The life science industry is entering a renewed age of innovation in 2015. Collectively, we have delivered strong results on almost every front, buoyed by breakthrough therapies and scientific advancements.
Global partnerships have not only enabled innovations to blossom but have also led to more personalized solutions for improved patient care worldwide. We have also witnessed the convergence of industries starting to redefine diseases and healthcare in new and profound ways.
At WuXi Global Forum 2016, we celebrate our industry’s recent achievements and discuss the implications for the future.
Dr. Hui Cai joined WuXi AppTec in 2009 as Vice President of Business Development, and is currently Vice President of Corporate Alliances, Head of PR and Corporate Communications, and Head of Product Definition, Design and Development (PD3). Prior to WuXi, Dr. Cai spent 10 years at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development leading multiple drug discovery programs in the therapeutic areas of inflammation and autoimmune diseases. She is a co-author and co-inventor to over 40 scientific publications and issued or pending patents. Dr. Cai is a Councilor of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and a member of ACS national committee on Chemistry and Public Affairs. She is also a member of the Advisory Council of UCSD IRPS 21th Century China Program, and a member of BayHelix. In her past capacity, she served as a Commissioner at the City of San Diego Science and Technology Commission, Chair of SABPA, and President of SDCA. Dr. Cai received her BS and MS in Chemistry from Peking University, PhD from The Scripps Research Institute, and MBA from UCSD Rady School of Management as a DLA Piper – Athena Scholar. Prior to WuXi, Dr. Cai spent 10 years at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development leading multiple drug discovery programs in the therapeutic areas of inflammation and autoimmune diseases. She is a co-author and co-inventor to over 40 scientific publications and issued or pending patents. Dr. Cai is a Councilor of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and a member of ACS national committee on Chemistry and Public Affairs. She is also a member of the Advisory Council of UCSD IRPS 21th Century China Program, and a member of BayHelix. In her past capacity, she served as a Commissioner at the City of San Diego Science and Technology Commission, Chair of SABPA, and President of SDCA. Dr. Cai received her BS and MS in Chemistry from Peking University, PhD from The Scripps Research Institute, and MBA from UCSD Rady School of Management as a DLA Piper – Athena Scholar.
Rick E Winningham has served as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Theravance Biopharma since its spin-off from Theravance, Inc. in June 2014. From October 2001 to August 2014, Mr. Winningham served as Chief Executive Officer of Theravance, Inc., where he also served as Chairman of the Board of Directors from April 2010 to October 2014. Prior to joining Theravance, Inc., he served as President, Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) Oncology/Immunology/Oncology Therapeutics Network (OTN) from 1997 to 2001, and also as President of Global Marketing from 2000 to 2001. In addition to operating responsibility for U.S. Oncology/Immunology/OTN, Mr. Winningham also had full responsibility for Global Marketing in the Cardiovascular, Infectious Disease, Immunology, Oncology/Metabolics and GU/GI/Neuroscience therapeutic areas. Over a fifteen-year period with BMS and its predecessor, Bristol-Myers, Mr. Winningham held various U.S. and global management positions. During his tenure with BMS, he was associated with the development and commercialization of several major pharmaceutical products, such as Taxol®, Paraplatin®, Zerit®, Videx®, Reyataz®, and Abilify®. Mr. Winningham holds an M.B.A. from Texas Christian University and a B.S. from Southern Illinois University. He is a Director on the Board of the California Life Sciences Association (CLSA). Previously, Mr. Winningham served as a Director on the Board of the California Healthcare Institute (CHI) from November 2011 to March 2015. He was elected Chairman of CHI in January 2014, a position he held until CHI merged with BayBio to become CLSA in March 2015. Mr. Winningham was subsequently elected to the role of Chairman of CLSA in March 2015. He stepped down from the position in November 2015. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Jazz Pharmaceuticals, and a member of the Board of Directors of OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Mr. Winningham is also a past member of Biotechnology Industry Organization’s Board of Directors and served on the Health Section Governing Board Standing Committee on Reimbursement
Dr. Ge Li is the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of WuXi PharmaTech, a leading open-access R&D; capability and technology platform company serving the global pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries. Dr. Li studied at Peking University as an undergraduate and received his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Columbia University. He began his industry career in 1993 as one of the founding scientists at Pharmacopeia, Inc. (NASDAQ: PCOP). In 2000, Dr. Li moved back to Shanghai to found WuXi PharmaTech and has since been its Chairman and CEO. Under Dr. Li’s leadership, WuXi has grown from 4 founders and a single laboratory of 7,000 square feet in Year 2000 to a global operation with over 10,000 employees and facilities totaling 5 million square feet for world-class research, development and manufacturing to help advance some of the most innovative healthcare products for patients around the world. Dr. Li’s entrepreneurship and achievements have won him numerous prestigious awards and honors, including “2015 SCRIP Executive of the Year Award”, “The 25 Most Influential People in Biopharma in 2015”, “Forbes 25 Notable Chinese-Americans”, “The 60 Most Influential People during 60 Years Pharmaceutical Development in China”, “Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year China Award”, and “The Boston Biotech Chief Executive Officers Conference Life Achievement Award”.
Hannes Thor Smárason is a prolific entrepreneur, investor, and advisor. Mr. Smárason co-founded WuXi NextCODE along with Dr. Jeff Gulcher. He has been a longtime advisor to deCODE Genetics and its venture investors Polaris Venture Partners and ARCH Venture Partners and contributed to the strategy that culminated in the $415 million sale of deCODE Genetics to Amgen. Mr. Smárason previously served as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Business and Finance at the company (1997-2004) during which time deCODE Genetics achieved worldwide recognition as the global leader in analyzing and understanding the human genome. During his tenure Mr. Smárason led the first IPO by an Icelandic company in the U.S., structured and negotiated alliances with pharmaceutical companies, and led the strategic acquisition of a drug discovery company. Prior to joining deCODE Genetics he was a consultant at McKinsey & Company serving Fortune 100 clients in the finance, healthcare, and hospitality sectors. He also served as the chairman and CEO of Icelandair and its parent company FL Group in the mid- to late- 2000’s. Mr. Smárason has served on boards across a variety of sectors related to investment and advisory activity and is active across a range of charitable organizations. He received his master’s degree in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he also earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering.
Richard (Rick) Klausner joined Illumina as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer in September 2013. Klausner is responsible for Illumina’s strategies for advancing genomics into clinical medicine and public health. He is also part of Illumina’s executive management team, which is responsible for directing all aspects of company strategy, planning, and operations. Prior to joining Illumina, Klausner was managing partner of the venture capital firm, The Column Group. Previously, he held roles as Executive Director for Global Health at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and as the eleventh director of the National Cancer Institute between 1995 and 2001. He has served as chief of the cell biology and metabolism branch of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, as well as a past president of the American Society of Clinical Investigation. He also has been Chairman of the National Science Education Standards Projects of the National Academy of Sciences. Klausner currently chairs the International Advisory Board for Samsung, is the Chairman of Audax Health, and previously chaired the Strategic Oversight Council of Sanofi. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Klausner holds an M.D. from Duke Medical School.
Greg Verdine joined Third Rock Ventures in 2009 to focus on creating companies in the area of next-generation therapeutics, as well as to provide scientific due diligence for the firm’s potential portfolio investments. Greg is a thought leader in the field of chemical biology and an accomplished biotech entrepreneur. He has played a key role in our portfolio companies:Co-founder, CSO and former CEO of Warp Drive Bio & Co-founder of Eleven Biotherapeutics. Prior to joining Third Rock, Greg served as the Erving Professor of Chemistry in the Harvard University departments of stem cell and regenerative biology, chemistry and chemical biology, and molecular and cellular biology for more than 25 years. He discovered the molecular mechanism of epigenetic DNA methylation and elucidated the pathway by which certain genotoxic forms of DNA damage are eradicated from the genome. Greg is also responsible for discovering a new class of therapeutics termed stapled peptides, which are currently in clinical development and have received much attention for their ability to drug “undruggable” targets. Greg has co-founded multiple biotechnology companies, including Enanta Pharmaceuticals, Gloucester Pharmaceuticals, Aileron Therapeutics, Tokai Pharmaceuticals, Ontorii Pharmaceuticals (now Wave Life Sciences) and Eleven Biotherapeutics. For more than a decade, he served as one of two global consultants for Hoffmann-La Roche. He was a founding scientific advisor to Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Ariad Pharmaceuticals and Variagenics. Greg serves as a scientific advisor to the Ibusuki Medipolis Research Institute, is on the board of scientific consultants of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Research Institute, the board of scientific advisors of the National Cancer Institute and the scientific advisory board of the SMA Foundation. Greg is a VIP Faculty Member at the Agency of Science and Technology Research (A*STAR) in Singapore and a Guest Professor at Peking University. Greg was a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral fellow in molecular biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School. He holds a B.S. in chemistry from St. Joseph’s University and a Ph.D. in chemistry from Columbia University. Greg built his first boat with his father when he was 10 and spent much of the following few years rebuilding classic mahogany Chris Craft cruisers with his father.
Anne co-founded 23andMe in 2006 after a decade spent in healthcare investing, focused primarily on biotechnology companies. Her hope was to empower consumers with access to their own genetic information and to create a way to generate more personalized information so that commercial and academic researchers could better understand and develop new drugs and diagnostics. Presently, 23andMe has built one of the world’s largest databases of individual genetic information. Its novel, web-based research approach allows for the rapid recruitment of participants to many genome-wide association studies at once, reducing the time and money needed to make new discoveries, and the company has created a proven and standardized resource for finding new genetic association and confirming genetic loci discovered by others. Under Anne’s leadership 23andMe has made significant advances in bringing personalized medicine directly to the public. Anne graduated from Yale University with a BS in Biology. Getting access to and understanding her own genetic information had always been one of her ambitions.
Dr. Krishna Yeshwant is a physician, programmer, and entrepreneur who has been working with Google Ventures since its inception. He first joined Google as part of the New Business Development team. Prior to Google he helped start an electronic data interchange company that was acquired by Hewlett-Packard and a network security company that was acquired by Symantec. He also co-authored the business plan for Diagnostics For All, which won both the Harvard Business School and MIT $100k business plan competitions. Previously, Krishna published several book chapters and journal articles in the field of computer-guided surgery, completed research in tissue engineering, and developed and licensed multiple surgical devices. He has worked with the technology transfer offices of MIT, Harvard, and Massachusetts General Hospital. Krishna has a B.S. in computer science from Stanford University. He also earned an M.D. from Harvard Medical School, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and completed his residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA where he continues to practice.
Prior to joining WuXi Healthcare Ventures, Dr. Li focused his effort on healthcare and life science investment opportunities at Fidelity Biosciences, Fidelity Growth Partner Asia, and Baird Venture Partners. He also led drug discovery projects and technology licensing due diligence at Vertex Pharmaceuticals, a biotech company in Boston, MA. During his scientific career, Wei first-authored numerous scientific publications in journals including Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Wei received a B.S., with distinction, in Chemical Physics from University of Science and Technology of China, a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Mammalian Genetics from Harvard University, and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, where he was elected Beta Gamma Sigma, with a concentration in Finance, Accounting and Marketing.
Stephen Knight joined F-Prime Capital in 2003 where he serves as President and Managing Partner. He has worked in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries for over 25 years and invests broadly across healthcare. Steve currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Forum Pharmaceuticals (formerly EnVivo Pharmaceuticals) and serves on the Board of Directors of Innovent Biologics, Proteostasis Therapeutics, Iora Health, Pulmocide, Semma Therapeutics and Denali Therapeutics. Steve previously served on the boards of several private and public health care companies including, Blueprint Medicines (NASDAQ: BPMC) FoldRx Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer), Ironwood Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: IRWD), NextWave Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer), and Respivert, Ltd (acquired by J&J;). Prior to joining F-Prime Capital, Steve held various senior management roles in private and public biotechnology and consulting companies. He also was a researcher at AT&T; Bell Laboratories, the National Institutes of Health, and Yale University. He holds an M.D. from the Yale University School of Medicine, an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Organization and Management and received a B.S. in biology from Columbia University, graduating summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
David R. Parkinson is a Venture Partner at New Enterprise Associates (NEA). From 2007 until 2012, Dr. Parkinson served as President and CEO of Nodality, a South San Francisco-based biotechnology company focused on the biological characterization of signaling pathways in patients with malignancy to enable more effective therapeutics development and clinical decision-making. Until October 2007 Dr. Parkinson was Senior Vice President, Oncology Research and Development, at Biogen Idec. At Biogen Idec he oversaw all oncology discovery research efforts and the development of the oncology pipeline. Previously he had served as Vice President, Oncology Development, at Amgen and Vice President, Global Clinical Oncology Development, at Novartis. During his tenures at Amgen and Novartis, Dr. Parkinson was responsible for clinical development activities leading to a series of successful global drug registrations for important cancer therapeutics, including Gleevec, Femara, Zometa, Kepivance, and Vectibix. Prior to joining industry, Dr. Parkinson worked at the National Cancer Institute from 1990 to 1997, serving as Chief of the Investigational Drug Branch, then as Acting Associate Director of the Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program. Dr. Parkinson is a past Chairman of the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) Biologics Advisory Committee and is a recipient of the FDA’s Cody Medal. He has served on the National Cancer Policy Forum of the Institute of Medicine, as a board director of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. He is a past co-chair of the Cancer Steering Committee of the NIH Foundation Biomarkers Consortium and has also served as a member of the FDA’s Science Board and as an elected Director on the Board of Directors of the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR). He currently serves on the Boards of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and is the Chairman of the AACR Finance Committee. Dr. Parkinson currently serves on the Boards of Threshold Pharmaceuticals and Cerulean Biosciences, both public companies focused on the discovery and development of anti-cancer drugs. Dr. Parkinson was previously a Director of Facet Biotech, Inc, a public biopharma company which was acquired by Abbott Pharmaceuticals, and until recently also served as a Director on the Board of Ambit Biosciences until its acquisition by Daiichi Sankyo. Dr. Parkinson received his medical degree from the University of Toronto. He completed a Hematology Fellowship at Royal Victoria Hospital at McGill University in Montreal and was a Research Fellow at the New England Medical Center at Tufts University in Boston. He has held academic positions both at Tufts and at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, and is an author of more than 100 publications.
Bryan joined Venrock as a Kauffman Fellow in 1997. He is based in Palo Alto and invests broadly across healthcare. Bryan is currently Chairman of the Board of Directors of Castlight Health (NYSE: CSLT), Ironwood Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: IRWD), Achaogen (NASDAQ: AKAO) and Kyruus. He also serves on the Board of 10X Genomics, Doctor on Demand, Grand Rounds, Intarcia, and Zeltiq (NASDAQ: ZLTQ), and is a Board observer at CloudFlare. Past investments include Ariosa Diagnostics (acquired by Roche), athenahealth (NASDAQ: ATHN), CodeRyte (acquired by 3M), Ikaria (acquired by Mallinkrodt), Illumina (NASDAQ: ILMN), and Sirna Therapeutics (acquired by Merck). Bryan was named a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute in 2006 and has ranked on Forbes’ Midas List seven times, 2008 – 2015. Immediately prior to joining Venrock, Bryan received his Ph.D. in Chemistry & Chemical Biology from Harvard University. He previously held positions in corporate finance at Kidder, Peabody & Co and received his B.A. from Dartmouth College.
Rafaèle Tordjman, MD, PhD, is a Managing Partner. She joined Sofinnova Partners in 2001. Prior to this, she worked as a research scientist at the Institut National de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) in Cochin Hospital, Paris. Before joining INSERM, she was a medical doctor specializing in clinical haematology and internal medicine. She obtained her PhD, with high honours, in haematopoiesis and angiogenesis from the University Paris VII followed by a post doctoral fellowship in immunology. Rafaèle obtained her medical degree and her specialisation in Haematology and Internal Medicine as a five-year fellow in Paris University Hospitals. She also participated in the “Young Manager Program” at INSEAD (France, in 2002). She has invested in and is on the board of Ascendis, DBV technologies – which went public on Euronext Paris and on Nasdaq, Nucana Biomed, MedDay, ObsEva and Lysogene. She was also on the board of Corevalve, Endoart before it was successfully sold to Allergan Inc, of Preglem before the latter was successfully sold to Gedeon Richter, HBI Ltd before being acquired by Meda and off Flexion Therapeutics – which went public on Nasdaq.
Mr. Greg Scott founded ChinaBio® in 2007 to help western life science companies achieve success in China. ChinaBio® Consulting works with U.S., European and APAC companies seeking partnerships, acquisitions, novel technologies and funding in China. In 2014, Greg launched ChinaBio® Life Science Fund with Daan Gene and Foshan City to invest in companies bringing western products and technologies to China. ChinaBio® Conferences has organized over 30 events in China focused on investment and partnering, including the highly successful ChinaBio® Partnering Forum which draws over 800 attendees from around the world to China each spring. Greg is also co-founder of two angel investment groups that have funded over 45 biotechnology and medical device companies in the U.S. and China, and Executive Editor of ChinaBio® Today, the most widely read source for China life science news. Greg lives and works in Shanghai but visits San Diego several times a year to enjoy the blue skies and sandy beaches.
Darren Carroll is senior vice president of corporate business development for Eli Lilly and Company, where he is responsible for all acquisition, joint venture, collaboration, licensing, venture capital and alliance management activities of the company, as well as technology search/evaluation operations. Prior to assuming his current role, he was vice president of corporate business development, and prior to that he was vice president of new ventures for Lilly, which includes the fund groups Lilly Ventures and Lilly Asian Ventures. Previously, he was the CEO of InnoCentive, Inc. from its founding through its spin-out from Lilly. Darren has also served as senior vice president of RealMed, a venture-backed health care IT company. Earlier in his career, he practiced law with a large private law firm in New York and negotiated complex technology transactions for General Electric Company. Currently, Darren serves as Chairman of the board of directors for BioCrossroads. He is a member of the board of directors for the Indiana Bioscience Research Institute, the Advisory Board of the BioExec Institute, and the LP advisory committee for several life science funds. He has also served on the board of directors for Citic Pharmaceuticals, Novast Holdings, Hydra Biosciences, InnoCentive and GlobeImmune.
Dr. Li Xiao Yi Benjamin, is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Lee’s Pharmaceutical Holdings Ltd. He holds a Ph.D. of Pharmacology from the University of Illinois at Chicago and is a life member of its Alumni Association. He was also a postdoctoral fellow for R&D; in cardiovascular drugs with Parke-Davis Research Division of Warner-Lambert Company, a major pharmaceutical company in United States. Dr. Li is also an adjunct professor at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and vice chairman of Hong Kong Biotechnology Organization, and he is committed to promoting the training of biotech professionals and the development and upgrade of the biotech industry. Dr. Li joined “Lee’s Group” in February 1994 and has since been responsible for and concentrated his time and professional efforts on the research and development of the Group’s new products. He has numerous publications in medical journals and patents including “A peptidase in human platelets that deamidates tachykinins”, “Antithrombosis Enzyme from The Snake Venom of Agkistrodon Acutus”, “Topical Interferon and its Preparation Methods”, etc. Dr. Li is one of the winner of the [EY Entrepreneur of The Year—China 2015] in the Pharmaceutical & Life Sciences Category.
Yinuo Li oversees a team that works with China’s public, private, and nonprofit sectors to address key domestic and global health, development, and policy issues. Yinuo joined the foundation in 2015 after a career at McKinsey & Co., where she was most recently a partner at the firm’s Palo Alto office. Her McKinsey career began in Los Angeles, California, United States, in 2005. From 2008 to 2013, while based in McKinsey’s Beijing office, Yinuo served as co-leader of the Healthcare Practice, and leader of the Social Sector and Global Public Health Practice. Her areas of expertise included health system and reform, global health, pharmaceutical and diagnostic products, digital healthcare, and health financing. Her clients covered leading multinational and Chinese pharmaceutical and life science companies, institutional investors, trade associations, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and academic institutions. Yinuo was elected a partner at McKinsey in 2011. In 2014, she moved to McKinsey’s office in Palo Alto, California, United States, where she focused on Healthcare and Social Sector Practice. She is a sought-after speaker on topics ranging from industry perspectives to strategy, organization, talent recruitment/development, and women’s leadership. Yinuo has a B.S. in biology from Tsinghua University in Beijing and a Ph.D. in molecular biology from UCLA.
Dr. Steve Yang is Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of WuXi AppTec. He is also WuXi’s Head of International Discovery Services Unit (IDSU). WuXi AppTec is a leading global pharmaceutical, biopharmaceutical, and medical device R&D; capability and technology open access platform company with operations in China and the United States. Dr. Yang is a pharmaceutical industry leader recognized for building R&D; capabilities, delivering research and early development portfolios of drug candidates, and establishing R&D; partnerships in China and other Asian and emerging markets. Before joining WuXi, Dr. Yang was Vice President and Head of Asia and Emerging Markets iMed at AstraZeneca, based in Shanghai. Previously, Dr. Yang served as Vice President and Head of Asia R&D; at Pfizer based in Shanghai, and as Executive Director and head of Pfizer’s global R&D; strategic management group based in the United States. Before joining Pfizer, Dr. Yang held a number of leadership positions at IntraBiotics Pharmaceuticals, a U.S.-based biotech company. He also worked for Strategic Decisions Group, a strategy consulting firm for Fortune 100 companies. Dr. Yang received his PhD in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the University of California, San Francisco, USA. He started his undergraduate study in Fudan University, China and completed his BS Summa Cum Laude in Biology from Michigan Technological University, USA. He co-founded the BayHelix Group, a non-profit global professional organization of Chinese life science business leaders, and served as the chairman of the board for two terms.
Mr. Edward Hu is currently CFO and CIO at WuXi AppTec. In this capacity, Mr. Hu manages the company’s finance, investments, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, and new business and capability building. In addition, Mr. Hu is Head of WuXi Corporate Venture Fund, spearheading the fund’s investment activities and portfolio management. Mr. Hu previously served WuXi’s COO and CFO for five years until April 2014. Prior to joining WuXi, Mr. Hu was SVP and COO at Tanox, responsible for operations, finance, IT, project management and strategic planning, and managed the acquisition of Tanox by Genentech in 2007. He also held positions at Merck & Co., Inc. as a Senior Financial Analyst and later in Business and Financial Planning at Biogen, Inc. (n/k/a Biogen Idec, Inc.), where he managed the business planning of Biogen’s R&D; and clinical operations organizations, and provided project planning and analysis support to key drug development project teams. Mr. Hu completed his Ph.D. work, all but dissertation, in Biophysics and Biochemistry at Carnegie Mellon University, where he also received his M.B.A.