Our board

Vision, values and strategy

Ian Hamilton - Chairman

Ian Hamilton joined the Biotangents board as Chairman in February 2018. He brings over 30 years of executive experience within the agribusiness sector.

Ian was one of the original members of the executive team at Aviagen, the world’s largest poultry breeding company, where he spent 15 years in various global positions. His current non-executive positions, in addition to Biotangents, are as Chairman of Vytelle, Horizon Proteins and Zantra and as a Non-Executive Advisor to Wheatsheaf Group and being He is currently Managing Director of GrowSafe Systems, and previously Ian was Chairman of Roslin Technologies and Cogent Breeding.


Ian holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Agriculture from the University of Edinburgh.

Alan Hale - CEO

Alan has over 35 years’ industrial experience in biotech and technology working in a range of commercial (large, SME and start-up), academic and public sector organisations. He started his career in big pharma before moving into biotechnology. He has directed Research and Development in life sciences, enabling technologies and energy sectors and in technology areas as diverse as synthetic biology, pharmaceuticals, genetics and text analytics.


Alan is experienced in developing new companies in the early stages and in raising finance. His breadth of experience in a range of industry sectors and types plus his hands-on operational knowledge of how to make an organisation work effectively, combines well with his experience working with entrepreneurs and early stage technologies. This expertise provides for a strong strategic focus in Biotangents and his clear vision, balanced with the understanding of how teams can deliver on the ground, is supported by his strong people skills.


Alan contributed in an advisory capacity to the development of Biotangents from its embryonic stage and formally joined the company as CEO in November 2016.

Lina Gasiūnaitė - Director of Science

Lina founded the company with Andy and now leads the R&D team developing Moduleic Sensing™, which she first conceptualised in 2016 and will be launched in 2019 in our first products. She also developed our revenue-generating Short Sequence Randomisation™ method as a tool to fulfil revenue-generating DNA assembly fee-for-service work for a leading synthetic biology company specialising in customised promoters. Lina completed her undergraduate studies in Molecular Biology at Vilnius University and holds an MSc degree in Biotechnology from the University of Edinburgh.

Dr Andy Hall-Ponselè - Director of Operations

Andy designed the revenue-generating Leapfrog Assembly™ technology on which the company was founded. He now works on the commercialisation aspects of Moduleic Sensing™ and operational matters within the business, and led the successful brucellosis collaborative grant application. Andy has been involved in DNA technology R&D since 2008 when, as a student under Professor Chris French, he led the University of Edinburgh team to a gold medal at the iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) competition. He holds a DPhil from the University of Oxford, where he used metabolic engineering approaches to provide new insights into the control of metabolism in plants.

Professor Steve Howell - Investor Director

Steve has over 20 years’ experience of commercialisation in the life sciences industry. Since founding Innova Partnerships in 2006, he has been instrumental in the creation of over a dozen biotechnology start-ups and fulfilled multiple successful exit strategies. This includes the successful negotiation of the exit of medtech company Innova Biosciences, which was acquired by SYGNIS AG for €11.5m in 2017.


Steve is a visiting Professor of Commercial Innovation at King’s College London, a non-executive director of Langford Veterinary Services at the University of Bristol and was previously Director of Business Development at Alere, a leader in rapid point of care diagnostics and now part of Abbott. Steve holds a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University of Leeds.

Professor Chris French - Scientific Adviser

Professor Chris French is the first member of our Scientific Advisory Board. He is Personal Chair of Microbial Biotechnology at the University of Edinburgh and has considerable experience planning and supervising research, with numerous high-impact publications on DNA assembly and biosensor development.

Chris has a history of advising companies within the life sciences and has overseen the University of Edinburgh’s entries in the iGEM competition since 2006. He is also a member of the Flowers Consortium, which was awarded a £6M EPSRC grant for the development of synthetic biology infrastructure for the UK.

David Glen - Corporate Advisor and Finance

David joined DC Consulting in 2008 having trained and qualified with an independent chartered accountancy firm in Broughty Ferry, Dundee. Now heading up DC’s Edinburgh office, David has a strong track record in supporting clients across a broad spectrum of assignments, including helping clients to become “investor ready” prior to guiding them through the raising of investment capital, incorporating equity, debt and grant funding. David brings this expertise to Biotangents, where he advises on corporate and financial strategy.

Copyright © 2019 Biotangents Limited. All rights reserved. 

Registered company number: SC495625. VAT Number: GB 219 8525 83.

Registered company and trading address: Douglas House, Pentlands Science Park, Bush Loan, Penicuik, Midlothian, Scotland EH26 0PZ.