We’re a cofounding team of serial entrepreneurs, physician scientists and industry veterans with deep experience in translating technology for patient care.
Jake Chabon (Ph.D.) is the CEO & CSO of Foresight Diagnostics, which he co-founded with academic partners in 2020. He is a molecular biologist and bioinformatic scientist with more than 20 peer-reviewed publications and 2,700+ citations to date (including a Nature paper related to Foresight’s liquid biopsy platform). Prior to founding Foresight, Dr. Chabon’s research focused on using cancer genomics to inform more personalized treatment strategies for cancer patients. He has extensive experience with NGS assay development with an emphasis on developing non-invasive cancer detection methods and applying these methods to better understand mechanisms of response and resistance to cancer therapies. Jake completed his Ph.D and his postdoctoral training at Stanford University under the co-mentorship of Dr. Max Diehn and Dr. Ash Alizadeh with whom he co-founded Foresight Diagnostics.
Mukul Agarwal is the CFO & CBO of Foresight Diagnostics. Mukul has over 20 years of experience in corporate development, finance, and strategy. Prior to joining Foresight, Mukul was Vice President of Corporate Development at Forty Seven, Inc (acquired by Gilead in 2020). Before Forty Seven, he held the roles of VP of Business Development at Revance, Senior Director of Corporate Development and Strategy at Anacor (acquired by Pfizer), and Director of Global BD&L at Forest Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Allergan, now Abbvie). He has also held commercial strategy, brand marketing, and portfolio management roles at MedImmune (acquired by AstraZeneca), GlaxoSmithKline and Genentech. Earlier in his career, Mukul was a management consultant with PRTM (acquired by PriceWaterhouseCoopers) with a focus on strategy and operational excellence for Biotech/Pharma and Medical Device and Diagnostic clients. Mukul received his M.B.A. from Carnegie Mellon University, M.S. from Ohio State University, and B. Tech. from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
Sandra Close Ph.D. is the Chief Operations Officer of Foresight Diagnostics. Sandy has extensive experience in delivering drugs and diagnostics to market, with a focus on organizational structure, business strategy, and quality and regulatory requirements.Prior to joining Foresight, Sandy served as Chief Diagnostic Strategy Officer at ArcherDX/Invitae where she led efforts to advance an NGS-based molecular diagnostic platform for genetic mutation detection, including MRD products.Dr. Close also served as Chief of Integrative Science & Collaborative Research for BioStatistics Solutions, Inc., Chief Scientific Officer at Arrogen, and as a Research Advisor at Ph.D Eli Lilly & Company. Sandy received her Ph.D. in Medical and Molecular Genetics from Indiana University-Indianapolis, M.S. from Columbia University in the City of New York, and B.S. from Indiana University-Bloomington.
Maximilian Diehn (M.D./Ph.D.) is a co-founder of Foresight Diagnostics and Professor of Radiation Oncology, Vice Chair of Research, and Division Chief of Radiation and Cancer Biology at Stanford University. Dr. Diehn has a long track record of research accomplishments in the fields of cancer genomics and cancer biology. His prior work focused on gene expression profiling of solid tumors and treatment resistance. More recently, and in close collaboration with Dr. Alizadeh’s group, his laboratory has developed novel liquid biopsy methods for detection of circulating tumor DNA. Currently, his research is focused on developing and applying liquid biopsy approaches to early detection, minimal residual disease, treatment response monitoring, and analysis of tumor heterogeneity. Clinically Dr. Diehn specializes in the treatment of lung cancer. He also manages a broad clinical research portfolio that includes multiple investigator initiated clinical trials focused on improving personalized therapy for patients with lung cancer, including through the application of liquid biopsies.
Ash Alizadeh (M.D./Ph.D.) is a co-founder of Foresight Diagnostics and Professor of Medicine (Oncology) at Stanford University where he leads the Cancer Genomics program at the Stanford Cancer Institute. Dr. Alizadeh has a significant history of research and accomplishments in cancer genomics, beginning with the original development of microarray gene expression profiling for cancer classification starting with lymphomas, and advancing to multiple tumor types. In close collaboration with Dr. Diehn’s group, his research group at Stanford University has a long history of developing cancer genomic techniques, including for ultra-sensitive and non-invasive detection of tumor-derived cell-free DNA. Clinically, he is a practicing medical oncologist specializing in the care of patients with lymphoma, including diffuse large B-cell lymphomas (DLBCL). His clinical research is focused on diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive biomarkers and translating discoveries from the laboratory to the clinic using cutting tools in data science.
David Kurtz (M.D./Ph.D.) is a co-founder of Foresight Diagnostics and an Assistant Professor of Medicine (Oncology) at Stanford University. His research focuses on developing and translating methods to detect, monitor, and treat hematologic malignancies. To accomplish this, Dr. Kurtz works at the intersection of molecular biology, cancer genomics, and bioengineering to develop the next generation of cancer diagnostics. Along with Dr. Alizadeh, Dr. Kurtz was one of the earliest investigators to explore the utility of tumor-derived cell-free DNA in lymphomas. He has applied multiple methodologies to detection of cell-free DNA in lymphomas, with a focus on improving the clinical utility and analytical sensitivity of these methods. Clinically, Dr. Kurtz is a medical oncologist who specializes in the treatment of non-Hodgkin lymphomas. His research program also focuses on the clinical translation of NGS tools and computational approaches for improving patient care for patients with all types of cancer.
Shahram Seyedin-Noor is Founder and General Partner of Civilization Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on supporting cutting-edge innovations in health tech and biology. At Civilization, Shahram has invested in over 50 startups and serves on the Board of leading companies such as Rewrite Therapeutics, a gene editing innovator acquired by Intellia. Prior to founding Civilization VC, Shahram was a founding executive in several life sciences companies, including Inspirna (formerly Rgenix), a clinical-stage biotech company with first-in-class therapeutics for cancer, and NextBio, a pioneering genomics software platform acquired by Illumina. Shahram has been a pre/seed investor in category-defining startups such as Omada Health, Lemonaid Health (acquired by 23andme), Counsyl (acquired by Myriad), Bina (acquired by Roche), SingularBio (acquired by Invitae), Rocket Pharma (IPO), and Avantome (acquired by Illumina). Shahram began his career in Silicon Valley over 20 years ago and advised some of the world’s top technology leaders while at Goldman Sachs. He earned his JD from Harvard Law School and obtained a BA in Economics from Pomona College.
Jeff Bird has been a life sciences investor for nearly twenty years at Sutter Hill Ventures. In 2019, he formed Bluebird Ventures. Jeff most recently served on the boards of two public companies, Portola Pharmaceuticals and Forty Seven, Inc. Jeff served as CEO of Verinata Health, a developer of non-invasive prenatal diagnostics which was sold to Illumina in 2013. Prior to Sutter Hill Ventures, Jeff was an executive at Gilead Sciences for 12 years, most recently as Senior Vice President of Business Operations which included global sales and marketing. Jeff received MD and Ph.D (Cancer Biology) degrees from Stanford Medical School and was also a Stanford University undergraduate.
Mark Lee has been at the forefront of personalized healthcare for 15+ years, in leadership roles at preeminent companies in this space. Most recently, he was SVP and Global Head for Personalized Healthcare, Product Development at Genentech/Roche, spearheading transformation of drug development and care delivery through data-at-scale and technology. Previously, Mark was on the founding team for GRAIL, where he built one of the largest clinical research programs for early cancer detection. Mark’s previous roles also include Lead for Oncology Clinical Sciences at Google[x] Life Sciences, Chief Medical Officer at Boreal Genomics, and Vice President of Oncology Development at Genomic Health, where he led the successful development and validation of the Oncotype DX tests for Colon and Prostate. Mark holds a PhD (Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology) from Harvard University, and his MD from Stanford University, where he completed his internal medicine training and medical oncology fellowship.
Dr. Horning is an expert in the field of lymphoma therapy and has been at the forefront of biopharmaceutical innovation for many years. Dr. Horning previously served at Genentech / Roche, most recently as Chief Medical Officer and Head of Global Product Development from 2014 to 2019. During her time at Genentech / Roche, she oversaw the approval of 15 new medicines for multiple disease areas, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, influenza and blindness. Prior to joining Genentech, Dr. Horning was a Professor of Medicine, Oncology and Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation at Stanford University for more than 20 years, where she remains a Emerita Professor. At Stanford she specialized in the treatment of lymphomas, authoring more than 150 studies and participating in over 50 clinical trials, including multiple studies involving MRD.
Dr. Horning is a co-founder and board member for EQRx, a biotechnology company focused on creating innovative medicines at lower prices, and currently serves on the Boards of Directors at Gilead Sciences, Moderna, and Olema Oncology. She has received numerous awards and recognitions including the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association 2020 Woman of the Year, 2017 Duane Roth Memorial Award, 2014 Fierce Biotech Top Women in Biotech Award and 2010 Top Women in Bay Area Business Award. She was President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology from 2005-2006. She has served on the editorial boards of Journal of Clinical Oncology, Clinical Cancer Research, Clinical Lymphoma, Leukemia & Lymphoma, the Annals of Internal Medicine and the American Journal of Medicine and has authored more than 300 publications. Dr. Horning received her M.D. from University of Iowa School of Medicine and completed her post-graduate fellowship in Oncology and Cancer Biology at Stanford University.
Christopher R. Flowers, M.D., M.S is an accomplished medical professor and physician with a successful career focused on treatment of B cell lymphoma and rare subtypes of lymphoma. In addition to his advisory role at Foresight, he serves as Chair and Professor in the Department of Lymphoma-Myeloma in the Division of Cancer Medicine at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and is co-leader of MD Anderson’s B-Cell Lymphoma Moon Shot® program. Dr. Flowers also served as the Director of the Lymphoma Program at the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University, where he served as a professor from 2016-2019. He received his M.D. from Stanford University School of Medicine and completed two master’s degree programs, earning an M.S. in Medical Information Sciences at Stanford University and an M.S. in Pharmaceutical Outcomes Research & Policy at the University of Washington School of Pharmacy.
Stan Lapidus is an inventor and entrepreneur. He founded two of the most successful companies in the history of the diagnostic industry. Cytyc Corporation transformed screening for cervical cancer with the modern Pap test--the ThinPrep. Exact Sciences has revolutionized screening for colorectal cancer with its Cologuard test. Stan holds 37 US patents. He was elected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering in 2014 for his pioneering work on the early detection of cancer. He served as an instructor at MIT from 2001 to 2017. Stan received his BS in electrical engineering from Cooper Union in New York City.