Christalyn joined Flagship Pioneering as an associate after completing the firm’s Fellows Program in 2018. At Flagship, she works as part of a team of creative and entrepreneurial scientists to develop Flagship’s first-in-category ventures.
Prior to joining Flagship, Christalyn completed her graduate work in the laboratory of Professor Jeffrey Fredberg at Harvard University. Christalyn’s Ph.D. research focused on applying concepts from soft matter physics to understanding the collective behavior of epithelial sheets within the context of respiratory disease. She identified a phenomenon of viral-induced cellular migration and investigated the implications of this discovery for identifying the genesis of asthma and creating therapeutics to prevent the development and progression of the disease. For her paradigm-shifting breakthroughs, she was selected as a Harvard Horizons Scholar for 2017, one of eight graduate students chosen from across the university for groundbreaking research. She has garnered a number of awards for her presentations and research, including the Ruth and William Silen Oral Presentation Award at the NESS, the Gordon Research Conference travel award and the American Thoracic Society training award.
Christalyn received a Ph.D. in biological sciences from Harvard University and a B.A. in biology from the University of North Texas. During her Ph.D., Christalyn led a team of researchers in the Harvard President’s Innovation Challenge to develop early, cell-based diagnostics for children with asthma. In conjunction with the outreach department of the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Christalyn organized science demonstrations and tutorials for local schools and field trips to Harvard’s SEAS labs. Christalyn is a regular speaker and mentor for the Harvard Medical School Biomedical Science Career Program and is currently an organizer for their annual conference, working to recruit and retain women and minority candidates in biological sciences.