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Leadership

Executive Team

Shekar Shetty
Chief Executive Officer
  • 30+ years experience in R&D, marketing and commercializing technology in healthcare and specialty chemicals

  • Senior management positions at Air Liquide and Nalco

  • MBA, Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management; MS, Chemical Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology

Xinhua Li, PhD
EVP, Drug Development
  • 30+ years developing therapeutics in pharma and biotechnology companies

  • Senior positions at Arsenal Medical, GelTex Pharmaceuticals, Genzyme and Dyax Corp.

  • PhD, Chemistry, Washington University in St. Louis; Postdoctoral fellow, Chemistry, Harvard University; MBA, Babson F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business

Peter Howe
Chief Financial Officer
  • 25+ years experience in investment banking and startups

  • Completed over 30 corporate finance and M&A transactions including public market capital raises for Cephalon, Alkermes and GelTex

  • MBA, MIT Sloan School of Management; BA, Emory University

Mitch Zakin, PhD
EVP, Innovation
  • 35+ years experience developing technologies for life sciences and chemical and biological defense

  • Former DARPA Program Manager, visiting scholar, Wyss Institute for Bio-Inspired Engineering at Harvard Medical School; Co-Founder of Soft Robotics, Inc.

  • PhD, Physical Chemistry, Harvard University; BS, Chemistry, CCNY

Winston Henderson, JD
General Counsel
  • 25+ years experience in intellectual property/corporate law and working in technology startups from founding to exit

  • Member, Board of Trustees at Boston Children's Hospital, work experience includes Kenyon & Kenyon, Anderson Consulting, and Surface Logix

  • JD, Duke University School of Law; BSE, Biomedical Engineering & Electrical Engineering, Duke University

Scientific Advisors

John Marota, MD, PhD
Massachusetts General Hospital

Dr. John Marota is an Assistant Professor of Anesthesia, Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, a Harvard Medical School affiliate in Boston, MA. A practicing anesthesiologist, Dr. Marota has over 35 years of clinical & research experience. His research is focused primarily on the use of functional MRI to investigate development of acute tolerance to the cerebral stimulating effects of cocaine that occurs with prolonged drug exposure. He has also investigated the relationship between cerebral blood flow, blood volume, and oxygen consumption during neural activation to better understand the mechanism by which the brain couples cerebral vascular hemodynamics to metabolism; a concept fundamental to the basis of almost all techniques to image functional activity of the central nervous system. He has also conducted research on opiates & pain; specifically, how the CNS responds to acute and chronic pain and chronic opioid exposure.  Dr. Marota was Medical Director at the Medicines Company from 2015-2018. He has authored over 37 publications. 

Dr. Warwick Tong, MB, ChB, MPP, GAICD
 

Dr. Tong is a New Zealand trained physician based in Melbourne Australia with over 35 years of executive management and governance roles in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. In his career he has been directly involved with the development of one drug that has achieved FDA approval and two others that are in clinical development. He is currently Chairman of the Board of Amplia Therapeutics Limited (ASX: ATX) and a Director of Aculeus Therapeutics. Previously he held positions at GlaxoSmithKline, including country, regional and global roles as Medical Director, Business Development Director and VP Commercial Strategy for Infectious Diseases. In addition, he was CEO of a public-private partnership in oncology drug development and brings decades of experience in clinical development. Before his pharmaceutical industry career Dr. Tong worked in primary care medicine for 14 years, founding two medical clinics in New Zealand.

Prof. Lyle Isaacs, PhD
University of Maryland

Dr. Lyle Isaacs, Professor of Chemistry, University of Maryland, College Park, MD is a world-renowned expert in cucurbit[n]urils (CB) and inventor of a class of CB-type receptors poised for major impact in the public health field, particularly as related to stimulants and opioids. Research in the Isaacs Group is focused on basic and applied problems of molecular recognition in water using CBs as molecular containers that sequester and/or release chemically and biologically relevant compounds. His research program has three main goals. First, understand the fundamental recognition properties of CB compounds. Second, synthesize new-to-the-world CB molecular containers. The third broad goal is to interface CB type receptors with and to express control over complex biological systems. Prof. Isaacs has authored over 180 publications and has 11 US patents. Dr. Isaacs has won several awards including the 2018 Hillebrand Prize, Chemical Society of Washington and was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2013 for his work on CBs.

Joseph Cotten, MD, PhD
Massachusetts General Hospital

Dr. Cotten is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care, and Pain Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, a Harvard Medical School affiliate in Boston, MA. A practicing anesthesiologist, Dr. Cotten’s current research addresses the molecular mechanisms by which anesthetics activate TASK tandem pore potassium channel function and in the characterization of breathing stimulants for use in opioid-induced respiratory depression reversal.  Dr. Cotten is co-inventor of a sequestrant drug for opioid and stimulant reversal and has authored over 45 publications.     

Prof. George M. Whitesides, PhD
Harvard University

Currently the Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor at Harvard University, Prof. George Whitesides’ present research interests include materials science, surface science, polyvalency, microfluidics, optics, self-assembly, microfabrication, nanotechnology, and cell surface biochemistry. Prior to joining Harvard, he was a member of the faculty of the MIT from 1963 to 1982. Prof. Whitesides is a co-founder of companies with a combined market capitalization of over $20 billion. In the early 80s, he co-founded biotechnology company Genzyme, which remains one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies; in 1993 he co-founded GelTex, which was acquired by Genzyme for $1.2 billion; and in 1996, he co-founded Theravance, which went public in 2004 and currently has a $1.1billion market capitalization. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and the American Philosophical Society, among other organizations.