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General Session [clear filter]
Monday, September 19

8:30am EDT

Chairperson’s Opening Remarks
avatar for Michelle Benz

Michelle Benz

Senior Conference Producer, Questex - Fierce Life Sciences
avatar for Rebecca Willumson

Rebecca Willumson

Senior Vice President & Publisher, Questex; Fierce Life Sciences
Rebecca Willumson is the Senior Vice President of Questex's Life Sciences and Healthcare media divisions and the Publisher of FierceBiotech, FiercePharma and FierceHealthcare.  She is responsible for overseeing the sales, editorial, and operations functions of the group’s digital... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 8:30am - 8:45am EDT

8:45am EDT

Keynote: Perseverance (and Innovation) Pay in Biotech
With a sharp decline in the XBI, the poor performance of recent IPOs and dwindling balance sheets at countless companies, these are challenging times in the biotech market. But they are not unprecedented. In this keynote address, Mersana Therapeutics CEO Anna Protopapas discusses the sector’s ups and downs and shares key insights and learnings from her two decades of leadership at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Takeda and Mersana, a former Fierce 15 award winner.

avatar for Anna Protopapas

Anna Protopapas

President and Chief Executive Officer, Mersana Therapeutics
Anna joined Mersana in March 2015, bringing a substantial track record of executive leadership and business experience in the biotech industry. Prior to Mersana, Anna was President of Millennium, where she led Takeda Pharmaceutical Co.’s $1.3 billion oncology business. Anna also... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 8:45am - 9:15am EDT

9:15am EDT

Partner Keynote: Innovations in BioManufacturing, a CDMO perspective
  • This year marks the 40th year of the approval of the first FDA approve biotechnology drug. Our industry has evolved tremendously and we have seen incredible changes to make life impacting medicines available.
  • We have seen an evolution and expansion in the modalities that are going through the drug development life cycle. Biomanufacturing needs to be ready with the required infrastructure, innovation, flexibility and expertise to deliver these treatments.
  • CDMOs, such as FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, are implementing innovations that will drive the future of Biomanufacturing. Innovation in the CDMO spaces, can be different than innovation from discovery and molecule ownership and will bring different value.

avatar for Christine E. Vannais

Christine E. Vannais

Chief Operating Officer, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies
Christine Vannais is a seasoned professional with over twenty years of experience working in a variety of industries including contract biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing, USDA biological vaccine manufacturing and research, FDA and EU small molecule manufacturing, primary... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 9:15am - 9:45am EDT

9:45am EDT

Panel: Battling Biotech’s Bear Market
There’s no doubt that biotech is facing tough times: shares are in freefall, investors have shut off the tap that flowed in the wake of the COVID crisis, clinical results are beginning to thin the good ideas from the bad and small companies are being forced to lay off staff. How can companies stay afloat, raise money and keep alive in this bear market?

avatar for Querida Anderson

Querida Anderson

Managing Editor, Fierce Biotech
Querida Anderson is the managing editor for Fierce Biotech, Healthcare, Medtech and Pharma. Before joining Fierce in June 2021, she was the editor in chief of GlobalData’s investigative pharma news team, formerly known as BioPharm Insight when it was owned by the Financial Times... Read More →

avatar for Stefan Vitorovic, M.S., M.B.A.

Stefan Vitorovic, M.S., M.B.A.

Co-Founder and Managing Director,, Vida Ventures
Stefan Vitorovic is Co-Founder and Managing Director at Vida Ventures.Prior to co-founding Vida Ventures, Stefan was an investment professional at Third Rock Ventures, an early-stage life sciences venture capital firm. At Third Rock, he was part of the founding team of Decibel Therapeutics... Read More →
avatar for Maha Katabi, CFA

Maha Katabi, CFA

General Partner, Sofinnova Investments
Maha Katabi is an experienced investor with over two decades in managing public and private biotech companies through bull and bear markets. She is focused on investing in development stage biopharmaceuticals and is currently a member of the board of directors of Aerovate (AVTE... Read More →
avatar for Adam Friedman, M.D., Ph.D.

Adam Friedman, M.D., Ph.D.

President, Corporate Strategy & Business Development, Scorpion Therapeutics
Dr. Friedman has been Scorpion Therapeutics’ President, Corporate Strategy & Business Development since September 2021, after serving as interim Chief Executive Officer between February 2021 and August 2021, as Executive Vice President, Corporate Development & Operations from July... Read More →
avatar for Marian Nakada, Ph.D.

Marian Nakada, Ph.D.

Vice President, Venture Investments, JJDC
Marian Nakada, VP Venture Investments for Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JJDC, has over 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, starting her career at the laboratory bench at Centocor and moving to a research leadership role before Centocor’s acquisition by Johnson... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 9:45am - 10:30am EDT

11:00am EDT

Panel: The R&D Dilemma: Embracing New Modalities vs. Tried-and-True Approaches
The last few decades have seen the biotech industry lead the charge in R&D innovation. But as companies look for ways to differentiate their products, R&D efforts have shifted from small molecules to exploring more advanced therapies. Is this the right approach for every company? Developing a molecule that doesn’t progress as hoped can be make or break for a biotech and have a drastic impact on their ability to raise capital or find partners.  
This session will explore the pros and cons of sticking to an area of research that is tried and tested vs. embracing new modalities of treatment, and how to navigate the unique challenges of emerging modalities such as the ability to manufacture these treatments.

avatar for Michelle Benz

Michelle Benz

Senior Conference Producer, Questex - Fierce Life Sciences

avatar for Mike Ellis, PhD

Mike Ellis, PhD

Senior Vice President of Small Molecule Drug Discovery, Bristol Myers Squibb
Mike Ellis, PhD, serves as the senior vice president of Small Molecule Drug Discovery (SMDD). Mike and the SMDD team partner with cross-functional scientists throughout Bristol Myers Squibb’s network of thematic research centers to create and advance potentially transformational... Read More →
avatar for Iris Grossman, PhD

Iris Grossman, PhD

Chief Therapeutics Officer, Eleven Therapeutics
On the leading edge of Personalized Medicine & Data Analytics ~20 yearsWorked for or consulted for 4 of the top Big PharmaLed, as CSO, platform-driven start-ups into therapeutic entities with broad pipelines & capabilities, including a multi-year multi-million Dollar partnershipChampioned... Read More →
avatar for Charles Lin Ph.D.

Charles Lin Ph.D.

Sr. Vice President, Biology, Kronos Bio, Inc.

Monday September 19, 2022 11:00am - 11:45am EDT

11:45am EDT

The Time is Now: How Scaling Biotechs can Grow in a Difficult Economy
Since the 2008 Great Recession, the life sciences market has seen record infusion of venture capital (VC) dollars in early-stage, scaling biotech firms. And while VC has pulled back somewhat over the last couple of years as companies brace for recession, investing remains strong—the year-to-date VC totals for 2022 already exceed 2019 levels.

So with so many of them poised to begin growing, these biotechs need to navigate the challenges and opportunities that come with scaling in a difficult economic environment—especially taking into consideration their real estate infrastructure and facilities. In this session, you’ll learn how scaling life sciences firms can think strategically about their office, lab and manufacturing spaces—in a way that conserves capital while helping to rapidly boost productivity and accelerate scientific development.

avatar for David Lucchino

David Lucchino

Co-founder, President and CEO, Frequency Therapeutics
David is a life sciences CEO and entrepreneur with nearly two decades of executive leadership experience, having played an integral role in launching, building and operating several successful companies in both the biotech and medical device industries. Over the course of his career... Read More →
avatar for Bob Coughlin

Bob Coughlin

Managing Director, Life Sciences, JLL
Mr. Coughlin is a Managing Director at JLL and is the New England’s Life Science Practice Group lead. He specializes in the representation of lab, GMP manufacturing and technology space. Robert delivers creative solutions that align real estate strategies with scientific business... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 11:45am - 12:15pm EDT

12:15pm EDT

Presentation: Building Solutions for the “Future Lab”
avatar for Don O'Neil

Don O'Neil

Chief Commercialization Officer, Curiox Biosystems
Don O'Neil earned his Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from University of California San Diego, an MBA from Cornell, and brings to Curiox 25 years of sales and marketing expertise in life science research, pharmaceuticals, sequencing, and diagnostics. His life science experience... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 12:15pm - 12:30pm EDT

1:30pm EDT

Fireside Chat with Fierce Biotech Editorial Team
avatar for Fraiser Kansteiner

Fraiser Kansteiner

Staff Writer, Fierce Biotech
Fraiser Kansteiner is a staff writer at Fierce Pharma. He joined the Fierce team in 2020 and covers topics such as manufacturing, COVID-19 and drug delivery. He also manages Fierce Biotech and Fierce Pharma’s LinkedIn showcase pages. Before diving into pharma reporting, Fraiser... Read More →
avatar for Sharon Barr

Sharon Barr

Senior Vice President, Head of Research and Product Development, Alexion, AstraZeneca Rare Disease
Sharon is responsible for drug discovery and early development as well as discovery and development of diagnostics, data sciences, genomics, bioinformatics, clinical biomarkers, and bioanalytical sciences supporting the Alexion pipeline. With more than 18 years of industry experience... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 1:30pm - 2:00pm EDT

2:00pm EDT

Panel: Setting a Foundation for Success Through Innovative and Diverse Clinical Trial Design
Clinical trials can often face delays if there are unexpected changes to the trial design or difficulty attracting qualified patients. The cost implications of pivoting can dramatically increase when it comes to Phase III trials, and it's imperative for companies to ensure they are picking the right design for their needs. This panel will discuss innovative approaches to design clinical trials, new ways to increase diversity and inclusion in clinical trials, methods to integrate biomarkers, endpoint evaluation and exclusionary criteria to improve efficiency.

avatar for José Trevejo, MD, PhD

José Trevejo, MD, PhD

Chief Medical Officer, Tarsus Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
José brings his experience and passion for leading research and development teams in the advancement of novel therapeutics for serious and rare diseases. Before joining Tarsus, José served as Chief Development Officer for Rocket Pharmaceuticals and CEO of the non-viral gene therapy... Read More →

avatar for William Lee, Ph.D.

William Lee, Ph.D.

Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, Cell & Gene Therapy Development, Allucent
Dr. Lee has more than 25 years’ research and industrial experience in gene therapy, cellular immunology, and therapeutic vaccines, including 15 years in regulatory affairs. In his current position as Vice President, Cell and Gene Therapy Development at CATO SMS, Dr. Lee is involved... Read More →
avatar for Kimberly Doggett

Kimberly Doggett

Head of Clinical Trial Diversity and Program Delivery Leads, UCB
Kim Doggett is the Head Diversity in Clinical Trials and Program Delivery Leads at UCB Biosciences, Inc. based in Morrisville, NC. Kim has worked in the clinical trial industry for 20+ years with experience managing small and large development programs and teams. Her passion is patients... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 2:00pm - 2:45pm EDT

2:45pm EDT

Panel: Evaluate Innovative Deal Structures and How to Find the Right Partner
This session will cover deal making within the biotech industry and what to look for when evaluating potential partners from both the big pharma and biotech sides. What are the red flags to be aware of? What are the green flags to look for? There are many factors that impact who you should partner with and what to be looking for in a partner depending on the strategy. This panel will hear from several experienced deal makers who can speak to the motivations, decision-making process, and outcomes while finding the right partner.

avatar for Sarah Hogan

Sarah Hogan

Partner, WilmerHale
Sarah Hogan, a Partner at WilmerHale, advises companies in the life sciences and digital health industries in connection with structuring and negotiating intellectual property licenses, strategic collaborations and other complex commercial transactions. Drawing on her scientific background... Read More →

avatar for Abbas Kazimi

Abbas Kazimi

Chief Business Officer, Nimbus Therapeutics
Abbas Kazimi is Chief Business Officer at Nimbus Therapeutics. Over the course of his tenure at Nimbus he has helped drive multiple transformative transactions and has evolved the company’s business development and partnering strategy. In his role, he is also responsible for expanding... Read More →
avatar for Imran Nasrullah, MS, JD

Imran Nasrullah, MS, JD

Vice President & Head, Collaborate2Cure Hub US, Business Development & Licensing, Bayer Pharmaceuticals
Imran Nasrullah is an intrapreneur driving external innovation with entrepreneurs.  He possesses 25 years of business development & licensing, strategy, economic development, and technology transfer experience. Currently, Imran is Vice President and Head of the Collaborate to Cure... Read More →
avatar for Rachel Zolot Schwartz, MBA

Rachel Zolot Schwartz, MBA

VP, Head of Business Development and Commercial, Volastra Therapeutics
Rachel Zolot Schwartz is Head of Business Development & Commercial at Volastra Therapeutics, where she led the diligence, negotiation and contracting for the company’s first major pharma partnership, an up to $1.1B discovery deal with Bristol Myers Squibb. She has developed the... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 2:45pm - 3:30pm EDT

4:00pm EDT

Data Integrity and High-Velocity Biotech Business with Digital Twins
As fast-growing biotech organizations are pressed to accelerate research through clinical trials, modern technologies that create digital twins of the scientific process are needed to enable businesses to deliver faster results. Join Dr. Vasu Rangadass as he explores emerging digital technologies such as digital twins and pre-validated unified platforms that provide data integrity and increased velocity. Dr. Rangadass will also draw from recent case studies to illuminate these simplified information architectures that help correlate scientific processes to product and patient outcomes.

avatar for Vasu Rangadass, PhD

Vasu Rangadass, PhD

President & CEO, L7 Informatics, Inc.
Vasu Rangadass, Ph.D., President and CEO at L7 Informatics, Inc., is a leader in enterprise-scale digital transformation and automation of scientific processes. Previously, Dr. Rangadass was the Chief Strategy Officer at NantHealth following its acquisition of Net.Orange, the company... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 4:00pm - 4:30pm EDT

4:30pm EDT

Panel: Fierce 15 - What does it mean to be Fierce?
In this panel, we check in with past Fierce 15 honorees to track their journeys from start-up to the big time. Where are they now, and where are they going?

avatar for Max Bayer

Max Bayer

Staff Writer, Fierce Biotech
Max Bayer is a staff writer for Fierce Biotech. He joined after more than three years at CBS News, two of which were spent covering the twists and turns of the COVID-19 pandemic, from infection trends to CDC guidelines. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2018... Read More →

avatar for John Evans, MBA

John Evans, MBA

Chief Executive Officer and Board Member, Beam Therapeutics
John Evans joined Beam in 2017 as CEO, bringing significant experience as a company builder, dealmaker, and drug developer in the biotechnology industry.Mr. Evans was previously an early employee and member of the leadership team at Agios Pharmaceuticals, most recently serving as... Read More →
avatar for Fabrice Chouraqui, PharmD

Fabrice Chouraqui, PharmD

CEO, Cellarity
Fabrice Chouraqui, PharmD, joined Flagship Pioneering in 2020, where he serves as both CEO-Partner of Flagship Pioneering and CEO of Cellarity. Fabrice is an experienced global pharmaceutical executive with a passion for driving the progress of medical sciences and bringing innovation... Read More →
avatar for Thomas J. Schuetz, MD, PhD

Thomas J. Schuetz, MD, PhD

CEO, Compass Therapeutics
Thomas J. Schuetz, MD, PhD has over 20 years of experience in oncology, biopharmaceutical drug development and life science venture investing. He co-founded Compass in 2014 following conceptual discussions while he was a venture partner at OrbiMed. While at OrbiMed, Thomas also co-founded... Read More →
avatar for Andrew Allen, M.D., Ph.D.

Andrew Allen, M.D., Ph.D.

Co-founder, President and Chief Executive Officer, Gritstone bio
Andrew Allen, M.D., Ph.D. co-founded Gritstone bio, Inc. and has served as President, CEO and a board member since 2015. In 2009, Dr. Allen co-founded Clovis Oncology and served as Chief Medical Officer until 2015, driving development of Rucaparib, a PARP inhibitor. Prior he was Chief... Read More →

Monday September 19, 2022 4:30pm - 5:30pm EDT
Tuesday, September 20

8:45am EDT

Keynote: Succeeding in a Bear Market
The biotech market has experienced challenging times over the last year, with valuations falling and investors being more cautious with their investments. Join Jean-Paul Kress, CEO of MorphoSys, for a dynamic discussion on key steps to unlocking value and finding success during these uncertain times, including:
  1. Securing funding early on to prepare for uncertainties
  2. Establishing a clear strategic focus and making bold decisions to stay on course
  3. Finding value in innovative partnerships and M&A that strengthen your strategy

avatar for Jean-Paul Kress, M.D.

Jean-Paul Kress, M.D.

Chief Executive Officer, morphosys
As a trained physician, Jean-Paul Kress has devoted his career to bringing transformative medicines to patients. Since joining MorphoSys as CEO in September 2019, he has strategically repositioned the company from a leading antibody technology provider to a global, commercial-stage... Read More →

Tuesday September 20, 2022 8:45am - 9:15am EDT

9:15am EDT

Keynote: Bringing an Invention from Academia to the Clinic
CEO and Founder Armon Sharei, PhD, launched SQZ Biotech from a discovery made in his doctoral research at MIT. In his keynote, Dr. Sharei will discuss the journey of SQZ and the challenges that come with transforming an invention from an academic lab into a clinical-stage biotechnology company.

avatar for Armon Sharei, PhD

Armon Sharei, PhD

Chief Executive Officer and Founder, SQZ Biotechnologies
Armon Sharei, PhD, is the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of SQZ Biotechnologies, a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on unlocking the full potential of cell therapies for patients around the world and has active programs in Oncology, Autoimmune and Infectious Diseases... Read More →

Tuesday September 20, 2022 9:15am - 9:45am EDT

9:45am EDT

Panel: Leverage AI and ML to Advance Discovery and Accelerate Drug Development
Developing a therapeutic on average takes 12+ years and billions of dollars, but now with AI and machine learning, the potential to identify molecules and bring them to the clinic faster and cheaper can be a reality. But where has there been proven success applying AI and ML and does it live up to the hype?

avatar for Yaron Turpaz, Ph.D.

Yaron Turpaz, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President and Senior Advisor, Computational Discovery, Compugen
Dr. Turpaz is an SVP & Sr. Advisor, Computational Discovery at Compugen. Dr. Turpaz has more than 15 years of experience in the fields of R&D informatics, data sciences and technology in the biotech and pharma space with hands-on experience using cloud-based high throughput computational... Read More →

avatar for Jane Rhodes, PhD, MBA

Jane Rhodes, PhD, MBA

Chief Business Officer, Verge Genomics
Jane Rhodes, PhD, MBA is Chief Business Officer at Verge Genomics. Jane brings more than 25 years of drug discovery, company building and strategic leadership in the biotech industry, including 18 years at Biogen. Jane’s passion lies at the intersection of technology and life science... Read More →
avatar for Frank D. Yocca, Ph.D.

Frank D. Yocca, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President & Chief Scientific Officer, BioXcel Therapeutics
Dr. Yocca is an accomplished R&D executive and scientist with extensive experience leading global biopharmaceutical companies. He has wide-ranging expertise in leading high performance, world-class teams in drug discovery and development whose efforts have resulted in a number of... Read More →
avatar for Andrew A. Radin

Andrew A. Radin

Co-founder and CEO, Aria Pharmaceuticals
Andrew A. Radin is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Aria Pharmaceuticals. Andrew created the company’s first drug development algorithms as part of his studies in biomedical informatics at Stanford University in 2014. Since co-founding Aria, Andrew was named an Emerging... Read More →
avatar for Molly Gibson, Ph.D

Molly Gibson, Ph.D

Co-founder, Chief Strategy and Chief Innovation Officer, Generate Biomedicines
Molly serves as co-founder and chief strategy and chief innovation officer of Generate Biomedicines, a Flagship Pioneering company. At Generate, she oversees corporate strategy, platform and data strategy, and an innovation group called G:Labs that explores novel applications of the... Read More →

Tuesday September 20, 2022 9:45am - 10:30am EDT

11:00am EDT

Fireside Chat with Fierce Biotech Editorial Team
avatar for Gabrielle Masson

Gabrielle Masson

Staff Writer, Fierce Biotech
Gabrielle Masson is a staff writer for Fierce Biotech. Prior to Fierce, she worked at Becker's Hospital Review for almost three years, where she reported on public health and the pandemic. Gabrielle graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2019 after studying creative... Read More →
avatar for Geoff MacKay

Geoff MacKay

President & CEO, AVROBIO
Geoff is a pioneer in cell and gene therapy with a track record of successful leadership at innovative biotechs. He is the former CEO of Organogenesis Inc., the world’s leading cell therapy company. During his tenure at the helm, the company treated 1 million patients with living... Read More →

Tuesday September 20, 2022 11:00am - 11:30am EDT

11:30am EDT

Separating Fact from Fiction: Decentralized Clinical Trials (DCTs) in the Biotech Space
Common misconceptions surrounding decentralized research often deter sponsors from attaining it’s key benefits. Separating fact from fiction and understanding how to identify fit for purpose solutions can lay the roadmap for successful implementation of a DCT strategy. This session will focus on “myth busting” these common misconceptions and provide an overview of the benefits decentralization can bring to Biotechs.

avatar for Sarah Gillespie

Sarah Gillespie

Associate Director, Decentralized Clinical Trials, Syneos Health
Sarah has 13 years of experience in clinical operations and project management, specializing in real world and late phase research. Since 2019, Sarah has utilized her clinical research background to develop subject matter expertise in decentralized research and digital health technologies... Read More →

Tuesday September 20, 2022 11:30am - 12:00pm EDT
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