We don’t just envision the possibilities, we create them.

Founded in 2014 by two of the world’s foremost experts in synthetic biology, James Collins, PhD, and Tim Lu, MD, PhD, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Synlogic is comprised of visionary scientists – pioneering biologists and genetic engineers working to transform drug discovery and treat disease in a new way.


Realizing the promise.

We are at the cusp of a revolution in medicine. Synthetic biology is an entirely new strategy in drug development, affording us the opportunity to design selective and potent living medicines to treat disease. With a team of experienced scientists and executives at the helm, Synlogic is forging new ground to advance this approach and design novel therapeutics to treat unmet medical needs.







Board of Directors

Defying convention.

As leaders in the life sciences, our Directors share our vision for the potential of Synthetic Biotics and challenge us daily to achieve more to advance our mission. Having served at the helm of biotechnology companies and investment firms, our Directors serve as strategic partners and advisors guiding us to achieve progress for patients and the field













Founders & Advisors

Running with leaders.

We have the good fortune of calling these industry, medical and scientific leaders our trusted advisors and colleagues, working alongside our team to realize the potential of synthetic biology to do more for patients.













We don’t just envision the possibilities, we create them.

Founded in 2014 by two of the world’s foremost experts in synthetic biology, James Collins, PhD, and Tim Lu, MD, PhD, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Synlogic is comprised of visionary scientists – pioneering biologists and genetic engineers working to transform drug discovery and treat disease in a new way.


Realizing the promise.

Board of Directors

Defying convention.

Founders and Advisors

Running with leaders.

Join Us

Up for the challenge?

Antoine Awad

Antoine (Tony) Awad joined Synlogic in December 2018 as Head of Technical Operations and is responsible for process sciences and manufacturing functions for the Company. Tony has over 15 years of experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry with substantial experience in the development and manufacturing of novel therapeutics from pre-IND studies through global commercialization. Prior to joining Synlogic, Tony was most recently at Abpro Therapeutics and served as Senior Vice President of CMC and Operations where he was responsible for the development of bi-specific antibodies for oncology and leading corporate operational functions. Prior to that he served as Senior Vice President of Technical Operations and Manufacturing at L.E.A.F. Pharmaceuticals focused on developing small molecules for oncology. Previously, Tony held positions of increasing responsibilities over a ten-year period at Merrimack Pharmaceuticals. As Head of Process Sciences & Manufacturing, Tony led CMC development, manufacturing and approval of ONIVYDE® for treatment of advanced pancreatic cancer and transitioned to Ipsen Bioscience to integrate and lead commercial manufacturing of ONIVYDE®. Tony has broad experience in partnerships, collaboration and M&A, most notably with Sanofi, Baxalta/Shire plc, Actavis Pharma/Teva Pharmaceutical Industries and Ipsen Bioscience. He is a graduate of Boston University and holds degree in biochemistry and molecular biology, and conducted graduate research at Boston University School of Dental Medicine.

Mary Beth Dooley

Mary Beth Dooley joined Synlogic in June 2018 and is responsible for leading the Company’s financial strategy, planning, corporate accounting and operations. Before joining Synlogic, Mary Beth worked at Idera Pharmaceuticals, where she served various roles of increasing responsibility within the finance and accounting organization. Prior to joining Idera, Mary Beth worked in the Health Industries Assurance Practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers, primarily serving clients in the life science sector. Prior to joining PricewaterhouseCoopers, she served as an Assistant Vice President at Boston Private Bank & Trust Company, in the Investment Management & Trust Department. Mary Beth holds a B.S in Economics from Bates College, a M.S. in Accounting and an M.B.A. from Northeastern University. She has participated in the Bike MS Cape Cod Getaway to help raise money and awareness for multiple sclerosis for over ten years.

Caroline B. Kurtz, PhD

Dr. Caroline Kurtz joined Synlogic in October 2016 and is responsible for program leadership and portfolio planning and progression. Caroline has 25 years experience in the pharmaceutical industry and has led several programs across various stages of development. Previously, Caroline was vice president and GC-C platform lead at Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, where she drove the development of linaclotide (LINZESS®) from pre-IND through NDA approval and life-cycle management. In this role, she managed the linaclotide development collaborations with U.S. partner Forest (now Allergan), European partner Almirall and Japanese partner Astellas. She also served as the portfolio lead for the discovery and development of new GC-C agonists, including identification of two additional clinical candidates. Prior to her role at Ironwood, Caroline served as director of infectious diseases at GelTex/Genzyme, where she led discovery of novel polymeric compounds as anti-infectives for intestinal and pulmonary infections. Caroline has over 41 publications and has received several industry and academic honors for her work including being named by PharmaVoice as one of 2016’s 100 most inspiring people. Caroline received her Ph.D. in immunology from Harvard University in the laboratory of Dr. John Weis, and carried out post-doctoral training in viral immunology and central nervous system demylelinating diseases in the laboratory of Dr. Robert Fujinami at the University of Utah. She received a B.S. in biochemistry from the University of New Hampshire.

Peter Barrett, PhD

Peter Barrett is a partner at Atlas Venture and has been involved in the creation of several novel therapeutic and drug discovery platform companies. He is also a Senior Fellow at Harvard Business School, where he teaches Commercializing Science to second year MBA students and is the faculty chair of the key advisory board of the Blavatnik Fellowship Program.

Peter is currently chairman of Synlogic (NASDAQ:SYBX) and Obsidian Therapeutics, and also serves on the board of Larimar (NASDAQ:LRMR). He previously served on the boards of past Atlas companies Vitae Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:VTAE; acquired by Allergan), Stromedix (acquired by Biogen), Novamed (acquired by Sciclone), Alnylam (NASDAQ:ALNY), Harbour Antibodies (acquired by Harbour Biomed), Momenta (NASDAQ:MNTA), Sirion Therapeutics (acquired by Alcon and Bausch & Lomb), Infacare (acquired by Mallinckrodt), Archemix (acquired by Baxter) and a number of other ventures.

Prior to joining Atlas Peter was co-founder, executive vice president, and chief business officer of Celera Genomics, which announced the first successful sequencing of the human genome in 2001. While at Celera, Peter led strategic alliances, acquisitions, and business strategy and helped launch it as a public company in 1999.

Prior to founding Celera, Peter held senior management positions at Applera, most recently serving as vice president of corporate planning and business development. During his tenure, he ran several businesses and expanded the life science business through a series of licensing agreements, partnerships, and acquisitions.

Peter also serves on the board of Perkin Elmer (NYSE:PKI).

Peter received a BS in chemistry from Lowell Technological Institute (now known as the University of Massachusetts, Lowell), and a PhD in analytical chemistry from Northeastern University. He also completed Harvard Business School’s Management Development Program.

James Flynn

Mr. Flynn is currently a Managing Member and Portfolio Manager of Nerium Capital LLC, an investment adviser he founded in January 2021. Nerium Capital LLC is the General Partner of Nerium Partners LP, a healthcare focused investment partnership. Mr. Flynn also currently serves as a Board Member for ARCA Biopharma, Inc., a biotechnology company dedicated to developing therapies for cardiovascular diseases, MEI Pharma, Inc., a clinical stage pharmaceutical company committed to developing novel and differentiated cancer therapies, and Ricebran Technologies, an innovative specialty ingredients company. From 2019 to 2020, Mr. Flynn was exploring business opportunities which ultimately led to the formation of Nerium Capital LLC. From 2017 to 2018, Mr. Flynn worked as a therapeutics analyst at Aptigon Capital (a Citadel Company), an investment firm. Prior to that, from 2003 to 2017, Mr. Flynn served in various roles at Amici Capital, LLC, an investment firm, including healthcare portfolio manager (2008 to 2017). From 2002 to 2003, Mr. Flynn worked in the credit research/high yield group at Putnam Investments, an investment firm. Mr. Flynn earned a S.B. degree in Management Science with a concentration in Finance and a minor in Economic Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Mr. Flynn is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder.

Michael Heffernan

Michael Heffernan is a seasoned entrepreneur and biopharmaceutical leader with over 25 years of experience building and leading development stage and commercial companies. He is the Founder and Chairman of the Board of Collegium Pharmaceutical where he served as President and CEO until June 2018. He co-founded and is CEO of Avenge Bio, an Immuno-Oncology company that he is actively managing, and was previously CEO of Onset Dermatologics, a dermatology company that he founded and spun out of Collegium to create PreCision Dermatology, which was later sold to Valeant. Mr. Heffernan held previous positions as co-founder and CEO of Clinical Studies Ltd. and later served as CEO and Chairman of PhyMatrix Corp. He earned his B.S. degree in Pharmacy from the University of Connecticut and began his career at Eli Lilly and Company.

Mr. Heffernan serves on the board of directors of Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. (AKBA), Trevi Therapeutics, Inc. (TRVI) and Biohaven Pharmaceutical Holding Company Ltd. (BHVN). He previously served on the board of directors of Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., Ocata Therapeutics, Inc., Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc., and Veloxis Pharmaceuticals A/S.

Nick Leschly

Nick Leschly is chief executive officer at 2seventy bio. Previously, Nick served as chief bluebird at bluebird bio for 11 years. Prior to bluebird, he was a partner and founding member of Third Rock Ventures in 2007. Nick played an integral role in the overall formation, development, and business strategy of several of Third Rock’s portfolio companies, including Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Edimer Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Prior to joining Third Rock, Nick worked at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., leading several early-stage drug development programs and served as the product leader for VELCADE. Nick received his B.S. in molecular biology from Princeton University and his MBA from Wharton Business School. He currently serves as a board member of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO).

Ed Mathers

Ed Mathers joined NEA as a Partner in August 2008 after spending 26 years working within the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industry in a variety of senior roles. Ed is focused on biotechnology and specialty pharmaceuticals investments, and is a director of Akouos, Ampylx Pharmaceuticals, Envisia Therapeutics, Inozyme, Liquidia Technologies, Lumos Pharmaceuticals, ObEva, Ra Pharmaceuticals, Reneo Pharma, Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, Senti Biosciences and Trevi Therapeutics. Previously, Ed was a director of Intarcia, Lumena (sold to Shire) Motus Therapeutics (sold to Allergan), Plexxikon (sold to Daiichi Sankyo) and MedImmune,LLC.

Immediately prior to joining NEA, Ed served as Executive Vice President, Corporate Development and Venture, at MedImmune, Inc., and was a director of MedImmune, LLC. In this role, he was a member of the leadership team that executed the sale of the company to Astra Zeneca for $15.6 billion in 2007. While at MedImmune, Ed was responsible for the company’s corporate and business development activities and led the company’s venture capital subsidiary, MedImmune Ventures, Inc. Before joining MedImmune in 2002, he served as Vice President, Marketing and Corporate Licensing and Acquisitions at Inhale Therapeutic Systems (now Nektar). Previously, Ed spent 15 years at Glaxo Wellcome, Inc. (GlaxoSmithKline), where he held sales and marketing positions of increasing responsibility. He earned his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from North Carolina State University.

Richard P. Shea

Rick Shea has previously served as the Chief Financial Officer of Syndax Pharmaceuticals, Inc. from February 2017 to July 2020. Rick previously served as a member of the Syndax Pharmaceuticals board of directors from January 2014 to February 2017. From July 2007 through December 2016, he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Momenta Pharmaceuticals Inc., a publicly traded biotechnology company, and was its Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since October 2003. Prior to joining Momenta, Rick served as Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Variagenics Inc., a publicly traded pharmacogenomics company, that was merged with Hyseq Pharmaceuticals Inc., and as Vice President, Finance of Genetics Institute, Inc., a publicly traded biotechnology company, which was acquired by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which was then acquired by Pfizer, Inc. Rick received an AB from Princeton University and an MBA from the Public Management Program at Boston University.

Jim Collins, PhD

Dr. James J. Collins is the Henri Termeer Professor of Medical Engineering & Science and Professor of Biological Engineering at MIT. He is also a Core Founding Faculty member of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, and an Institute Member of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. His research group works in synthetic biology and systems biology, with a particular focus on using network biology approaches to study antibiotic action, bacterial defense mechanisms, and the emergence of resistance. Professor Collins’ patented technologies have been licensed by over 25 biotech, pharma and medical devices companies, and he has helped to launched a number of companies, including Sample6 Technologies, Synlogic and EnBiotix. He has received numerous awards and honors, including a Rhodes Scholarship, a MacArthur “Genius” Award, an NIH Director’s Pioneer Award, as well as several teaching awards. Professor Collins is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Medicine, and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, as well as a charter fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Timothy Lu, MD, PhD

Dr. Timothy Lu is an Associate Professor leading the Synthetic Biology Group in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and the Department of Biological Engineering at MIT. He is a core member of the MIT Synthetic Biology Center. Professor Lu’s research at MIT focuses on engineering integrated memory and computational circuits in living cells using analog and digital principles, applying synthetic biology to tackle important medical and industrial problems, and building living biomaterials that integrate biotic and abiotic functionalities. He is a recipient of the NIH New Innovator Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and the Ellison Medical Foundation New Scholar in Aging Award, among others.

Cammie Lesser, MD, PhD

Dr. Lesser is a board certified infectious disease specialist in Boston, Massachusetts. She is currently licensed to practice medicine in Massachusetts. She is an Associate Professor of Medicine (Microbiology and Molecular Genetics) at Massachusetts General Hospital.

The Lesser lab is interested in understanding how bacterial pathogens manipulate host cell processes to promote their own survival and replication during the course of an infection. In particular, their efforts focus on determining how bacterial factors injected via type 3 protein delivery systems into the host cell cytosol act to disarm host innate immune responses, including the induction of pro-inflammatory cytokine production, pyroptosis and autophagy. Their studies focus on virulence factors from Gram-negative enteric pathogens that cause gastrointestinal diseases including Shigella, Salmonella, Yersinia and enteropathogenic E. coli. They have developed multiple innovative technologies to address these questions including an innovative bottom-up approach to study single, potentially functionally redundant effectors as well as yeast functional genomic and proteomic approaches to identify conserved eukaryotic signaling pathways targeted by the virulence proteins.

More recently, the Lesser lab has begun to exploit findings garnered from their mechanistic based studies to develop bacterial strains engineered to deliver proteins of therapeutic value rather than virulence proteins into host cells. Current efforts with this system are aimed at developing a viral-free protein delivery system for cellular reprogramming; for example, the conversion of fibroblasts into induced pluripotent stem cells. In addition, they have begun to develop commensal bacteria that act suppress inflammation by blocking the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines with the goal of utilizing these bacteria to develop a new targeted treatment for inflammatory bowel disease.

Kristala Prather, PhD

Dr. Kristala Prather is the Arthur D. Little Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT. She received an SB degree from MIT in 1994 and PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and worked in BioProcess Research and Development at the Merck Research Labs prior to joining the faculty of MIT. Her research interests are centered on the design and assembly of recombinant microorganisms for the production of small molecules, with additional efforts in novel bioprocess design approaches. Prather is the recipient of an Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, a Technology Review “TR35” Young Innovator Award, a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the Biochemical Engineering Journal Young Investigator Award, and most recently, the Charles Thom Award of the Society for Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology. Additional honors include selection as the Van Ness Lecturer at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and as a Fellow of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study (2014-2015). Prather has been recognized for excellence in teaching with numerous awards including appointment as a MacVicar Faculty Fellow (2014), the highest honor given for undergraduate teaching at MIT.

Christopher Voigt, PhD

Dr. Christopher Voigt is a Professor of Biological Engineering at MIT, Co-Director of the Synthetic Biology Center, and Co-Founder of the MIT-Broad Foundry. His lab focuses on pushing genetic engineering to the scale and complexity of designing genomes from the bottom-up. They have developed genetically-encoded sensors and circuits and have used these to control multiple pathways and cellular functions. This has been applied to the optimization of chemical and materials production and to the discovery of novel pharmaceuticals. He holds joint appointments at the Broad Institute, Lawrence Berkeley National Labs, Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST), and University of California – San Francisco (UCSF). He received his BSE in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan (1998) and PhD in Biophysics and Biochemistry from Caltech (2002). He serves on the science advisory boards of DSM, Bolt Threads, Pivot Bio, SynLogic, Amyris Biotechnologies, Cambrian Genomics, and Zymergen. He has been honored with a National Security Science & Engineering Faculty Fellowship (NSSEFF), Sloan Fellow, Pew Fellow, Packard Fellow, NSF Career Award, Vaughan Lecturer, and MIT TR35. He has prepared reports and briefings on synthetic biology for the National Academies of Science, National Science Foundation, Office of the Secretary of Defense, and Congress. He founded the journal ACS Synthetic Biology and serves as the Editor-in-Chief and co-founded the SEED conference series.

Paul Miller, PhD

Dr. Paul Miller is chief scientific officer at Artizan Biosciences Inc. a privately held Connecticut-based biotechnology company developing a platform for identifying and targeting pathogenic intestinal bacteria, with a focus on inflammatory bowel disease and potential applications in autoimmune diseases, obesity, skin, lung and CNS diseases. From 2014 until 2019 he served as CSO at Synlogic. Previously, Paul was the vice president of infection biology at AstraZeneca, where he was responsible for the early discovery portfolio and strategy while also leading several external collaborations. Prior to Astra-Zeneca, Paul was the chief scientific officer for antibacterial research at Pfizer, leading discovery teams that produced eight drug development candidates, provided critical research support for several successful marketed antibiotics including Zithromax and Zyvox, and also successfully advanced a novel oxazolidinone (sutezolid) for tuberculosis into Phase II studies. A microbial geneticist by training, Paul began his professional career at the Warner-Lambert Company in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he integrated modern molecular-genetic approaches into a traditional antibacterial drug discovery program and established novel target discovery projects. His work there led to new insights into the mechanisms by which bacteria sense and respond to antibiotics and other environmental agents. Paul received his Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from the Albany Medical College, and conducted post-doctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health. He has also served as a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Forum on Microbial Threats.

Brendan St. Amant

Brendan joined Synlogic in 2021 as Vice President, Head of Legal. Prior to joining Synlogic, he was Vice President, Legal, and member of the leadership team at Ohana Biosciences and was senior counsel at Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Brendan was previously an associate and partner at the law firm of Donnelly, Conroy & Gelhaar, LLP, in Boston where he focused on commercial controversies and government enforcement. Earlier in his legal career, Brendan served as a clerk for the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut and was an associate at the law firm of Goodwin Procter. He received his B.A. in History from Cornell University, J.D. from Harvard Law School, and his M.P.P from the Harvard Kennedy School. Brendan has served on several practice-related bar committees and on the executive committee of the Board of Trustees of the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education corporation. 

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