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Michael Tarasev, COO & CSO

Michael Tarasev, COO & CSO

Michael Tarasev founded Blaze in 2006, and is a co-inventor of its core technologies. He currently serves as both CSO and COO – combining technology discovery work and laboratory supervision with budgeting, customer acquisition, and operations management.

Michael attended St. Petersburg University in Russia and graduated with a BS and MS in Physics, with his master’s thesis focusing on determination of ultra-low IR absorbance in chalcogenide glasses. He received his Doctorate in Optics/Biophysics from the Vavilov State Optical Institute for his work aimed at elucidation of photochemically-induced effects in human blood and blood components. He was also involved in development of optics-based medical devices for various applications – diagnostic, therapeutic and surgical.

Michael’s postdoctoral research in biochemistry and molecular biology was conducted first at Queens University in Kingston, Canada, and later at the University of Michigan School of Medicine in Ann Arbor, MI. From 2002 to 2010, he worked as a Research Associate for the UM Department of Biochemistry, where he investigated mechanisms of enzyme catalysis using a variety of experimental techniques including all types of spectroscopy, crystallography and molecular biology. 

Michael holds an MBA from the UM Ross School of Business, specializing in early-stage financing and entrepreneurship. He has also held part-time positions with the UM Technology Transfer Office, and Venture Investors, with responsibilities including deal sourcing, opportunity screens and due diligence.

Michael was selected by Corp! magazine as Entrepreneur of the Year in 2014. He holds five issued patents, authored over 20 peer-reviewed papers, and made over 30 presentations at national and international conferences.