2017 Massachusetts Life Sciences Speaker Bios

KEYNOTES:

Greg L. Verdine, PhD

Erving Professor of Chemistry, Harvard University and Harvard Medical School

Gregory Verdine is a pioneer in the field of chemical biology, a serial biotech entrepreneur and a life science venture capitalist. In an independent academic career at Harvard University and Harvard Medical School spanning nearly 3 decades, he has elucidated the molecular mechanism of epigenetic DNA methylation and the pathways by which certain genotoxic forms of DNA damage are surveilled in and eradicated from the genome. He is a leading figure in the field of new therapeutic modalities, and has developed a new class of therapeutics termed stapled peptides, which are currently in clinical development and have received much attention for their ability to drug targets previously considered “undruggable”. Dr. Verdine is Erving Professor of Chemistry in the Departments of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Chemistry and Chemical Biology, and Molecular and Cellular Biology.
Dr. Verdine has made important contributions in the translation of bench science to the bedside. He has founded or co-founded a number of successful biotechnology companies, including Enanta Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq ENTA), Gloucester Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Celgene), Tokai Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq TKAI), WaVe Life Sciences (Nasdaq WVE), Eleven Biotherapeutics (Nasdaq EBIO), Warp Drive Bio, Aileron Therapeutics, and FogPharma. To date, these companies have succeeded in gaining FDA approval for two drugs, romidepsin (Gloucester/Celgene) and paritaprevir (Enanta/AbbVie). He has also worked in the venture capital industry as a Venture Partner with Apple Tree Partners, Third Rock Ventures, and WuXi Healthcare Ventures, and as a Special Advisor to Texas Pacific Group. He co-founded and served as the founding President of the non-profit Gloucester Marine Genomics Institute and Gloucester Biotechnology Academy, for which he continues to serve as Director.
Dr. Verdine is Chairman of the Board of Directors of WaVe Life Sciences, and is a Director of Warp Drive Bio, for which he also Chairs the company’s Scientific Advisory Board.   He is currently President and CEO of FogPharma, a biotechnology company focused on a transformative drug discovery platform based on Cell-Penetrating Miniproteins as well as LifeMine, the first biotechnology company exploiting the unique ability of fungi to produce powerful drugs optimized through billions of years of evolution, and deploying these molecules for the treatment of intractable human diseases via novel biological mechanisms. Dr. Verdine serves on the Board of Scientific Consultants of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Research Institute and on the Board of Scientific Advisors of the National Cancer Institute.
Dr. Verdine holds a PhD in chemistry from Columbia University, a B.S. in chemistry from St. Joseph’s University, and served as an NIH postdoctoral fellow in molecular biology at MIT and Harvard Medical School. He has won numerous prestigious awards, including most recently the AACR Award for Excellence in Chemistry in Cancer Research, and the Nobel Laureate Signature Award.

 

Donald E. Ingber

Founding Director, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University

Donald E. Ingber, M.D., Ph.D., is the Founding Director of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, the Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and the Vascular Biology Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, and Professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He received his B.A., M.A., M.Phil., M.D. and Ph.D. from Yale University.

Ingber is a pioneer in the field of biologically inspired engineering, and at the Wyss Institute, he currently leads a multifaceted effort to develop breakthrough bioinspired technologies to advance healthcare and to improve sustainability. His work has led to major advances in mechanobiology, tumor angiogenesis, tissue engineering, systems biology, nanobiotechnology and translational medicine. Through his work, Ingber also has helped to break down boundaries between science, art and design.

Ingber has authored more than 425 publications and 150 patents, founded 5 companies, and been a guest speaker at more than 475 events internationally. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, National Academy of Inventors, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was named one of the Top 20 Translational Researchers world-wide in 2012 (Nature Biotechnology), a Leading Global Thinker of 2015 (Foreign Policy magazine), and has received numerous other honors in a broad range of disciplines, including the Robert A. Pritzker Award and the Shu Chien Award (Biomedical Engineering Society), the Rous Whipple Award (American Society for Investigative Pathology), the Lifetime Achievement Award (Society of In Vitro Biology), the Leading Edge Award (Society of Toxicology), Founders Award (Biophysical Society) and the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Innovator Award.

Some of Ingber’s most recently developed technologies include an anticoagulant surface coating for medical devices that replaces the need for dangerous blood-thinning drugs; a dialysis-like sepsis therapeutic device that clears blood of pathogens and inflammatory toxins; a shear stress-activated nanotherapeutic that targets clot-busting drugs to sites of vascular occlusion; and Human Organs-on-Chips created with microchip manufacturing methods and lined by living human cells, which are being used to replace animal testing as a more accurate and affordable in vitro platform for drug development and personalized medicine. In 2015, Ingber’s Organs-on-Chips technology was named Design of the Year by the London Design Museum and was also acquired by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City for its permanent design collection. His Organs-on-Chips were also named one of the Top 10 Emerging Technologies of 2016 by the World Economic Forum.

PANELISTS:

Anil Achyuta
Director of Advanced Research, L’Oreal

Anil Achyuta is an impact-driven professional with expertise at the interface of engineering, biology, and business. Anil is currently the Director of Advanced Research at L’Oreal, where he looks for disruptive start-ups in the beauty, materials science, dermatology, and medical aesthetics space. Anil also has collaborations with academics, dermatologists, and key opinion leaders who are changing the landscape of global beauty arena from the Boston area.
Previously, Anil advised GlaxoSmithKline’s (GSK) Bioelectronics R&D group and their Venture Arm – Action Potential Ventures (APVC) as their Associate Director. With the R&D group, Anil helped identify disease targets and key opinion leaders to validate efficacy of innovative devices in pre-clinical animal models and invested in ~$3M in ongoing proof-of-concept projects. On the Venture side, Anil managed deal flow, performed early-stage screens, technology analysis, and due diligences for APVC, which helped APVC’s Partners successfully launch 1 start-up and shape future investments.
Anil also created, led, and launched GSK’s $1M Innovation Challenge, an open global competition that aims at creating a wireless implantable platform device for mapping disease-related neural circuits in the peripheral nervous system. In this particular role, Anil worked with GSK’s legal, business development, marketing, R&D team, and industry leaders to compile the scientific and legal criteria for start-ups to compete and win the challenge. Anil presented the competitive landscape, strategy, and the mechanics of this Innovation Challenge to GSK’s executives to get a unanimous buy-in. The Innovation Challenge also catalyzed strategic collaborations between GSK, US Government agencies, and Fortune 500 companies and was designed to closely complement President Obama’s BRAIN Initiative (NIH SPARC $250M investment, and DARPA ElectRx $79M investment).
Anil previously worked at Draper Laboratory as an R&D Leader and Business Development Executive managing over $5M projects spanning lab-on-a-chip, tissue engineering, and implantable devices. In lab-on-a-chip devices arena, Anil has led the liver and brain-on-a-chip concepts, where his team has shown efficient malarial infections inside the liver chip (Gates foundation funded project). With the brain chip, Anil’s team has shown the ability to mimic stroke-like conditions (NIH funded). On the implanted device end, Anil’s team made one of the smallest electrode peripheral nerve interfaces to record and stimulates signals from sub-100 micron autonomic nerves, which is in early research stage. For his technical and business achievements, Anil won the Outstanding Contributor of the Year award at Draper for three consecutive years in a row. Anil was also named “Neuroengineering Contributor of the Year” in 2012 by Lab-on-a-chip, a top microdevice engineering journal.
Prior to GSK and Draper, Anil spent over 2 years at an MIT start-up called GVD Corporation in Cambridge, MA. At GVD, Anil invented a new silicone polymer product line, designed manufacturing processes that would increase the efficiency of this process to reduce COGS and this product (Exilis) is now in sales.
Anil maintains an active involvement with the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Boston area. Through L’Oreal, Anil works actively with MassChallenge to identify and mentor early-stage start-ups.


Viktor Adalsteinsson

Group Leader, Broad Institute

Viktor Adalsteinsson is a Group Leader at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, where he is leading the Blood Biopsy Team, a multi-institutional collaboration to profile cancer genomes directly from blood samples. The Blood Biopsy Team includes scientists, engineers, oncologists, and computational biologists spanning his lab and other labs at Broad, MIT, Dana-Farber, MGH, and beyond. The goal of their research is to identify mechanisms of response and resistance to therapy, enable routine monitoring of patients with cancer, and someday, provide a mechanism for early detection of cancer. Please see WBUR for recent coverage of their work.
Adalsteinsson holds a PhD in Chemical Engineering from MIT (laboratory of J. Christopher Love) where he developed novel approaches for functional and genomic profiling of single cells in cancer. Adalsteinsson joined the Broad Institute as a Research Affiliate during his doctoral studies at MIT and was subsequently tapped to lead the Blood Biopsy Team.

 

Edward Berger
Policy, Reimbursement and Strategy Counsel for the Life Sciences

A senior healthcare executive with more than 30 years of experience in life science and medical technology reimbursement analysis, planning and advocacy, Ed Berger founded Larchmont Strategic Advisors in 2005 to help early stage companies deal effectively with the strategic challenges and opportunities posed by the rapidly evolving healthcare regulatory and policy environment.  Building upon the knowledge and experience gained as a member of the management teams of such companies as Fresenius Medical Care, Thermo Cardiosystems, and ABIOMED, Dr. Berger has provided reimbursement analysis and strategy development consultation to a variety of clients developing new technologies in fields including mechanical circulatory support, orthopedics, neural monitoring and neuromodulation, gastrointestinal surgery, severe pulmonary dysfunction, nuclear medicine, diagnostic imaging, clinical laboratory testing, and personalized medicine. In addition to reimbursement-related services and public policy analysis and advocacy, his areas of expertise include media relations, investor relations, research ethics and patient protection, and corporate compliance programs.

Carl Berke

Partner, Partners HealthCare Innovation Fund

Carl is a Partner at Partners HealthCare Innovation Fund in Boston, investing in new biomedical technologies emerging from Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham & Womens Hospital. His career has spanned over 25 years in the practice and management of innovation to bring new technologies from lab to market.

As a bench scientist and R&D director, he worked at Polaroid Corporation and Hygeia Sciences in the development of photographic and clinical products – he is an inventor on 6 US patents. He served as a Partner at Integral/Analysis Group, a management consultancy focused on innovation and growth strategy. He has been an active private equity investor as a member of Angel Healthcare Investors LLC and is a founding director of Mass Medical Angels LLC. He has served on the boards of Quosa [literature management software], Kasalis [robotics], Annovation [novel anesthetics], Combinent [drug delivery], Sebacia [acne treatment], Infobionic [cardiac monitoring], QPID Health [bioinformatics], LifeImage [diagnostic image sharing], Syntimmune [autoimmune therapy] and the Sudanese Education Fund [philanthropy].

Carl holds an AB degree from Cornell University and received his PhD in Organic Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. He also holds an appointment as Lecturer in the Biomedical Enterprise Program in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.

William Bonificio
VP , Shumway Capital

William Bonificio is a VP at Shumway Capital. As part of his position at Shumway, William is responsible for company creation (specifically drug creation/ideation) along with public and private investing. Prior to his role at Shumway Capital, William was an Associate at RA Capital Management and a VentureLabs Fellow at Flagship Ventures.  He earned his Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Harvard University’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. During the course of his research he worked on multiple microbiology projects and eventually went on to be Co-Founder and Co-CEO of The American Microbiome Institute.

Source: His email to Tatiana and the American microbiome Institute webpage: http://www.microbiomeinstitute.org/aboutus/

Lynn Bry
Director of the Center for Metagenomics, Brigham & Womens Hospital

Dr. Bry is a Co-Investigator at the Partners Biobank, which is consenting patients at two Partners Healthcare institutions, BWH and MGH, to enable studies furthering biomarker development and validation for personalized medicine. She is an Assistant Professor of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and an Associate Medical Director in the Department of Pathology at BWH. She also directs the Crimson Project that has developed IT tools and infrastructure to support high-throughput and sample collection that occurs in a cost-effective and IRB-compliant manner. Working with i2b2 (Informatics for Integrating Biology with the Bedside), an NIH-funded National Center for Biomedical Computing, Crimson has enabled many large-scale genomic studies by supplying tens of thousands of phenotyped samples at a fraction of the costs commonly incurred to obtain adequate materials.

Dr. Bry is a Board-certified pathologist and specializes in clinical laboratory testing in molecular diagnostics, microbiology and immunology. She routinely works with research groups to develop novel markers into diagnostic assays that can be run on platforms used in clinical laboratories. She also maintains an NIH-funded research laboratory, studying host-pathogen-commensal interactions in the gut.

Brian Cain
Regional Director of East Coast Sales & Business Development, Aragen Bioscience
Brian Cain is currently responsible for overseeing business development-related activities, as well as, sales & client relationship activities on the East Coast for Aragen Bioscience (a GVK BIO Company).

Before joining Aragen Bioscience, Brian spent a year & 9 months at ACD (Advanced Cell Diagnostics) developing business relationships & creating new opportunities for selling Products & Services related to ACD’s RNAscope technology platform in the New England territory. Before joining ACD, Brian spent five and a half years at Blue Sky BioServices in Worcester, MA where he was primarily responsible for managing BioServices customer relationships & developing sales strategies for new services & products. Just prior to joining Blue Sky, Brian also spent six years at the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, Inc. (NIBRI) in Cambridge, MA, working in a variety of roles within the Novartis Oncology Department which included assay development, focused library screening and global operations. Eventually Brian joined Novartis’ Strategic External Resourcing group where he was responsible for global biology outsourcing. Prior to that, he spent two years as an Assay Development scientist at Arradial, Inc. where he oversaw the development, validation & miniaturization of various kinase & phosphatase assays on a novel liquid-handling platform.

Brian earned a Ph.D. in Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics from the Tufts University School of Medicine where he studied the processing of neuronal precursor proteins in the brain, as well as, the convertases that cleaved those proteins into smaller bioactive peptides

 


Lily Cortese

Director, Transactions & Business Analytics, J&J Innovation Cente

Lily Cortese is Director, Transactions & Business Analytics at the Johnson & Johnson Boston Innovation Center. J&J Innovation focuses on accelerating early innovation and enhancing opportunities for collaboration and investment across Johnson & Johnson’s global healthcare businesses. The innovation centers in Boston, London, California, and Shanghai provide scientists, entrepreneurs and emerging companies focused on early-stage opportunities one-stop access to science and technology experts. Lily is part of a team of local deal-making experts with the flexibility to adapt deal structures to match early-stage opportunities and establish novel collaborations to accelerate development of innovations to solve unmet medical needs.
As Director, Transactions & Business Analytics, Lily has responsibility for leading and executing transactions across all three sectors, pharma, med devices and consumer. She manages all aspects of the deal process including developing value-creating deal structures, leading term sheet discussions and contract negotiations while simultaneously driving the business case development and approval process.
Lily recently to Boston from the UK where she was based at the J&J Innovation Centre in London for four years. During that time, she worked as Director, Strategy and Operations, was a non-executive Director for the Innovation Forum and completed her MBA at the University of Cambridge.

 

 

Nina Dudnik
Founder of Seeding Labs

Dr. Nina Dudnik is on a mission to ensure that talented scientists across the world have the tools, training and network to pursue life-changing science. Trained as a molecular biologist with a PhD from Harvard University, Dr. Dudnik has worked in research labs in the US, Africa and the Middle East. As the founder of Seeding Labs, she has engaged over 100 private sector partners to provide the equivalent of more than $15 million in laboratory equipment and scientific training to scientists at 47 universities in 27 countries. Through strategic partnerships, Seeding Labs has provided employee engagement opportunities and new CSR and access to medicines initiatives for the private sector, while providing scientists around the world resources they have used to identify novel drug molecules, develop and patent agricultural technologies, train tens of thousands of students and improve the financial sustainability of their research programs.
Dr. Dudnik has received numerous awards for this work including the 2014 John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award and Scientific American’s 100 Most Influential People in Biotech 2015. Her writing and the work of Seeding Labs have been featured in a range of publications including the Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, The Times of India and The Kenyan Standard.

 

Evan Ehrenberg
CEO, Clara

Evan started college at the age of 11, graduating from UC Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science with an emphasis in computational modeling. He was MIT’s youngest ever Ph.D. student in the department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, and is now graduating with his doctoral degree in computational neuroscience. For the last four years of his Ph.D., Evan collaborated with his co-founder Sol Chen on research topics ranging from computer vision to experimental neuroscience. Previously, Evan did an internship at Palantir as a forward deployed engineer and product manager.

Jonathan Freeman
Chief Business Officer, Vedanta

Jonathan Freeman is Vedanta’s Chief Business Officer. An industry veteran, Jonathan joined Vedanta following a career spanning two decades in leading roles within Merck KGaA, Baxter and Serono. Within Merck, Jonathan served as Senior Vice President, Head of Strategy Development and Portfolio Management, overseeing asset valuation, capital allocation, and strategy development guiding investment and corporate shifts resulting in, amongst other things, the launch of Bavencio in collaboration with Pfizer. Prior to Merck, Jonathan was Director of European M&A for Baxter, where he defined and executed external growth strategy, established commercial and manufacturing joint ventures, constructed, financed, and executed strategic business models and alliances working alongside multinational investment groups such as TPG and Goldman Sachs. During his time with Serono, Jonathan was Director of Corporate and Business Development, leading licensing, alliance management, the management of private equity relationships, and participating broadly in Corporate M&A. Jonathan was a former Vice President of the Swiss Pharma Licensing Group (now SwissHLG), representative to the International Pharma Society, a faculty member of the European Centre for Pharmaceutical Medicine (ECPM), and an Editor of the Business Development & Licensing Journal. Jonathan holds a First Class Honours BA in Biochemistry and an MA from Cambridge University, a Ph.D. in Molecular Pharmacology from the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now CRUK) at the Edinburgh University Medical School, and an MBA from Geneva and Webster, St Louis Universities. Prior to entering the industry, Jonathan held assistant professor and post-doctoral positions in cancer research, gene therapy and virology in several leading academic settings including the Swiss Institute for Cancer Research (ISREC) and the Geneva Medical School (CMU) obtaining funding from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) and the Royal Society of London.

 

Joseph Gormley
CTO, IOMICS Corporation

Prior to launching IOMICS, J. Gormley was an industry consultant with twenty years experience developing software for both research and clinical care. His software tools and platforms have been deployed across multiple disciplines including in silico biology, systems toxicology, neuroscience, cancer research, and emergency care. He is a past recipient of a JAF Innovation Grant to explore commercialization of Computational Systems Biology, has presented original engineering work on cancer patient stratification to the IBM Watson Application Team, and has been an invited speaker in QSAR/QSPR to Harvard University’s Center for Integrated Mesoscale Architectures. His primary interests include the use of machine learning and multiscale biochemical data in the development of feature rich software tools for rational chemical design and automated identification of computable phenotypes in precision medicine. He is the lead architect on the FUSION Analytics Platform, a cloud-based software system for predictive analytics and rapid prototyping of advanced decision models for the biochemical and health sciences. He obtained a B.Sc in Computer Science from University of Maryland in 1985 and an ALM in Biology from Harvard University in 2001.

 

Luba Greenwood
Vice President, Global Mergers & Acquisitions and Business Development, Head of Roche Diagnostics Partnering Hub

Luba Greenwood is a Vice President of Global Mergers & Acquisitions and Business Development at F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Diagnostics.  She is also heading the Roche Diagnostics Partnering Hub for the East Coast. She brings over pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry experience and expertise in building and advising innovative technology companies and providing strategic counsel to global corporations. Her career has spanned leadership roles in venture capital, business development, M&A, law, consulting, and operations.  Luba has recently served as a Venture Partner at Colt Ventures, and led Business Development and Strategy at a Flagship VenturesLabs company.  Prior to that, Luba served as a Senior Mergers & Acquisitions Counsel at Pfizer Inc.  Luba began her career practicing law at a leading national law firm, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, where she represented large multinational corporations, start-ups, and private equity and venture capital funds in biotechnology, high technology, energy, and finance industries in securities, intellectual property, regulatory, and litigation matters.

Luba is a professor at Boston University School of Management where she teaches Business Law, and Boston University Law School where she teaches a course on the Life Sciences. Luba serves on the board of the Longwood Symphony Orchestra, is a Co-chair of MassBio’s Entrepreneur’s University, mentor for the MIT 100K Entrepreneurship Competition, a judge for MassChallenge and the Young Entrepreneurs Initiative, and on a Steering Committee of the Boston Bar Association. In 2014, she received the Science Club for Girls Catalyst Award for her commitment to fostering women talent and advocating for women in science and technology.

Ali Haghighi-Mood
President & CEO, Sirona Medical Technologies Inc.
Ali is the president and CEO of Sirona Medical Technologies, an early stage device company developing a mapping and ablation catheter for the treatment of cardiac arrhythmias.  Ali has over 20 years of technical and operational experience in medical device space, including research & development, operations and general management.
Prior to Sirona Medical Technologies, Ali was the President and CEO of Cambridge Heart, a cardiac diagnostics company and developer of the first non-invasive technology for the assessment of risk for sudden cardiac arrest approved by FDA. He holds a BS and MS degree in Electrical Engineering from University of Tehran and a PhD degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Sussex, UK. He also holds an appointment as Lecturer in the Institute for Medical Engineering & Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

John Hallinan
Chief Business Officer, MassBio

John Hallinan joined MassBio in 2012 as the Chief Business Officer and oversees the MassBio Innovation Services programs.
John’s fiscal experience in the life sciences and software industries reflect positions of increasing responsibility across a broad range of strategic and operational disciplines. His background encompasses venture financings, corporate development, technology licensing, and mergers and acquisitions.
Prior to MassBio, John was the Chief Financial Officer at Cytel, a leader in the design and implementation of adaptive clinical trials, and he had been active with MassBio—serving on the Economic Development Advisory Group and as co-chair of the Finance Committee & Entrepreneur’s University.
Before joining Cytel, John served as CFO at Signet Laboratories, a leading supplier of diagnostic assays to the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. Prior to Signet, John was interim CFO at Cambium Learning, a private equity-backed publishing company that completed two acquisitions during his tenure. John was the Chief Financial Officer of AnVil, Inc. a venture-funded silico drug discovery company, where he led the company’s healthcare market business development efforts. At CambridgeSoft Corporation, John rose to CFO of that leading pharma/bio applications and enterprise solutions supplier. As Animation Technologies’ CFO, he guided the company’s first and second rounds of venture funding.
John currently sits on the Advisory Board of MTTC (the MA Technology Transfer Center).
John holds a BBA from St. Bonaventure University and is a certified public accountant. He lives with his wife Denise in Marlborough, MA.

Carla Haslauer
Principal, Technology Development Fund, Boston Children’s Hospital

Carla joined Technology and Innovation Development Office of Boston Children’s Hospital in 2014. As Principal, Technology Development Fund (TDF), Carla coordinates the TDF funding cycles and proposal evaluations, and project manages funded projects and external collaborations. Prior to joining TIDO, Carla was a postdoctoral scientist in the Orthopaedics Research Department at BCH. She was the recipient of an NIH F32 NRSA fellowship to support her postdoctoral research, as well as an NSF GRFP recipient for her graduate research. Carla received her Bachelor of Science in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA. She earned a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Carla has authored and co-authored 16 peer-reviewed publications in the fields of tissue engineering and wound repair.

Sheela Hegde
Partner, Health Advances
Sheela Hegde has 15 years of experience in advising senior executive teams on corporate strategy. Sheela co-leads Health Advances’ Biopharma Practice, helping companies maximize the value of their assets and build winning market positions. Sheela brings a cross-sector lens to providing strategic advice to her clients, which include the leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies as well as financial investors.
Experienced in multiple therapeutic areas, Sheela has particular expertise in metabolic, CNS, and autoimmune fields. At Health Advances, Sheela heads the Metabolics and Drug Delivery sub-practices.
Sheela joined Health Advances in 2005 with a background in corporate strategy and health care provider operations. Prior to Health Advances, Sheela worked at The Advisory Board where she managed client relationships and led research teams in areas related to hospital care delivery and new payment models. She also previously worked at Novartis Pharmaceuticals in the Cardiovascular Business Franchise and with the Japan affiliate.
Sheela earned a BA in human biology with university distinction and Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University, and an MBA from Harvard University

 

Matthew Henn
Senior VP, Head of Drug Discovery & Bioinformatics, Seres

Matthew Henn is the Senior Vice President and Head of Drug Discovery & Bioinformatics of Seres. He has more than 16 years of combined research experience in microbial ecology, genomics, and bioinformatics that spans both environmental and infectious disease applications. Dr. Henn’s research has focused on the development, implementation, and application of genomic technologies in the area of microbial populations and their metabolic functions. Prior to joining Seres, he was the Director of Viral Genomics and Assistant Director of the Genome Sequencing Center for Infectious Diseases at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.

He has authored over 60 peer-reviewed publications in microbiology and bioinformatics, and has led multiple large-scale international genomic projects. He has served as a consultant for the WHO’s Grand Challenges in Genomics for Public Health in Developing Countries, as a scientific advisor for the National Institutes of Health’s Viral Pathogen Bioinformatics Resource Center, and as an ad-hoc reviewer and editor of many peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Henn earned his Ph.D. in ecosystem sciences from the University of California at Berkeley, where he was a NASA Earth Systems Sciences Fellow, and trained as a NSF Postdoctoral Fellow in microbiology at Duke University.

Brian Hubbard
CEO, 3 Point Bio

Brian Hubbard is the CEO of 3 Point Bio, a biotech and consulting company in the life sciences.
Hubbard brings extensive knowledge of drug discovery and development. Prior to 3 Point Bio, Brian led drug discovery efforts at the Broad Institute.  Before the Broad, he was Senior Director of Cardiovascular Diseases at Merck, where he was responsible for strategy and execution of research and early development. His focus was primarily atherosclerosis research. While at Merck, Hubbard was also part of a core team that developed a strategic plan for restructuring basic research in the pharmaceutical industry.
Prior to his work at Merck, Hubbard was Director of Cardiovascular and Metabolism Research at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research and did research into metabolic diseases and obesity at Millennium Pharmaceuticals.
Hubbard received his B.S. in chemistry from The College of William and Mary and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana. He did postdoctoral research in biochemistry and antibiotics at Harvard Medical School.

Sven Karlsson
President & Co-Founder, Platelet Biogenesis 

Sven is the President and Co-Founder of Platelet BioGenesis, a venture-backed biotech startup that is commercializing the production of human platelets. He has a decade of experience working across venture capital, business development, and finance. Prior to founding Platelet BioGenesis, he worked in Mergers & Acquisitions at J.P. Morgan, as an Analyst at a hedge fund, and as a Senior Manager of Investments at a clean energy venture fund. Sven received a B.S. in Operations Research Industrial Engineering from Cornell University and an MBA with Distinction from New York University’s Stern School of Business.

Jeff Karp

Associate Professor, Brigham and Women’s Hospital &  Harvard Medical School

Dr. Jeff Karp is a leading researcher in the fields of drug delivery, medical devices, stem cell therapeutics, and tissue adhesives. He is an Associate Professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Principal Faculty at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, and an affiliate faculty at the Broad Institute and at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (where he teaches to MIT-Sloan business school students). He has published >100 peer-reviewed papers (with >12,250 citations) and has given 250 national and international invited lectures and has 65 issued or pending patents. Several technologies developed in his lab have formed the foundation for multiple products on the market and currently under development and for the launch of four companies including Skintifique, Gecko Biomedical, Alivio Therapeutics, Frequency Therapeutics. Karp’s co-founded companies collectively employ >60 people.
His laboratory has been funded by multiple companies, foundations and governmental funding agencies including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, NFL, Johnson & Johnson, Phillips, Sanofi, UCB, NIH, DOD, US Army, Kenneth Rainin Foundation, Helmsley Trust, JDRF, Rheumatology Research Foundation, Coulter Foundation, Prostate Cancer Foundation, Brain Science Foundation, American Heart Association, Deshpande Foundation, Institute for Pediatric Innovation, Boston Children’s Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Government of India and the Government of Korea. Dr. Karp also won an internal Shark Tank award judged by Kevin O’Leary.
Karp’s work has been discussed in hundreds of newspapers, online websites, television newscasts, and radio shows around the world including CNN, ABC News, NBC, Boston Globe, LA Times, BBC, Discovery, National Geographic, The Atlantic, The Guardian, American Museum for Natural History, Popular Mechanics, CTV Canada AM.  Karp has also appeared multiple times on CBC’s Quirks and Quarks and NPR Science Fridays.
The Boston Business Journal recognized him as a Champion in Healthcare Innovation and MIT’s Technology Review Magazine (TR35) also recognized Dr. Karp as being one of the top innovators in the world (3 members from his laboratory have subsequently received this award).
His work has been selected by Popular Mechanic’s “Top 20 New Biotech Breakthroughs that Will Change Medicine.” He gave a TEDMED talk at the Kennedy Center in DC on bioinspired medical innovation and since 2015 has been a member of the TEDMED Editorial Advisory Board (only member to be elected to the board 3 years in a row). In 2015 and 2016 he received Breakthrough Awards from the Kenneth Rainin Foundation and in 2015 was a commencement speaker in at the University of Toronto. He also serves as a consultant to the Kenneth Rainin Foundation and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation on the topic of new technologies for Inflammatory Bowel Disease. He has deep consulting expertise with startups and with several Fortune 500 companies across a wide spectrum of areas including drug delivery, medical devices, consumer healthcare products, and stem cell therapeutics.
Dr. Karp was selected as the Outstanding Faculty Undergraduate Mentor among all Faculty at MIT and he received the HST McMahon Mentoring award for being the top mentor of Harvard-MIT students. To date, 18 trainees from his laboratory have secured faculty positions and several have transitioned into impactful careers in pharma, biotech, medtech, and venture capital.

Long Phi Le
Director of Technology Development, Center for Integrated Diagnostics, MGH

Dr. Le is a practicing molecular pathologist who is currently the Director of Technology Development at the MGH Center for Integrated Diagnostics. His clinical and research interests include development of novel target enrichment, bioinformatics analysis, and medical informatics solutions for next-generation sequencing and their application for clinical molecular diagnostics. He has a strong interest in applying big data descriptive and predictive analytics in healthcare with the goal of effectively and efficiently delivering laboratory results and clinical decision support.

 

Danny Levner
CTO, Emulate
Daniel Levner is Emulate’s Chief Technology Officer. Prior to joining Emulate’s founding team, he was a as a Senior Staff Scientist with the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, where he led the advanced engineering team responsible for developing Emulate’s Organs-on-Chips platform. Levner played a key leadership role in managing the multidisciplinary Organs-on-Chips team by formulating innovative approaches for fostering close collaboration and in-depth exchange between biologists and engineers. Levner brings this tight integration of disciplines to Emulate, where it is a defining part of the company’s culture.
Prior to directing the Organs-on-Chips program, Levner worked with world-renowned Harvard geneticist Prof. George M. Church in programs related to medical diagnostics, DNA/RNA sequencing tools, and multiplexed analysis techniques. As an entrepreneur, Levner co-founded a medical diagnostics startup company, and earlier in his career, an optical telecommunications startup company. Levner received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University as well as an M.S. in aeronautics and astronautics, also from Stanford. He has authored numerous publications and more than 20 issued and pending patents.

 

Steve London
Partner, Pepper Hamilton

Steve London joined Pepper Hamilton as a partner 10 years ago to open Pepper Hamilton’s Boston office.  He is a member of the firm’s Health Sciences Department.  For more than 25 years, he has been representing entrepreneurial life sciences companies developing and commercializing medical devices, biotech, drugs and pharma, technologies servicing the life sciences and health care industries, as well as the sources of capital that finance these companies.   He guides these enterprises throughout the entire corporate life cycle.  He leads angel, venture capital and private equity financings, IPOs, mergers and acquisitions, strategic relationships, and licensing and commercial transactions.  He serves as general corporate counsel to private and publicly-traded life sciences companies, working closely with senior management and boards of directors in corporate governance matters, building teams, accessing capital, enhancing asset portfolios, and regulatory compliance.  He also has extensive experience in representing companies from throughout the world in entering the US market and engaging in cross border transactions.

Steve is listed in The Best Lawyers in America and 2017 New England Best Lawyers.  He is a frequent speaker on a variety of topics relating to the growth and development of entrepreneurial ventures.

Steve is a graduate of Brandeis University and Georgetown University Law Center.

Kathryn (Katy) McCabe
Director of Business Development- Emerging Technology and Innovation, Eli Lilly

Kathryn (Katy) McCabe is Director of Business Development- Emerging Technology and Innovation for Eli Lilly in Cambridge, MA. Katy directly engages with the Cambridge innovation ecosystem with a focus on early discovery to help grow new therapeutics. She works with strategic limited partner Venture Capital firms to recommend and vet new companies, searches and evaluates in-licensing opportunities, connects directly companies in incubators such as Lab Central, and scouts new collaborations for Lilly R&D.

Prior to joining Lilly, Katy led technical and strategic assessments for partnerships, acquisitions, and company strategy across Gene Therapy, Immunology, Oncology, and Hematology at Baxalta. At GlaxoSmithKline, Katy directed 3 high profile academic/industry collaborations at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute in neurodegeneration (now in PhII clinical trial), retinal disease, and muscle regeneration. At Advanced Cell Technology (now Astellas), Katy was the Director of Preclinical Ocular Program where she managed a small team of senior scientists to generate stem cell derived products for the treatment of ocular diseases.

Travis A. McCready
President and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center

Travis McCready is the President and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, a $1 billion public–private partnership with the mission of advancing the life sciences sector in Massachusetts. He directs and oversees the center’s investment strategy, along with the agency’s operations, programs, and partnerships. Previously, Mr. McCready served as the Vice President for Programs at The Boston Foundation, directing the Foundation’s grants and community investment strategy to benefit the people of Greater Boston. Prior to that, he was the first Executive Director of the Kendall Square Association, responsible for growing the innovation economy of Kendall Square, one of the Commonwealth’s most economically robust districts. He has also held the Chief Operating Officer and CFO positions at the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, overseeing the operations and finances for the three convention centers in Massachusetts.

Mr. McCready serves on the Boards of the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, the Conservation Law Foundation, Life Science Cares, and WBUR. He has served on the Economic Development Planning Council under two governors, including co-chairing the subcommittee on innovation and entrepreneurship. In 2009, he was named one of Boston’s top “40 under 40” young business leaders by the Boston Business Journal. Mr. McCready is a frequent speaker on economic development strategy as it relates to the convergence of private, public, and not-for-profit interests, and his blog, Life Sciences Discourses, has been recognized by The Boston Globe.

Mr. McCready received his B.A. from Yale University and J.D. from the University of Iowa, and began his law career as a corporate attorney in Minneapolis, MN.

Glenn A. Miller
Market Sector Leader, Partners Healthcare Innovation

Dr. Miller is a Market Sector Leader at Partners Healthcare Innovation. Before joining Partners Healthcare, Dr. Miller was President of CDx Vision, a consultancy specializing in Precision Medicine and Companion Diagnostics. Dr. Miller has nearly 30 years of experience in the clinical laboratory industry and personalized medicine including serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of MolecularMD; Vice President and Head of Personalized Healthcare and Biomarker Strategy, Portfolio and Alliances for AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals; and leading Genzyme Analytical Services as Vice President and General Manager while directing the Research and Development efforts of Genzyme Genetics. Dr. Miller also serves as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board and is a member of the Board of Directors of Biomarker Strategies. He received his Ph.D. in Experimental Pathology from Roswell Park Memorial Institute, a graduate division of the State University of New York at Buffalo. He completed his postdoctoral work in molecular hematology and viral leukemogenesis at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and molecular genetics at the University of Miami School of Medicine.

Walter Ogier
Co-founder, Acetylon
Mr. Ogier co-founded Acetylon in October 2008 and was appointed its founding President and Chief Executive Officer and a Director of the company in July 2009 at the time of its Series A financing. Mr. Ogier has raised more than $250 million in private and public company financing during his 20+ year life science industry career and has brought more than a dozen therapeutic products to market in North America and Europe. From 1997 to 2007, he served as President and CEO of development stage companies Eligix, Inc., Genetix Pharmaceuticals, and Arbios Systems Inc. He was previously Vice President of Marketing with Aastrom Biosciences, Inc., which he helped to bring public in 1997 (Nasdaq: ASTM), and earlier in his career held various product management, global marketing and business development positions within the Blood Therapy Group of Baxter Healthcare Corporation. Mr. Ogier’s industry experience spans development of small molecule drugs, monoclonal antibodies, growth factors, adult stem cell and immune cell therapies, gene therapies, bone marrow and solid organ transplantation, therapeutic medical devices and blood diagnostics with a focus on blood-related diseases including hematologic cancers, inflammatory / autoimmune diseases and genetic blood disorders. Mr. Ogier received his M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and B.A. in chemistry magna cum laude from Williams College.

Swati Prasad
Senior Manager of Business Development and Scientific Alliances, Charles River Laboratories.

Dr. Swati Prasad, MBA is Senior Manager of Business Development and Scientific Alliances at Charles River Laboratories. Swati manages drug discovery alliances and strategic partnerships with focus on creative business models to increase revenues, penetrate markets and strengthen drug discovery portfolio. Previously, she was at AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals where she managed external collaborations and partnerships. She has extensive experience in large pharma, CRO and life science industry with hands-on drug development experience across diverse therapeutic areas and entire lifecycle, from preclinical research to clinical development candidates. She holds a doctorate degree in Chemistry from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, India, an MBA from Wilmington University and a bachelors in Classical Music from Prayag Sangeet Samiti, India.

Jen Rice
Associate Director of Business Development, OTD, Harvard University 

Jen Rice, Ph.D. is an Associate Director of Business Development at Harvard University’s Office of Technology Development (OTD).  As an Associate Director, Jen supports commercialization activities for Harvard Medical School and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health by working with researchers to patent, market, and license their inventions, as well as identify industry-sponsored research opportunities.  Prior to joining Harvard, Jen was a Technology Manager and Special Programs Manager in the Office of Technology Management (OTM) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Jen holds a B.A. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Boston University, and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Kevin J. Slatkavitz
President and Founder, ThinkQuality, LLC

Kevin is President and Founder of ThinkQuality, LLC – a strategic consulting firm aimed at working with start-ups and large multinationals across the Pharma/BioPharma ecosystem to rethink their specific challenges, opportunities and business case for Quality. Understanding and leveraging the return on Quality investment is one of the most underutilized means for demonstrating and communicating value to investors, regulators, patients and other key stakeholders throughout a company’s project lifecycle. ThinkQuality, LLC offers practical, fit-for-purpose strategies and coaching to do this proactively, collaboratively and more predictably.

Through ThinkQuality, LLC, Kevin applies his extensive insights into the complex and global challenges and opportunities of small and large organizations from early stage discovery/development through drug product approval/launch and beyond – drawing on experience from numerous developed/approved novel products including LIPITORâ and LINZESSâ. He leverages proactive strategies and solutions, including early and ongoing engagement with the FDA, for enabling innovation and speed to market – creating a competitive advantage while building mutual trust and respect with stakeholders.

Kevin has a successful track record of regulatory approvals and inspections – building relationships and gaining organizational alignment along the way. He is a champion of collaborative problem solving and science-based risk management, strategic leadership and organizational design and development. In addition, he understands the different language of executives and scientists and can bring organizations together with a common understanding of “return on Quality investment”.

He earned a B.S. in Chemistry at Tufts University and a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst – beginning his career as a scientist/analytical chemist in the consumer products industry. Kevin transitioned into a broader Quality role while at Warner-Lambert/Parke Davis (now Pfizer). Since then, he has served in senior, global Quality leadership roles at Purdue Pharma (Director, Research Quality Assurance), AstraZeneca (Global Head, R&D GMP Quality Assurance), Nektar Therapeutics (Vice President and Head, Quality) and Ironwood Pharmaceuticals (Vice President and Head, Global Quality).

Rich Wilmot
Head, Philips Ventures

Rich is the head of Philips Ventures.  Prior to his current role, Rich launched and led a healthcare market diligence team responsible for market opportunity assessment on a global basis across all Philips businesses.  Rich joined Philips from Partners HealthCare, where he was a principal for the Partners Innovation Fund (PIF), and oversaw the creation, launching and funding of new ventures generated from Partners innovative research discoveries.  He also spent time in the investment banking industry, working for both Bank of America as well as Deutsche Bank Securities.  Rich holds degree from Harvard University in engineering sciences and was an adjunct professor at Tufts University for several years where he taught a course on Entrepreneurial Finance.

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