Company | Karius

About Us - Hero

Karius sees a world where infectious disease is no longer a major threat to human health.

Our mission: We strive to deliver unprecedented insight to enable physicians to make rapid life-saving treatment decisions.

About Karius

Karius is a life sciences company focused on generating genomic insights for infectious diseases with a non-invasive Karius® Test that helps clinicians make rapid treatment decisions.  

 

We are a team of clinicians, molecular biologists, data scientists, software engineers, and commercial experts drawn together by a shared commitment to improve patient health.

 

By using genomics and AI to map a patient’s microbial landscape from a single blood draw, Karius moves closer to a vision of a world where infectious disease is no longer a major threat to human health.  The Karius laboratory is CLIA-certified and CAP-accredited to perform high-complexity clinical laboratory testing.

Karius CEO Mickey Kertesz

"Infectious diseases are a leading cause of global mortality and an enormous area of unmet need. The Karius Test allows clinicians to diagnose infections more rapidly and accurately, helping them to devise precise and effective treatment plans for patients with the objective of speeding their recovery times.
I’m excited for future applications of our technology to combat infectious diseases worldwide."

Karius Co-Founder Mickey Kertesz

Leadership Team

Alec Ford

Chief Executive Officer

Alec has over 30 years of experience in the genomics, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries, and has a proven track record driving commercial growth and performance for businesses in highly competitive and regulated biomedical markets. He was previously the Chief Operating Officer for Myriad Genetics, a molecular diagnostic company.  During his time at Myriad, he launched new products and scaled new business units in Women's Health, Oncology, Urology, and Prenatal screening.  Previously, Alec has held leadership positions at Novartis, Sanofi-Aventis, Nektar Therapeutics, and Pfizer. Alec is a founding board member of BioUtah, Utah’s life sciences trade association.

Mickey Kertesz, PhD

President and Chief Product Officer

Mickey co-founded Karius in 2014 to bring the pathogen detection technology he and colleagues developed at Stanford closer to the bedside. Prior to that, he was the CEO and co-founder of Moleculo, a long-reads DNA sequencing company, which was acquired by Illumina in late 2012. Mickey earned an MS in computer science from Tel Aviv University and a PhD in computational biology from the Weizmann Institute of Science. He went on to complete his postdoctoral work in bioengineering at Stanford University, where he developed novel methods for investigating the genetic diversity of human viruses.

Tim Blauwkamp, PhD

Chief Scientific Officer

Tim, co-founder of Karius, is a biomedical scientist with 15 years experience managing and conducting research in molecular biology, regenerative medicine, and next-generation sequencing. He was previously Head of Molecular Biology at Moleculo, where he ran scientific research and lab operations until the company’s acquisition by Illumina. He continued to lead a technology development group within Illumina, creating new genomics tools and authoring several patent applications. He obtained a PhD in biological chemistry from the University of Michigan. His postdoctoral work at Stanford University and the University of Michigan led to several novel tools and insights into the molecular mechanisms governing human development.

Sivan Bercovici, PhD

Chief Technology Officer

Sivan is an innovator in artificial intelligence, pioneering the development of complex computational and data platforms, as well as novel machine-learning models designed to address critical challenges in human disease. Prior to Karius, Sivan was a co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at Lifecode, where he led the development of the analytical platform and validation of several clinical assays across oncology and rare hereditary diseases. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, and continued to Stanford's Artificial Intelligence Lab to pursue his post-doctoral research.

Rachel Jones

Chief Commercial Officer

Rachel is a proven commercial executive with expertise in building highly effective sales and marketing programs resulting in market leadership. Known for her ability to establish, scale and direct high performing and cohesive teams, Rachel is an influential leader who quickly builds trust and rapport. Prior to joining Karius, Rachel was CCO at BioFire Diagnostics where she built and led the commercial team responsible for the launch of syndromic infectious disease diagnostics to annual global sales greater than $1B. 

Bradley Perkins, MD

Bradley Perkins, MD

Chief Medical Officer

Brad is a physician, scientist, and entrepreneur with extensive experience in microbial and human genomics research, application, and commercialization. At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), he led the anthrax bioterrorism investigations following 9/11, and later served as CDC’s Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. More recently, he was EVP for Strategy and Innovation at Vanguard Health Systems, and he was the founding Chief Medical Officer for Human Longevity Inc., working with genomics pioneer JC Venter.  Brad is board-certified in Internal Medicine.

Stacy Solorio

VP, Head of Human Resources

Stacy is a strategic, versatile, and business-focused Human Resources leader leveraging a wealth of experience developing and delivering on HR strategies for organizations undergoing rapid growth and change. Passion for building HR infrastructure from the ground up while partnering with leaders to meet their business objectives through people strategies. An influencer, thought leader, and change agent who applies expertise to complex business issues to develop innovative solutions. Stacy is committed to creating a dynamic and diverse work environment that fosters a culture of inclusion, innovation, collaboration and creativity where employees are enabled to achieve their greatest potential.

Asim A. Ahmed, MD

Senior Medical Director, Medical Affairs

Asim is a physician-scientist trained in pediatric infectious diseases. He obtained his M.D. from Baylor College of Medicine and performed an HHMI medical student fellowship at UCSF. He completed his residency at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and fellowship in infectious diseases at Boston Children’s Hospital where he developed systems to study the entry mechanisms of flaviviruses, alphaviruses and henipaviruses. In addition to his work on metagenomic next-generation sequencing for infectious diseases he has an extensive clinical expertise in encephalitis, emerging viruses and vector-borne diseases.

Karen To, CPA

Senior Director, Finance & Controller

Karen brings over 15 years of corporate accounting and finance operations experience from start-ups to Fortune 500 organizations in health technology, and life sciences. Her experience ranges from M&A integration, systems implementation to facilitate budgets and forecasting for U.S. operations. Previously she served various managerial positions at Stentor, Philips, and Fluidigm. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from San Diego State University and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Judith Wilber, PhD

Laboratory Director

Judy has broad experience in technology development and clinical utilization of new biomarkers and technologies, having held positions as Vice President of Technical Operations and Clinical Laboratory Director at CareDx (formerly XDx); Vice President of Research in Nucleic Acid Diagnostics at Bayer Healthcare (formerly Chiron Diagnostics), where she established in-house clinical reference laboratories in the US and Europe and led studies to prove the clinical value of viral load measurement.

Scientific Advisors

Dr. Steven Quake

Dr. Steven Quake

Professor of Bioengineering at Stanford University and renowned genomics pioneer

Professor Quake is the Lee Otterson Professor in the School of Engineering and a professor of bioengineering of applied physics and physics at Stanford University. His group pioneered the development of microfluidic large-scale integration.

Dr. Russ Altman

Dr. Russ Altman

Professor of Bioengineering, Genetics, and Medicine at Stanford

Dr. Altman is a professor of bioengineering, genetics, and medicine, and past chairman of the Bioengineering Department at Stanford University. His research interests include the application of computing and informatics technologies to problems relevant to medicine. For example, uncovering methods for understanding drug action at the molecular, cellular, organism, and population levels, discovering how human genetic variation impacts drug response, and analyzing biological molecules to understand the actions, interactions, and adverse events of drugs.

Dr. Iwijn De Vlaminck

Dr. Iwijn De Vlaminck

Robert N. Noyce Assistant Professor in Life Science and Technology at Cornell University and cell-free DNA-based diagnostics expert

Dr. De Vlaminck is the Robert Noyce Assistant Professor in Life Science and Technology at the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering at Cornell University. He is also Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Cornell University. His research at Cornell focuses on cell-free DNA-based diagnostics of rejection and infection in transplantation and on developing techniques in single-cell genomics. Dr. De Vlaminck did postdoctoral work in the lab of Steve Quake at Stanford University.

Dr. David Relman

Dr. David Relman

Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor and Professor in the Departments of Medicine (Infectious Diseases) and of Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford University and Chief of Infectious Diseases at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System

Dr. Relman is the Thomas C. and Joan M. Merigan Professor in the departments of Medicine and of Microbiology and Immunology at Stanford University. He is chief of infectious diseases at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, co-director of the Center for International Security and Cooperation, and senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University.

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