise Development in September as vice president of research. With a personal mission of advancing equity, accessibility and excellence in research, she will work to grow and secure research development.

Sagers comes from Oregon State University where she served as the vice president of research. She previously held research leadership roles within University of Arkansas, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the National Science Foundation.

“Cynthia Sagers is a proven leader who has advanced cutting-edge research and scholarship during her roles at Oregon State University, the National Science Foundation and the University of Arkansas,” said Sethuraman Panchanathan, executive vice president of Knowledge Enterprise Development and chief research and innovation officer at ASU. “We look forward to the energy, leadership and initiative she is sure to contribute as ASU’s knowledge enterprise continues to scale rapidly and expand our impact globally.”

Sagers will also be a professor within ASU’s College of Integrative Sciences and Arts.