Alumni Update: Isaac Rodriguez and SweetBio

Isaac Rodriguez
Isaac Rodriguez (B.S. ’10; Ph.D. ’13)

By Erica Naone
Office of Development and Alumni Relations


Isaac Rodriguez (B.S. ’10; Ph.D. ’13) used his two biomedical engineering degrees to co-invent a product, a combination of Manuka honey, a collagen derivative and nanoparticles, which promotes tissue regeneration. Though his primary expertise is in the lab, since graduation Rodriguez has stepped into the world of business to bring his invention to market.

He co-founded the Memphis, Tennessee-based biotech startup SweetBio in 2015, with his sister, Kayla Rodriguez Graff, and serves as its chief science officer. The company quickly earned accolades, raising more than $3 million and graduating from ZeroTo510, an accelerator program designed to help entrepreneurs clear medical devices for commercial use, and from LaunchTN’s The TENN, an economic development program that helps entrepreneurs in the Tennessee area.

SweetBio recently launched a product in the veterinary market. In 2019, it will launch its first human clinical product, Apis, a resorbable solid sheet that can be used for wound care treatments and in dentistry.