In 2017, Neena joined Quark Venture and established the firm’s California office. Quark Venture has jointly established a new $500M global health sciences venture fund to invest globally in biotechnology and health sciences companies that are addressing unmet medical needs through innovations in drug development, medical devices, health IT, and emerging convergent technologies.
Previously, Neena was the Director of Strategic Partnerships at QB3, the California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences, an institute at the University of California made up of UCSF, UC Berkeley, and UC Santa Cruz. She worked to initiate new collaborations between external partners and QB3 scientists and QB3 startups. She also created the QB3 Collaborative Startups program to initiate collaborations between QB3 startups and industry partners, which grew to 7 partners in 3 years. She managed the firm's alliances with Calico and Pfizer, ran the pre-commercial $1M-per-year grant program, and worked with the firm’s venture fund, Mission Bay Capital. Neena was also the creator and Director of the primeUC program, a UC-wide startup competition and networking program in the life sciences, which garnered over 250 applications in the first year, and provided over $300K in prizes to the winners.
Prior to QB3, Neena served her Fellowship as an Associate in venture investment at Itochu Technology, the California office the Japanese trading company Itochu.
Education, Personal, and Fellowship
Neena earned her PhD in chemistry at the California Institute of Technology (CalTech), in Pasadena, California. Her research focused on elucidating the structure of an ABC Transporter, and her work was published in Science. While at CalTech, Neena was a recipient of the national P.E.O. Scholar Award, a Moore-Hufstedler Project Award, a DOW Career award, and was also a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award recipient.
Neena earned her undergraduate and master's degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and she serves on MIT’s Educational Council. She is also a member of the Board of the American Friends of the London School of Tropical Hygiene and Medicine.
Neena spends most of her time chasing around two small children. In her non-existent free time, she enjoys travel, reading, and photography.
Neena Kadaba is a member of Kauffman Fellows Class 13, and served her fellowship at Itochu Technology, Inc. under the mentorship of Shinzo Nakano.