Yi Liu, Ph.D.
Chief Executive Officer

Yi Liu, Ph.D., is a co-founder of Kumquat Biosciences and served as Chief Executive Officer since November, 2018.  Previously, Dr. Liu served as Chief Scientific Officer of Wellspring Biosciences Inc. until July, 2019, a private biopharmaceutical company he co-founded in July 2012.  From October 2014 to November 2018, Dr. Liu served as Chief Scientific Officer of Kura Oncology, a public company he co-founded in August 2014. Dr. Liu also co-founded Intellikine, Inc., a private biopharmaceutical company, where he served as Vice President of Drug Discovery from 2007 to May 2012, until its acquisition by Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Prior to Intellikine, Dr. Liu was the head of the drug design group at the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation. Earlier in his career, he held senior scientist positions at both SGX Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Curagen Corporation. Dr. Liu received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Princeton University, his M.Sc. in computational chemistry from Beijing University and his B.E. in Chemical Engineering from Tsinghua University.

Lynn Yang, Sequoia Capital China

Lynn Yang, focusing on healthcare investment. Prior to joining Sequoia Capital China in May,2015, Lynn worked at healthcare team of Legend Capital. Lynn accomplished investment deals in different area of healthcare industry such as Burning Rock, Cstone(2616.HK), JW Therapeutics, Grail, Hongkong Asia Medical, Qihan Bio (eGenesis counterpart in China), Hifibio etc. Before setting her foot in venture capital, Lynn worked as business development manager in Johnson & Johnson and product manager at GE Healthcare. Mrs. Yang holds a MBA from Duke University and Master of Clinical Science from Huazhong Technology University.

Carl Gordon, OrbiMed

Carl L. Gordon, Ph.D., CFA, is a founding Partner and Co-Head of Global Private Equity at OrbiMed. He was a senior biotechnology analyst at Mehta and Isaly from 1995 to 1997. He was a Fellow at The Rockefeller University from 1993 to 1995. For the last five years (2014 to 2018) Forbes® Magazine named Mr. Gordon one of the top 100 venture capitalists in the world when it placed him on the “Forbes Midas List”. Carl received a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1993) and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Harvard College (1987).

Scott Platshon, EcoR1

Scott Platshon joined Kumquat Biosciences as a Board Observer in August 2019. Since 2015, he has served as a principal at EcoR1 Capital, a fundamental biotechnology-focused investment firm in San Francisco. Prior to that, he was an analyst for Aquilo Partners, a boutique life-science investment bank. Scott holds a Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering from Stanford University.

Board Observers

Gavin Xia, LAV

Gavin G. Xia, Ph.D., is a Principal with Lilly Asia Ventures (LAV). Prior to joining LAV, Gavin was with Navigant Consulting and Monitor Group in healthcare business consulting industry and has served clients in pharmaceutical, medical device, and chemical industries in both US and Asia markets across projects ranging from M&A to market entry strategy to geographic expansion. Prior to consulting, Gavin had over more than 10 years academic and industry research experience in drug discovery and development. Gavin received his Ph.D. degree in Chemistry from University of Chicago in 2007, and his dual Bachelor’s in Chemistry and Economics from Peking University in 2001.

Nisha Marathe

Bio coming soon.

Scientific Advisors

Kevan Shokat, Chairman of SAB
Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Professor and Vice-Chair, Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology
University of California, San Francisco

Kevan’s laboratory is focused on the discovery of new small molecule tools and drug candidates targeting protein/lipid kinases, GTPases, and RNA helicases. His lab utilizes the tools of synthetic organic chemistry, protein engineering, structural biology, biochemistry and cell biology. In oncology and neurodegenerative diseases he focuses primarily on targets in pathways which have been validated by human genetics such as the lipid kinase PIK3CA mutants (20% of human tumors), the most frequently mutated human oncogene—the GTPase–KRAS, the metabolic and growth factor sensitive kinase mTOR, the mitochondrial kinase, PINK1 (Parkinson’s Disease), the kinase Lrrk2 (Parkinson’s Disease). Kevan is currently an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, vice-chair of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology at the University of California at San Francisco, and Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of California at Berkeley.  He received his B.A. in Chemistry from Reed College in 1986.  After receiving his Ph.D. in organic chemistry at UC Berkeley with Professor Peter Schultz, and post-doctoral work in cellular immunology at Stanford University with Professor Chris Goodnow, he began his independent research career at Princeton University before moving to UCSF in 1999. He was inducted into the National Academy of Sciences (2010), the Institute of Medicine (2011), and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2011).  He has commercialized discoveries from his laboratory through co-founding several biotechnology companies including, Cellular Genomics, Intellikine, Araxes, Kura, eFFECTOR, Revolution Medicines and Mitokinin.

Francesco Marincola, M.D.
Global Head of Research at Kite Pharma

Dr. Marincola received his MD, summa cum laude from the University of Milan, Italy and Surgery training at Stanford University, California. His research interest lies in translational medicine and focuses on the development of strategies for the dynamic study of patients’ response to immunotherapy. His approach has brought seminal observations regarding the mechanisms leading to rejection of tumors, allograft rejection, graft-versus-host disease and autoimmunity.

Dr. Marincola is currently Global Head of Research at Kite Pharma, Santa Monica, California. He previously was President and Chief Scientific Officer at Refuge Biotechnologies, Menlo Park, California, Distinguished Research Fellow at AbbVie Corporation in Redwood City, California, Chief Research Officer at Sidra Medical and Research Center in Doha Qatar and Tenured Investigator at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda Maryland. Dr. Marincola founded in 2003 the Journal of Translational Medicine of which he is currently the Editor-in-Chief. He is also Editor-in-Chief of Translational Medicine Communications and Clinical and Translational Medicine. He is past-president of the Society for the Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) and of the International Society for Translational Medicine. Dr. Marincola is editor of several biomedical books including the SITC-affiliated Cancer Immunotherapy Principles and Practice Textbook. Dr. Marincola is an award winning fiction writer author of The Wise Men of Pizzo and the Cat Behind the Window.

Hongbo Chi, Ph.D.
Member, Department of Immunology
Robert G. Webster Endowed Chair in Immunology
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Dr. Hongbo Chi is an immunologist with a long-standing interest in immune signaling and cell metabolism. His laboratory has made important discoveries in understanding the principle of metabolic reprogramming for immune cell fate, state and tolerance. These include the roles of metabolic programs (e.g. glucose, lipid, and mitochondrial metabolism), signaling pathways (e.g. mTOR and Hippo kinases; metabolite- and nutrient-induced signaling), and systems-level regulatory networks (e.g. interactions between protein regulators and their targets) in basic T cell and dendritic cell biology and mechanisms of cancer and autoimmune diseases. His work is highly regarded and widely referenced, earning him a place on the 2020 Highly Cited Researchers list. Dr. Chi received his Ph.D. from the University of Rochester, and his postdoctoral training with Dr. Richard Flavell from Yale University School of Medicine. In 2007, he started his independent research program at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where he is currently a Member (Professor) and Endowed Chair in the Department of Immunology. His research program has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 2007, with a recent NIAID R37 merit award. Honored by his graduate alma mater, University of Rochester, with their 2018 Alumni Achievement Award, Dr. Chi continues his innovative quest for fundamental discovery and translational initiative as a highly collaborative member of St. Jude and the scientific community.