OTM Team


Bruce D. Butler, Ph.D.

Vice President, Research and Technology
Director, Office of Technology Management

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3369
Fax: +1 (713) 500-0331
Email: Bruce.D.Butler@uth.tmc.edu

Dr. Bruce D. Butler is Vice President Research and Technology, and directs the Office of Technology Management at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). The office handles the technology transfer activities including the creation of new start-ups for the six UTHealth schools and the UTHealth faculty at the Texas Heart Institute. Dr. Butler also holds an academic position as Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology at the Medical School and managed a research program in collaboration with NASA, U.S. Navy and several international pharmaceutical companies. He has over 200 published papers, abstracts and book chapters. Other positions he holds include VP for the Office of Global Health Initiatives, Associate Director of the UTHealth / MD Anderson Cancer Center-Center for Advanced Biomedical Imaging Research (CABIR). Dr. Butler is an inventor on numerous U.S. and associated foreign patents; several of which have been commercialized through UTHealth that include respiratory healthcare products and bio-pharmaceuticals. He has been involved with product development for medical and home-care devices, including FDA regulatory approvals and clinical trials. Dr. Butler has been personally involved in the creation of 5 life-science start-ups and numerous other business development partnerships.


Christine E. Flynn, Ph.D.

Associate Director, Licensing and New Venture Development
Director, Biotechnology Commercialization Center

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3383
Fax: +1 (713) 500-0331
Email: Christine.Flynn@uth.tmc.edu

Christine E. Flynn, Ph.D. joined OTM in 2007, where she is responsible for assessing, protecting, and commercializing the intellectual property generated by faculty, staff, and students at UTHealth, with a particular focus on startup companies.  Christine also helped establish and further coordinates the Biotechnology Commercialization Center (BCC) at UTHealth.  Prior to joining OTM, Christine received Bachelor of Science degrees in both Chemistry and French from The Pennsylvania State University in University Park, PA. She continued her education at The University of Texas at Austin, in Austin, TX, where she researched peptide-directed recognition and growth of semiconductor materials under the direction of Professor Angela Belcher, receiving her Doctorate of Philosophy in Chemistry. In conjunction with a postdoctoral research position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA, Christine joined Cambrios Technologies Corp. as the first employee of the new company, where she contributed to the commercialization and expansion of the basic science that she previously developed with Dr. Belcher, including as Principal Investigator on two Army grants and as a key player in the formation of Intellectual Property Strategy for the company.


Peter G. Seferian, Ph.D.

Senior Patent Manager

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3377
Fax: +1 (713) 500-0331
Email: Peter.Seferian@uth.tmc.edu

Peter G. Seferian, Ph.D. joined OTM in 2008, where his primary responsibility involves the assessment, protection, and management of the intellectual property generated by UTHealth faculty, staff, and students. Dr. Seferian is a registered Patent Agent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and prior to joining the Office of Technology Management he was a Senior Patent Agent at Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a publicly traded biopharmaceutical company, where he filed and prosecuted hundreds of patent applications, as well as contributing to IP strategy, diligence and competitive intelligence efforts. Before joining Lexicon, Dr. Seferian had many years of bench experience as a Senior Scientist and Project Leader in the biotechnology industry. At Zonagen, Inc., he developed novel vaccine adjuvant systems and while at Aprogenex, Inc., he worked on FISH based diagnostic systems. He also has GMP pharmaceutical production experience obtained at Natcon Chemicals, Inc., a generic pharmaceutical company. Dr. Seferian received his B.S. degree in Biology from the State University of New York at Binghamton and his Ph.D. from the Graduate School of Biomedical Science at UTHealth, where he studied auto-anti-idiotypic immune regulation in the Pathology Department at the Medical School. After receiving his Ph.D., he served as a postdoctoral fellow at the Protozoan Diseases Laboratory of the USDA-ARS in Beltsville, MD, developing recombinant vaccines.

Marman Photo

   Hannah Marman Nelson, Ph.D.

   Senior Technology Licensing Associate

   Phone: +1 (713) 500-3399 
   Fax:     +1 (713) 500-0331
   Email: Hannah.M.Nelson@uth.tmc.edu

Hannah Marman Nelson, Ph.D. joined OTM in 2014, where she is responsible for assessing, marketing, and licensing intellectual property developed at UTHealth. Prior to joining OTM, Hannah received a B.S. in Biology in 2007 from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. She continued her education in Microbiology at the University of Texas at Austin where she researched virulence of the enteric bacterial pathogen Shigella in the laboratory of Dr. Shelley Payne, receiving her doctorate in 2013. While completing her graduate studies, Hannah worked for over two years at the UT Austin Office of Technology Commercialization, where she was responsible for evaluating and marketing life science technologies created at UT Austin.  

Chuan-Yar "Yaya" Lai, Ph.D.

Technology License Associate

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3384
Fax: +1 (713) 500-0331

Chuan-Yar (Yaya) Lai, Ph.D. joined OTM in 2019, where she is responsible for assessing, marketing, and licensing intellectual property developed at UTHealth. Prior to joining OTM, Yaya received a B.S. in Biochemistry in 2005 from the University of Texas at Austin. She earned a Ph.D in 2012 in Macromolecular Science and Engineering at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. Her research focused on developing multi-layer polymer film products for real world applications ranging from optical data storage and lenses to packaging film in collaboration with various industrial companies and government labs. One of the government projects she contributed to was spun off to a start-up company named PolymerPlus. Yaya then worked in the chemical industry at Dow Chemical for 7 years before joining OTM.

Jan Hendrickson

Senior Administrative Manager

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3369
Fax:     +1 (713) 500-0331
Email: Janet.M.Hendrickson@uth.tmc.edu

Elda Tolentino

Administrative Coordinator

Phone: +1 (713) 500-3353 
Fax:     +1 (713) 500-0331
Email: Elda.Tolentino@uth.tmc.edu