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Sunday, 04/27/2014 3:34:11 PM

Sunday, April 27, 2014 3:34:11 PM

Post# of 72
Organovo -- >>> Backround info on Organovo founders Andras Forgacs and Gabor Forgacs, from the Modern Meadow website -

>>> Modern Meadow was founded in 2011 by some of the leading tissue engineers and co-inventors of bioprinting. Since its inception, the company has attracted a world class team, advisors and investors who share the aim of leveraging advances in tissue engineering to solve global resource challenges.

Andras Forgacs, Co-founder and Chief Executive

Andras is an entrepreneur and venture investor in technology and life science. He co-founded Modern Meadow in 2011. Previously, he had also co-founded Organovo, a leader in tissue engineering which pioneered the use of 3D bio-printing to create human tissue for a range of medical applications. Organovo’s bio-printer was named one of the top inventions of 2010 by Time Magazine and the company was recognized by MIT Technology Review on its TR50 list of most innovative companies for 2012.

Andras also served as Managing Director with Richmond Global, an international technology-focused venture fund. Previously, Andras was a consultant in the New York office of McKinsey & Company focused on biopharma and private equity. Earlier, he was a founding member of Citigroup’s corporate and investment banking e-commerce group where he led a team that developed award winning financial technology products and advised large cap corporate clients on a range of corporate finance challenges.

He is also co-founder and Chairman Emeritus of the international non-profit Resolution Project. Andras is a Kauffman Fellow with the Center for Venture Education and a Term Member with the Council on Foreign Relations. Andras holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts with honors from Harvard University.

Gabor Forgacs, Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer

Dr. Gabor Forgacs is a theoretical physicist turned bioengineer turned innovator and entrepreneur. He is the George H. Vineyard Professor of Biological Physics at the University of Missouri-Columbia, the Executive and Scientific Director of the Shipley Center for Innovation at Clarkson University and scientific founder of Organovo, Inc. and Modern Meadow, Inc.

He was trained as a theoretical physicist at the Roland Eotvos University, Budapest, Hungary and the Landau Institute of Theoretical Physics, Moscow, USSR. He also has a degree in biology. His research interests span from topics in theoretical physics to physical mechanisms in early embryonic development.

He is the co-author of the celebrated text in the field, “Biological Physics of the Developing Embryo” (Cambridge University Press, 2005) that discusses the fundamental morphogenetic mechanisms evident in early development. These mechanisms are being applied to building living structures of prescribed shape and functionality using bioprinting, a novel tissue engineering technology he pioneered. He is the author of over 160 peer-reviewed scientific articles and 5 books.

He has been recognized by numerous awards and citations. In particular, he was named as one of the “100 most innovative people in business in 2010” by FastCompany.

Francoise Marga, Co-founder and Senior Scientist

Dr. Francoise Marga is a co-founder and a Senior Scientist at Modern Meadow. She joined Dr. Forgacs’ laboratory in 2003 and played a crucial role in the development of the bioprinting technology and its two medical applications: the vascular graft and the nerve graft.

She is co-inventor on several related patents, either licensed to Organovo or key to the foundation of Modern Meadow. She was the lead investigator for both companies in their first awarded SBIR grants.

Francoise is a food biochemist by training. Before joining Dr. Forgacs’s laboratory, she worked on the biochemical and biophysical characterization of biopolymers. She holds a PhD from the University of Technology Compiegne (UTC) in France. She came to Canada as postdoctoral fellow and worked at Armand-Frappier Institute in Laval, Quebec on polysaccharide-degrading enzymes. She then moved to Lafayette, LA and worked on cuticle composition in relation with its elastic properties. She came to Columbia as a research associate in the Department of Biological Sciences prior to joining the Forgacs Lab. She is the co-author on several seminal publications on the bioprinting technology.

Karoly Jakab, Co-founder and Senior Scientist

Dr. Karoly Jakab is a co-founder of Modern Meadow. He worked with Dr. Forgacs for over a decade on several biophysics research projects and developed extensive expertise in the biomechanics of cells and tissues.

Karoly’s contribution was instrumental in developing the first generation bioprinters used to create living 3D tissues for regenerative medicine. He co-authored key publications related to bioprinting in the field of biological physics, tissue engineering and biotechnology. Beside his contribution to the basic science in tissue and cell biomechanics, he is also co-inventor on core bioprinting patents currently licensed in the industry of bioprinting.

A physicist by training with strong engineering skills, he designed and built several prototype research instruments and devices, many of them crucial elements in the company’s current manufacturing process.

Karoly holds a Ph.D. in biological physics, his training includes two postdoctoral fellowships in developmental biology (University of Virginia) and vascular tissue engineering (University of Missouri), respectively.

Sarah Sclarsic, Director of Business

Sarah Sclarsic is an entrepreneur with a background in biotechnology. She co-founded Getaround, an innovative peer-to-peer carsharing company. At Getaround Sarah guided operations and business development, crafting novel business relationships within the transportation and insurance industries. She previously worked in venture capital as an investment analyst with Canaan Partners, focusing on early-stage technology companies.

Sarah holds a BA in Bioethics and Public Policy from Harvard University, where she also performed research in a molecular and cellular biology lab. After college she worked in sub-Saharan Africa helping the Clinton Foundation scale up treatment of HIV/AIDS. Sarah is a graduate of Singularity University, a technology studies program based at NASA Ames, and has advised early-stage startups on business strategy, product, and business development.

Hemanth Varadaraju, Process Engineering

Hemanthram Varadaraju manages process engineering for Modern Meadow. Prior to Modern Meadow, he worked for Lonza (Walkersville, MD) as a process engineer to scale-up cell therapy manufacturing processes. He has a broad experience in de-risking operations involved in stem cell manufacturing processes from upstream to downstream. Apart from process development, he has expertise in process modeling to evaluate cost of goods, debottlenecking and optimizing workflow. Earlier, Hemanth was an intern at Monsanto and contributed for process development engineering.

Hemanth holds a Masters in chemical engineering from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and his graduate research includes applications of nanofiber membranes as an adsorptive medium for bioseparations.

Ryan Kaesser, Research Associate

Ryan Kaesser is a graduate from the University of Missouri – Columbia with a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences. During his studies he interned and performed laboratory research on autoimmune disorders. In 2009, he joined the Forgacs Lab. While there he worked with the current Modern Meadow team helping to develop the technology that would lead to the launching of the company. Ryan joined Modern Meadow in June 2012.


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