Dr. Ratmir Derda, Ph.D. (Founder and Chief Executive Officer) Ratmir is an Associate Professor of Chemistry at the University of Alberta. Ratmir is the author of over 45 peer-reviewed publications and is the inventor on 10 patent applications (three issued patents). He is also an advisory board member of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry journal, and recipient of several awards including the David Gin New Investigator Award from the American Chemical Society (2017), Marta Cook Piper Research Prize from the University of Alberta (2017), Rising Star in Chemical Biology award from International Chemical Biology Society (2015), Young Investigator Award from Boulder Peptide Society (2014) and Gold Medal at the XXIX International Chemistry Olympiad (1997).


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Ms Samantha Kwok (Operations Manager): Samantha completed her BSc with Honours from the University of Waterloo majoring in Biochemistry. She then completed her MSc in Chemistry at the University of Alberta working in the laboratory of Professor Dennis Hall. Samantha joined the Derda Research Group in January 2017 as a research and administrative assistant, where she spearheaded the technology translation from Derda lab to 48Hour Discovery Inc.


Ms Ying (Ali) Chou (Research and Development): Ali completed her undergraduate training in Chemistry at McGill University, she then pursed a MSc in Chemistry in the Derda lab at the University of Alberta. Ali’s research in the Derda lab focused on using genetically-encoded (GE) libraries to develop a serological diagnostic test for Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. She has over 3 years of hands-on experience in development and screening of GE-libraries for difficult targets, which is the core technology of 48Hour Discovery Inc.


Dr. Craig Milne, Ph.D., MBA (Business Advisor): Craig is a serial entrepreneur who co-founded or lead a number of companies over the past 10 years.  Through his roles in consulting and banking, Craig has helped close to 100 companies develop strategies for success.  He is highly creative, data-driven and tenacious.  Craig has an MBA in Finance from the University of Alberta and a Ph.D. in Immunology from the University of Toronto.

Dr. Yun (Jessica) Cao, Ph.D. (Lead Data Scientist): Jessica completed her Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Alberta under the supervision of Professor Chintha Tellambura. Shortly thereafter, she joined the Derda Research Group in August 2017 as a computing research assistant. Jessica’s research in the Derda lab focused on database design, management, web application development, data visualisation and analysis. She transitioned to 48Hour Discovery in April 2018, where she will focus on the implementation of machine learning in data analysis, and development of web-application and database.

Dr. Caishun (Carson) Li, Ph.D. (Scientist): Carson completed his Ph.D. in Molecular Biochemistry from Huazhong Agricultural University in Wuhan, China. After his Ph.D. he held a postdoctoral position at the University of Alberta under the supervision of Dr Christopher W. Cairo where he worked on T-Cell and B-Cell Membrane Glycobiology and Biophysics. He joined the Derda lab as a research assistant in 2015. Carson’s research in the Derda lab focused on screening of ligands for cell surface transporters. Shortly thereafter, he joined 48Hour Discovery INC, where he will focus on developing cell-based panning pipelines, validation of methods using genetically-encoded (GE) phage libraries and product development.


Dr Nicholas Bennett, Ph.D. (Technology Advisor): Nicholas completed his Ph.D in Biochemistry from Massey University in New Zealand under the supervision of Dr Jasna Rakonjac, focused on the molecular biology of filamentous phage. After his Ph.D he held a postdoctoral position at McGill University in the lab of Dr Matthias Götte where he worked on T4 Bacteriophage and inhibitors of viral polymerases. He is currently part of Derda lab at University of Alberta as a Senior Research Associate. Nicholas has over 14 years of hands-on experience in molecular biology and genetics of bacteriophages that constitute the core platform of 48Hour Discovery Inc.