The Xycrobe team, Kristen Kuakini, from left, Mun Su Rhee, Thomas M. Hitchcock, Jeong Ho Kim, Blake Burchak and intern Lanchi Tran, are harnessing ‘good’ bacteria for use in skin treatments. Photo by Melissa Jacobs.

The Xycrobe team, Kristen Kuakini, from left, Mun Su Rhee, Thomas M. Hitchcock, Jeong Ho Kim, Blake Burchak and intern Lanchi Tran, are harnessing ‘good’ bacteria for use in skin treatments. Photo by Melissa Jacobs.

Six San Diego startups were chosen as finalists for Startup Stadium, a pitch competition for early-stage entrepreneurs going this week at the 2017 BIO International Convention.

BIO is the largest biotechnology conference in the world, and it’s taking place this year at San Diego’s convention center. The Startup Stadium, now in its third year at BIO, helps startups connect with investors, venture philanthropy groups, and other attendees of the conference.

Finalists for the pitch event were chosen from 100 applicants, with 40 startups making it through to the current round. Biotech startups from 14 states, along with Canada, Germany and India, made the finals. Now, those 40 startups will give 5-7 minute pitches in front of investors.

“In many cases, early stage biotechs don’t have the right access to investors and other stakeholders, so the Startup Stadium is designed to help fill that gap,” said Jim Greenwood, BIO’s president and CEO, in a statement. “It’s a fantastic program in that it allows us to reach some of the most overlooked regions for biotech start-ups, which traditionally have limited access to investor engagement, feedback and representation.”

The six San Diego startups on the list are:

Actavalon Inc. — focuses on the development of a drug with the potential to target and eradicate human cancer cells.

Agribody Technologies — owns unique crop yield-enhancing genetic technology that can also improve stress tolerance, disease resistance and product shelf life.

Aquam LLC. — offers a packaged water treatment plant that can deliver a four-hour treatment time, reduce total sludge volumes and recover energy as direct electricity.

Notogen Inc. — developed a therapeutic to stop and reverse spinal disc degeneration, a condition strongly associated with back pain.

OrPro Therapeutics Inc. — developing a therapeutic platform to treat diseases such as cystic fibrosis

Xycrobe Therapeutics Inc. —developing innovations that turn microbes into vehicles for the delivery of biotherapeutics.

Startup Stadium pitches will take place Tuesday through Thursday (June 20-22) of this week.