This year’s Annual Meeting is now the State of Possible Conference where we'll celebrate what’s possible in our industry and for patients today that wasn’t five or 10 years ago. The two-day event will draw over 600 industry leaders from Massachusetts and beyond to debate the most pressing challenges facing the life sciences to ensure we can continue this incredible success. Attendees will hear from the brightest minds through keynotes, panel discussions and 15-minute Possible Talks, inspiring and engaging content in the style of a TED Talk. Join us as we celebrate the State of Possible!
Vice President and Head, Clinical Science, Neuroscience Therapeutic Area Unit, Takeda
Robert (Bob) Alexander, M.D. received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Chicago. He completed an internship in Internal Medicine at the New England Deaconess and a residency in Adult Psychiatry at McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School. Following residency, Bob was a fellow at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) with the late Richard Wyatt and at Columbia University (in Medical Genetics). As part of his NIMH fellowship he spent one year in the laboratory of Dr. David Sachs of the National Cancer Institute learning positional cloning and other molecular biology techniques. The focus of Bob’s fellowships and early research was in schizophrenia (including investigations into proposed etiologic causes such as the viral and autoimmune hypotheses) and genetics of psychiatric disorders (in particular, genetic animal models informative for addiction and psychosis). Bob was on the faculty of Thomas Jefferson University from 1992 to 1995 and then worked at the University of Pennsylvania, where he developed expertise in the treatment of substance abuse. During his career, Dr. Alexander has held a number of academic positions and hospital appointments and is currently a Staff Psychiatrist at McLean Hospital.
Bob is currently the Vice President and Head, Clinical Science, Neuroscience Therapeutic Area Unit at Takeda. Prior to Takeda, Bob was Vice President and Head of Clinical for the Neuroscience and Pain Research Unit; Vice President, Clinical, for CNS and Pain Innovative Medicines Unit (iMed) of AstraZeneca; Vice President and Head of Discovery Medicine and Chief Medical Officer of the Neurosciences Centre for Excellence in Drug Discovery at GlaxoSmithKline; and Senior Director in Clinical Neuroscience and Clinical Pharmacology at Merck Research Labs. Bob is an expert in psychopharmacology and have conducted clinical studies in a broad range of neurologic and psychiatric and targets, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson’s dise
Mike Bonney is Executive Chair of Kaleido Biosciences’ Board of Directors. Previously, Bonney was CEO and Director of Cubist Pharmaceuticals from 2003 until 2014. Under his leadership, Cubist grew from a struggling micro-cap to the world’s leading antibiotic company, and was acquired by Merck early in 2015 for $9.5 billion. Prior to Cubist, Bonney was Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Biogen where he built the company’s commercial infrastructure for the launch of its first product. Before joining Biogen, he spent 11 years at Zeneca Pharmaceuticals in a range of commercial, operating and strategic roles, ending his career there as National Business Director.
Bonney also chairs the boards of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Magenta Therapeutics and Bates College. He is a member of a number of other boards, including Celgene Corporation, Sarepta Therapeutics, and Syros Therapeutics. Bonney spends much of his time identifying and mentoring the next generation of life science leaders.
Bonney was a regional winner and national finalist (2013) in the life science segment of Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year and was one of six executives nationwide named as Marketwatch’s CEO of the Year (2011). He received his undergraduate degree in economics from Bates College.
Bruce is currently chairman of AvroBio (NASDAQ:AVRO), Kymera Therapeutics, Hotspot Therapeutics, Nimbus Therapeutics, Rodin Therapeutics, and Unum Therapeutics (NASDAQ:UMRX), and also serves on the boards of Lysosomal Therapeutics, and Magenta Therapeutics (NASDAQ:MGTA). He previously served on the boards of past Atlas companies Avila (acquired by Celgene), Padlock (acquired by BMS), Prestwick (acquired by Biovail), Stromedix (acquired by Biogen), Zafgen (NASDAQ:ZFGN), miRagen Therapeutics (NASDAQ:MGEN), and a number of other ventures.
Bruce serves as an advisor in various capacities to UCB, Takeda, and the Gates Foundation. He also serves on the board of the National Venture Capital Association and of New England Disabled Sports, a charity dedicated to adaptive sportrs.
Bruce blogs about biotech and venture capital topics at LifeSciVC.com, which is syndicated on Forbes.
Prior to joining Atlas in 2005, Bruce was a consultant at McKinsey & Company, as well as an investor for Caxton Health Holdings. As a British Marshall Scholar, Bruce received a D.Phil. (PhD) in molecular immunology from Oxford University. His work focused on the study of HIV and tumor immune responses. He received a BS in biochemistry, summa cum laude, from The Pennsylvania State University.
Katrine Bosley is the Chief Executive Officer of Editas Medicine
Prior to joining Editas, Katrine was an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at The Broad Institute, a biomedical and genomic research center, and before that, she was the CEO of Avila Therapeutics (acquired by Celgene). Katrine was also Vice President, Business Development at Adnexus Therapeutics and then Vice President, Strategic Operations after Adnexus’ acquisition by Bristol-Myers Squibb. Earlier, Katrine held several positions at Biogen in Business Development, Commercial Operations, and Portfolio Strategy and was part of the healthcare team at the venture firm Highland Capital Partners.
She is a graduate of Cornell University.
In addition to her role at Editas, Katrine currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Genocea Biosciences (NASDAQ: GNCA) and is a member of the Board of Directors of Galapagos NV (EURONEXT and NASDAQ: GLPG), of BIO – the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, and of Massachusetts Eye and Ear.
George M. Church, PhD ’84, is professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School, a founding member of the Wyss Institute, and director of PersonalGenomes.org, the world’s only open-access information on human genomic, environmental, and trait data. Church is known for pioneering the fields of personal genomics and synthetic biology. He developed the first methods for the first genome sequence & dramatic cost reductions since then (down from $3 billion to $600), contributing to nearly all “next generation sequencing” methods and companies. His team invented CRISPR for human stem cell genome editing and other synthetic biology technologies and applications – including new ways to create organs for transplantation, gene therapies for aging reversal, and gene drives to eliminate Lyme Disease and Malaria. Church is director of IARPA & NIH BRAIN Projects and National Institutes of Health Center for Excellence in Genomic Science. He has coauthored 450 papers, 105 patents, and one book, “Regenesis”. His honors include Franklin Bower Laureate for Achievement in Science, the Time 100, and election to the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering.
David H. Donabedian, PhD, MBA, is co-founder and CEO of Boston-based Axial Biotherapeutics. Since Axial’s launch in November 2016, David has raised significant capital from top-tier VCs, assembled a renowned advisory and scientific board and established the company as a leader in the gut-brain-axis.
David was a strategy consultant at Accenture and applied his strong foundation in science and business at Surface Logix, where he headed the company’s business development efforts. His ability to develop successful business strategies and help launch innovative ideas led him to GlaxoSmithKline, where he took an active role in the ceedd leadership team. In 2012, he co-founded Alcyone Life Sciences, which is focused on the central nervous system disorders. In recognition of his skill in identifying future trends, he was recruited by AbbVie, where as VP, Head of Ventures & Early-Stage-Collaborations, he led a global team that managed a portfolio of biotech companies and successfully completed multiple transactions including M&A, licenses and option-deals. David is a Partner of Longwood Fund.
David holds a BA in Chemistry from St. Anselm College, a Ph.D. in Polymer Chemistry from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, and an MBA from the University of North Carolina.
Dr. Fruehauf is a physician-scientist and life science entrepreneur. He is the President and CEO of Biolabs, the national network for biotech co-working spaces and the Executive Director of LabCentral, the largest co-working space for life-science companies in the Boston area. Together, these organizations span all of the major biotech markets in the US and comprise a large number of startup companies (over 150 currently, over 200 companies graduated). The concept of these facilities is built around openness, transparency and shared resources and has changed the way biotech companies are built in the US. Companies launched at Biolabs/LabCentral have raised over $2bn in venture capital financing since 2010.
Dr. Fruehauf is a General Partner at BioInnovation Capital, an early stage venture capital fund providing capital to startup companies in the life sciences.
Dr. Fruehauf studied Medicine in Germany and France. He practiced medicine (internal medicine and OB/Gyn) for several years in Germany before coming to Boston for a post-doc at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School. He is an author of 30 peer reviewed articles in the medical literature and inventor on numerous issued and pending patents, mostly on drug delivery and RNAi technologies.
Vikas joined SR One in 2011 after interning since 2009 with a background in corporate strategy and business development. Vikas was a consultant in McKinsey and Co’s pharmaceutical practice, worked with dozens of start-ups and early stage companies as a consultant at Extera Partners, and worked in business development at Infinity Pharmaceuticals. He is a Kauffman Fellow (Class 17) and an active mentor for MassBio’s MassConnect program.
Vikas received his B.A. in Neurobiology from Harvard University, and his MBA in Health Care Management from The Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania.
Vice President, Clinical Development, Huntington's Disease Program Lead, Uniqure
Joseph Higgins, M.D., joined uniQure in March 2018 as Vice President of Clinical Development and is responsible for the early development of clinical gene therapy trials for neurological disorders.
Dr. Higgins serves as the lead for our Huntington's disease clinical program. The Company’s Investigational New Drug (IND) application for AMT-130 has been cleared by the FDA allowing uniQure to begin its planned dose-escalating, randomized and controlled Phase I/II clinical trial to assess the safety, tolerability and efficacy of a one-time treatment of AMT-130 in patients with Huntington’s disease.
Prior to joining uniQure in 2018, Dr. Higgins was responsible for all neurological diagnostic testing at Quest Diagnostics and was the federal CLIA-license holder for a specialty laboratory. He was formerly a Professor at Weill Cornell Medical College where he was the principal investigator on several private foundation and NIH research grants focused on clinical neurogenetics. He held senior leadership positions in genomic medicine at the federal and state governments including the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH). At NIH he was part of the Human Genome Project and teams that initiated the first-in-human enzyme replacement and gene therapy clinical trials. He led the Human Genetic Initiative at the NYSDOH. He discovered the genes or loci for several diseases including Parkinson disease, essential tremor, ataxia, intellectual disability (ID), and metabolic disorders. He created a transgenic mouse model for proof-of-concept studies to treat non-syndromic ID.
He is a fellow of the American Academy of Neurology with board certifications in Pediatrics by the American Board of Pediatrics and Neurology with Special Qualification in Child Neurology by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He has authored more than 100 peer‐reviewed publications, book chapters, and reviews articles in the field of neurogenetics. He
Laura Indolfi is the Founder & CEO of PanTher Therapeutics, a spin-out of MIT and MGH that provides superior drug delivery technologies for revolutionizing the treatment of locally advanced solid tumors. Her scientific expertise covers a broad range of therapeutic areas (cardio, cancer, regenerative medicine) and approaches (drug delivery, cell therapy, implanted devices). Together with her strong technical background, Laura has hands-on business and managerial know-how developed during her biomedical business training at Sloan and Harvard Business schools, combining the science and business knowledges to drive the company’s vision. Prior to PanTher, she was a research associate at Harvard-MIT IMES, and served as entrepreneur-in-residence at MGH Cancer Center. She is a TED Fellow, one of 21 people chosen annually by the TED organization who are considered to be the most disruptive and transformative change-makers in the world. In 2017, she attended the prestigious conference “Fortune: Most Powerful Women – Next Gen”, an invite-only summit hosted by Fortune gathering a stellar group of game-changing executives, entrepreneurs and innovators. Laura is also one of the 5 women selected by Massachusetts Life Science Center and Takeda for their inaugural class in 2018 of MassNextGen program, honoring exceptional leaders in the biotech industry.
Irena Ivanovska, Ph.D., Site Head/Boston and Director, Celdara Medical, leads the development of therapeutic programs in several disease areas, is responsible for operations of the Boston office, as well as sourcing and vetting of new pipeline assets. In addition, she serves as an Alliance Manager in support of Celdara’s Pipeline Development Service partnerships with pharmaceutical companies. She also leads Celdara’s due diligence efforts. Prior to Celdara, Irena was a Senior Research Biologist at Rosetta Inpharmatics, LLC (a wholly owned subsidiary of Merck and Co.), where she identified and validated cell cycle microRNAs as targets for oncology, developed siRNA delivery methods to physiologically-relevant primary cell systems and identified gene expression disease biomarkers. As an associate principal investigator in the Respiratory and Immunology department at Merck-Boston, she led a cross-functional team that delivered a validation package and a small molecule lead for an autoimmune disease target. Irena received her Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Princeton University for discovering new structural and signaling pathways that regulate yeast cell division. As a postdoctoral fellow at the Whitehead Institute of MIT, she identified a new histone modification critical for proper chromosome structure. She received an NIH National Research Service Award and a Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Career Development Fellowship to pursue these studies. Irena has been a member and a volunteer in several biotechnology professional organizations, including HBA, WEST and AWIS. Irena has been developing Celdara’s presence in and relationships with the Boston biotech and academic communities since 2017.
Sven Karlsson, CFA, MBA, is co-founder, chief operating officer, and chief business officer of Platelet BioGenesis, the only company in the world manufacturing functional human platelets. At PBG, he has grown the company from one employee to 25, raised more than $20 million in venture capital and non-dilutive grants, and advanced the company’s scalable, cGMP-compliant platelet bioreactor. PBG is developing a platelet platform to create an entirely new class of therapeutics: designer platelets to treat cancer and other life-threatening diseases. The company plans to enter the clinic with its first product, donor-independent platelets for transfusion, in 2021.
Earlier in his career, Karlsson held a variety of board-level and senior positions in the renewable energy field, helping a variety of green energy startups raise their first financing rounds, find their first customers, and scale to profitability. Karlsson started his career as a senior analyst for M&A and business development at JPMorgan and also held positions at a number of asset management firms.
Dr. Jeremy Levin is the Chairman and CEO of Ovid Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: OVID) a public company developing novel medicines for orphan and rare diseases of the brain. Dr. Levin has deep experience in the global biopharmaceuticals industry, leading companies and people to develop and commercialize medicines that address medical needs worldwide. He has been voted one of the 25 most influential people in the biopharmaceutical industry.
Prior to Ovid, Dr. Levin served as President and CEO of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA) the world’s largest generics drug company. Previously, he was a member of the Executive Committee of Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) where he had global responsibilities for strategy, alliances and transactions. In this role, he devised and led the BMS “String of Pearls” strategy, which resulted in the transformation of the company. Prior to BMS, he was Global Head of Strategic Alliances at Novartis (NYSE: NVS). In this role, he established and managed strategic collaborations with multiple companies around the world. Dr. Levin has served on a number of public and private company boards over the years, and currently serves on the Board of Directors of BIO, Biocon, Ltd (NSE: BIOCON) and Lundbeck (OMX: LUN).
Dr. Levin is the recipient of a number of awards including the Kermode Prize for work on novel hypertension drugs, the Albert Einstein Award for Leadership in Life Sciences, the B’nai B’rith Award for Distinguished Achievement for commitment to improving global health care.
Dr. Levin holds a Bachelors Degree in Zoology and was awarded a Masters of Arts in the structure of Chromatin from the University of Oxford in 1978. He also received degrees of Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery from the University of Cambridge in 1981. He has practiced internal medicine at University Hospitals in England, Switzerland and South Africa. Born on a farm, Dr. Levin farms cattle in Connecticut in his spare time.
Since 2002, Dr. John Maraganore has served as the CEO and a Director of Alnylam.
Prior to Alnylam, Dr. Maraganore served as an officer and a member of the management team for Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. As Senior Vice President, Strategic Product Development for Millennium, he was responsible for the company’s product franchises in oncology, and cardiovascular, inflammatory, and metabolic diseases. He was previously Vice President, Strategic Planning and M&A and, prior to that, he was General Manager of Millennium BioTherapeutics, Inc., a former subsidiary of Millennium. Before Millennium he served as Director of Molecular Biology and Director of Market and Business Development at Biogen, Inc. At Biogen, Dr. Maraganore invented and led the discovery and development of ANGIOMAX® (bivalirudin) for injection, formerly HIRULOGTM and currently marketed by The Medicines Company. Prior to Biogen, Dr. Maraganore was a scientist at ZymoGenetics, Inc., and the Upjohn Company.
Dr. Maraganore received his MS and PhD in biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of Chicago. He is the Chair of the Board for Agios Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Maraganore is Chair of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Board, and is a member of the BIO Executive Committee.
Managing Director Pricing and Access, Syneos Health
Erin Mistry brings 15 years experience in helping manufacturers evaluate their pricing, value and access portfolio strategies across global markets. She is currently Managing Director Pricing and Access at Syneos Health, a 23,000 + global organization that combines both clinical trial and commercial development services.
Erin spent many years working with healthcare systems establishing quality metrics and leading clinical teams that feed into value-based care initiatives and patient engagement strategies while finding the pricing and access niche at Medimmune.
She has worked extensively across a variety of therapeutic areas and global markets to build value messaging and demonstration, evidence requirements, pricing strategies, contracting opportunities, and stakeholder engagement plans across the commercial development spectrum. Erin enjoys the dynamic policy environment and the direct interaction with Payer decision makers that influence today’s access decisions.
Dr. Ragan is a founder, as well as the Chief Executive Officer and President of X4. She has more than 19 years of experience building companies in the biotechnology industry. Most recently, Dr. Ragan consulted as Chief Business Officer at Lysosomal Therapeutics Inc (LTI), an Atlas Venture portfolio company, where she led the company’s business development activities. Prior to LTI, Dr. Ragan held leadership roles in corporate development and operations at Genzyme/Sanofi where she led strategic partnering efforts for Genzyme’s Rare Disease business and headed the supply chain planning for Genzyme’s flagship commercial products. Other professional roles include business roles at Hydra Biosciences, Oscient Corporation and Celera Corporation. Dr. Ragan received her BS in Mechanical Engineering from Tufts University and her PhD from MIT. She completed post-doctoral studies at Harvard Medical School.
WilmerHale partner Rosemary G. Reilly is a seasoned corporate lawyer with more than 20 years of experience advising life sciences companies on corporate and securities matters. She provides ongoing counsel for clients ranging from startups and emerging companies to mature public companies, investment banks and venture capital firms. Drawing on her experience as in-house counsel, she has a unique understanding of the legal and business challenges faced by her clients. In addition to advising clients on a wide range of corporate and securities matters, Ms. Reilly has significant experience with private and public securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, strategic alliances, venture capital and strategic financings, and SEC compliance. She regularly advises boards in connection with securities transactions and general corporate matters, and provides advice on governance and commercial transactions. Ms. Reilly is a frequent speaker on topics relating to corporate and securities transactions, and was selected by peers for inclusion in the 2019 edition of Best Lawyers in America in the areas of biotechnology and life sciences.
ISSI ROZEN, Chief Business Officer at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, is responsible for partnering with the life sciences industry and venture investors and developing innovative scientific and business collaborations. He is also responsible for initiating and establishing new ventures around novel research projects and for licensing the institute’s intellectual property portfolio. He joined the Broad in 2011 after a career in the pharmaceutical industry. Before joining the Broad Institute, Rozen led corporate development at Resolvyx Pharmaceuticals, a venture-backed biotech start-up. Before that, he headed the business analysis group at EMD Serono where he was responsible for evaluations of in-licensing and M&A opportunities as well as commercial analytics and forecasting for all pipeline and commercial products. Issi is also a co-founder of a number of biotech start-ups and is an accomplished jazz guitarist. He earned his M.B.A. at MIT’s Sloan School of Management.
Lisa Schaefer is the Director of Financial Services and Tax Policy at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO). In this role, Lisa develops policy solutions to facilitate capital formation for emerging biotechnology companies.
Prior to her current role, she served as the Assistant Vice President for Public Policy & Advocacy at the Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) focusing on cross-border financial services issues. Prior to joining SIFMA, Lisa lived in Hong Kong for three years coordinating ASIFMA’s response to post-crisis financial reforms across the Asia-Pacific region.
Previously, Lisa promoted trade and investment in emerging markets around the world at Delphos International, a boutique consultancy, as well as for the U.S. Embassy in Argentina. She also served as an aide in Washington, DC to then-Congressman Brian Bilbray from her home state of California.
Lisa holds an undergraduate degree in Political Science from San Diego State University and a Masters in International Trade and Investment Policy from the George Washington University. She serves on the Board Advisory Committee for Village Focus International, a social impact organization based in Vientiane, Laos working to end human trafficking.
Executive Director, State Government Affairs & Federal Payment, Bristol-Myers Squibb
Tamar Thompson is a health policy and reimbursement strategist with extensive experience working with governmental agencies, private payers, Congressional leaders, and patient advocacy groups to improve patient access to existing and new medical therapies. She has more than 20 years of leadership experience in health care, including the ability to develop strategic and tactical recommendations to ensure optimal reimbursement and market access for products. Tamar currently serves as executive director, state government affairs/alliance development and federal payment for Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and she also serves as the Chair for Healthy Women.
Prior to joining Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Mrs. Thompson served a strategic policy advisor and consultant for three premiere Washington DC based firms, ADVI, Kimbell & Associates and Avalere Health, where she managed a diverse portfolio of clients, including medical device, biotech, pharmaceutical, and specialty drug, companies. Preceding her time in Washington DC, Ms. Thompson was Director of Health Policy & Reimbursement at Molecular Insight Pharmaceuticals (MIP) where she was charged with developing and launching reimbursement strategy for cutting-edge molecular diagnostic and therapeutic treatments options. She has also held health policy and reimbursement leadership strategy roles at GE Healthcare and Bracco Diagnostics. Tamar has also served as claims operations director and benefit plan manager in the managed care sector for Humana and ValueOptions.
Tamar holds a M.S. in Health Sciences with a concentration in Public Health from Trident University in Cypress California. She also has an Executive Leadership certificate from Columbia University (in partnership Bristol-Myers Squibb Company), and maintains active certifications from the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) as a Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) and Certified Coding Specialist – Physician Based (CCS-P).
Director of Digital Psychiatry, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
John Torous, MD MBI is director of the digital psychiatry division, in the Department of Psychiatry at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a Harvard Medical School affiliated teaching hospital, where he also serves as a staff psychiatrist and academic faculty. He has a background in electrical engineering and computer sciences and received an undergraduate degree in the field from UC Berkeley before attending medical school at UC San Diego. He completed his psychiatry residency, fellowship in clinical informatics, and master's degree in biomedical informatics at Harvard. Dr. Torous is active in investigating the potential of mobile mental health technologies for psychiatry and has published over 75 peer reviewed articles and 5 books chapters on the topic. He serves as editor-in-chief for an academic journal on technology and mental health, JMIR Mental Health, currently leads the American Psychiatric Association’s work group on the evaluation of smartphone apps, and is an advisor to the smartphone mood study within the NIH's one million person All of Us research program.