Ryan Bethencourt

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Ryan Bethencourt
Ryan Bethencourt

(1979-03-18) March 18, 1979 (age 43)
Occupationbiohacker, venture partner

Ryan Bethencourt (March 18, 1979) is an American scientist, entrepreneur, and biohacker[1] best known for his work as co-founder and CEO of Wild Earth,[2] Partner at Babel Ventures[3] and cofounder and former Program Director at IndieBio, a biology accelerator and early stage seed fund.[4] Bethencourt was head of life sciences at the XPRIZE foundation,[5] a co-founder and CEO of Berkeley Biolabs, a biotech accelerator,[6] and Halpin Neurosciences, an ALS therapeutics-focused biotech company.[7] Bethencourt co-founded Counter Culture Labs, a citizen science nonprofit,[8] and Sudo Room, a hacker space based in downtown Oakland, California.[9]

Bethencourt is a vegan and has worked on the development of several sustainable and cruelty-free products.[10]

Early life[edit]

Bethencourt has worked over the last decade in the biopharmaceutical industry to partner on and develop novel drugs from first IND submission to FDA approval with many major biopharmas including Pfizer, AZ, J&J, Sanofi, Takeda, Amgen, Genentech, and other companies in the U.S., E.U., and Japan. He has also served as COO at Genescient Pharmaceuticals, a longevity focused biotech startup and CEO of Halpin Neurosciences, an ALS focused startup. Bethencourt’s work has been featured in Wired, TechCrunch, Forbes, the San Francisco Business Times, and other publications. He regularly speaks on biotech innovation and writes for Biocoder, an O’Reilly Media publication. He's also an author of Forbes, Techonomy and Huffington Post.

Since Bethencourt co-founded IndieBio in 2014, he and his team have funded 68 biotech startups, including companies building the post-animal bioeconomy: The EVERY Company, Memphis Meats, Gelzen, New Wave, and Pembient. He's also an advisor of The Good Food Institute.[11]


Bethencourt has a BSc degree in Biological Sciences (Molecular Genetics) from Warwick University in the United Kingdom. He also has a Masters in Bioscience Enterprise (MBE) from Cambridge University (2002 – 2003). This masters course was the first of its kind in the UK (launched in 2002) and it was a fusion of the MBA/Biotech courses and launched in partnership with Harvard and MIT. He has also been a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Candidate at the Center for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Edinburgh in 2003 working on stem cell differentiation. .[12]

Companies invested and co-founded[edit]

  • NERD Skincare
  • Gelzen
  • V-Sense Medical
  • Memphis Meats
  • Vali Nanomedical
  • Truust
  • Koniku
  • Girihlet
  • MYi
  • Circularis
  • New Wave Foods
  • Amino BioLabs
  • Gene and Cell Technologies


  • Berkeley ultrasound

Co Founded:

  • Sudo Room
  • Counter Culture Labs
  • Berkeley Biolabs
  • LAbLaunch
  • IndieBIo
  • Wild Earth

Global Forum 2015[edit]

Bethencourt joined the Global Forum 2015 as one of the speakers. The Global Forum on Research and Innovation for Health 2015, aimed to identify solutions to the world’s unmet health needs through research and innovation. The said forum was held on August 24–27, 2015 at Philippines International Convention Center(PICC), Metro Manila, Philippines. Bethencourt spoke about the topic of "Increasing public expenditure on research and innovation in emerging economies" and "Increasing investments for innovative andpractical solutions to priority healthcare".

Pioneers Asia 2016[edit]

Bethencourt was a part of Pioneers Asia 2016 on Mar 23, 2016 at Tokyo, Japan . Pioneers facilitates profound business relationships between tech innovators. The event was for tech entrepreneurs, investors, top executives, thought-leaders, and international media from Europe to Asia, Middle East, and beyond. Bethencourt spoke about BIOTECH FOR THE WORLD OF THE FUTURE. He also moderated the life sciences and agriculture topic on the said event.


  1. ^ "Move Over Hackers, Biohackers Are Here". Forbes. 15 March 2014.
  2. ^ Peters, Adele (2019-03-09). "This biotech startup is growing protein-rich vegan pet food in a lab". Fast Company. Retrieved 2019-03-17.
  3. ^ Kite-Powell, Jennifer. "See How Algae Could Change Our World". Forbes. Retrieved 2019-03-17.
  4. ^ "Biotech Accelerator IndieBio Bumps Funding To $250K Per Startup To Give Founders More Runway". TechCrunch. AOL. 12 May 2015.
  5. ^ "Citizen Scientists Accelerate Bio Progress". Techonomy. 27 June 2014.
  6. ^ Gewin, Virginia (2013). "Biotechnology: Independent streak". Nature. 499 (7459): 509–511. doi:10.1038/nj7459-509a. PMID 23894751.
  7. ^ ‘Biohackers’ go solo in quest to find cures
  8. ^ "Inside the Ethical Cheese Lab". East Bay Express. 2 July 2014.
  9. ^ "New hackerspace Berkeley BioLabs opens in southwest Berkeley - The Daily Californian". The Daily Californian. 28 January 2014.
  10. ^ Fox, Katrina (15 March 2018). "Why Wild Earth Cofounder Ryan Bethencourt Is Applying The Science Of 'Vegan Biohacking' To Pet Food". Forbes. Archived from the original on 26 March 2018. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
  11. ^ "Squarespace - Claim This Domain".
  12. ^ https://www.linkedin.com/in/bethencourt[self-published source]