Branden Wolner, PhD. Founder and Principal Consultant
With over 20 years' experience in both Academia and Industry, Dr. Wolner has broad expertise in both Scientific Strategy and Business Development. He has invented and developed new synthetic biology technologies for production of therapeutics, biofuels and commodity chemicals. Dr. Wolner is a proven Functional and Project Manager. He recently led projects at Intrexon to develop a new methanotroph capable of metabolizing cheap natural gas as well as an international enzyme engineering project, drawing on both his high throughput screening expertise and his deep insight into protein engineering. This project involved 10 scientists in the Bay Area and Budapest, Hungary.
BIOTECH AND BIOPHARMA CONSULTING
Previously, Dr. Wolner implemented a new metabolic engineering strategy and overhauled the high throughput screening operations at Dow AgroSciences, bringing it up to cGMP compliance in a new ISO-5 cleanroom setting. These changes resulted new production strains for DAS' crown jewel insecticides, Spinosad and Spinetoram, as well as a novel fungicide (fenpicoximid) for disease control in Septoria species. Combined these resulted in over $240MM/yr in new revenue.
Earlier in his career, Dr. Wolner invented a novel Synthetic Biology platform termed "Genetic Chemistry" that consisted of two core technologies: one to generate genetic diversity in biosynthetic gene clusters ("ComGene"), the other to discover novel genetic pathways based on homology to known conserved genes ("Directed Discovery"). This platform, deployed in a high throughput manner, resulted in novel antimicrobials for the treatment of nosocomial infection, a $13B market.
Dr. Wolner's technical expertise covers strain/cell line engineering/optimization, high throughput screening, assay development, fermentation development and scale-up, tech transfer, protein engineering and CMC/GMP manufacturing. He is also experienced in Business Development, Partnering, Product Development and Market Research.