At Civilization VC, we believe PhD scientists are uniquely qualified to become entrepreneurs; they combine grit with the curiosity, depth of knowledge, and technical creativity necessary to turn world-changing ideas into sustainable ventures. Join us for a panel discussion and networking event with academics turned startup founders, investors, and IP licensing experts to discuss what you need to know about founding a life science company.

This event is proudly hosted by Civilization Ventures and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Light food and drinks will be served.



Thu, December 5, 2019

5:30 PM – 7:30 PM PST

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Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

139 Townsend Street

Suite #150

San Francisco, CA 94107

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Speaker Bios:

Kathy Ku is the chief licensing advisor in the Palo Alto office of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. She is also a member of the technology transactions and the patents and innovations practice groups. Kathy is an internationally recognized leader in the field of technology transfer. She served as the Executive Director of Stanford University’s Office of Technology Licensing (OTL) for 27 years. During that period, OTL licensed hundreds of new technologies, bringing in $1.8 billion, most of which went back to support research and education at Stanford.

Oguzhan Atay is co-founder and CEO of BilliontoOne, a pioneering diagnostics company and YC graduate. Oguzhan received his PhD from Stanford, where he combined machine learning and genetics to solve problems in cell biology. Oguzhan graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Princeton University with a Bachelor’s in Molecular Biology and minors in Physics, Computer Science, and Applied Mathematics.

Leah Sibener is co-founder and Head of Therapeutic Discovery at 3T Biosciences, a company with a high-throughput platform for discovery of new immunotherapy targets. Leah completed her PhD in Immunology in Chris Garcia’s lab at Stanford University and launched 3T with her co-founder, Marvin Gee, translating their thesis work to create new cancer therapies. Leah and Marvin were both featured on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2017.

Jun Axup is the Science Director and Partner at IndieBio, the world’s largest biotech accelerator, located in downtown San Francisco. She has a PhD in Chemical Biology from The Scripps Research Institute. She co-founded 2 companies and worked at several startups in the fields of immuno-oncology, protein engineering, lab automation robotics, CRISPR, and precision medicine. At IndieBio, she helps scientists become entrepreneurs to solve humanity’s most pressing problems with life itself. Her role includes advising companies, running program operations, making investment decisions, and fostering a stronger biotech entrepreneurship community.

Alexandre Colavin is a co-founder of Jungla Inc. where he built a cloud-based platform that combines clinical knowledge with advances in functional genomics, biophysics, cellular engineering, machine learning, and distributed systems to help clinicians and patients understand the results of genetic and genomic tests. In 2019, Jungla was acquired by the leading medical genetics company Invitae, where he now serves at the Lead of Technology Development, Clinical Sciences and Interpretation. Alex completed his PhD in Biophysics at Stanford University in the lab of Dr. KC Huang and his B.S. in Physics at University of California, Irvine.

Liz Shepherd is co-founder of Novome Biotechnologies where her team engineers symbiotic microbial therapies to fight chronic diseases. Liz completed her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology in Justin Sonnenburg’s lab at Stanford University. Prior to Stanford, she received her B.S. in Microbiology at the University of Washington where she worked on computational protein design in the lab of Dr. David Baker.

Ashley Tehranchi is co-founder and CEO of Sapphire Bio, the precision medicine marketplace. Prior to Sapphire, Ashley cofounded and served as CTO of Mammoth Biosciences, a CRISPR platform company. Prior, she did an industry postdoc at Celgene. Ashley holds a Ph.D. in Biology from Stanford University, and a B.S. in Biology from the University of Houston-Downtown.