Defined Bioscience Announces Formation of Scientific Advisory Board

Defined Bioscience Announces Formation of Scientific Advisory Board

San Diego, California—Defined Bioscience, a life science tools company pioneering the development of next generation ingredients for cell culture, today announced the formation of its scientific advisory board (SAB). The SAB is comprised of a distinguished group of academic and industry experts who will advise the Defined Bioscience team on the development and commercialization of cell culture reagents, growth medium and kits to consistently grow high quality stem cells and iPSC-derived tissue with applications in life science and cultivated meat.

“We are proud to have experienced scientists and leaders with deep experience in stem cell biology, protein production, and product development joining our SAB,” said Steve Rees, CEO of Defined Bioscience. “We look forward to meeting regularly and fully leveraging the team’s diverse breadth of experiences as we expand our R&D and commercial efforts. With our scientific advisors’ guidance, we believe that we can bring many new and innovative reagents for our customers making innovative discoveries, life-saving therapeutics, and amazing new cultivated meat products.”

Appointed members of the newly formed Defined Bioscience SAB include the following:

  • Alysson Muotri, PhD, is a Professor and Director of the Stem Cell Program at the University of California, San Diego. His research focuses on human brain development and evolution, exploring mobile elements as generators of neuronal diversity. Dr. Muotri’s lab is also interested on modeling neurological diseases, such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, using human induced pluripotent stem cells. He received several awards, including the prestigious NIH Director’s New Innovator Award and the Emerald Foundation Young Investigator Award. Dr. Muotri earned a BSc in Biological Sciences from the State University of Campinas in 1995 and a Ph.D. in Genetics in 2001 from University of Sao Paulo, in Brazil.
  • Paul Burridge, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and a founding faculty member of the Center for Pharmacogenomics. For more than 15 years, Dr. Burridge has worked on the applications of human pluripotent stem cells (both hESC and hPSC), concentrating on culture and differentiation methodologies, regenerative medicine, and disease modeling, specifically the pharmacogenomic and molecular mechanisms of chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy and heart failure. Dr. Burridge is the recipient of the NIH NHLBI Pathway to Independence Award and a Fellow of the American Heart Association in Genomic and Precision Medicine. He completed a PhD in Human Stem Cell Biology at the University of Nottingham before pursuing postdoctoral fellowships at Johns Hopkins University in Pediatric Oncology and then at Stanford University in Cardiology before becoming an Instructor in Cardiovascular Medicine at Stanford.
  • Aline M. Betancourt, PhD, is a recognized expert in the field of stem cells, cancer, and cell-based therapies. She has greatly contributed to the understanding of many aspects of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) over the last two decades. Her laboratory was the first to show that Toll-like receptors (TLRs) on MSCs affects their stress responses and immune modulation. She was also first to describe paradigm-shifting evidence that MSCs can be induced into both the accepted immunosuppressive MSC2 phenotype and a new pro-inflammatory MSC1 phenotype. Most recently, she cofounded Vitabolus to develop the first orally delivered cell therapy for inflammatory bowel disease funded in part by a Discovery-Quest award from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM). Dr. Betancourt received her PhD degree from Georgetown Univ. Her postdoctoral training in cancer research began at the NIH-NCI. She has been a faculty member of Tulane Univ School of Medicine since 1994-and an Adjunct Associate Professor since 2014.
  • Mark Nowakowski, MS, is the Chief Technology Officer at Argonaut Manufacturing Services Inc and former CEO and/or founder of LyoGen LLC and BioMatrix Engineering. Mr. Nowakowski brings expertise and guidance in the cryodessication, cryopreservation, and commercial spaces. He has expertise in product design and patenting, in vitro diagnostics devices, microfluidic cartridges, lyophilization techniques and process flows, and manufacturing automation spanning three decades. His previous employment includes Hybritech Incorporated, Biosite Diagnostics, FMC BioProducts, and Mesa Tech International. Mr. Nowakowski earned his MS degree in R&D Systems Management at the University of Southern California.
  • Jiwu Wang, PhD, is the Founder, President and CEO of Allele Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals Inc. and the Scintillon Institute for Biomedical and Bioenergy Research. Over the years Dr. Wang and his team at Allele have worked on biological advancements that have been at the forefront of molecular biology research, including RNA interference, fluorescent proteins, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), genome editing, and camelid single domain antibodies. In 2015, Allele established a cGMP facility in San Diego to further the clinical development of iPSC-based cell therapy. His research is the foundation for Allele Biotechnology’s cellular reprogramming platform for iPSCs. Dr. Wang obtained a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from Peking University and earned his Ph.D. degree in Molecular Biology at the University of Southern California.
  • Geoffrey Chang, PhD, is a professor of Pharmacology at the University of California, San Diego’s Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. His research spans nearly 30 years in the area of structural biology of integral membrane proteins, using X-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) to elucidate the structures of multidrug resistance transporters, among others. Dr. Chang additionally leads efforts at UCSD to incubate novel scientific ideas and technologies for eventual commercialization. Dr. Chang is an Era of Hope Scholar, recipient of the Beckman Young Investigators and Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers, and recipient of the EUREKA and PSI grant awards through the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Chang earned his B.A. and M.S. in Biophysics and his PhD in Molecular Biophysics at the University of Pennsylvania.

About Defined Bioscience 

Defined Bioscience is a life science startup developing cell culture reagents, growth media, and kits to consistently grow high-quality stem cells and iPSC-derived tissue. We strive to provide improved quality solutions and reduce the production cost of stem cells, iPSC-derived cells and tissues for our customers working on life science and cultivated meat solutions. Its flagship products include HiDef-B8, a fully-defined stem cell maintenance medium with weekend-free passaging capabilities, and FGF2-G3, a thermostable variant of FGF2 with a half-life greater than three weeks in mammalian cell culture conditions. Defined Bioscience is located in San Diego, California. For more information, visit us at