Dahlia Biosciences

Enabling precision medicine research with CRISPR cell and tissue reagents.

Dahlia Biosciences was founded in 2017 to unlock the power of CRISPR technology for cell and tissue analysis. Dahlia’s reagent products will support research, drug development, and clinical diagnostic applications. A participant in the IndieBio accelerator program, the company has generated proof-of-principle data on DNA telomere detection by imaging and flow cytometry and has secured an exclusive license in research tools and diagnostics to RNA-targeting Cas9 (RCas9) IP from UC Berkeley. By leveraging CRISPR-Cas9 technology, Dahlia Biosciences plans to develop an orthogonal nucleic acid detection approach to current fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) approaches for cytometry and imaging applications. Key advantages of using a Cas9-based approach include faster time to data, more simplified workflow, and headroom to scale target multiplex.


Un Kwon-Casado, Co-Founder & CEO. Previous roles include Chief Strategy Officer at Caribou Biosciences and VP of Corporate Development at Fluidigm.

Dr. Ilona Holcomb, Director of R&D. Previous roles include Senior Scientist at Fluidigm, Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University, Ph.D. in Molecular Biotechnology from University of Washington.

Dr. Alan Chan, Scientist. Postdoctoral Fellow at University of Toronto. Ph.D. in Medical Biophysics from University of Toronto.


● Dr. Sam Sternberg, Co-Founder. Protein-RNA biochemist and CRISPR expert. Assistant professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics at Columbia University. He is a co-inventor of the RNA-targeting Cas9 technology and completed his doctorate in Jennifer Doudna’s laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley.

● Dr. Mitch O’Connell. Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics at University of Rochester and a member of the Center for RNA Biology. After obtaining his PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Sydney, Mitchell was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Dr. Jennifer Doudna at the University of California, Berkeley, where he made a number of discoveries related to the ability for CRISPR systems to target RNA.

● Dr. Alex K. Shalek. Pfizer-Laubach Career Development Assistant Professor at MIT, as well as a Core Member of the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science (IMES) and an Assistant Professor of Chemistry. He is also an Associate Member of the Ragon and Broad Institutes, an Assistant in Immunology at MGH, and an Instructor in Health Sciences and Technology at HMS. Of relevance, Dr. Shalek is a pioneer in single-cell genomics, including the detection and analysis of nucleic acids in single cells.

● Dr. Jared Burks. Assistant Professor and Co-Director of the Flow Cytometry and Cell Imaging Core Facility at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Of relevance, Dr. Burks has in-depth experience in the utilization of imaging, flow cytometry, and mass cytometry techniques through his role in directing the core facility at MD Anderson Cancer Center.