3 Teams Advance to the George Shultz Innovation Fund Finals

The three teams will present to the Innovation Fund Advisory Committee in May. Seen here is fall 2023 finalist Nick Feamster.

The spring 2024 George Shultz Innovation Fund finalists are developing solutions to detect lead in water, treat diseases, and improve patient care.

Managed by the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, the George Shultz Innovation Fund provides up to $250,000 in co-investment funding for early-stage tech ventures coming out of the University of Chicago, Argonne National Laboratory, Fermilab, and the Marine Biological Laboratory.

Register for the George Shultz Innovation Fund Finals >>

The teams will pitch to the Innovation Fund Advisory Committee, which consists of advisors, entrepreneurs, and industry experts, during the finals event on Wednesday, May 29, 2024.

The spring 2024 finalists are:

NanoAffix Science // NanoAffix has developed a portable device for real-time detection of lead in tap water. The system consists of a handheld sensor module connected via Bluetooth to a mobile app. Their long-term solution: inline continuous sensor chips integrated with water filters.

  • CEO Junhong Chen, Crown Family Professor of Molecular Engineering at the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering and lead water strategist at Argonne National Laboratory

Claudyn Biotech // Claudyn Biotech is developing a novel class of drugs to block claudin channels, which can be used to treat diseases like Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

  • Cofounders Chris Weber, associate professor of pathology; Le Shen, research associate professor of surgery; Fatemeh Khalili-Araghi, University of Illinois in Chicago

PAC Dynamic // Using computational modeling and machine learning algorithms, together with a proprietary algorithm, we are able to model different therapeutic options to maximize care for patients with heart failure.


To date, the Innovation Fund has invested over $9 million in more than 90 companies that have gone on to raise more than $412 million in follow-on funding. Companies launched with the fund’s support include Onchilles PharmaExplORer SurgicalClostraBioEsya Labs, and Super.Tech.

The core mission of the Innovation Fund is to help scientific founders turn their innovations into ventures that advance cutting-edge technologies, generate significant financial returns, and create lasting impact for humankind.

This site uses cookies and other tracking technologies to assist with navigation and your ability to provide feedback, analyze your use of products and services, assist with our promotional and marketing efforts.