Meet the new generation of young biotech entrepreneurs

5-22-2019 x
From left, Omar Abudayyeh of Sherlock Biosciences; Catherine Freije, Ph.D. candidate, Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard; Trevor Martin of Mammoth Biosciences; Cameron Myhrvold, postdoctoral fellow, the Broad; and Jonathan Gootenberg of Sherlock. Image: Jamel Toppin/Forbes

Crispr had no obvious relevance to human health when it was first described in 1987, but [Jennifer] Doudna, who won the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences for her Crispr work, and other pioneers have discovered ways to turn it into a gene-editing tool. [Rachel] Haurwitz and Doudna helped found Caribou Bio­sciences in 2011 to get in on the action. Haurwitz, still in her 20s, became CEO the next year.

Haurwitz is not the only young entrepreneur who sees opportunity in gene editing. Doudna cofounded Mammoth Bio­sciences with some of her other doctoral students and two Stanford Ph.D.s. Trevor Martin, the company’s 30-year-old CEO, has raised $23 million from such investors as Apple CEO Tim Cook. In 2015, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, 29-year-old Luhan Yang founded eGenesis with her mentor, Harvard geneticist George Church, to use Crispr to help transplant pig organs into people. Omar Abudayyeh and Jonathan Gootenberg, also in their 20s, cofounded Sherlock Biosciences with another Crispr pioneer, 37-year-old Feng Zhang of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.

Related article:  Is there a place for CRISPR gene editing in organic farming? Many farmers say ‘yes'

“They may be young, but in both cases these are people at the top of their game scientifically,” Doudna says of her cofounders. “They’re fearless in all the right ways.”

Read full, original post: The Young Biotech Entrepreneurs Looking To Make Billions By Editing Life Itself

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