SPEAKERS

DR. BRIAN LEYLAND JONES
Former Director of Emory and McGill Cancer Centers
CMO National Foundation for Cancer Research
Chief Science Officer, The Darwin Foundation

Brian Leyland-Jones, BSc (Ist class Hons), MB BS, PhD, FRACP, FRCPC is the Chief Medical Officer and Scientific Advisory Board Member for the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) and Chief Scientific Officer of The Darwin Foundation.   He also serves as the Chief Medical Officer of OTraces, Xylonix and the N OF 1 Mission, collectively devoted to the implementation of prevention and cure of malignancy globally.  He sits on several national and international boards including the Asian Foundation for Cancer Research (AFCR), NED Biosystems, Non-Pareil, Ratio and is Director Emeritus for the WIN Consortium.  He founded Xanthus, AKESOgen and Viviphi.

Dr.  Leyland-Jones holds biochemistry, medical, and doctoral degrees from the University of London. Following residency training at Hammersmith, Brompton, St. Bartholomew’s and London hospitals, he completed a clinical pharmacology fellowship at Cornell University and a medical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. He then joined the academic staff at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and New York Hospitals with a special research interest in Early Phase clinical, clinical pharmacological and biomarker evaluation of many anticancer compounds, including the platinums and anthracycline analogs in use today. In 1983, he moved to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to head the Developmental Chemotherapy section. During his time with the NCI, he was responsible for the overall development of approximately 70 anti-cancer compounds in various stages of transition from in-vitro screening to Phase III clinical trials, including overseeing the early development of paclitaxel in Phase 1 and 2 trials. From 1990 to 2000, he served as founding chair of Oncology and director of the McGill University Comprehensive Cancer Centre. He recruited and built a broad multifaceted cancer centre, including a robust cross-hospital clinical trials enterprise, with deep clinical pharmacologic and biomarker support. Dr. Leyland-Jones continued as the Minda de Gunzberg Chair in Oncology and professor of medicine at McGill University in Montreal, Canada for 7 additional years, focusing on the development and biomarker strategies of several of the new targeted oncologic agents.

He joined Emory University in 2007. As Director of the Winship Cancer Centre and Associate Vice-President of Health Sciences, Dr. Leyland-Jones lead the Centre to obtain National Cancer Institute Cancer Centre Designation, the first in the State of Georgia, and for the first time in 30 years.  Dr. Leyland-Jones was instrumental in building the Genomics Medicine Program at the Avera Cancer Institute in Sioux Falls, SD where he was the Vice President of Molecular and Experimental Medicine from 2014-2019.   Dr. Leyland-Jones’ principal academic contributions have been in the fields of anticancer therapy development, the pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacogenetics of oncological clinical trials, the translation of preclinical models into the clinic, biomarker endpoints in Phase I/II clinical trials, and screening and mechanistic studies of novel targeted and chemotherapeutic anticancer agents.

Dr. Leyland-Jones is the recipient of numerous research grants, and has served as principal, co-principal and co-investigator on more than 100 clinical studies. He has authored and co-authored more than 210 peer-reviewed articles and book contributions, 25 books and book chapters, 425 abstracts and 35 patents.  He has a robust speaking and private consulting practice that takes him all over the world.

DR. IRVING WEISSMAN

Director, Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine
Director, Stanford Ludwig Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research and Medicine
Professor of Pathology and Developmental Biology

Irving L. Weissman, is the Director of the Stanford Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine and Director of the Stanford Ludwig Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research. He is a founder of Forty Seven and was a member of the founding Scientific Advisory Boards of Amgen, DNAX and T-Cell Sciences. He co-founded, was a Director and chaired the Scientific Advisory Board at SyStemix, StemCells, Inc. and Cellerant. His research encompasses the biology and evolution of stem cells and progenitor cells. His lab was first to prospectively isolate mouse and human blood stem cells, and he also was a co-isolater of the human brain forming stem cells. At SyStemix and Stem Cells, Inc, these cells were brought into successful early stage clinical trials. He is also engaged in isolating and characterizing the rare cancer and leukemia stem cells. He discovered that cancer stem cells express CD47, the ‘don’t eat me’ signal, to overcome prophagocytic signals that arise during cancer development. Irv is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine and the American Association of Arts and Sciences. He has received many awards, including the Pasarow Award in Cancer Research, California Scientist of the Year, the De Villiers International Achievement Award of the Leukemia Society of America, the Robert Koch Award, the Rosenstiel Award, the Max Delbruck Medal, and the Jessie Stevenson Kovalenko Award of the National Academy of Sciences. He has several honorary doctorates.  Irv is the co-founder of several noted oncology companies, including, most recently, FortySeven.

DR. RONALD A. DEPINHO
Former President, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Ron DePinho is an internationally-known leader and recognized for his groundbreaking discoveries in cancer, aging, and age-associated degenerative disorders. His pioneering work and collaborative initiatives across multiple disciplines has yielded better methods of early cancer detection, improved cancer patient care, and new cancer drugs.

With a medical, clinical and scientific research career spanning decades, Dr. DePinho served with distinction as MD Anderson Cancer Center’s fourth president from 2011-2017. At the nation’s top-ranked hospital for cancer care, he conceived and launched a Cancer Moon Shots Program designed to more rapidly convert knowledge into dramatic reductions in cancer suffering and death. This multi-billion dollar initiative involving nearly 2,000 faculty and staff has yielded many practice-changing advances in a number of cancers and inspired the national moon shot program.

By those who know him well, DePinho is described as an eternal optimist and a passionate, visionary thinker. His inspiration for the ambitious and lofty Moon Shots goal came from America’s drive a generation ago to put a man on the moon. “Nothing is impossible if you put your mind to it and cancer patients and their families are counting on us,” DePinho says. “This has become my passion and life’s work to take my diverse background and collaborative insights to make a meaningful difference for as many lives as possible.” 

MD Anderson Cancer Center

During his six-year tenure as MD Anderson President, DePinho dramatically expanded and improved basic research programs, enhanced the graduate program, recruited many world class faculty, modernized its translational and digital research infrastructure, secured record philanthropy and clinical revenue, and expanded MD Anderson’s global network to 34 institutions in 24 countries, reaching one-third of the global population.

DePinho’s sense of urgency continues today as a faculty member in the Department of Cell Biology at MD Anderson where he leads a research lab of 20 researchers. His most celebrated discoveries include the elucidation of a core molecular pathway for aging, the determination of the basis for the intimate link between advancing age and increased cancer incidence and the demonstration that aging can be reversed.

FRED NAZEM
Executive, Venture Capitalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
GP of Seven Venture Capital Funds

Former CEO/Chairman of Oxford Health

Fred Nazem, entrepreneur and philanthropist, has founded or financed several multi-billion dollar corporations. Known also as a turnaround specialist, he led the reorganization and successful reversal of Oxford Health Plans which was later sold to United Healthcare for $5 billion. He is a corporate architect, biochemist, high tech innovator, investor and leader.

Fred Nazem began his career in the financial industry in the late 1970's. As founder of Nazem and Company, he managed seven private venture capital funds and a joint venture in partnership with Banque National De Paris of France. In the four decades since its founding, Mr. Nazem has started, financed or guided more than three hundred cutting edge enterprises. With an ever-expanding width of experience, he has defined new fields and ideas in finance, high technology and healthcare. Several of the companies founded by Mr. Nazem have become multi-billion dollar enterprises. A most recent venture is Rejuvenan Global Health, a highly digital, membership based healthcare delivery system which provides its members with the knowledge and tools they need to own and manage their health and the health of their families.

Mr. Nazem is also well-known for his role as a turnaround specialist. In 1997, as Chairman of Oxford Health Plans, he led the reorganization and successful reversal as the company experienced operational and financial difficulties. Oxford was later sold to the United Health Group for $5 billion. As director of one of America's most prominent family fortunes, Mr. Nazem orchestrated a dramatic turnaround from near bankruptcy to a ranking on the Forbes 400 list for wealthiest people of the world. He has namaged private wealth for four decades and currently is Managing Partner of Hedgeworth Capital, a private fund founded in 2003.

Alongside his business ventures, Mr. Nazem devotes much of his time and energy to important philanthropic concerns. Primarily working through the Nazem Family Foundation, he has supported many civic, educational and healthcare-related cases. He currently serves on the Science and Technology Advisory Board of Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. Furthermore, he is a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts and the Economic Club of New York. Mr. Nazem is a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, an award granted to American citizens of diverse origins for their outstanding contributions to the United States.

Fred Nazem received a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry from Ohio State University, a Master of Science in physical chemistry from University of Cincinnati and an MBA in finance from Columbia University. He also did doctoral work in quantum physics at Washington University. Mr. Nazem worked as a chemist at Keebler and Company, and Matheson Coleman and Bell before he ventured to Wall Street. He served as a securities analyst and Assistant Vice President at Irving Trust Company (now Bank of New York) before founding his own venture capital firm.

DR. ANDREW LO

Charles E. and Susan T. Harris Professor, a Professor of Finance
Director of the Laboratory for Financial Engineering at the MIT Sloan School of Management

Named TIME’s “100 most influential people in the world”

Andrew W. Lo is the Charles E. and Susan T. Harris Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, director of the MIT Laboratory for Financial Engineering, a principal investigator at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, and an affiliated faculty member of the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. He is also an external faculty member of the Santa Fe Institute and a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research.

He has published numerous articles in finance and economics journals (see http://alo.mit.edu), and has authored several books including Adaptive Markets: Financial Evolution at the Speed of Thought, The Econometrics of Financial Markets, A Non-Random Walk Down Wall Street, Hedge Funds: An Analytic Perspective, and The Evolution of Technical Analysis. He is currently co-editor of the Annual Review of Financial Economics and advisor to the Journal of Investment Management and the Journal of Portfolio Management.

Lo’s current research spans five areas: evolutionary models of investor behavior and adaptive markets, systemic risk and financial regulation, quantitative models of financial markets, financial applications of machine-learning techniques and secure multi-party computation, and healthcare finance.  Recent projects include: deriving risk aversion, loss aversion, probability matching, and other behaviors as emergent properties of evolution in stochastic environments; constructing new measures of systemic risk and comparing them across time and systemic events; applying spectral analysis to investment strategies to decompose returns into fundamental frequencies; and developing new statistical tools for predicting clinical trial outcomes, incorporating patient preferences into the drug approval process, and accelerating biomedical innovation via novel financing structures.

Alongside his business ventures, Mr. Nazem devotes much of his time and energy to important philanthropic concerns. Primarily working through the Nazem Family Foundation, he has supported many civic, educational and healthcare-related cases. He currently serves on the Science and Technology Advisory Board of Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. Furthermore, he is a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts and the Economic Club of New York. Mr. Nazem is a recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, an award granted to American citizens of diverse origins for their outstanding contributions to the United States.

His awards include Batterymarch, Guggenheim, and Sloan Fellowships; the Paul A. Samuelson Award; the Eugene Fama Prize; the IAFE-SunGard Financial Engineer of the Year; the Global Association of Risk Professionals Risk Manager of the Year; the Harry M. Markowitz Award; the Managed Futures Pinnacle Achievement Award; one of TIME’s “100 most influential people in the world”; and awards for teaching excellence from both Wharton and MIT. His book Adaptive Markets has also received a number of awards, listed here. He is a Fellow of Academia Sinica; the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the Econometric Society; and the Society of Financial Econometrics.

Lo received a B.A. in economics from Yale University in 1980 and an A.M. and Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1984. From 1984 to 1988, he was an assistant and associate professor of finance at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. He has been at MIT since 1988.

DR. ROY S. HERBST

Ensign Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology) and Professor of Pharmacology
Chief of Medical Oncology, Yale Cancer Center and Smilow Cancer Hospital
Associate Cancer Center Director for Translational Research, Yale Cancer Center

Dr. Herbst is nationally recognized for his leadership and expertise in lung cancer treatment and research. He is best known for his work in developmental therapeutics and the personalized therapy of non-small cell lung cancer, in particular the process of linking genetic abnormalities of cancer cells to novel therapies.

 

Prior to his appointment at Yale, Dr. Herbst was the Barnhart Distinguished Professor and Chief of the Section of Thoracic Medical Oncology in the Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology, at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (UT-MDACC) in Houston, Texas. He also served as Professor in the Department of Cancer Biology and Co-Director of the Phase I Clinical Trials Program.

Dr. Herbst’s primary mission is the enhanced integration of clinical, laboratory, and research programs to bring new treatments to cancer patients. He has led the Phase I development of several of the new generation of targeted agents for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), including gefitinib, erlotinib, cetuximab, and bevacizumab. More recently, he participated in the successful registration of pembrolizumab for the treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer, following the successful Yale-led KEYNOTE 10 study of the immune therapy drug commonly used to treat other cancers. He was co-leader for the BATTLE-1 clinical trial program, co-leads the subsequent BATTLE-2 clinical trial program, and served as a Co-program Leader of the Developmental Therapeutics Program for the YCC Support Grant. Dr. Herbst’s laboratory work is focused on immunotherapy angiogenesis; dual epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)/vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) inhibition in NSCLC, and targeting KRAS-activated pathways. More recently, he has explored predictive biomarkers for the use of immunotherapy agents. This work has been translated from the preclinical to clinical setting in multiple Phase II and III studies which he has led.

After earning a B.S. and M.S. degree from Yale University, Dr. Herbst earned his M.D. at Cornell University Medical College and his Ph.D. in molecular cell biology at The Rockefeller University in New York City, New York. His postgraduate training included an internship and residency in medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. His clinical fellowships in medicine and hematology were completed at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, respectively. Subsequently, Dr. Herbst completed a M.S. degree in clinical translational research at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Dr. Herbst is an author or co-author of more than 275 publications, including peer-reviewed journal articles, abstracts, and book chapters. His work has been published in many prominent journals, such as the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Clinical Cancer Research, Lancet, the New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature. His abstracts have been presented at the annual meetings of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), the World Conference on Lung Cancer, the Society of Nuclear Medicine Conference, and the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer.

Dr. Herbst was a member of the National Cancer Policy Forum (1998-2014) for which he organized an Institute of Medicine meeting focused on policy issues in personalized medicine. He is a member of ASCO and, as a member of AACR, he chairs the Tobacco Task Force. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and an elected member of the Association of American Physicians. Dr. Herbst is also a member of the medical advisory committee for the Lung Cancer Research Foundation and chair of the communications committee for ASCO and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer.

He is currently the Vice Chair for Developmental Therapeutics for the Southwestern Oncology Group (SWOG) Lung Committee, Principal Investigator of the SWOG 0819 trial, and steering committee chair for the Lung Master Protocol (Lung MAP). Dr. Herbst was awarded the 2010 Waun Ki Hong Award for Excellence in Team Science by the Division of Cancer Medicine, UT-MDACC. The Alvin S. Slotnick Lecture Award for notable contributions to lung cancer research was bestowed upon him by Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center in 2014. That same year, the Bonnie Addario Foundation honored him with the Annual Addario Lectureship Award and the Bonnie J. Addario Excellence in Collaboration and Innovation Award. In 2015, the Clinical Research Forum presented his project “Predictive Correlates of Response to the Anti-PD-L1 Antibody MPDL3280A in Cancer Patients” its top Clinical Research Achievement Award in the United States for 2015. For his lifetime achievement in scientific contributions to thoracic cancer research, Herbst was awarded the 2016 Paul A. Bunn, Jr. Scientific Award by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer at IASLC 17th World Conference on Lung Cancer in Vienna, Austria. His work has been funded by ASCO, AACR, the United States Department of Defense, and the National Cancer Institute. In 2015, his team at Yale was awarded a lung cancer SPORE by the NCI, and he serves as a principal investigator for the AACR/ Stand Up to Cancer Dream Team grant.

MARIO SZNOL, MD

Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology)

Co-Leader, Cancer Immunology, Yale Cancer Center

Co-Director, Yale SPORE in Skin Cancer

Dr. Mario Sznol is a Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology) at Yale and Co-Director of the Cancer Immunology Program and Leader of the Melanoma/Renal Cancer Translational Research Team at Yale Cancer Center. Dr. Sznol, formerly with the National Cancer Institute (NCI), has an international reputation in cancer drug development. His expertise and experience are in cancer immunotherapy, drug development for cancer and treatment of patients with melanoma and renal cell carcinoma. Dr. Sznol has contributed to the development of cytokines, cell therapies, co-stimulatory antibodies and immune checkpoint inhibitors, through the design, execution and analyses of clinical trials and clinical development plans as well as through direct patient care.

After completing a fellowship in medical oncology at Mount Sinai College of Medicine in 1987, he joined the NCI as a Senior Investigator in the Investigational Drug Branch (IDB), Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program (CTEP). From 1994-1999, Dr. Sznol was head of the Biologics Evaluation Program, IDB, CTEP where he was responsible for clinical development of multiple biological and immune therapy agents. In 1999, he left NCI to become Vice President of Clinical Development for Vion Pharmaceuticals. He joined the Yale faculty in medical oncology in 2004.

BRINDA EMU, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine (Infectious Diseases), Yale School of Medicine                                        

Dr. Emu received her B.A. from Harvard University and her M.D. from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She completed an Internal Medicine residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and fellowship in Infectious Diseases at the University of California, San Francisco. She remained on faculty at UCSF from 2004 to 2009, studying immune correlates of protection in HIV-infected individuals. Dr Emu then worked as Medical Director in early clinical development at Genentech, Inc in South San Francisco (2009-2012). While at Genentech, she focused on development of novel therapeutic approaches to unmet needs in infectious diseases.

Dr. Emu joined the Division of Infectious Diseases at Yale School of Medicine in 2013. Her laboratory studies the intersection of chronic viral infection and oncology, with a focus on HIV-associated malignancies. 

PAOLA A. ASCIERTO, MD

Vice-Director of the Unit of Melanoma, Cancer Immunotherapy and Innovative Therapy                    Unit of Melanoma, Cancer Immunotherapy and Innovative Therapy
National Tumor Institute Fondazione G. Pascale, Naples, Italy

Paolo A. Ascierto, MD, is Vice-Director of the Unit of Melanoma, Cancer Immunotherapy and Innovative Therapy at the National Tumor Institute Fondazione G. Pascale in Naples (Italy). He earned his medical degree from the University of Naples, where he earned board certification in oncology. Before the present position he previously served there as a postdoctoral fellow and then vice director of the Department of Clinical Immunology. Moreover, he was the Director of the Unit of Medical Oncology and Innovative Therapy in the period April 2008- July 2011. Major research interests have included genetics and proteomics research of melanoma, apoptosis and cell death in human cancer, assessment of new molecular markers for tumor progression in patients with malignant melanoma, as well as targeted therapies for melanoma, biochemical and immunological monitoring, and vaccination treatments. He has served as principal investigator in numerous clinical trials and has been well-published in peer-reviewed journals on topics related to his interests. Dr. Ascierto serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Translational Medicine, the Combination Products in Therapy, the Journal of Skin Cancer, the Journal of Molecular Biomarkers & Diagnosis, Dataset Papers in Medicine, The Journal of OncoPathology, and the Annals of Translational Medicine. He is the Editor in Chief of the Combination Strategies section of the Journal of Translational Medicine. He has been an invited speaker at more than 200 national and international meetings, and maintains active memberships in several medical societies in Italy and abroad.

DR. ALFRED SLANETZ

CEO, Geneius Biotechnology

Former CEO, Bluebird Bio

Former Head of Product Development, Genetech

Dr. Slanetz is the founder of Geneius Biotechnology and has been President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of the Company full time since its inception. Prior to co-founding the Company, he served as Chief Executive Officer and President of Bluebird Bio.

 

Dr. Slanetz also served as Vice President, Business Development of TRANSGENE in May 1996. From 1994 to 1996, he served as Manager, New Product Planning and Development at Genentech Inc. Prior to that, Dr. Slanetz was a Management Consultant for Arthur D. Little.

 

He received his Ph.D. in Molecular and Immunobiology from Yale University, as well as a Masters from Brown University.

ROBBIN COLE GOODMAN

Director of Business Programs and Corporate Affairs
George H. W. Bush Foundation for U.S.-China Relations

Mr. Goodman is an inaugural team member of the George H. W. Bush Foundation for U.S.-China Relations, where he serves as the director of business programs and corporate affairs, leading the Bush China Foundation’s work as a national-level resource for businesses and communities who want to realize opportunities in the United States and China through increased business, trade, and investment. He regularly engages with state and local officials, businesses, investors, and economic development organizations to provide a deeper understanding of the U.S. and Chinese polity, economy, and market and to connect businesses and investors in both the United States and China in order to maximize the economic potential of the bilateral relationship. 


In his capacity as program manager for business, trade and investment at The University of Texas at Austin China Public Policy Center, Mr. Goodman served as a key connector for businesses in Texas and throughout the heartland of the United States to resources and opportunities in greater China. From energy companies in Corpus Christi to high-tech firms in Austin to agricultural producers across the U.S. heartland, Mr. Goodman provided guidance and assistance to a wide-range of businesses, investors and local community leaders in optimizing their business, trade and investment relationships with China.

 

Mr. Goodman was previously responsible for general business administration and public relations at China’s largest greenfield investment in the United States, TEDA TPCO America Corporation, a $1.2 billion dollar investment in Corpus Christi, Texas and has spent significant time studying and conducting research in China, including co-authoring and publishing academic papers in geosciences and environmental management, with researchers from the China University of Geoscience and Tianjin Normal University.

Mr. Goodman is certified at the superior level in Chinese from the University of Mississippi
- Chinese Language Flagship and holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and master’s in
business administration from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. He is a current board
member for the World Affair’s Council of South Texas.

© 2020 Oncology Investor Conference Series