Our mission

Coding cells for novel cures

bit.bio_ioskeletal myocytes About us bit.bio-lab-image-3-opt
bit.bio-lab-image-3-opt bit.bio_ioskeletal myocytes About us

What we do

bit.bio is a synthetic biology company providing human cells for research, drug discovery and cell therapy. The company applies a patented safe harbour gene-targeting approach (opti-ox™; Pawlowski 2017) to inducibly express transcription factor combinations that reprogram human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) into highly defined and mature human cell types. 

The required transcription factor combinations are discovered using high throughput screens and advanced data analysis (bit.bio discovery platform). The company is currently building a clinical pipeline and marketing a wide range of cells and disease models for research and drug discovery under its ioCells brand including nerve cells, immune cells and muscle cells. 

The company was spun out of the University of Cambridge in 2016 and has since raised approximately $200M from Arch Ventures, Foresite Capital, Milky Way, Charles River Laboratories, National Resilience, Tencent, and Puhua Capital among others.

bit.bio-lab-image-4-opt bit.bio_ioGlutamatergic Neurons About us
bit.bio_ioGlutamatergic Neurons About us bit.bio-lab-image-4-opt

The company has expertise in the underpinning science of synthetic biology and stem cells and also in manufacturing, and clinical translation. The board is chaired by serial entrepreneur Dr Hermann Hauser and includes Sir Gregory Winter (Nobel Prize for medicine), biotech veteran Alan Roemer (co-founder Roivant and Pharmasset) and the company's CEO and scientific founder Dr Mark Kotter. 

Executive leadership

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Kathryn Corzo
MBA, BSc Pharm, RPh, President and Chief Operating Officer
Executive Leadership team
Kathryn Corzo
MBA, BSc Pharm, RPh, President and Chief Operating Officer
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Kathryn has over 25 years experience in early and late drug development across multiple indications and platforms. She was partner at Takeda Ventures, Inc. and Head of Oncology Cell Therapy Development at Takeda Pharmaceuticals where she built capabilities and oversaw a cutting edge oncology cell therapy portfolio. Prior to that, she held several roles at Sanofi Genzyme and built a two decade career at Hoffman – La Roche, Roche Molecular Systems, Eli Lilly and Syndax, contributing to the approval of 6 new cancer therapies and expansion of multiple indications.
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Bernhard Klemen
PhD, Chief Financial Officer
Executive Leadership team
Bernhard Klemen
PhD, Chief Financial Officer
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Dr. Bernhard Klemen spent more than 10 years at UBS, Morgan Stanley and J.P. Morgan in London and Frankfurt as well as Vienna, where he established the Austrian J.P. Morgan business. Since 2011 he has been a business angel and first investor as well as co-founder of more than 25 companies with scalable business models in tech and biotech. Between 2017-18 he became co-founder and raised, as international partner, the first international venture capital fund with a Pakistan focus - Sarmayacar. In 2018 he became an investor and board advisor supporting fundraising efforts for bit.bio before joining the company's executive team as CFO in 2021.
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Mark Kotter
MD, PhD, Founder and CEO, Board Member
Executive Leadership team
Mark Kotter
MD, PhD, Founder and CEO, Board Member
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Mark is a stem cell biologist and neurosurgeon at the University of Cambridge. Aged nineteen, he decided to pursue a career in medicine to serve others and to make a difference in people’s lives. His curiosity led him down a path of clinical service and laboratory discovery. He became fascinated by synthetic biology, as he saw it as the key to a new generation of medicines. He is the founder of bit.bio and co-founder of the cultured meat start-up Meatable.
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Paul Morrill
PhD, Chief Business Officer
Executive Leadership team
Paul Morrill
PhD, Chief Business Officer
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Paul is a serial entrepreneur and scientist with over thirty years of experience in the biotech and pharma sectors. Most recently, he was the commercial founder and President of Horizon Discovery Group, and founder of CellRx Limited, a growth factors company serving the biopharmaceutical sector. Paul holds a PhD in Biotechnology from the University of Cambridge.

Board members

Hermann Hauser
Hermann Hauser
PhD, KBE, FRS, Chair of the Board
Board member
Hermann Hauser
PhD, KBE, FRS, Chair of the Board
Hermann Hauser
Dr Hermann Hauser is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Amadeus Capital Partners where he invested in CSR, Solexa, Icera, Xmos and Graphcore. Solexa created the dominant gene-sequencing technology now sold by Illumina. He has wide experience in developing and financing companies in the ICT and life science sector. He is a founder of Acorn Computers which created the ARM processor and helped spin it out with Apple into an independent company. He is vice-chair of the European Innovation Council, the €10bn deep tech fund of Horizon Europe.
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Weslie Janeway
Board Member
Board member
Weslie Janeway
Board Member
Resized Weslie Janeway PR

Weslie Janeway is an investor, author, philanthropist and scientist based in New York, USA and Cambridge, UK. While pursuing a career in financial services, she has served in a variety of non-executive roles in the not-for-profit sector, such as Treasurer of Cancer Care, Inc., a social services agency for cancer patients and their families, Board Trustee and Chair of the Development Committee of the New York Women’s Foundation and Vice-Chair and Head of the Nominating and Governance Committee of The Jackson Laboratory, a genetics institute based in Maine, USA.

Weslie is a founding investor and member of the Board of Directors of bit.bio, the cell-coding company based in Cambridge, UK. She serves on the Audit and Compensation Committees. Weslie is a graduate of both Columbia University in New York and Brown University in Rhode Island. Additionally, she has studied genetics at the University of Cambridge as well as in New York. She is also a Chartered Financial Analyst and the co-author of Mrs. Charles Darwin’s Recipe Book.

At present, as well as being a Trustee for Myelopathy.org, Weslie is a Trustee of the Rockefeller University, where she serves on the Audit, Hospital and Technology Transfer Committees.  In addition, she is an Independent Director of the New York Genome Center.

Alan Roemer Photo
Alan S. Roemer
MBA, MPH, Board Member
Board member
Alan S. Roemer
MBA, MPH, Board Member
Alan Roemer Photo
Alan is an entrepreneurial life sciences executive and board member who has launched three multi-billion dollar biotechnology companies, raised over $1.75 billion in private and public capital, consummated five IPOs, and executed numerous life sciences technology transactions. His senior leadership operating experience in development-stage biotechnology companies includes finance, business development, corporate strategy, operations & administration, accounting, human resources, legal, information technology, facilities, corporate communications, and investor relations.
Gregory Winter
Gregory Winter
PhD, Nobel Laureate, Board Member
Board member
Gregory Winter
PhD, Nobel Laureate, Board Member
Gregory Winter
Sir Gregory Winter is a Nobel prize winning scientist who invented technologies for making therapeutic monoclonal antibodies, and was directly involved in their industrial development, notably through the start up company Cambridge Antibody Technology Ltd. His inventions underpin many of the therapeutic antibodies in development and on the market, including blockbuster drugs such as Humira, Herceptin, Avastin and Keytruda.

Scientific advisory board

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Roger Pedersen
PhD, Chief Scientific Advisor
Advisor
Roger Pedersen
PhD, Chief Scientific Advisor
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Roger is a pioneer and thought leader in the field of human stem cell biology. His lab was the first to isolate pluripotent epiblast stem cells from the epiblast layer of the developing mammalian embryo. In addition, he developed one of the first cellular reprogramming protocols. Roger was co-founder of the Cambridge Stem Cell Institute. His lab is currently focused on differentiation of pluripotent stem cells, with potential applications for drug discovery, toxicity testing and cell therapies.
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Anil Dhawan
MBBS, MD, FRCPCH, Scientific Advisory Board Member
Advisor
Anil Dhawan
MBBS, MD, FRCPCH, Scientific Advisory Board Member
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Professor Anil Dhawan is a Consultant in Paediatric Hepatology at King’s College Hospital in London, UK, with a special interest in liver cell transplantation for liver-based metabolic defects and acute liver failure. Prof Dhawan is the Director of King’s Cell Therapy Unit. He is well known internationally and has held board-level appointments with the European Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, International Liver Transplantation Society, and International Cell and Regenerative Society and Transplantation Society. He is also the Director of Research and Development, King’s College Hospital, London. He has 421 peer-reviewed publications, an H Index of 77 and over 22,000 citations.
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Thore Graepel
Scientific Advisory Board Member
Advisor
Thore Graepel
Scientific Advisory Board Member
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resized Katy Rezvani
Katy Rezvani
PhD, MD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
Advisor
Katy Rezvani
PhD, MD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
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Dr. Katy Rezvani is a Professor of Stem Cell Transplantation & Cellular Therapy at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, where she serves as the Sally Cooper Murray Chair in Cancer Research, chief of the section for cellular therapy, director of translational research, and medical director of the GMP Facility. She also serves as executive director of MD Anderson's Adoptive Cell Therapy Platform. She leads a research lab with a focus on NK cell biology and developing novel NK cell engineering strategies for cancer, with the aim of translating these discoveries to the clinic. Dr. Rezvani completed her medical training at University College London, England and her PhD at Imperial College London. She completed her training in immunology and transplantation biology at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD. In addition, she has co-authored over 200 peer-reviewed publications and has received multiple prizes and awards.

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Loïc Vincent
PhD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
Advisor
Loïc Vincent
PhD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
resized Loïc Vincent
Loïc Vincent, PhD, is Chief Scientific Officer at Affini-T Therapeutics, an independent director of the Board of Directors at Alaya.bio, and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board at General Inception. He is an oncology scientist with more than 20 years of international experience in the academia/biotech/pharma industry, dedicated to advancing transformative therapies to patients suffering from cancer. Previously, Loïc was the Head of Takeda Oncology Drug Discovery Unit and Immunology Unit, responsible for building the Immuno-Oncology portfolio with a global network of outstanding biotech and academic collaborators, and for leading Takeda Cell Therapy Discovery. During his career, Loïc’s teams advanced more than 20 oncology drugs in the clinic based on various therapeutic modalities including small molecules, biologics, oncolytic viruses and cell therapies. Loïc is the author and co-author of more than 30 peer-reviewed publications, and more than 80 poster and oral presentations.
Marius Wernig
Marius Wernig
PhD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
Advisor
Marius Wernig
PhD, Scientific Advisory Board Member
Marius Wernig
Marius’ seminal 2010 paper in Nature demonstrating direct conversion of fibroblasts into neurons has sparked a widespread interest in cell reprogramming. He is the co-director of the Stanford Stem Cell Institute. His lab uses cellular reprogramming to understand how neurons are induced, and how they mature and maintain their identity.

Independent ethics and sustainability board

Enrica Alteri headshot about
Enrica Alteri
MD, DiplPharmMed, Ethics & Sustainability Board Member
Advisor
Enrica Alteri
MD, DiplPharmMed, Ethics & Sustainability Board Member
Enrica Alteri headshot about

After completing her medical studies in Rome and a post-doctoral fellowship focused on cellular immunology at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda (USA), Dr Alteri spent 7 years in drug discovery and 5 years in clinical safety at Ciba-Geigy/Novartis in Basel. She was involved in major projects that yielded important drugs such as Gleevec for myeloid leukaemia, Coartem for malaria and Reyataz for HIV-AIDS. In 1998 she joined Serono in Geneva where she led the Pharmacovigilance and Risk Management team. At Serono, Dr Alteri was instrumental in establishing the company’s pharmacovigilance processes, as well as implementing the entire portfolio’s risk management strategy.
In 2012 she joined the European Medicines Agency, where she was Head of the Safety and Efficacy Sector for one year, being later promoted to Head of the Human Medicines Evaluation Division, and then to Head of the Human Medicines R&D Support Division.
She was member of the EMA Executive Board from 2013 until she retired in 2020.
In this roles, Dr Alteri was part of many high impact EMA’s initiatives, from the transparency of clinical trial data to the development of regulatory science strategy to 2025.
Dr Alteri has been consulting for the Swiss regulatory agency (Swissmedic), and is currently member of the Scientific Committee and faculty of the Master Course in Drug R&D of the University of Geneva. Dr Alteri regularly gives lectures on various aspects of R&D at the Universities of Rome, Cattolica and LUISS, and at the European Course in Pharmaceutical Medicine at the University of Basel. Moreover, she is member of the CIOMS Working Group XIII (Real World Data/Real World Evidence), and the CIOMS. Working Group Education. Most recently, she has been appointed as Core Member of the Proposal Review Committee of Unitaid for a 3-year period.

Marie-Claire Cordonier
Marie-Claire Cordonier Segger
PhD (Santa), DPhil (Oxon), MEM (Yale), LLB&BCL (McGill), BA Hons (Carl/UVic), FRSC, FRSA, WIJA,Chair of Ethics and Sustainability Board and Advisor to the Board
Advisor
Marie-Claire Cordonier Segger
PhD (Santa), DPhil (Oxon), MEM (Yale), LLB&BCL (McGill), BA Hons (Carl/UVic), FRSC, FRSA, WIJA,Chair of Ethics and Sustainability Board and Advisor to the Board
Marie-Claire Cordonier

Marie-Claire is a pioneering international expert in sustainability, law and public policy innovation. An award-winning expert jurist, executive and law professor specialised in corporate social responsibility, climate law and governance, sustainable trade and ethical investment rules, she is Visiting Chair of Sustainable Development Law and Policy at the University of Cambridge, and also serves as Senior Director of the global Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL). Having assisted in drafting the Paris Agreement, she has published over 24 books and 160 papers with world-class presses, edited five law journals and a Cambridge University Press book series, advised the United Nations and key countries, and helps purpose-led companies to advance the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

Jeff Skopek headshot about
Jeff Skopek
Ethics & Sustainability Board Member
Advisor
Jeff Skopek
Ethics & Sustainability Board Member
Jeff Skopek headshot about

Jeff Skopek is an Associate Professor of Law at the University of Cambridge and Deputy Director of its Centre for Law, Medicine and Life Sciences. His research explores the normative and conceptual foundations of health law, focusing in particular on controversies about what harms and benefits count. Before coming to Cambridge, he was an Academic Fellow at Harvard Law School’s Petrie-Flom Centre for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics. Prior to that, he served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Lynch of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. He holds an A.B. in History from Stanford University, a Ph.D. in the History and Philosophy of Science from the University of Cambridge, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School

Our values

Purposeful
We are aware of our own purpose. Our individual purpose is aligned to that of bit.bio: coding biology for the benefit of humanity. We look beyond our daily struggles, putting purpose first.
Ambitious
We are exceptionally driven and ambitious in the pursuit of our common goals and create things that have value. We get things done. Together we will change the world.
Collaborative & trustworthy
Our joint purpose and mission critically depend on bringing together our combined knowledge and skills. We value diversity and approach everyone with an open mind.
Empirical
We adhere to the scientific method. We put facts above opinions. In the absence of data, we create it. We know that the world is full of opportunities. Our mindset is one of abundance.

"At bit.bio, we are passionate about engineering human cells that will enable the medicine of the future."

Mark Kotter | MD, PhD, Founder | CEO

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Related pages

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