Category: COVID-19


Making the invisible, visible.

A little over 14 years ago, I was daydreaming in the lab. I should have been processing cancer-prone mice and recording the location of their

Dr. Joshua Santarpia

Poppy Scientific Advisor

Dr. Joshua L. Santarpia is the Research Director for Chem/Bio programs at the National Strategic Research Institute. He is also associate professor of microbiology & pathology and program director for the biodefense and health security graduate programs at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Dr. Santarpia’s work is aimed at understanding and countering threats from biological organisms, especially those that pose a threat when dispersed in aerosols. He’s worked extensively on biological sensors for both the Department of Defense & Department of Homeland Security. Much of Dr. Santarpia’s current work involves understanding the factors related to aerosol/airborne transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
Dr. Santarpia has held past positions at Edgewood Chemical and Biological Center and Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. He was most recently a distinguished staff member at Sandia National Laboratories.
Dr. Santarpia is trained in aerosol physics and microbiology. His peer reviewed research focuses largely on the detection of biological aerosols in the environment.

Dr. Charles Chiu

Poppy Scientific Advisor

Dr. Charles Chiu, M.D./Ph.D. is a Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Dept. of Medicine, Infectious Diseases at University of California, San Francisco, Director of the UCSF-Abbott Viral Diagnostics and Discovery Center (VDDC), Associate Director of the UCSF Clinical Microbiology Laboratory, and an advisor to Poppy. He heads a translational research lab engaged in next-generation sequencing assay development for diagnosis of infectious diseases, pathogen discovery, bioinformatics software development, nanopore sequencing, and characterization of emerging infections. He has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and holds over 15 patents.

Dr. Michael Christian

Poppy Medical Advisor
Dr. Michael Christian, M.D. MSc Public Health, FRCPC is a veteran healthcare leader with 30 years experience in critical care, infectious diseases, military, aviation and pre-hospital medicine. Dr. Christian has been Chief Safety Officer for a large multi-site hospital system, Medical Director for Critical Care Response Teams, and Director for Health Agencies. Dr. Christian completed his MSc in Public Health the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and is a retired member of the Royal Canadian Air Force having served tours in Haiti and Afghanistan and continues to serve as a reserve specialist medical officer/flight surgeon. Dr. Christian has responded to many disasters including SARS, the 2010 Haiti earthquake and the London Bridge attack. He was also honored as one of the top 3 authors in the field of Disaster Medicine research between 2008 and 2017.

Dr. Christopher E. Mason

Weill Cornell Medicine
Poppy Advisor
Christopher is Associate Professor at Weill Cornell Medicine. His lab develops and deploys new biochemical and computational methods in functional genomics, and metagenomics. Dr. Mason has won awards from the NIH, the CDC and the WorldQuant Foundation. He was named as one of the “Brilliant Ten” Scientists by Popular Science, and featured as a TEDMED speaker. His work represents 150+ peer-reviewed articles and has been featured on the covers of Nature, Science or Nature Biotechnology. Dr. Mason completed his dual post-doctoral training at Yale Medical School in genetics and a fellowship at Yale Law School. He obtained his Ph.D. in Genetics from Yale University.

Elizabeth (EC) Caley

Co-Chief Executive Officer
An entrepreneur and experienced operator, Elizabeth Caley (EC) is co-CEO and co-founder of Poppy. Prior to co-founding Poppy, EC was an executive at Chan Zuckerberg and COO of Meta. Over the last 20 years, she’s held executive roles at global technology companies such as Microsoft, Hummingbird, and Firmex. Honored as one of the most inspiring women in STEM, EC is an active contributor to the Bay Area, Oxford, & Toronto technology communities as a mentor, advisor, and speaker. EC holds MBAs from the University of Toronto & University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, with multiple awards for leadership and academic achievement.

Sam Molyneux

Co-Chief Executive Officer

An entrepreneur and innovative scientist, Sam Molyneux is co-CEO and co-founder of Poppy. Prior to co-founding Poppy, Sam was an executive at Chan Zuckerberg, and CEO and co-founder of Meta. Sam is an experienced entrepreneur and scientist specializing in bringing mission-driven, science-forward ventures to market. Recently he’s been recognized as Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, and one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business. Sam’s research has been published in Nature Genetics, Science Translational Medicine, Cancer Cell and other leading journals, and he is a frequent speaker on the future of innovation, and science-based technology for good.

Daniela Bezdan

Head of Innovation

A scientist and innovator, Daniela Bezdan is Head of Innovation (former Chief Scientific Officer) and co-founder of Poppy. As one of the world’s foremost authorities on metagenomics, next generation sequencing and environmental microbiomes, Dani has established best-in-class protocols and led global projects understanding indoor spaces, from subways to the International Space Station. Dani’s research is published in leading journals, and she’s a member of Germany’s COVID-19 Task Force, co-chair of NASA GeneLab’s Microbiome group, and the former Executive Director of MetaSub. Daniela is frequently consulted by industry-leading science technology companies for her expertise.