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Fiona Nielsen

Founder, DNAdigest and Repositive

Fiona Nielsen is a bioinformatics scientist-turned entrepreneur. Having worked at Illumina developing tools for interpretation of next-generation sequencing data and analysing cancer genomes, Fiona realised the main bottleneck for genome interpretation and precision medicine is accessing the right data. Therefore, she decided to disrupt outdated practices with the aim of accelerating drug discovery. In 2013, Fiona founded DNAdigest as a charity to promote best practices for efficient and ethical data sharing, and in 2014, she co-founded Repositive to develop an online community platform and global exchange for genomic data. Fiona’s familiarity with the industry ensured that Repositive’s platforms would provide data access solutions while also respecting the industry need for privacy, data governance and IP protection. Repositive built the innovative Cancer Model Platform and international network of providers and biopharma partners to compile the world’s largest directory of cancer models. Early partners including AstraZeneca, Boehringer Ingelheim, XenTech and Shanghai LIDE Biotech has positioned Repositive as the go-to global marketplace to accelerate translational cancer research. Fiona features on the 2018 WISE100 list, an index of the UK’s 100 most inspiring and influential women in social enterprise, and she regularly speaks on invited panels on the subjects of genomics, impact entrepreneurship, and ethical data sharing.

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