February 2017 Spotlighted Entrepreneur – Robert Ivarie

The research efforts of Robert Ivarie, emeritus professor of genetics, have led to 19 issued patents and one pending patent application. Ivarie has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Inventor of the Year at the University of Georgia, and a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. In 1996, Ivarie co-founded AviGenics, which subsequently was known as Synageva, a biotechnology startup company genetically engineering chickens to function as “bioreactors” for the efficient production of therapeutic proteins. Synageva was later acquired by Alexion for over $8 billion, and Kanuma, a drug based on Ivarie’s technology, is now on the market in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.