Industry News: Serial Inventor, Dr. Milton Lee, and Serial Entrepreneur, Glen Mella, Join Forces to Form Axcend and Revolutionize the Liquid Chromatography Market

22 Feb 2018

After decades of breakthrough work in a variety of analytical techniques utilizing capillary chromatography, Dr. Milton Lee has joined forces with Glen Mella (a long-time serial entrepreneur and successful venture-backed business executive) to form Axcend — a company dedicated to revolutionizing the liquid chromatography marketplace.
Mella will serve as Chief Executive Officer of Axcend, while Dr. Lee will serve as its Chief Science Officer. Both are Axcend Co-Founders.
For the past several years, Dr. Lee has led a research team at Brigham Young University (BYU) to develop the world’s first truly mobile liquid chromatograph. Those development efforts have matured, the technology has been licensed from BYU, initial funding has been secured, and Axcend will unveil its first product in late February at Pittcon 2018 — the world’s leading conference/exposition for laboratory science.
“Those familiar with Milt Lee recognize his vision for innovation in the analytical chemistry industry,” Mella said. “Being able to join Dr. Lee and help lead the Axcend team as we disrupt the liquid chromatography market with the first truly mobile device in this space was an opportunity I could not pass up. I’m optimistic that the road ahead is going to be very exciting for us.”
About Dr. Milton Lee
Known primarily for his work in capillary chromatography and mass spectrometry, Dr. Lee was recognized in 2016 with a Lifetime Achievement Award from LCGC Magazine, in part because of his prior invention and commercialization of

  • Capillary supercritical fluid chromatography,
  • Atmospheric pressure ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry, and
  • Hand-portable gas chromatography–toroidal ion-trap mass spectrometry.

He has been an analytical chemistry professor at BYU for over 35 years, where he has served as the H. Tracy Hall Professor of Chemistry since 1985. Dr. Lee conducted post-doctoral research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology after receiving his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from Indiana University and his bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from the University of Utah. He has authored nearly 600 journal publications.
“Very few non-chemists have the ability to quickly come up-to-speed with something as technical as liquid chromatography,” Dr. Lee said. “However, not only did Glen grasp the importance and nuances of our new invention very fast, he quickly landed the funding we needed to launch Axcend. I’m confident this is going to be a prosperous and enjoyable adventure together.”
About Glen Mella
Glen Mella has held a variety of C-Level, Board and senior executive positions for several venture capital backed companies, including President and COO of Control4; SVP of Marketing & Sales for Triton PCS; Founder & CEO of Found, Inc.; and Co-Founder and Board Member of Cypher. Glen began his career in Consumer Packaged Goods at Frito-Lay and Dial, and later joined $500 million WordPerfect where he was its VP of Marketing and General Manager through its sale to Novell and Corel. Mella received his MBA from Northwestern University and his bachelor’s degree from BYU.
About Axcend
Axcend is a provider of innovative, compact nanoflow liquid chromatography (LC) systems that deliver dramatic improvements in portability, ease of operation, rapid and convenient deployment, and coupling to other analytical systems (such as mass spectrometry).