Mark has led much of the seminal work on fecal transplantation and the human microbiome, publishing in leading journals such as Nature and NEJM. He translated fecal transplantation from a topic of research into clinical practice by founding OpenBiome, where he pioneered the universal donor model as a safe, effective and cost-efficient solution to the C. difficile epidemic. Under Mark's leadership, OpenBiome has treated more than 20,000 patients through a network of over 800 hospitals. He co-founded Finch Therapeutics to develop defined microbial therapies that treat diseases beyond C.difficile.
Mark graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University with a BA in Biology and received his Ph.D. in Microbiology from MIT.
Ulrich Thienel, MD
Dr. Thienel joins Finch with more than 20 years of experience successfully leading drug development programs for biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, including RRD International, Takeda, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Johnson & Johnson. Dr. Thienel’s development experience spans multiple therapeutic areas, including gastrointestinal, immunology, central nervous system, hematology, respiratory, and rare diseases. Throughout his career, Dr. Thienel has engaged in ten investigational new drug applications (INDs), two new drug applications (NDAs) and three biologics license applications (BLAs). He completed his M.D. and Ph.D. in Germany and a fellowship in rheumatology at Columbia University, New York.
Before co-founding Finch, Andrew helped grow OpenBiome as its Operations Director. Andrew joined OpenBiome after working as a consultant for Bain & Company in Chicago. At Bain, Andrew served clients across several industries, including healthcare, manufacturing, telecom, consumer packaged goods, airlines, retail, and insurance while working across multiple services including growth strategy, performance improvement, negotiations, M&A, and IT. Prior to joining Bain, Andrew worked in investment banking at JPMorgan.
Andrew holds a BBA with High Distinction from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
Greg Perry brings more than 20 years of corporate finance experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, including leading the acquisition of three companies and raising $1 billion of capital in ten transactions, including an IPO. Prior to joining Finch, Mr. Perry held various senior financial leadership roles at several biotech companies including Novelion Therapeutics, Eleven Biotherapeutics, ImmunoGen, Domantis, and Transkaryotic Therapies. Mr. Perry transitioned to the biotech industry after beginning his career at General Electric, where he served in increasingly senior financial roles over fourteen years. Additionally, Mr. Perry currently serves on the Board of Directors of Merus Therapeutics and Kala Pharmaceuticals. He earned a B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Amherst College.
Zain Kassam, MD, MPH
Before co-founding Finch, Dr. Kassam helped co-found OpenBiome, a nonprofit organization that provides access to fecal microbiota transplants, and previously served as OpenBiome’s CMO. As the CMO at OpenBiome, he played a pivotal role in the establishment of the nation’s first public stool bank and pioneered the development of donor screening protocols that have become the industry standard.
Dr. Kassam previously served as a Scientific Advisory Board Member for the American Gastroenterological Association Center for Gut Microbiome Research & Education, and has authored over 150 peer-reviewed publications and abstracts. He has been involved in more than 25 prospective microbiome therapeutic studies, including the first randomized trials in ulcerative colitis and hepatic encephalopathy. Dr. Kassam was named to the Top 40 under 40 Healthcare Innovator List by MedTech.
Dr. Kassam received his Master of Public Health degree from Harvard University with a focus on biostatistics, epidemiology and clinical trials, and completed post-doctoral training at MIT in microbiome engineering. He received his MD from Western University in London, Canada, and completed his Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology training at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.
BEN ENERSON, JD
Ben brings more than 12 years of experience in complex transactions, intellectual property strategy and management, and litigation. Ben previously was in-house counsel at Moderna Therapeutics from 2015-2017, and Sunovion Pharmaceuticals from 2010-2015. He began his legal career as a litigation attorney at Fish & Richardson and Holland & Knight, where he focused on managing intellectual property matters for a wide variety of clients.
Sonia Timberlake, PhD
Sonia is an expert at designing NGS-based algorithms for applications in microbial genomics, immunnogenomics, and evolution. Prior to joining Finch, she built and managed AbVitro's computational algorithms and infrastructure, supporting high throughput single-cell immune phenotyping and repertoire sequencing technology. This technology platform was acquired by Juno Therapeutics, where Sonia led a multidisciplinary team to harness native adaptive immune responses for developing engineered cell therapies in oncology.
Sonia graduated from Caltech with a B.Sc in Molecular Biology and received her Ph.D. in Biological Engineering from MIT.
Jim Sigler, MBA
Jim has 28+ years of experience in drug development. At Genzyme, he and his team brought Carticel™, the first biologic therapy of its type, from academia all the way through FDA submission, inspection, licensure, and commercialization. At Reprogenesis, he and his team executed a crash re-formulation and pre-clinical model development effort that resulted in the resumption of a Phase III trial less than nine months after suspending the trial. At Acceleron, he and his team completed in-house manufacture of the first clinical drug substance for the company, and the outside manufacture of clinical drug product, less than two years after the company’s initial financing and barely seventeen months after board approval to build the in-house capability.
Jim received his BS in Biology/General Studies from Cornell University and his MBA from Harvard Business School.
Elaine Vo, PhD
Elaine previously directed the Research and Development Program at OpenBiome, characterizing the stability, viability, and potency of existing treatments as well as developing next generation FMT products for both treatment of recurrent C. difficile infection and clinical research on FMT for new indications.
She holds an AB in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology from Harvard University and a PhD in Integrative Biology from the University of California, Berkeley.
Chris Weidenmaier, PhD
Christopher comes to Finch with almost a decade of experience as a principal investigator at the University of Tuebingen, Germany where his research was focused on host-pathogen and host-microbiota interactions. He holds a PhD in microbiology from the University of Tuebingen and worked as a postdoc at the Division of Infectious Diseases of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. In addition, Christopher has extensive experience in discovery and development of novel anti-infectives and led several projects in collaboration with industry partners.
Dean Glettig, PhD
Dean previously worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Bob Langer at MIT, with a particular focus on improving current methods in oral drug delivery. His research was funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Max-Planck Institute, as well as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. This resulted in the filing of 4 patents and the start of a spin-off company.
Dean received his BSc & MSc in Chemistry from ETH Zurich and a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Tufts University.
CRYSTAL CHEN, MD
Bharat Ramakrishna, MD
Dr. Bharat Ramakrishna is a medical doctor with clinical experience in the areas of internal medicine and infectious diseases. He has held roles in patient advocacy organizations, sits on the board of several healthcare nonprofits, and has several peer-reviewed publications. In addition to his medical degree he has training in translational medicine, and is the medical lead for our translational and early clinical development work for FIN-524, working closely with collaborators at Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Bharat has also played a major role in Finch’s pharmacovigilance and stool donation programs.
He completed his medical degree at the University of Melbourne and his residency/fellowship in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Monash Health, Victoria.
John Hogan brings 25+ years of drug development experience to Finch. Prior to joining Finch, John served as Director, Clinical Operations for Momenta Pharmaceuticals where he oversaw a portfolio of biosimilars and novel biologic drugs. Before joining Momenta John worked at a number of Pharmaceutical and CROs in a variety of roles including: Data Management, Clinical Monitoring, Pharmacovigilence, Project/Program Management and Director of Operations roles.
John holds a BA in Biology from Rutgers University and a Masters in Project Management from Western Carolina University.
Kristine Callahan, MST, CPA
Kris is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts; she has over twenty-five years of experience in public and private accounting positions. Her business approach is multidisciplinary, combining her proven expertise in accounting, taxation, life sciences and general business practices to offer the highest level of support to an organization’s finance function. Kristine’s professional experience includes almost fourteen years at Deloitte, a global accounting and tax advisory firm where she successfully worked in Boston and Chicago during her tenure as a Senior Manager in each of the audit, tax and technology groups within the firm. She traveled extensively for client needs throughout the U.S. and abroad and has broad industry experience from her varied client base. Kris also has extensive corporate operational experience from her prior positions as Regional Financial Manager at a former subsidiary of Sun Oil, Director of Financial Reporting for a publicly traded investment company and as a Controller of a Cambridge based venture capital firm.
Kris earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Accountancy from Bentley University in Waltham, MA and received her Master of Science in Taxation from Northeastern University in Boston, MA.
Jim is the associate director of quality assurance at FTG. He has over 23 years of experience in Quality Assurance management. He has widespread knowledge of quality system development and remediation, in both biologics and pharmaceuticals. While working at Johnson and Johnson’s Global Biologics Supply Chain (GBSC), he authored the companies’ global quality policies and led the worldwide quality guideline initiative by facilitating creation and approval of these documents. He has extensive knowledge of FDA expectations having led and supported numerous regulatory inspections under both routine and consent decree settings. Acting as an FDA third-party remediation professional, Jim has provided expert international consultation services regarding quality/compliance systems with a focus on regulatory compliance and practical feasibility. Jim received his undergraduate degrees from Rutgers University. He is certified in Six Sigma (black belt) process improvement techniques/tools, and is an ASQ Certified Quality Manager and Certified Quality Auditor. Jim is currently studying to obtain his MBA.
Suja is a Biomanufacturing Associate at Finch Therapeutics. She is a graduate from Bharathidasan University (India), where she received her M.Phil (Master of Philosophy) degree in Radiation and Nuclear Physics. She also graduated from Manonmaniam Sundaranar University (India), where she received her Bachelors and Masters in Physics. She has always been passionate about life science and caring for others. She is excited to learn more about the human microbiome.
Marina Santiago, PhD
Marina is a Research Scientist at Finch Therapeutics. For the last 10 years, Marina has worked on different aspects of antibiotic resistance, from natural product discovery and isolation, to developing genomics techniques for identifying new resistance factors. She has presented her work at Gordon conferences, national meetings, and to the public through the Harvard Science in the News and the Boston Museum of Science. She received her BS in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University, and her PhD in Chemical Biology from Suzanne Walker’s lab at Harvard Medical School. She is excited to be at Finch and to apply her multidisciplinary experiences to the challenges of developing microbiome remediation therapeutics.
Martina Schinke, PhD
Martina joins Finch with 15 years of program leadership, strategic alliance- and program-management experience in academic, pharmaceutical, and biotech settings. Most recently, Martina provided program management support for bluebird bio’s growing Oncology Franchise and co-led development of bluebird’s lead Oncology CAR T cell therapy product bb2121 from research through clinical development in collaboration with Celgene since 2014. Martina was formerly with the Novartis Institute for Biomedical Research where she held senior project leadership positions over a nearly 10-year tenure and provided strategic and operational leadership for multiple Novartis early discovery and development programs in several therapeutic areas. Prior to her time at Novartis, she was overseeing the microarray facility at the Bauer Center for Genomics Research at Harvard University. Martina holds a PhD from the University in Heidelberg, Germany, and completed her postdoctoral training at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and was Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Boston.
Kris has over 30 years of experience in new drug development in both big pharma and biotech with a highly successful track record in taking products from pre-IND to market approval and commercialization. Over the course of his career, Kris has successfully submitted more than 35 INDs and gained approval of more than 20 NDAs and BLAs. While primarily focused on regulatory affairs, he also has had responsibility for quality assurance and clinical operations throughout his career.
Kris holds a BS in Animal Science and a MS in Physiology from the University of California at Davis.
Tom Borody, MD PhD DSc FRACP
Tom completed medical training in Sydney, Australia then conducted research at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. On his return to Australia Tom established the Centre for Digestive Diseases. He has overseen its growth into an active clinical research institute with 72 employees. Tom has published more than 280 papers and filed over 160 patents. Tom treated his first patient using FMT in 1988 and published several papers bringing FMT into clinical practice. Beyond using FMT for C difficile Tom was first to treat colitis, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome as well as neurologic and autoimmune disorders, using FMT or defined microbial therapies. To date Tom’s clinic has completed over 14,000 FMT treatments.