Leadership team

Dr Catherine Elton
Dr Catherine EltonCEO & Founder
Catherine graduated from King’s College, Cambridge in 2000 and went on to study the biochemistry of platelet-collagen interactions, earning her PhD from Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge. In 2003, she joined Abcam, then a small disruptive antibody supplier. Under her leadership, the in-house laboratory responsible for antibody design, manufacture and characterization grew from 4 to 40 staff. She assisted with a successful IPO on AIM in 2005 and was a member of the senior management team. She returned to academic research in 2015 as a Daphne Jackson fellow at the Wellcome Sanger Institute where she studied the role of surface proteins in parasite infection. She co-founded Qkine in 2016 to address challenges in the growth factor and complex protein supply chain and support innovations in stem cell science and regenerative medicine, areas she believes underpin future advances in human health and wellbeing.
Dr Marko Hyvönen
Dr Marko HyvönenCSO & Founder
Marko is a structural biochemist with over 20 years of experience in producing complex proteins for structural analysis. He studied biochemistry at the University of Helsinki and did his PhD at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg. He joined the Department of Biochemistry in Cambridge in 1998 and has been leading a research group since 2001. One of the main themes in his research is to understand the structure and function of TGF-beta family growth factors, with a particular focus on activins. He runs a core facility providing high-quality growth factors and other protein-based tools for the stem cell research consortium at the University of Cambridge and this expertise is part of the foundations of Qkine.
Rob Nixon
Rob NixonHead of Commercial
Rob has a strong commercial background in the life science segment with a track record of building and coaching highly successful sales teams. Educated at the University of Manchester, studying BSc (Hons) Medical Biochemistry, he began life at Biotest UK before the pharmaceutical microbiology business was acquired by Merck Millipore. Having worked for Merck in several northern European roles within the laboratory reagents business for over 10 years, he moved to GE Healthcare Life Science to build and drive a new EMEA team focused on applied markets, with a particular focus on the rapidly growing and highly relevant point-of-care lateral flow test market. Latterly, Rob developed a global distributor network for Jellagen’s next-generation collagen to channel into the research market for stem cell and regenerative medicine applications. Rob joined Qkine in April 2020 to implement the commercial go-to-market strategy, channelling Qkine’s growth factor & cytokine portfolio for stem cell culture and organoid research applications.

Board

Jim Warwick
Jim WarwickChair
Jim graduated from Christ’s College Cambridge in 1986 with a degree in computer science and joined Analysys Limited, a Cambridge-based telecommunications consultancy where he headed up its IT, software and web development initiatives. Analysys Managing Director, David Cleevely, was one of the founders of Abcam and Jim moved to join them in 2000 as a Technical Director focussing on building a scalable e-commerce architecture for the startup. He took over the operational management of the UK office as Managing Director in June 2004, working on both Abcam’s growth plans as well as efficiency improvement programmes. In 2009, Jim became Chief Operating Officer, with responsibility for overseeing the operational strategy of the Group. Jim left Abcam at the end of 2016 and presently, outside of Qkine, is a NED for a couple of other Cambridge companies – the startup Cambridge Nutraceuticals Limited and the AIM listed Quartix Plc. Jim also chairs the multi-academy trust, the Cambridgeshire Educational Trust.
Dr Cassie Doherty
Dr Cassie DohertyNon-executive Director
Cassie is Investment Director with Parkwalk Advisors, the largest EIS growth fund manager focused on University spin outs. She has worked in life sciences investment for over 10 years and joined Parkwalk in 2019. She sits on the Boards of a number of portfolio companies and likes to have an active role in supporting their strategic, technical and commercial plans. Companies Cassie has worked with have cumulatively raised over £50 million of investment and she has been involved in M&A and licensing deals.

Prior to working in life sciences investment, Cassie led drug development programmes based on her academic research into Phase II clinical studies. She holds a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Leeds.

Dr Robert Scoffin
Dr Robert ScoffinNon-executive Director
Rob graduated from Pembroke College, Oxford in 1987 with a degree in chemistry, and then went on to complete his D.Phil studying new materials with applications in non-linear optics and optical information storage. He then joined Oxford Molecular Limited, an Oxford spin-out company developing computational chemistry software applications. Over a 7 year career with OM, Rob worked his way up from junior software developer to being head of external collaborations, working with a group of large Pharma clients on innovative software solutions to drug discovery challenges. In 1998, Rob joined CambridgeSoft Inc with the remit of creating a European division for them. As VP of European Operations, Rob was responsible, over the next 12 years, for the growth of a $20m business. Rob left CambridgeSoft at the beginning of 2010 to become CEO of Cresset, a growing Cambridge-based computational chemistry software and services company.
Dr Christine Martin
Dr Christine MartinNon-executive Director
An Investment manager in the Life Sciences team at Cambridge Enterprise, Christine has a focus on drug discovery with a broad portfolio of technologies, including University of Cambridge spin-outs Carrick, STORM, Z-factor, PhoreMost, Qkine and PolyProX. Christine has extensive experience in Life Sciences Tech Transfer and supporting early stage companies at Board level. Previously, she was a Department Director and Project Leader at Biotica, a biotechnology spin-out from the University of Cambridge, where she successfully scaled operations.

Christine has an MA and DPhil from the University of Oxford. She is the author of over 20 peer reviewed journal articles and over 20 patents. She was also the recipient of the Arthur E. Schwarting award for the best article published in the Journal of Natural Products in 2006.