Seed World

Four Leading Scientists Join Inocucor Scientific Advisory Board


Four scientists with combined expertise in fermentation science, microbial profiling in humans and the movement of bacteria in soil have joined the Scientific Advisory Board for Inocucor, an agri-tech company that produces biological crop inputs for row crops and high-value produce.

“This esteemed team of scientists will actively participate in formulating the company’s R&D activities at its Denver and Montreal labs,” says Inocucor’s Executive V.P. for R&D and Chief Technical Officer Shawn Semones, who joined Inocucor last November after a long career at Novozymes Biologicals, Inc.

The board will be led by Jonathan Leder, Ph.D., recently retired Director of Novozymes Biologicals and a 40-year scientist in the fields of organic synthesis, applied microbiology, fermentation science, and mergers and acquisitions. Other board members are Mark Adams, Ph.D., Gregg Bogosian, Ph.D. and Birgit Scharf, Ph.D.

Prior to his leadership role at Novozymes Biologicals, Leder worked as a scientist and Business Technology Manager at Union Carbide for 16 years. He has numerous publications and 13 patents, and has been on the scientific advisory boards of the Virginia Tech Biological Systems Engineering Department and the Science Museum of Southwest Virginia. He earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Harvard University.

Mark Adams is Director of Microbial Genomic Services at The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine and a founding scientist at The Institute for Genomic Research. Adams was a co-founder of Celera Genomics, was Associate Professor of Genetics at Case Western Reserve University and Scientific Director and Professor at J. Craig Venter Institute. He earned his Ph.D. in Biological Chemistry at the University of Michigan and a B.A. in Chemistry from Warren Wilson College in North Carolina.

Gregg Bogosian, who also sits on Inocucor’s Manufacturing Advisory Board, is a consultant with more than 35 years’ experience in biotechnology, specializing in the use of fermentation to produce microbial products. He is experienced in cGMP-compliant manufacturing of biologicals. Bogosian holds a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Purdue University and has completed postdoctoral studies in Microbiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He earned a B.A. in Zoology at Miami University.

Birgit Scharf, an associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Virginia Tech, studies how bacteria sense and move towards plants in the soil. She holds a Ph.D. in Biology from Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology, Dortmund, Germany. She completed postdoctoral studies there and at Harvard University. She received a diploma in Biology from Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany.

Early next spring, Inocucor will occupy its new 30,000-square-foot U.S. headquarters and commercialization office currently under construction in Centennial, Colo. Its Montreal-based, R&D-focused Technical Center of Excellence is currently being enlarged from 10,000 to 20,000 square feet to house expanded product development and manufacturing operations. The company employs about 40 people in Montreal and the U.S., and anticipates adding another 25 to 30 high-level scientific and managerial professionals over the next year.