Hatem Dhaker

Hatem is a passionate software developer with an academic background in computer science. He brings to Microbiome Insights nearly 8 years of experience in software design, architecture, and development with a wide range of technologies at local startups and international organizations. Prior to joining the company, Hatem worked as a full stack software developer with the Vanbex group, where he helped build and launch several successful blockchain products. When he is away from the keyboard, Hatem can be found cycling, hiking, and exploring the natural wonders of beautiful British Columbia.

Kristina Campbell

Kristina Campbell, M.Sc., is a professional science communicator and engagement specialist who writes, consults, and works with scientific advisory boards for microbiome-related organizations throughout Europe and North America. Her special expertise lies in the area of nutrition and the gut microbiome. She has authored The Well-Fed Microbiome Cookbook (Rockridge Press, 2016) and has co-authored Gut Microbiota: Interactive Effects on Nutrition and Health (Elsevier, 2018), the first academic textbook on this topic aimed at dietitians and other health professionals. She is pleased to work with Microbiome Insights on a part-time basis, leading scientific communication activities and medical education initiatives.

Ben Tantika

Ben earned his B.Sc. (Hons) and M.Sc. from the University of British Columbia, concentrating on Microbiology, Molecular Biology, and Genetics. During his undergraduate and graduate thesis study, he conducted research on wine microbes with the goal of unlocking the mysteries of how microorganisms affect wine’s sensorial and chemical profiles. Ben previously worked as research technician and Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technician specializing in all things related to Sanger and Illumina NGS DNA Sequencing technology. Ben joined Microbiome Insights in 2018, bringing more than six years of experience in advanced techniques in both wet and dry lab settings.

Hilary Leung

Hilary earned his B.Sc. from the University of British Columbia, majoring in Biochemistry. During his undergraduate studies, he began his research in marine environmental microbiology, with emphasis on microbial diversity in oxygen minimum zones. He pursued and completed his M.Sc. in Microbiology & Immunology at UBC. During Hilary’s M.Sc. degree, he conducted research on the microbial communities which catabolise recalcitrant carbon in timber harvested forest soils, using stable-isotope probing and genomics. Hilary initially managed MBI’s laboratory operations for 2 years, since the inception of the company. He relocated to St. Louis (USA), where he was employed in the Department of Pediatrics in Washington University as a Staff Scientist. He rejoined the Microbiome Insights team in 2017 to resume his duties overseeing lab operations. Hilary has authored and co-authored papers in journals including International Society of Microbiology, Frontiers in Microbiology, Nature Scientific Data, and Environmental Microbiology, and has co-authored a book chapter in Methods in Enzymology.

Karl Moran

Karl Moran has a B.Sc. in Pharmacology from University College Dublin (Ireland). He brings over 5 years of clinical research and project management experience to the company. Prior to joining the team Karl worked as a Project Manager for Icon Clinical Research, where he managed the laboratory testing and operations for a number of clinical trials. At Microbiome Insights, he manages accounts related to Skin, Nutrition, Gut Health and the Oral Microbiome.

Nataša Jovic

Nataša Jovic brings over twenty years of therapeutic and diagnostic commercialization experience to the company.  Prior to joining Microbiome Insights, Nataša was Senior Director of Marketing for Notal Vision Inc. launching the first at-home monitoring platform in Ophthalmology, ForeseeHome®, for Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Previous to her role with Notal, she was responsible for the U.S. marketing efforts for Visudyne®, the first pharmacotherapy for wet AMD, with QLT Inc. before the product was acquired by Valeant Pharmaceuticals Inc. for $112.5M.  Nataša holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of British Columbia and a M.B.A. from the Segal Graduate School of Business at Simon Fraser University.

Malcolm Kendall

Malcolm Kendall has over 28 years of operational management, entrepreneurial, venture capital investment and leadership experience, the majority of which has been focused on company creation and building value in technology and biotechnology companies. Before founding Microbiome Insights, he was the co-founder and CEO of Indel Therapeutics Inc., a Vancouver-based biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing new drugs to address the global health crisis caused by antibiotic resistance. Prior to this, Malcolm was an investment professional with life science focused venture capital firms MDS Capital (now Lumira Capital), BioVista Capital (now Hatteras Venture Partners) and Intersouth Partners. Before entering business, he served in the U.S. Army where he honed his leadership skills as an Infantry and Special Forces officer. Malcolm has been an advisor and board member to numerous companies and organizations and is currently a member of the board of directors of Semios BIO Technologies, a mentor for the entrepreneurship@UBC program and an adjunct professor at the MBA MOT program at Simon Fraser University. He received his undergraduate degree from Washington and Lee University and an M.B.A. from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina.

Brett Finlay

Dr. B. Brett Finlay is a Professor in the Michael Smith Laboratories, and the Departments of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Microbiology and Immunology at the University of British Columbia. He obtained a B.Sc. (Honors) in Biochemistry at the University of Alberta, where he also did his Ph.D. (1986) in Biochemistry under Dr. William Paranchych, studying F-like plasmid conjugation. His post-doctoral studies were performed with Dr. Stanley Falkow at the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford University School of Medicine, where he studied Salmonella invasion into host cells. In 1989, he joined UBC as an Assistant Professor in the Biotechnology Laboratory. Dr. Finlay’s research interests are focussed on host-microbe interactions, at the molecular level. By combining cell biology with microbiology, he has been at the forefront of the field called Cellular Microbiology, making several fundamental discoveries in this area, and publishing over 500 papers (h index=127). His laboratory studies several pathogenic bacteria, including Salmonella and pathogenic E. coli, and more recently the microbiota. He is well recognized internationally for his work, and has won several prestigious awards including the E.W.R. Steacie Prize, the CSM Fisher Scientific Award, CSM Roche Award, a MRC Scientist, five Howard Hughes International Research Scholar Awards, a CIHR Distinguished Investigator, BC Biotech Innovation Award, the Michael Smith Health Research Prize, the IDSA Squibb award, the Jacob Biely Prize, the prestigious Canadian Killam Health Sciences Prize, the Flavelle Medal of the Royal Society, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, and the Prix Galien. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, is a Member of the German National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Microbiology, Chair d’État, Collège de France and is the UBC Peter Wall Distinguished Professor. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada and Order of British Columbia, and was inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame. He is a cofounder of Inimex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Microbiome Insights, scientific co-founder of Vedanta Pharmaceuticals and CommenSe, Director of the SARS Accelerated Vaccine Initiative, and Founding Director and Senior Fellow of CIFAR’s Microbes and Humans. He is also the co-author of the book Let Them Eat Dirt.

Examples of latest publications

Arrieta MC, Arévalo A, Stiemsma L, et al. Associations between infant fungal and bacterial dysbiosis and childhood atopic wheeze in a nonindustrialized setting. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2018.

Microbiome-driven allergic lung inflammation is ameliorated by short-chain fatty acids. Cait A, Hughes MR, Antignano F, Cait J, Dimitriu PA, Maas KR, Reynolds LA, Hacker L, Mohr J, Finlay BB, Zaph C, McNagny KM, Mohn WW. Mucosal Immunol. 2017 Oct 25. doi: 10.1038/mi.2017.75. PMID: 29067994

Towards standards for human fecal sample processing in metagenomic studies. Costea PI, Zeller G, Sunagawa S, Pelletier E, Alberti A, Levenez F, Tramontano M, Driessen M, Hercog R, Jung FE, Kultima JR, Hayward MR, Coelho LP, Allen-Vercoe E, Bertrand L, Blaut M, Brown JRM, Carton T, Cools-Portier S, Daigneault M, Derrien M, Druesne A, de Vos WM, Finlay BB, Flint HJ, Guarner F, Hattori M, Heilig H, Luna RA, van Hylckama Vlieg J, Junick J, Klymiuk I, Langella P, Le Chatelier E, Mai V, Manichanh C, Martin JC, Mery C, Morita H, O’Toole PW, Orvain C, Patil KR, Penders J, Persson S, Pons N, Popova M, Salonen A, Saulnier D, Scott KP, Singh B, Slezak K, Veiga P, Versalovic J, Zhao L, Zoetendal EG, Ehrlich SD, Dore J, Bork P. Nat Biotechnol. 2017 Nov;35(11):1069-1076. doi: 10.1038/nbt.3960. PMID: 28967887

Early infancy microbial and metabolic alterations affect risk of childhood asthma. Arrieta MC, Stiemsma LT, Dimitriu PA, Thorson L, Russell S, Yurist-Doutsch S, Kuzeljevic B, Gold MJ, Britton HM, Lefebvre DL, Subbarao P, Mandhane P, Becker A, McNagny KM, Sears MR, Kollmann T; CHILD Study Investigators, Mohn WW, Turvey SE, Finlay BB. Sci Transl Med. 2015 Sep 30;7(307):307ra152. doi: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aab2271. PMID: 26424567

Diet and specific microbial exposure trigger features of environmental enteropathy in a novel murine model. Brown EM, Wlodarska M, Willing BP, Vonaesch P, Han J, Reynolds LA, Arrieta MC, Uhrig M, Scholz R, Partida O, Borchers CH, Sansonetti PJ, Finlay BB. Nat Commun. 2015 Aug 4;6:7806. doi: 10.1038/ncomms8806. PMID: 26241678

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Bill Mohn

Dr. William (Bill) Mohn is a Professor in the Department of Microbiology & Immunology in the Life Sciences Institute at the University of British Columbia. Bill earned his B.A. from Colgate University and his Ph.D. from Michigan State. He was a Research Associate at the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa prior to moving to UBC as an Assistant professor in 1993.

Bill has done pioneering research on bacterial metabolism of chlorinated compounds, terpenoids, and steroids. He is a leader in microbial ecology and development of methods to investigate highly complex microbial communities, and is internationally recognized for his research.

Bill’s current research employs classical, molecular, genomic, and metagenomic approaches to study (1) interactions between the host microbiome and immune system, (2) forest soil microbial ecology, and (3) bacterial metabolism of lignocellulose and steroids. He was awarded the UBC Killam Research Prize and the Canadian Society of Microbiologists Murray Award for career achievement. He was elected to both The American Academy of Microbiology and the Board of Directors of the International Society for Microbial Ecology. Pseudomonas mohnii was named in recognition of his pioneering contributions.

Bill has over 130 peer-reviewed publications and has led or co-led several interdisciplinary collaborative research projects. He served on the Editorial Boards of Applied & Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology and on advisory boards for several major research initiatives. Currently, he chairs the Advisory Board to the Microbiomes in Transition (MinT) program at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL).

Bill teaches microbial ecophysiology and has supervised 15 postdocs, 33 graduate students and 47 undergraduate researchers.

Examples of recent publications

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Cait A, Hughes MR, Antignano F, Cait J, Dimitriu PA, Maas KR, Reynolds LA, Hacker L, Mohr J, Finlay BB, Zaph C, McNagny KM, Mohn WW. 2017. Microbiome-driven allergic lung inflammation is ameliorated by short chain fatty acids. Mucosal Immunology, advance on line doi: 10.1038/mi.2017.75

Cardenas E, Orellana LH, Konstantinidis KT, Mohn WW. 2018. Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones. Scientific Reports, advance on line, doi:10.1038/s41598-018-21197-0

Holert J, Cardenas E, Bergstrand L, Zaikova E, Hahn A, Hallam SJ, Mohn WW. 2018. Metagenomes reveal global distribution of bacterial steroid catabolism in natural, engineered and host environments. mBio 9:e02345-17

Sze MA, Dimitriu PA, Suzuki M, McDonough JE, Campbell JD, Brothers JF, Erb-Downward JR, Huffnagle GB, Hayashi S, Elliott WM, Cooper J, Sin DD, Lenburg ME, Spira A, Mohn WW, Hogg JC. 2015. The Host Response to the Lung Microbiota in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 192(4):438-445

Wilhelm RC, Singh R, Eltis LD, Mohn WW. Bacterial contributions to delignification and lignocellulose degradation in forest soils with metagenomic and quantitative stable isotope probing. ISME J. 2018 (in press).

 

 

Anusha Gandhi

Anusha Gandhi is the Senior Director of Sales and Business Development at Microbiome Insights. She brings nearly ten years of medical device development and sales experience to the company. Prior to joining the team, she held various positions as Channel Manager, Microbiome Product Manager, and Director of Sales at DNA Genotek Inc (now an Orasure company) and was most recently Director of Sales at Puritan Medical Products Company LLC. Anusha’s focus has been on the development of collection devices that enable the non-invasive collection of high quality DNA for genetic and microbiome testing. She has a strong understanding of study design, regulatory requirements, and commercialization and has worked with a wide range of pharmaceutical, biotechnology and diagnostic companies, and academic institutions all over the world. Anusha earned a Master of Neuroscience (MSc) and Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience (BSc) from Carleton University.