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Zhiyong Yang PhD, Co-founder and CEO of Fzata, Inc. Dr. Yang received her PhD degree from University of Arizona and received postdoc training at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Yang is an expert on characterizing therapeutic antibodies with 10 peer-reviewed papers on C. diff. subject matter and is an inventor on the Fzata patent applications.  Dr. Yang's leadership brought FZata to “2017 Maryland Incubator Company of the Year, Best Life Sciences Company”, only two years after launch. Dr. Yang has succeeded in winning multi-millions in non-dilutive funding from highly competitive sources. She is the PI of an R01 project, three SBIR Phase I grants, one SBIR Fast-Track grant and multiple federal and state subcontracts.


Hanping Feng PhD, Co-Founder & Chief Scientific Officer of Fzata. Dr. Feng received his PhD degree from University of Arizona and received postdoc training at Harvard Medical School and currently works as a full Professor at the University of Maryland School of Dentistry. Dr. Feng is an internationally renowned expert in C. diff. host immune response and pathogenesis and is the lead inventor on key Fzata technology patents.  He has established several CDI and IBD animal models and generated multi-specific antitoxin antibodies and enteric delivery of therapeutic antibodies.


Jibin Zhao EMBA, Co-founder & Operational & Financial Consultant of Fzata. As a successful entrepreneur in China, Mr. Zhao launched Triowin Automation Machinery Co. Ltdin 1999 which IPO’ed in 2014. He launched Shanghai SZX Home Food in 2014. Mr. Zhao brings 20 years of broad experience in business and management as well as his talent in market development & risk control to Fzata.


Elizabeth Smith PhD, MBA, VP of Business Development at Fzata. Dr. Smith received her PhD and MBA from the University of Chicago. Dr. Smith has over 20 years’ experience in biotechnology corporate business development. As  Principal of SoMax Consulting, Dr. Smith has assisted over 50 biotech pre-revenue companies providing assistance in areas such as commercialization strategy, licensing & partnerships, and patent strategy. She worked for 5 years as Associate Director, Technology Search and Development at Celsion Corp. There she led the ThermoDox®+ MRgHIFU non-clinical program for metastatic bone pain palliation in partnership with Philips Healthcare. This was the first ever non-approved Drug-Device combination to receive phase II IND clearance from the FDA.  Before Celsion, she worked for 5 years in the University of Chicago technology transfer office where she managed out-licensing and start-ups efforts for over 30 patent portfolios from The Division of Biological Sciences.

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Leading Scientific Advisors

Dr. Ciaran Kelly, Professor at Harvard Medical School, Chief of the Herrman L. Blumgart Internal Medicine Firm, Director of the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dr. Kelly earned his MD degree from Trinity College in Dublin and is the author of more than 150 clinical and basic research book chapters, invited reviews, and peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Kelly is a world-renowned expert in C. diff. basic and clinical research, and has led several clinical trials, including the trials of Merck’s antibody for CDI and a recently completed clinical trial studying the effects of S. boulardii on gut microbiota. 

Dr. Rakesh Dixit, the CEO and President of Bionavigen, a company dedicated to developing, consulting and advising the development of highly innovative biotherapeutics. Dr. Dixit has more than 30 years of R&D biopharmaceutical experience with Merck, Johnson and Johnson, and AstraZeneca. He not only was a key player in the development of MEDI3902, a bivalent, bi-specific human immunoglobulin G1κ monoclonal antibody for the prevention of nosocomial P. aeruginosa pneumonia, but also has been a Global Vice President, R&D with AstraZeneca-Medimmune for 13 years.  

Business Advisors

Dr. Darryl Carter, Chief Scientific Officer of Otter Immuno-oncology, Co-founder of Nora Therapeutics and Ventures Adviser and Entrepreneur-in-Residence for University of Maryland Ventures-UMB. Dr. Carter received his MD degree from University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and is sole inventor on 14 issued patents. Dr. Carter served as a faculty at John Hopkins before launching Nora in 2008. He not only led the research program, but also helped Nora raise $25 million in Series A financing, and $28 million in follow-on rounds.

Gianna Arnold, Equity partner and vice chair of Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP, and CEO of NuMoon Technologies, LLC. Gianna is the host of Emerging Company Round Tables which has nurtured numerous Maryland Startups, including FZata, Inc. Mrs. Arnold was named “TRAILBLAZER” by Women in BIO in 2014 and one of Maryland’s top 100 women in 2016. With her unique experience as a lawyer, scientist, entrepreneur and as a corporate executive, she gives priceless advice, helping to enhance company value and strategic alliances.

Board of Directors

Dr. Zhiyong Yang, Fzata Founder and CEO

Dr. Hanping Feng, Fzata Founder and CSO

Mr. Jibin Zhao

Dr. Haipeng Cheng, Senior Investment Director at Sangel  

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