Arkansas Summit Oct. 25 to Showcase State’s Life Science-based Companies

By Ben Boulden

The event will showcase presentations from 11 of the fastest-growing technology companies with research and innovation in the life sciences conducted at Arkansas universities and private companies.

These companies include medical devices, drug discovery, diagnostics, biotechnology, natural products and agriculture sciences. The summit is organized and hosted by BioVentures and will be held at the Conway Expo and Event Center, 2505 E. Oak St.

Registration is $45. Register on Eventbrite:

Among the presenting companies are Ascendant Diagnostics, Biotech Pharmacal, CSurgeries, Zystein LLC, Cardiowise, Blue in Green, Lapovations, Rejuvenics Technologies, Eco Bio, SFC Fluidics and Nanomatronix.

The keynote speaker is Greg Bledsoe, M.D., Arkansas surgeon general. Bledsoe has provided clinical and strategic consultation to numerous nonprofit and commercial entities. He is an operating partner for the venture capital firm New Road Capital Partners. Bledsoe is board-certified in emergency medicine and medical director of the Emergency Medicine Department at the Arkansas Heart Hospital.

A morning panel will focus on an overview of BioArkansas and the makeup of life sciences.  An afternoon panel will discuss the success stories of Arkansas companies, including Angel Eye Camera Systems, Pacific Vet Group, Rx Results and Safe Foods.

“At this summit, some of the state’s most innovative companies in the life sciences sector will have a chance to tell their stories and connect with potential investors,” said Nancy M. Gray, Ph.D., BioVentures director. “Arkansas’ research and development companies will show how very competitive they are with their peers nationwide. Access to capital is vital so these companies can keep creating jobs for Arkansans.”

Summit sponsors are BioVentures, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Arkansas State University, Thermo Fisher Scientific and the Advertising and Promotion Commission of Conway.

BioVentures is a technology commercialization organization and startup incubator focused on promoting a biomedical technology industry for Arkansas and translating research into products that benefit human health. BioVentures links the health care research minds to global markets to advance Arkansas’ scientific and economic development.

UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise including its hospital, regional clinics and clinics it operates or staffs in cooperation with other providers. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. U.S. News & World Report recognized UAMS Medical Center as a Best Hospital for 2021-22; ranked its ear, nose and throat program among the top 50 nationwide for the third year; and named five areas as high performing — colon cancer surgery, diabetes, hip replacement, knee replacement and stroke. Forbes magazine ranked UAMS as seventh in the nation on its Best Employers for Diversity list. UAMS also ranked in the top 30% nationwide on Forbes’ Best Employers for Women list and was the only Arkansas employer included. UAMS has 2,876 students, 898 medical residents and six dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.