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The Nalu Bio Team

Our world-class team of biotech and CPG experts is accelerating the potential of cannabinoids for the health of people and the planet.

Caitlyn Krebs
CEO and Co-founder

Entrepreneur with 20 years of healthcare experience with a passion for building companies at the intersection of science and technology—epigenomics, diagnostics, digital health, and eye tracking. Focused on commercializing new products and technologies within wellness and health. Mother of two boys, raised in Hawaii, and a Crossfitter. BS in biology from Brown University.

"I'm committed to building a world-class team that will deliver chemistry-derived cannabinoids that solve some of the world’s top health and wellbeing needs."

Matthew Roberts
Chief Technology Officer

Serial CTO with 25+ years of experience leading science, technology, and innovation for global leaders in Food and Nutrition. His experience and expertise span food, nutrition, operations, process scale-up, clinical trials, regulatory and quality. He has worked for large consumer packaged good companies and chemical ingredient companies including Nestle, Abbott Nutrition, Pharmavite—The Nature’s Bounty Company, Chromadex, and the Health & Happiness Group. Matthew has authored 30+ publications and patents and received his BS from Purdue University, his PhD from Cornell, and an Executive MBA from Washington University, St. Louis. Matthew is the father of 3 children, an avid hiker and runner, and a voracious consumer of science journalism and philosophy.

"I'm committed to help consumers, product innovators, and scientific researchers benefit from the full potential of high-quality, consistent, and safe CBD. Our team has worked tirelessly over the last year to develop a novel and scalable cannabinoid chemistry platform that will meet both the quality and quantity demands of a market projected to reach $20B by 2025."
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Chris Cornyn

Chief Business Officer

Chris’ focus has been scaling health and wellness start-ups, food innovation firms and partnering with global multinational companies to solve high-impact health needs. Chris was most recently Chief Innovation Officer at SpoonfulOne, an infant nutrition product company with the goal of preventing food allergies in children around the world. Chris developed the product platform, manufacturing and supply chain, IP/patents, and assisted in raising over $120 million in capital for the growth of the organization. SpoonfulONE was acquired by Nestle Health Science.

“The idea of helping people worldwide who suffer from inflammation, anxiety, pain and insomnia in a safe, sustainable, and scalable manner is so needed and compelling.”

Tim Lefever

Director of Discovery

Tim Lefever is an experienced Director with a demonstrated history of 20+ years of preclinical in vivo research and leading effective teams. He spent 9 years at Research Triangle Institute (RTI) managing the research endeavors and team focused on structure activity relationships, abuse liability, pharmacology and pharmacokinetics of cannabinoids. He successfully designed and executed numerous in vivo studies for Federally funded grants (NIH), Federal contracts (FDA, DEA), and Pharmaceutical/Biotech contracts, many under GLP conditions. He spent 3 years at Canopy Growth working closely with the Chief Medical Officer to develop and implement a product safety program; evaluating potential products for safety and efficacy through preclinical in vivo studies. Tim has  been an active member of the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS) since 2013 and co-hosted the Carolina Cannabinoid Collaborative meeting in 2017. He has authored or co-authored numerous manuscripts and presented research findings at a variety of scientific conferences over the past 20 years. 

Luke Dickinson

Project Manager:

Cannabinoid Manfucturing

Luke Dickinson is a highly skilled project manager currently overseeing cannabinoid manufacturing at Nalu Bio. In this role, he has successfully managed the tech transfer and scale-up production of minor cannabinoids through chemical synthesis, demonstrating expertise from bench-top to commercial scale. With a background that spans cannabinoids, pharmaceuticals, and biotech, including at Pfizer, MJ Wooly Corp, Realize Hemp, Biogen and Novogene, he has extensive experience managing various aspects of pilot to large-scale manufacturing and quality control operations. Luke earned his BS in Biochemistry from North Carolina State University and holds minors in Biomanufacturing (BTEC) and Microbiology.

Alex Dorenbaum
Medical Advisor

A world class physician with more than 25+ years of experience in healthcare as a physician and drug development expert. He has served as the Chief Medical Officer and held leading roles at Genentech, BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Chiron, Reneo Pharmaceuticals, Allakos, and Lumena Pharmaceuticals. Developed 30+ drugs in allergy, HIV/AIDS, pulmonary, immunological, cardiovascular, metabolic, and pediatric diseases. Currently a Clinical Professor at Stanford School of Medicine where he sees patients weekly. Received his MD from The National Autonomous University in Mexico City, Residency at University of Texas Health Science Center, and Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine.

"As a physician, I recognize and am excited about the broad therapeutic potential of cannabinoids. That's why I'm so enthusiastic about medical-grade, chemistry-derived cannabinoids to advance the treatment of multiple diseases."

Phyllis Whiteley
Co-founder and Board Member

Serial entrepreneur with 25+ years of healthcare experience. Builds, invests and creates companies within therapeutics, diagnostics, life science tools, digital health, and personalized medicine. Sits on multiple boards and is dedicated to helping social entrepreneurs address the problems of poverty, empower women, and build resilience to climate change. Passion for transformative life science innovations, healthcare solutions, global health, mentorship, and locavore cooking. BA in Chemistry and Ph.D in Pharmacology from Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri.

“Engineering new cannabinoid-inspired chemical entities for optimal impact has very exciting potential for the world of health and wellness.”

Randall Ussery
Co-founder and Board Member

Entrepreneur and investor with 15+ years sitting at the intersection of design and business, bringing new products and companies to life for startups and F1000 companies. Expert at incubating, investing, and advising on design and Go-to-Market for early stage startups. Sits on multiple Boards in healthcare, education, and fintech. BA from James Madison University and MBA from Babson College.

“Let's clinically validate what we know about cannabinoids, and then make those benefits available at a global scale, so we can solve a ton of problems and improve people’s lives."

Ken Mackie, MD
Scientific Advisor and Research Partner

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Chair and Distinguished Professor in Psychological and Brain Sciences at the Gill Center for Biomolecular Science, Indiana University. Research in neuroscience, regulation of CB1 receptors, regulation of endocannabinoid production, and role of novel cannabinoid receptors. 400 publications with 100+ publications on cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system, ScB in Engineering, Brown University, MD from Yale University.

“I’m really excited to evaluate how the potency and efficacy of Nalu Bio’s proprietary synthetic cannabinoids—specifically their market-ready CBD—may enable the development of effective non-opioid pain management."

Christopher Dino Beckett, DO
Clinical Advisor and Research Partner

A rural family medicine physician and entrepreneur, Dr. Beckett is known for his innovation and leadership in treating the opioid crisis in West Virginia.  He has been named the “National Rural Health Center’s Rural Practitioner of the Year” after being nominated by his peers.  He has been instrumental in the treatment of patients suffering addiction in central Appalachia by creating Medically Assisted Treatment Centers.  He has led the charge to open a recently closed acute care facility to create a detoxification unit and outpatient treatment facility while creating internships and workforce development for individuals successfully participating in recovery. BA in biology from West Virginia University and DO from West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine.

“The challenge of treating intractable pain for the vast number of people who suffer from it remains a significant challenge for clinicians. I've experienced first hand how the limitations of pain meds can contribute to opioid abuse and addiction. I've had a lot of success with CBD as an opioid-sparing alternative; and Nalu Bio's chemistry-derived cannabinoids are an important advance because they assure the consistency and predictable dose-to-dose performance we need for further research.”

Sam Banister, PhD
Scientific Advisor

A Team Leader in Medicinal Chemistry at the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney. Research on new cannabinoid drugs for epilepsy, neuropathic pain, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and more. Authored two book chapters on the chemistry of synthetic cannabinoids, 70+ peer-reviewed publications, postdoc at Stanford University, BSc and PhD in Chemistry, University of Sydney.

"Innovative chemistry and rigorous data are crucial for manufacturing complex natural products like cannabinoids at scale. I am very excited that Nalu Bio is raising the standard and working to bring such high quality cannabinoids to the market."
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