Steven P. Stoesz, Ph.D., President and Chief Operating Officer. Dr. Stoesz has spent the past fifteen years managing the development of antibody and ELISA products for the life sciences research market. Steve is a cellular and molecular biologist, who performed his graduate research in human oncology at the University of Wisconsin. There he examined changes in gene expression present in HER2-positive mammary carcinomas. He also is a co-inventor on two patents for prognostic assays that determine a breast cancer's proliferative status.
Frank R. McEvoy, Chief Financial Officer — Frank has more than 26 years of technology and investment industry experience as a securities analyst and hedge fund manager. During his career, Frank has held research and sales positions within Fortune 500 companies, has worked more than seven years as a “sell-side” senior research analyst, and has co-founded a private equity firm.
Franklin Pass, M.D., Chairman and Co-Founder — Frank graduated from the University of Minnesota and University of Minnesota Medical School and then trained at Oregon Health Sciences University as a dermatologist. Following a dermatology residency and military service, he joined the faculty of Albert Einstein College of Medicine. At Einstein, he spent six years in an immunochemistry and molecular virology laboratory. He organized and led the residency training program in dermatology and collaborated in early human papilloma virus research. He returned to the faculty of the University of Minnesota Medical School in 1973 to continue his HPV research, which ultimately resulted in the formation of Molecular Genetics, Inc. in 1979. Dr. Pass formed MOGEN, a Dutch plant biotechnology research company that today is part of Syngenta. Dr. Pass left Molecular Genetics in 1987 to found Bioseeds International, Ltd. Bioseeds was purchased by Calgene in 1990. Dr. Pass then became CEO of Medi-Ject Corporation, assembled a cadre of engineers and greatly advanced the mechanics of needle-free drug delivery. Medi-Ject was merged with a Swiss drug delivery company in 2000 and today is Antares Pharma, Inc. In all, Dr. Pass has been a co-founder and CEO of six companies in the field of agricultural biotechnology, drug delivery, pharmaceutical discovery and diagnostics, three of which became public corporations with eventual shareholder value in excess of $4.0 billion. He has been a co-founder and leader of three professional associations and served as a director of several civic arts organizations. His academic and industry contributions in the field of HPV helped to delineate the role of HPV in human cancer and in the design of papilloma virus vaccines, and he supported the fundamental development of genetically modified corn. Dr. Pass has published over forty scientific papers.
Mark I. Greene, M.D., Ph.D. is Co-Founder and a Director. Mark provides vision and inspiration for this Business Plan. Since his discovery of HER2/neu in 1978, and the design of the first HER2 monoclonal antibody drug (Herceptin for mice in 1986), he has worked continuously designing novel HER2 drugs and diagnostics. Over the years he has worked closely with his university’s technology transfer group, and they jointly share royalties generated from his earlier discoveries. His relationships with professors, Czerniecki (HER2 vaccination), Zhang (ELISA reagents) and Eberwine (detection technology) served to expedite our access. We believe his recent work with tumor immunity (Cell Reports, in press) could be the “next big thing” in HER2 BC management.
Douglas A. Kremer, Director — Doug is the founder and CEO of TerraMax, Inc., an agricultural biotechnology company focused upon microbial products that stimulate the growth of row crops and turf. He has been involved in cutting edge research and product development for 30 years, initially at the bench and later in management. Doug worked with Dr. Pass at two early stage biotechnology ventures dating back to 1980.
Dr. Arkadiusz Dudek, Director — Arek's background includes over 16 years in clinical management of cancer as a medical oncologist, over 16 years of cancer clinical research experience, and over 11 years in the field of tumor angiogenesis, signal transduction, and cancer immunotherapy. His expertise is in design and execution of clinical trials for cancer therapy with a special interest in the development of biomarker driven discovery of novel cancer therapeutics. He has 16 years of serving in several leadership positions in clinical trial offices at the University of Minnesota and the University of Illinois. He chairs and manages a broad range of clinical trials (from phase 1 through phase 3, from cooperative group, investigator-initiated, and industry sponsored studies) either therapeutic or non-therapeutic. He authored and co-authored more than 100 cancer related publications.
William P. Pilacinski, Ph.D., Director— Bill trained in microbiology and biochemistry. He has thirty-one years of experience in molecular biology as a research scientist and in international regulatory affairs. His seminal work on the development of a vaccine against bovine papillomavirus at Molecular Genetics, Inc. was used to support the development of the current HPV vaccine, a multi-billion dollar commercial success. His contributions in international licensing while working at Monsanto played a large role in the introduction of genetically modified food crops in Asia. Now retired, his consulting activity with WP Consulting, LLC, supports US Agency for International Development (USAID) research programs in Asia.
Patricia E. Tam, Ph.D., Consultant & Chairman of our Scientific Advisory Board — Patty's experience in microbiology, molecular biology and immunology was gained through academic and industry roles over the past twenty-five years, beginning in 1990 at the University of Minnesota Medical School and most recently as Executive Director of R&D at Syntiron, a vaccine development company. Patty has extensive grant preparation experience and has managed projects totaling over $10 million in federal funding.
Hongtao Zhang, Ph.D., Consultant — Hongtao has been a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine since 2007. He graduated from University of Pennsylvania in 1999 with a Ph.D. degree in Pharmacology. Currently he focuses on the receptor — targeted therapies using antibodies, antibody-like proteins, and small molecules. He is also devoted to the identification of serum biomarkers that can help the diagnosis and provide therapeutic guidance for breast cancer and melanoma. He has published more than 60 papers and serves as an editorial board member for several journals. He has been involved as a scientific consultant in several biotech startup companies.
Richard Krzyzek, Ph.D., Consultant — Richard is a member of our Scientific Advisory Board. Richard is a molecular biologist, who began his career as a postdoc in a University of Minnesota lab with Dr. Pass. He joined Frank at Molecular Genetics in 1980 and recently retired from R&D Systems, a major manufacturer of biologic reagents, where he was VP of R&D.
Brian J. Czerniecki, M.D., Ph.D. — Brian is a breast surgeon at the University of Pennsylvania Hospitals. He is recognized as a leader in the practice of HER2 tumor vaccination and a member of our Scientific Advisory Board. Brian will soon include HERTEST in his vaccination protocols.
Beverly Ogden, M.D. — Beverly is the pathologist at Woman’s Hospital, Baton Rouge, and responsible for the clinical diagnostic laboratory. She began using sHER2/neu testing as early as 1999 and is on record for uncovering 23 “hidden” HER2 tumors in the first two years. Bev is a member of our Medical Advisory Board and will collaborate with the UIC team monitoring serum HER2 in a population starting chemotherapy prior to surgery.