Board of Directors and Management

Michael Fitzgerald - Chair

Laurence A. Rubin, MD, FRCPC, FACP - CEO & Director

Scientific Advisory Board

Aruna Bansal MSc, PhD, CSta, CSci

Tim Spector, MB, MSc, MD, FRCP

Jack Ballantyne, PhD

Manfred Kayser, PhD

Barbara Prainsack, MSc, PhD

Board of Directors and Management

Michael Fitzgerald - Chair

Michael Fitzgerald is a founder of Identitas, as well as Cloverleaf Group. In 1995, he co-founded Gemini Genomics plc (Nasdaq: GMNI) and from 1995 to 2001, served as Chairman and representative of the lead shareholder until Gemini merged with Sequenom, Inc. (Nasdaq: SQNM) in September 2001.

Most recently, Mr. Fitzgerald co-founded and acts or acted as Chairman of each of Block Shield Corporation plc, Medcenter Holdings, Inc., Quadrant Technologies Limited and Zenergy Power plc and is a director of Clear Play International, Inc. and Roxro Pharma, Inc.

Mr. Fitzgerald also specializes in the structuring and financing of innovative technology and healthcare companies and in the provision of international banking and corporate legal services to clients in Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom. He has a Masters in Law and is admitted as a barrister in England and Wales, a barrister and solicitor in Victoria, Australia and a solicitor in New South Wales, Australia. He has authored numerous papers on company and banking law.

Laurence A. Rubin, MD, FRCPC, FACP - Chief Executive Officer & Director

Dr. Rubin brings to Identitas long standing academic and business expertise in genetic investigations and business development in genetic analysis.

Prior to founding Identitas, Dr. Rubin held executive positions in a number of biotech companies. As CEO and founder of Ellipsis Biotherapeutics, he guided the company’s development from a successful gene discovery focus to commercial high throughput SNP genotyping of ancestry and large scale project applications, in collaboration with DNAprint Genomics.

Dr. Rubin was also a founder and CEO of Ellipsis Neurotherapeutics, an early stage drug development enterprise commercializing a series of novel compounds for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. He oversaw the successful completion of early stage financing, intellectual property portfolio establishment and the company’s pre-clinical and phase 1 clinical trials development. He then managed the sale of the company to a publicly listed Canadian biotech company which has continued its development towards a human application.

Dr Rubin is also a Professor of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto and a clinical rheumatologist.


Aruna Bansal MSc, PhD, CStat, CSci

Dr. Bansal was formerly an Assistant Professor at the University of Utah (USA). There, she taught Genetic Epidemiology and Research Design and, in close collaboration with scientists at Myriad Genetics, she conducted linkage analysis of data from extended families with high disease-incidence. Dr. Bansal subsequently joined Gemini Genomics, where she analyzed data from twin-pairs to determine genetic variants underlying common disease.

Dr. Bansal worked for GlaxoSmithKline for seven years, in various roles of increasing responsibility. As Director of Genetic Analysis, she was responsible for an international team of statistical geneticists located in Europe and the USA.

In 2009, Dr. Bansal founded Acclarogen Ltd, a rapidly-successful consultancy company specializing in statistical genetics. Its clients include multinational pharmaceutical companies, smaller biotechnology companies and university research groups, located across Europe, North America and Australia.

Dr. Bansal is a UK Chartered Statistician and Chartered Scientist, with a BSc in mathematics (class I), MSc in statistics and PhD in statistical genetics.

Tim Spector, MB, MSc, MD, FRCP

Tim Spector is a Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at Kings College, London & Director of the TwinsUK Registry based at St Thomas’ Hospital, London.

He trained in rheumatology and epidemiology and moved into genetic epidemiology in 1993 when he founded the UK Twins Registry of 11,000 twins, which is one of the richest collections of genotypic and phenotypic information on twins worldwide. Its breadth of research has expanded to cover the genetics of a wide range of common complex traits many of which were previously thought to be mainly due to aging and environment. Most recently through GWAS studies his group have found over 300 novel gene loci in over 30 disease areas including osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, melanoma, baldness, and telomere length.

He has published over 500 research articles on common diseases and is an NHS NIHR Senior Investigator. He is Principal Investigator of the Wellcome Trust Muther study and of the multicentre EU Euroclot and Treat OA studies, and a partner in five others. He was awarded in 2009 an ERC Senior Investigator award to study epigenetics. He has written several books, focusing on osteoporosis and genetics for the scientific and public communities and presents regularly in the media.

Jack Ballantyne, PhD

Jack Ballantyne is a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Central Florida (UCF) and the Associate Director for Research at the National Center for Forensic Science in Orlando, Florida. He possesses a B.Sc. (with Honors) in Biochemistry from the University of Glasgow, Scotland, a M.Sc. in Forensic Science from the University of Strathclyde, Scotland and a PhD in Genetics from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, NY. His current duties include teaching and conducting research in forensic molecular genetics. He teaches a variety of forensic biology courses to baccalaureate and Masters level students in the Forensic Science Program and nucleic acid biochemistry to PhD students in the Biomolecular Sciences Program.

Prior to entering academia, he was a casework forensic scientist in Scotland, Hong Kong and New York where he proffered expert testimony in the criminal courts of these jurisdictions. He was the full time DNA technical leader in Suffolk County, New York and since then has served as a part-time consultant DNA technical leader for the States of Mississippi and Delaware, the City of Dallas and Sedgwick County, Kansas. Inter alia, he is the Chair of the New York State DNA Sub-committee, a regular visiting guest at the Scientific Working Group on DNA Analysis Methods (SWGDAM), a member of the DoD Quality Assurance Oversight Committee and a member of the World Trade Center Kinship and Data Analysis Panel (KADAP).

Manfred Kayser, PhD

Manfred Kayser is a Professor of Forensic Molecular Biology & Head of the Department of Genetic Identification at Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam.

He received his diploma in biology from Leipzig University, performed postgraduate research at Leiden University and Oxford University, and received his Doctorate in genetics with summa cum laude from Humboldt-University Berlin. After postdoctoral research at Pennsylvania State University, he was at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig; first as staff scientists in the Department of Evolutionary Genetics and later as Heisenberg Fellow of the German Research Council, before he moved to Rotterdam.

He has published over 200 research articles on forensic and anthropological genetics. In the forensic field, he is well known for his contributions to the introduction and further development of forensic Y-chromosome analysis, and for having established the field of Forensic DNA Phenotyping i.e., the prediction of appearance, ancestry, and age from DNA for investigative purposes.

Barbara Prainsack, MSc, PhD

Barbara Prainsack is a Professor at the Department of Global Health & Social Medicine King’s College London. She has published widely on regulatory, societal, and ethical dimensions of the biosciences, and in particular of DNA profiling and databasing for medical and forensic purposes. Her work featured in media such as BBC news, ABC National News Australia, Die Zeit, and Le Monde, and is regularly cited in policy documents. Barbara is a member of the Ethics Group of the UK National DNA Database and the Austrian National Bioethics Commission advising the federal government in Vienna.

Dr. Prainsack has published widely on regulatory, societal, and ethical dimensions of the biosciences, and in particular of DNA profiling and databasing for medical and forensic purposes. Her work featured in media such as BBC news, ABC National News Australia, Die Zeit, and Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, and is regularly cited in policy documents (most recently in the UK Human Genetics Commission’s report Nothing to hide, nothing to fear? Balancing individual rights and the public interest in the governance and use of the National DNA Database, 2009). Barbara will be the editor of the first comparative collection on the governance of forensic DNA databases (together with Richard Hindmarsh, Griffith University, Australia, publication date October 2010, Cambridge University Press).



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