We exist to alleviate humansuffering


Why We Founded 1910 Genetics


Our Name

In 1910, James Herrick published a report describing sickle-shaped red blood cells in a 20-year-old African-American student. Almost 45 years later, scientists discovered a mutation in hemoglobin that causes this “mysterious disease,” making sickle cell anemia the first genetic disease known to man.

This medical history inspires our approach of focusing on therapeutic targets with clinical or genetic validation - hence, the “Genetics” in our name. Today, over 90% of Phase 1 clinical drug candidates fail to achieve regulatory approval. A major contributing factor is target selection – most targets that are the focus of drug development efforts do not have clinical or genetic validation that confirms those targets play a causative, instead of an accessory role in the disease. Another contributing factor is that most preclinical animal models do not reflect human disease.


Our
Technology

At 1910 Genetics, we first establish an understanding of the molecular basis of disease to the granularity at which the world understands sickle cell anemia. This understanding centers biology as our North Star, and drives our integration of artificial intelligence (AI), computation and biological automation to accelerate the design of small molecule and protein therapeutics.

We have two drug discovery engines - ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ - that enable the design of both small molecule and protein therapeutics, an unmatched capability in the AI drug discovery space. Our therapeutic area-agnostic, end-to-end technology powers the full length of early drug discovery - from novel hit discovery to hit to lead, and lead optimization.

ELVIS™, our small molecule drug discovery engine, comprises three AI platforms including:

  • SUEDE™ - our gigascale virtual screening platform, which screens 14 billion molecules in less than six hours to identify promising hit compounds
  • BAGEL™ - our hit to lead deep learning generative chemistry platform that rapidly generates de novo lead molecules using a hit compound as a template
  • CANDID™ - our physical property prediction platform for multi-parameter optimization.
  • Biological Automation - These three AI platforms are integrated via cloud computing with our in-house biological automation wet lab platform. The technology conducts in vitro biochemical and cell-based assays on the AI-designed compounds and returns the wet lab data in a feedback loop to the AI platforms, while building a differentiated and proprietary dataset.
For protein design, we are developing ROSALYND™, an AI-driven discovery engine, which aspires to provide a faster, more affordable and more accurate alternative to X-ray crystallography for the purpose of 3D protein structure refinement, prediction and de novo protein therapeutics design.

Recent advances in computational technologies have placed historically “undruggable” targets within therapeutic reach. But at 1910 Genetics, we often say “Biology is King,” meaning that computational technologies are only impactful in drug discovery when driven by experimental biology. Our platforms’ scale and breadth empower us to be therapeutic area-agnostic with programs ranging from neuroscience and immunology to infectious disease and oncology, to name a few.


Our impact

Ultimately, our mission is to decrease the timeline and cost of drug development, while improving the success rate of bringing innovative medicines to patients in need.

We welcome all stakeholders, including biopharma, academia, government institutions, providers, payers, patients, investors, and exceptional talent to join us on our journey.

Team that makes
everything possible

Core Team

Jen Nwankwo, Ph.D. Founder & CEO
short biography

Before founding 1910, Jen worked at the intersection of life science, technology, and business. Prior roles include Management Consultant at Bain & Company, Director of Business Development at a health-tech startup (pre-seed to Series A), and drug discovery stints at Novartis and Eli Lilly. During her Ph.D. research, Jen was an HHMI Predoctoral Fellow at the medical schools of Tufts University and Harvard University.

Bridget Cole, Ph.D. Chief Scientific Officer
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Bridget brings 25 years of drug discovery and clinical development experience having contributed to multiple drug candidates including FDA approved Rezurock™. Previously, she was SVP of Drug Discovery at Nocion Therapeutics where she helped discover and develop clinical candidate NTX-1175. Before Nocion, Bridget held various leadership positions including VP at Flatley Discovery Lab and Surface Logix, and AD at Pfizer.

Lisa Velardo, CPA Interim CFO
short biography

Brandon Moore, Ph.D. Head of AI Research & ML Engineering
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Brandon harnesses machine learning and parallel computing to design small molecule therapeutics using our AI-powered E​LVIS​™ and ROSALYND​™ platforms.​ He received his Bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Neuroscience from MIT and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Vanderbilt where he leveraged neural networks to study the primate visual system. Once a King of the Nerds contestant, Brandon enjoys creative STEM projects like building animatronic chatbots, training generative art algorithms, and teaching monkeys addition (PNAS/I Fing Love Science).

Edward Walker, Ph.D. Director of Protein Therapeutics
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Peter Bertinato, Ph.D. Director of Medicinal Chemistry
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Peter is a seasoned medicinal chemist with over 25 years of experience in drug discovery and development having contributed to the discovery of multiple preclinical and clinical drug candidates including the FDA approved veterinary medicine drug SelentrolTM. Prior to joining 1910 Genetics, Peter served as Director of Medicinal Chemistry at Reverie Labs. Over his career, Peter has held several senior scientist positions at Eisai, Epix and Pfizer in addition to consulting for several small biotech companies and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Jesse W. Collins, Ph.D. AI Research Scientist II
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Jesse studied physics at MIT, and earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University, partly supported by an NSF IGERT fellowship in Biomechanics. He was a postdoc on an NIH-funded project in neuron activity recording. He trained AI models for genetics and tissue architecture studies before joining 1910 Genetics as an AI Research Fellow on the CANDID™ platform for small molecule discovery.

Mostafa Abedi, Ph.D. Computational Theoretical Chemist I​
short biography

Mostafa received his Ph.D. from Technical University of Denmark in computational and theoretical Chemistry. He spent several years working as a postdoctoral researcher at Brown University to leverage the power of machine learning techniques to develop efficient and accurate high-dimensional potential energy surfaces. At 1910 Genetics, his work involves utilizing computational chemistry tools to study and design small and large drug molecules with ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ platforms.

Reyal Hoxie, Ph.D. Scientist I, Translational Biochemistry & Pharmacology
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Reyal received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Biophysics at Brandeis University, where she investigated the energetics of binding for Hsp90 inhibitors and how Hsp90 inhibitors alter the effect of BiP on the conformation of Grp94. At 1910 Genetics, Reyal works on all aspects of our biological automation platform, leveraging state-of-the-art robotics to automate assay development, validation, and scale up for high throughput screening of therapeutics designed by our AI-powered ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ platforms.

Cole Baker, M.Eng. Machine Learning Engineer II
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Cole studied computer science at MIT where he earned his bachelor’s degree and his M.Eng. while researching at the Pantazis Magnetoencephalography LAB. His work combined machine learning, brain imaging and hyperbolic geometry to identify the first signs of Alzheimer’s Disease and the potential for cognitive trainings to mitigate disease progression. At 1910 Genetics, he works with ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ platforms to improve training efficiency, maximize model performance, and implement state of the art research.

Liping Wu, Ph.D. Principal Scientist & Manager of R&D Operations
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Liping received her PhD in cell and molecular biology from the Australian National University. At 1910 Genetics, she manages R&D operations and thrives on assay biology innovations for the ROSALYND TM platforms. Before joining 1910, Liping served as deputy head of R&D at Prestige Biopharmaceuticals USA. Prior to that, she worked at Cell Assay Innovations, Millennium Pharmaceuticals, and Maxthera Pharmaceuticals.

Mahmoud Ebrahimkhani, Ph.D. AI Research Scientist I
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At 1910 Genetics, Mahmoud works on creating generative AI models for structure-based small molecule drug discovery. Mahmoud earned his MS.c. and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from Stony Brook University and pursued his postdoctoral studies at Northwestern University. His expertise encompasses the creation of AI and machine learning workflows for automated disease diagnosis and digital biomarker prediction.

Seun Olorunwunmi Software Engineer II
short biography

Seun is an AWS-certified solutions architect with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems from Suffolk University and a Full Stack Web Development certification from Lambda School. At 1910 Genetics, Seun architects the cloud computing infrastructure that powers the full range of AI-driven small molecule and protein design programs across all phases of early stage drug discovery, including novel hit discovery, hit-to-lead, and lead optimization.

Matthew Sherman Automation Engineer II
short biography

Matt studied biomedical engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology where he earned his bachelor's degree.  He spent the last 7 years working in lab automation and compound management for oncology discovery.  At 1910 Genetics, Matt works on implementing and optimizing automated processes for our biological assays and inventory.

Francis Acquah, Ph.D. Fellow, Translational Biochemistry & Pharmacology
short biography

At 1910, Francis works on developing optimized workflows for our biological automation platform that leverages state-of-the-art robotics and software to automate assay development, validation and high-throughput data analysis to support clear decision-making. Francis received his PhD from the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center, Department of Biochemistry where he used integrated computational, biochemical and crystallographic approaches to identify druglike compounds targeting nicotinic receptor and RNA double helices.

Lakshmi Chivukula, Ph.D. Fellow, Translational Biochemistry & Pharmacology
short biography

Lakshmi received her Ph.D. in Nanoscience at University of North Carolina Greensboro, where she studied the Interaction mechanism of pathogenic yeast with nanostructured surfaces thereby investigating how such interaction influences the sterol quantity and antifungal drug resistance of pathogenic yeast. At 1910 Genetics, Lakshmi works on developing and validating biochemical and cell-based high throughput screening assays for therapeutics designed by our AI-powered ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ platforms.

Sidharth Shankar Research Associate I
short biography

At 1910 Genetics, Sidharth works on all aspects of our biological automation platform, which leverages state-of-the-art robotics to automate assay development, validation, and scale up for high throughput screening of therapeutics designed by our AI-powered ELVIS™ and ROSALYND™ platforms. Sidharth received his bachelor’s in Microbiology from the University of Washington, and spent three years in the Otterbein Lab at Harvard Medical School where he investigated the therapeutic potential of low dose carbon monoxide across models of sepsis and traumatic brain injury.

Juan Yancovich Software Engineering Fellow
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Daniel Ramirez Data Engineering Fellow
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Jonathan Deiloff Data Engineering Fellow
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Matt McCoy, Ph.D. AI Research Fellow
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Matt has a PhD in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics from George Mason University, where he developed methods to utilize protein structure dynamics to predict the phenotypic result of genomic mutations. He has continued to gain experience integrating AI into bioinformatic and protein structure analysis across a number of biotech applications (microbial characterization, agriculture, healthcare, drug development). At 1910 Genetics, he contributes to the development of the ROSALYND platform.

Yariela Brandao, MBA VP of People and Culture
short biography

Yariela is a bilingual, multicultural Human Resources Executive who is very well known for her energetic, creative personality and her ability to implement cost-effective business strategies to attract top 1% talent, increase employee engagement and performance. At 1910, Yariela’s motto is to focus on people, culture, and processes to drive business results. Yariela received her Master’s from Emmanuel College, Boston.

Yemisi Olorunwunmi Business Operations Associate
short biography

Jennifer Carney Executive Assistant and Office Manager
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Board of Directors

Jen Nwankwo, Ph.D. Board Director
short biography

Jen is the Founder & CEO of 1910 Genetics. Before founding 1910, Jen worked at the intersection of life science, technology, and business. Prior roles include Management Consultant at Bain & Company, Director of Business Development at a health-tech startup (pre-seed to Series A), and drug discovery stints at Novartis and Eli Lilly. During her Ph.D. research, Jen was an HHMI Predoctoral Fellow at the medical schools of Tufts University and Harvard University.

Shaan Gandhi, Ph.D. Independent Board Director
short biography

Phyllis Whiteley, Ph.D. Board Director
short biography

Phyllis is a Venture Partner at Playground Global, where she provides hands-on leadership in building, investing, and creating companies in all areas of Healthcare where technology can improve access to healthcare, the patient experience, and improved quality and speed while reducing costs. Her executive expertise includes strategic planning, financing, partnerships, restructuring, building executive teams, and M&A. Prior to joining Playground Global, Phyllis spent over a decade at Wildcat Venture Partners and Mohr Davidow Ventures, leading to numerous successful exits.

Business & Scientific Advisory Board

George Golumbeski, Ph.D. Chairman of the Business Advisory Board
short biography

Trained as a research scientist, George has focused on enabling young, innovation-driven companies to bring breakthrough medications into medical practice. In his more than 25 years leading Business Development organizations, he has contributed to advancement of numerous marketed medications that are benefiting patients worldwide. Known globally for his interest in leading-edge science and his creativity in forging inter-company collaborations, he was recognized in 2014 by Fierce Biotech as one of the 20 most influential people in the Biotechnology industry.

Sam Altman Technology Advisor
short biography

Ted Love, M.D. Advisor
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Ashish Vaswani, Ph.D. Technology Advisor
short biography

Suresh Poda, Ph.D. Scientific Advisor
short biography

Suresh is the Vice President of Neuroscience and Preclinical Research at Encoded Therapeutics, a pioneering gene therapy company focusing on neurological diseases. Before joining Encoded, Dr. Suresh held senior research positions at Eisai, Denali, Lundbeck, and started his industry career at AstraZeneca, following a decade of academic research at the University of Michigan and the University of Montreal. He has led numerous drug development programs from discovery through the early clinical stage, focusing on therapies for psychiatry, neurology, and inflammatory diseases.