Oaklander Naveen Jain may have stumbled on a groundbreaking idea: Anyone can be a superhero. Because instead of super-speed or impossible strength, these heroes can beat the deadliest virus on planet Earth. HIV controllers, the 1 in 300 people who have a natural immunity to HIV, are the closest we’ll get to comic books, Naveen says. With The Immunity Project, a biomedical startup, he wants to give that “biological superpower” to the world, using controller genes to make a free, effective HIV vaccine.

Naveen co-founded The Immunity Project with Dr. Reid Rubsamen, an anesthesiologist and founder of the drug delivery company Flow Pharma, who was working in the operation room the day Naveen’s daughter was born. “It’s pretty easy to remember that day,” Naveen laughs. Rubsamen introduced Naveen to the idea of HIV controllers, did all the lab work, and then  brainstormed with him how to bring the results from Petri dishes to patients.

Read more at Live Work Oakland.

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