Anuva was formed by a team with backgrounds in medicine, science and business. They shared a common goal to transform medicine by bringing the potential of Asia front and center for translational research into better treatments. 

There were multiple reasons to do this including the following: Asians make up most of the world’s diversity and population; they are, to date, minimally represented in medical research, equity demands this to be redressed and, perhaps most significantly, Asians represent a major opportunity to accelerate research, understanding and consequent drug discovery for the benefit of all.

The reason for this is that it is well recognized that discoveries are made in medicine by identifying what is different and using this knowledge to intervene. 

The human genome project has allowed the promise of genomics to start to become a reality. In understanding the biological software of DNA, we are provided with the code necessary for life. Significant discoveries have been made but they have not occurred anywhere near as fast as anyone hopes. In large part, this is because unraveling the key differences has been much harder than anticipated. By comparing and contrasting people from different backgrounds, we can much more rapidly tease out significant differences from the many inconsequential changes, especially if we understand the people we are studying. 

Anuva first determined the route most likely to yield answers and it was clear that India offered the greatest promise to initiate the endeavor. Despite having 1/5 of the world’s peoples, less than 2% of human genomics is represented by Indians. Yet, India has some of the greatest diversity of populations on the planet, resulting from a handful of common ancestral groups who evolved into relatively isolated groups because of a unique cultural history dating back over two thousand years.

Now, over 4000 distinct population groups possessing their own unique characteristics, are recognized within India. Combining the wide genetic stratification, distinct population characteristics and disease predispositions; together with a robust technical infrastructure and medical environment provides an extremely rich environment to investigate the different people’s and the diseases that some groups are more prone to than others. 

Anuva therefore began by establishing its lab and outreach program based in Mumbai as the center representing perhaps more of the country’s diversity than any other. This allowed us to reach out both North and South to start to understand the peoples of the country.

In addition, we established a bioinformatics core at the Wellcome genome campus in Cambridge England – home of the genome project and epicenter for genomic research alongside Boston USA where we also maintain a genetics presence amidst the largest academic genetic center in the world and home to the greatest number of pharmaceutical and biotech companies globally. 

Since our founding, we have established an extensive network across India, sequenced the largest population groups and uncovered novel population characteristics as well as unique traits that we are currently investigating and expanding upon. As this is happening, we are now taking this experience and knowledge and expanding beyond India further into Asia and the Middle East to represent a greater number of Asians with all the potential that they bring.

Dr. Jonathan Picker Chief Executive Office

Dr. Jonathan Picker is an affiliate faculty member and clinical geneticist at Boston's Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School.

With 25 years of experience in Pediatrics and Genetics, Dr. Picker specializes in the interface of clinical care and applied genetic and genomic research. Dr. Picker's research spans diagnostic tools in genetics to descriptive analysis of rare disorders to molecular neuroscience. He was the co-founder and Director of the first Pediatric Pharmacogenomic clinic in the USA; as well as Director of the Harvard Medical School Advanced Human Genetics Training Program Course.

Dr. Picker is the recipient of various prestigious awards, including the first Sidney R. Baer Jr. Prize for Mental health Research. He has authored numerous research papers involving informative cases, molecular biology, behavioral neuroscience, applied clinical genetic guidelines as well as invited reviews and chapters.

Dr. Picker holds a bachelor's degree of Medical Biology in Genetics, and an MBChB in Medicine from Aberdeen University, UK. He also holds an MS in Genetics and Biochemistry and a PhD in Molecular Biology from Newcastle University, UK.

Kushagra SharmaPresident & Board Member

Kushagra Sharma is a seasoned business leader with a career spanning entrepreneurship as well as general management, Kushagra has deep expertise in developing and executing business plans in start-ups as well as large corporations. He is responsible for the revenue growth of the business, strategic planning, and partnerships at Anuva.

Before joining Anuva, he was responsible for the strategy and project execution in launching 4G digital services for Reliance Jio in India. Kushagra has previously served in leadership roles in companies like British Telecom, MTS Sistema Shyam, Grail Research and Evalueserve.

He holds a bachelor's degree from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and an MBA from INSEAD, Fontainebleau.

Dr. Asmi ShahVice President of Data and Technology

Dr. Asmi Shah brings in her data science expertise in dealing with big data, managing and standardizing multidisciplinary large scale biological datasets in the field of drug discovery through genomics and phenomics. She is responsible for the research and development of end to end software products and workflows.

Before joining Anuva, she contributed to the research of drug discovery done with the use of high content/throughput screening on various zebrafish assays at University of Heidelberg in Germany and at Harvard Medical School, USA. She has also taken up various technical roles in product management and software R&D with different corporate industries such as Intel, Rambus and Inform Technologies in the USA and with data analytics startups in India.

Dr. Shah holds a bachelor’s degree from Saurashtra University, India, an MS from San Jose State University, USA and has pursued her PhD from University of Heidelberg, Germany under a Marie Curie fellowship.

Abhishek Kumar Chairman & Executive Director

Abhishek Kumar brings in extensive experience of acquiring, merging, carving out and repositioning companies globally. He founded Joulon - a KKR company, and has led large scale distributed businesses globally.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur and an MBA from Harvard Business School.