Decades of experience

Our leadership brings decades of clinical, R&D and management experience. Our founders previously started and sold two life science companies to Abbvie (2016) and Healthways/Tivity (2009). Our advisors are renowned opinion leaders in drug development and medicine.

Management Team

Murat Kalayoglu

Murat Kalayoǧlu, MD, PhD

Chief Executive Officer


Michael Singer, MD, PhD

Chief Strategy Officer

Metin Kurtoglu

Metin Kurtoǧlu, MD, PhD

Chief Operating Officer


Miloš Miljković, MD

Chief Medical Officer


Chris Jewell, PhD

Chief Scientific Officer

Emily English, PhD

VP, Quality Assurance

Andy Stewart, PhD

VP, Research

Albina Benson, PhD

Senior Director, Manufacturing

Yi Zhang, PhD

Senior Director, Technology

Executive Advisors

As the former Senior Vice President, Pfizer Inc and President, Pfizer Global Research and Development, Dr. LaMattina oversaw the drug discovery and development efforts of over 12,000 colleagues in the United States, Europe and Asia. Dr. LaMattina is a 30 year veteran of Pifzer Inc, having joined as a medicinal chemist in 1977. He is currently a Senior Partner at PureTech Health.

As the former Director of the NCI at the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Niederhuber oversaw the cancer research efforts of more than 5,000 NCI employees and managed a budget of over 5 billion dollars. Dr. Niederhuber was most recently Executive Vice President and CEO of the Inova Translational Medicine Institute, where he directed highly sophisticated genomic analyses with the goal of delivering excellence in personalized healthcare, research and education. Dr. Niederhuber is an internationally recognized oncologic surgeon who has given over 350 professional presentations, 250 peer-reviewed articles, and edited or co-edited 9 books.

Dr. Wilkes is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine and has served as researcher, teacher, administrator, mentor and executive. From 2015 to 2021, he served as Dean and James Carroll Flippin Professor of Medical Science at the University of Virginia School of Medicine.  Currently, he is Dean Emeritus at the UVA School of Medicine.  Dr. Wilkes has co-authored more than 100 research papers and holds six U.S. patents. He is a successful entrepreneur who is founder and Chief Scientific Officer of ImmuneWorks, Inc., a biotech company which develops novel treatments for immune-mediated lung disease. He is also a member of the Board of Directors for Baxter International, and Syneos Health.  Dr. Wilkes is National Director of the Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation’s eminent program that develops careers of underrepresented in medicine physician scientists, dentist scientists, and nurse scientists. He has served on several advisory boards and committees of the National Institute of Health, and has received numerous awards for diversity and inclusion.


Dr. Elisseeff is the Morton Goldberg Professor and Director of the Translational Tissue Engineering Center at Johns Hopkins University Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Wilmer Eye Institute, with appointments in Chemical and Biological Engineering, Orthopedic Surgery, and Materials Science. She is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Medicine, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Elisseeff’s research focuses on the impacts of immune and stromal environments on complex tissue during disease and tissue repair. In these areas she has founded several successful startups and published hundreds of peer reviewed studies.

Dr. García is the Executive Director of the Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience and Regents’ Professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is a co-founder of three successful start-up companies and an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Inventors. His research program integrates innovative engineering and cell biology concepts to create cell-instructive technologies for regenerative medicine and cell engineering. Dr. García has published hundreds of papers in these areas and received many distinctions, including Georgia Tech’s Class of 1934 Distinguished Professor Award and the Founders Award from the Society for Biomaterials.

Dr. Mooney is the Pinkas Family Professor of Bioengineering in the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and a Core Faculty Member of the Wyss Institute. His laboratory designs advanced technologies for immunotherapy and regenerative medicine. Dr. Mooney’s efforts have led to hundreds of papers in peer-reviewed journals. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Inventors. His inventions have been licensed by over 20 companies, leading to several commercialized products. Dr. Mooney has founded a number of successful companies and is active on many industry scientific advisory boards. 

Clinical Advisors

Dr. Anderson is an internationally recognized researcher on multiple myeloma, the focus of his laboratory and clinical research studies over the last three decades. He has developed laboratory and animal models of the tumor in its microenvironment which have allowed for both identification of novel targets and validation of novel targeted therapies, and has then rapidly translated these studies to clinical trials culminating in FDA approval of novel targeted therapies. His paradigm for identifying and validating targets in the tumor cell and its milieu has transformed myeloma therapy and markedly improved patient outcome. He is a recipient of many scientific and humanitarian awards including: the International Myeloma Workshop Waldenstrom’s Award; the International Myeloma Foundation Robert A. Kyle Lifetime Achievement Award; the American Association for Cancer Research Joseph H. Burchenal Award; and the American Cancer Society Medal of Honor in Science. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, served as President of the International Myeloma Society, and is President-elect of the American Society of Hematology. Dr. Anderson is the Kraft Family Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School as well as Director of the Jerome Lipper Multiple Myeloma Center and Lebow Institute for Myeloma Therapeutics at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. He is a Doris Duke Distinguished Clinical Research Scientist and American Cancer Society Clinical Research Professor.

Dr. Barnett-Tapia is Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Neurology and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto.  Dr. Barnett-Tapia is a member of the medical advisory board for the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America and Myasthenia Gravis Society of Canada.  Her research is focused on patient-centered outcomes research in neuromuscular disorders, aiming to incorporate the patients’ views and preferences into clinical trials and practice.  She has received funding form US Department of Defense, MGNext and Muscular Dystrophy Canada. Dr. Barnett-Tapia’s work has been recognized by multiple awards, including the inaugural Surinderjit Singh Young Lectureship Award by the American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine (AANEM).

Dr. Benatar is a Professor of Neurology and of Public Health Sciences, Chief of Neuromuscular Division, and Vice Chair for Clinical and Translational Research in the Department of Neurology. He is the Walter Bradley Chair in ALS Research and the Executive Director of the ALS Center at the University of Miami. He obtained his medical degree at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and is also trained in both basic neuroscience (DPhil, Oxford) and clinical research methods (Masters in the Science of Clinical Research Emory). He leads an active clinical and translational research program focused on biomarker and therapy development for ALS and MG. He is the PI of the ongoing Pre-Symptomatic Familial ALS (Pre-fALS) study as well as the CReATe Consortium, a rare diseases clinical research consortium focused on ALS and related neurodegenerative diseases.

Ivan Borrello is an internationally recognized expert on immunotherapy for multiple myeloma. His group was the first to describe the use of marrow infiltrating lymphocytes (MILs) as a source of highly tumor specific T cells for adoptive T cell therapy. This work has led to several clinical trials in which his group showed the ability of activated MILs to impart measurable tumor specific immunity. His group is also exploring various approaches to enhance the use MILs in a variety of different settings and in diseases other than myeloma. Dr. Borrello is an Associate Professor at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins in the divisions of Tumor Immunology and Hematologic Malignancies. He received his MD degree from the Medical College of Virginia. Completed his Residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Chicago and his Fellowship in Oncology at Johns Hopkins where he then has continued as a faculty member. He also serves as the medical director of the Cell Therapy Lab.

Dr. Howard is the former James F. Howard Distinguished Professor of Neuromuscular Disease and the prior Chief of the Neuromuscular Disorders Section at UNC. Currently, he is Professor of Neurology, Medicine, and Allied Health at UNC, Chapel Hill School of Medicine and directs the Myasthenia Gravis (MG) Clinical Trials and Translational Research Unit at UNC. A practicing neurologist for over 43 years and expert on MG and electromyography, Dr. Howard has authored more than 340 abstracts, 185 articles, 35 book chapters, and 3 books. He was the 2019 recipient of the European Academy of Neurology Investigator Award and is frequently invited to lecture on MG. Dr. Howard is a member of the NIH-funded rare disease clinical research network, MGNet.

Dr. Landgren is one of the world leaders in the field of early treatment strategies and molecular- and cell-based monitoring of minimal residual disease (MRD) detection in multiple myeloma and its precursor states. As Chief of the Myeloma program at Chief of Myeloma Program at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Miami, Dr. Landgren leads the Experimental Therapeutics Program to discover new treatment paradigms for multiple myeloma integrating modern therapy and novel MRD assays. Dr. Landgren has designed and led the definitive study showing that all multiple myeloma patients are preceded by a precursor stage. As part of his ongoing research program, he is studying molecular mechanisms underlying the trajectory from precursor to full-blown multiple myeloma with the goal to develop treatment strategies aiming to delay, prevent, and ultimately define a cure for multiple myeloma. Dr. Landgren has published over 250 peer-reviewed publications and he is a frequently invited speaker at national and international hematology conferences. He serves on several research committees and editorial boards for scientific journals.

Dr. Levy is the Parker B. Francis Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Chief of the Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Levy’s Airway Inflammation and Resolution “AIR” laboratory aims to identify new pathways to resolve pulmonary inflammation, infection or injury by understanding the roles of naturally-derived, specialized pro-resolving mediators in health, and then translating these findings to the pathobiology of important lung diseases, including ARDS.  His work has helped lead to more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, over 10 patents awarded or pending, and continuous funding from the National Institutes of Health since 1993.  He is an active participant in NIH grant review study sections.  He is an elected member of the ASCI, AAP and Interurban Clinical Club. He is active in the American Thoracic Society and has served in several leadership roles for the ATS, including as Chair of the Publication Policy Committee and a member of the Board of Directors.

Dr. Libby is a cardiovascular specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and holds the Mallinckrodt Professorship of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He served as Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine at BWH from 1998 – 2014. His areas of clinical expertise include general and preventive cardiology. His current major research focus is the role of inflammation in vascular diseases such as atherosclerosis. Dr. Libby has a particular devotion to translate his basic laboratory studies to pilot and then large-scale clinical cardiovascular outcome trials. He instigated and helped to lead the large scale Canakinumab Anti-Inflammatory Thrombosis Outcomes Trial (CANTOS) that provided clinical validation of the role of inflammation in atherosclerosis.  Dr. Libby has received numerous awards and recognitions for his research accomplishments, including the Distinguished Scientist Award for Basic Research, American College of Cardiology, the Gold Medal of the European Society of Cardiology and the Basic Research Prize of the American Heart Association, the Anitschkow Prize in Atherosclerosis Research of the European Atherosclerosis Society, and the Special Award of the Heart Failure Association of the European Society of Cardiology.

Dr. Manzi is Professor of Medicine and Chair of the Medicine Institute at Allegheny Health Network, Pittsburgh, PA. Dr. Manzi received her MD from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She completed her medical Internship and Residency at Duke University Medical Center, after which she completed her Fellowship in Rheumatology at UPMC, and received her Master of Public Health (MPH) from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health. Dr. Manzi is recognized internationally as a pioneer in the investigation of premature cardiovascular disease in systemic lupus erythematosus and in the discovery of biomarkers for lupus diagnosis, monitoring and stratification. She has published over 250 scientific reports and book chapters and is inventor of the cell-bound complement activation products (CB- CAPs) technology platform for which she holds more than 20 patents. Her research program has received multimillion-dollar support from many organizations including the NIH, the Department of Defense, the Lupus Foundation of America and the Arthritis Foundation.

Dr. Matthay is a Professor of Medicine and Anesthesia at the University of California at San Francisco and a Senior Associate at the Cardiovascular Research Institute. He is Associate Director of Critical Care Medicine. He received his AB from Harvard University and his MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He received an American Thoracic Society award for Scientific Achievement in 2002 and the UCSF Award for Outstanding Clinical Research in 2006, as well as the Lifetime Achievement Award in Mentoring at UCSF in 2013. He is a member of the American Association of Physicians. Dr. Matthay’s research has focused on the pathogenesis and resolution of pulmonary edema and acute lung injury and the clinical counterpart, the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). His recent research has also focused on the biology and potential clinical use of allogeneic bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal (stem) cells for ARDS. He has led major clinical trials in ARDS and Sepsis and COVID-19 over the last 25 years.

Dr. Mozaffar is a Professor of Neurology and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of California – Irvine, where he is also the Director of the Division of Neuromuscular Disorders and Associate Director for the Center for Translational Sciences Award (CTSA).  Dr. Mozaffar is the Principal Investigator for UCI-NEXT, the NeuroNEXT award to the University of California, Irvine, one of 25 such NeuroNEXT sites funded by the NINDS/NIH. He is also the Lead Investigator for a multicenter NIH/NIAMS funded Natural History Study in sIBM (INSPIRE-IBM), which started April 2021.  Dr. Mozaffar has been at UC Irvine since 2000 where he has built an internationally recognized clinical and research program in Neuromuscular Disorders.  He is actively involved in clinical and translational research in Neuromuscular Disorders, including currently serving as Principal Site Investigator on over a dozen clinical trials in myasthenia gravis, rare and ultra-rare myopathies and in immune myopathies. He has co-authored over 190 peer-reviewed publications and has authored or co-authored over a dozen book chapters and invited reviews.

Dr. Vu is a Professor of Neurology at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine and the Division Director for Neuromuscular Medicine and EMG. Dr. Vu’s current research focus is on treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS; Lou Gehrig’s disease), myasthenia gravis, peripheral neuropathy, and myositis. He has authored or co-authored more than 60 peer-reviewed publications and has been the Principal or Co-Investigator on more than 90 NIH and industry-sponsored grants and clinical trials.

Careers and Culture

Cartesian is expanding its world-class team of scientists dedicated to curing disease through developing cutting-edge cell therapies. Our highly integrated approach is a rare find in biotech; discovery, cGMP manufacturing, and clinical operations all happen under one roof. Team members learn and grow through exposure to an immersive experience. A sense of family stems from close, cross-functional, and continuous conversation with highly committed colleagues. The result is fast-paced innovation, leading to next-generation therapies for our patients.

We are proud members of the fast-growing Gaithersburg biotech community. Please contact us at if you share our passion for developing the next-generation of cell therapies.

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