CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#biotech—Mission BioCapital, a venture capital firm focused on making investments in early-stage life sciences companies that it uniquely supports as they grow, announced it has made key additions and promotions to its staff after raising its most recent fund, Mission BioCapital V LP.
The firm has hired Jennifer Griffin, Ph.D., as partner for strategy and investor relations. It has also promoted Cassidy Blundell, Ph.D., from associate to principal, and promoted Zach Collins, Ph.D., from associate to principal.
“These key staff additions and promotions will help Mission BioCapital as we enter a new stage of growth and entrepreneurial activity,” said Steve Tregay, Ph.D., managing general partner. “With our new fund, we are accelerating our funding of promising startups. Jennifer, Cassidy and Zach will also play important roles as we begin to emphasize company co-creation alongside academic scientists and first-time entrepreneurs in addition to traditional venture investing.”
Before joining Mission BioCapital, Dr. Griffin served as vice president of industry strategy and investments for the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the economic development agency that nurtures startups and advances the biopharma industry throughout Massachusetts. She developed and executed investments on behalf of the state and managed a $50 million annual budget. She also designed, capitalized and managed a $2 million+ public-private partnership that supports women founders, as well as a $2 million seed fund that helped advance life science startups outside of the Boston/Cambridge cluster.
Earlier, Dr. Griffin was a consultant at Back Bay Life Science Advisors, and served in the MIT Technology Licensing Office. She holds a B.S. in microbiology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester.
Dr. Blundell joined Mission BioCapital in the Cambridge office as an analyst in 2018. While at Mission BioCapital, Cassidy has been a key contributor to several investments, including Tidal Therapeutics (acquired by Sanofi), ARase Therapeutics, and Mediar Therapeutics. She holds a B.S. in biomedical engineering from Boston University and a Ph.D. in bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania, where she was an HHMI Interfaces fellow. In her thesis work, Cassidy focused on development of micro-engineered in vitro systems to study the human placenta.
Dr. Collins, who is based in San Francisco, joined the firm as an analyst in 2018. He has played an important role with several investments in the Mission BioCapital portfolio including Pandion Therapeutics (acquired by Merck), Vedere Biosciences (acquired by Novartis), and Shape Therapeutics. Zach has served as the head of academic alliances and an entrepreneur success partner at MBC BioLabs. He holds a B.S. in biology from the George Washington University and a Ph.D. in biological and biomedical sciences from Harvard University. During his Ph.D., he studied the molecular basis of embryonic development and contributed to publications that for the first time mapped gene expression in the early vertebrate embryo on the cellular level. Those discoveries were recognized by Science Magazine as the 2018 “Breakthrough of the Year.”
Mission BioCapital has already funded seven companies from its new fund including four where it has played a co-founder role.
About Mission BioCapital
Mission BioCapital is a venture capital firm focused on making pivotal early-stage investments in life sciences companies. We support our portfolio companies through a unique combination of shared lab space, capital investment, and access to strategic partners. With offices in the nation’s leading life science clusters in Cambridge and San Francisco, Mission BioCapital is dedicated to helping entrepreneurial scientists build successful companies, from idea to exit. Learn more at missionbiocapital.com.