Who We Are


Mark Budde, PhD. Co-Founder and CEO
Mark focuses on the intersection of synthetic biology and technology. He developed the core of the Primordium sequencing technology as a postdoc in Michael Elowitz's lab at Caltech, while leading development of a system to genetically encode and optically read out cellular lineage and experiential histories (Science. 2021 372(6538):eabb3099). His work on synthetic biology also created a synthetic paradoxical control system in mammalian cells. Prior to his postdoctoral work, he led a team of synthetic biologists engineering cyanobacteria at Matrix Genetics. Mark received his PhD from the University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Andrey Shur, PhD. Co-Founding Scientist
For his PhD work, Andrey developed a tape recorder system to enable bacteria to encode and record environmental signals in their own DNA. Andrey was also heavily involved in developing the simulation automation software package BioCRNpyler. In addition to his skills in lab automation and sequencing data analysis, Andrey is proficient at 3D printing, robotics, electronics, and regularly contributes to open-source projects. Andrey received his PhD from Caltech in Biology and Bioengineering.

Kevin Ko, PhD. Co-Founder and CFO
Kevin has extensive experience in data analytics and business process management. Kevin was the Chief Risk Officer at an asset management firm. He oversaw the Portfolio Implementation and Portfolio Optimization teams as the Head of Portfolio Construction. Prior to that, Kevin worked for NASA/JPL, IBM, and HP. He was a NSF Graduate Research Fellow. Kevin received his MS and PhD in Electrical Engineering from Caltech.

Professor Michael Elowitz, PhD. Co-Founder and Advisor
Michael Elowitz is an HHMI Investigator and Professor of Biology, Bioengineering, and Applied Physics at Caltech. He received his Ph.D. in Physics at Princeton in 1999, and did postdoctoral research at the Rockefeller University, before moving to Caltech in 2003. Dr. Elowitz's research focuses on ways to predict, control, and design circuits of interacting genes and proteins that can provide diverse dynamic functions in living cells. His laboratory currently uses synthetic biology approaches to discover principles of intercellular signaling, memory, and pattern formation systems, and to develop circuit-based therapeutic modalities. Awards include a Macarthur Fellowship, the HFSP Nakasone Award, and the Sackler Prize in Biophysics.