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Bioinnovation grad turns expertise into business development role for Tulane Medicine

June 16, 2023 4:00 PM
Carolyn Scofield scofield@tulane.edu

Kaylynn Genemaras, PhD, (SSE '23) was all smiles as she received her doctoral graduation hood following years of hard work and study. (Photo by Bakhtier Rizaez)


Kaylynn Genemaras, PhD, began her university years with the plan of becoming a physician. While working on her bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, Genemaras realized her real interest was in research, which brought her to Tulane University and the Bioinnovation Program. She recently earned her doctorate and now works in the Office of Research Business Development at Tulane University School of Medicine.

Bioinnovation graduate students train under the collaborative leadership of mentors and colleagues across Tulane’s Schools of Science & Engineering, Medicine, Public Health & Tropical Medicine, Law, and Business. Genemaras chose Robert Garry, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at Tulane School of Medicine, as her principal investigator and worked in his lab while earning her degree. The program is designed to get more engineers into the entrepreneur space to be part of startups, and to understand the commercialization process of products, devices, and therapeutics.

That knowledge and experience is now helping Genemaras in her role as Business Development Associate at the School of Medicine, working alongside James Zanewicz, JD, LLM, RTTP, Chief Business Officer, and Elaine Hamm, PhD, Executive in Residence.

“I’m able to use my technical background to understand the science, expertise and technologies contained within or arising from the School of Medicine,” said Genemaras. “I then apply my scientific, entrepreneurial, commercialization and business background to help promote our capabilities, key opinion leaders and innovations to industry.”

Genemaras’ business acumen was on display at BIO2023 in Boston, a leading biotech conference that brought together more than 24,000 biotech and pharma experts from around the world. The School of Medicine sent a team of scientists and business leaders to build new partnerships between research and industry. Genemaras attended the Business Development Fundamentals Course prior to the conference to gain insight into how big pharma companies approach business development, and build a deeper network with he industry classmates. She then met with dozens of potential partners during the conference and wrote daily Tulane Medicine Digest updates containing overviews of  four of the hottest areas in biotech.

Zanewicz said the team was incredibly effective at BIO 2023 because of Genemaras’ efforts. “Kaylynn has a unique ability to translate science at all levels: She can take it down to lay terms for the public, as she often does with our tweets about scientific papers and the Tulane Medicine Digest – or she can keep it higher level, when interacting with fellow scientists and industry professionals. We are lucky to have her as a key part of our team, working to identify any way we can partner with the industry or investor community.”