Speakers

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Axel Meyer
Head of BBB and Advanced ADME at DMPK and Bioanalytical Research
AbbVie Deutschland

Axel Meyer is the head of BBB and Advanced ADME at DMPK and Bioanalytical Research at AbbVie Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG in Ludwigshafen, Germany. After obtaining his PhD at the Max-Delbrück Lab in Cologne in 1995, he did his post-doctoral training in the Human Genome Group at Sandoz Pharma AG in Basle, Switzerland from 1995 till 1998. After his stay in Switzerland, he moved to the Max-Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Heidelberg as a senior postdoctoral fellow to work on GABAergic interneurons. In 2002 he joined Abbott GmbH & Co KG in Ludwigshafen as a lab head for Molecular Biology. In this function he was project leader for several drug development projects. He joined AbbVie Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG after its split from Abbott in 2013 as a lab head for Nucleic Acid Technologies. Since 2011 his work is focussing on the BBB, both within AbbVie and in the context of international consortia. He took over his recent position in 2018.

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

11:00 am | The Saturation Concept for Brain Penetration of Antibodies

Nadine Ruderisch
Senior Scientist
AbbVie

Nadine joined the in vivo pharmacology team at AbbVie in 2018, at the newly formed Foundational Neuroscience Center in Cambridge, MA. She and her team are responsible for advancing the brain drug delivery platform at AbbVie. Prior to joining AbbVie, Nadine worked at Hoffmann-La Roche on the Brain Shuttle platform. Nadine received her Ph.D. degree from the University of Zurich studying transport mechanisms over the BBB and did post-doctoral training on BBB biology at UCSF.

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

9:40 am | Blood-Brain Barrier Penetrating Bi-Specific Antibodies to Treat Neurodegenerative Diseases

Sang Hoon Lee
President & CEO
ABL Bio

CEO and Founder of ABL Bio Head of Bio Division at Hanwha Chemical Co-founder and CSO at PharmAbcine Chiron (Novartis), AstraZeneca, Genentech and Exelixis in US Scientist at Sandford Medical School Postdoc at Harvard Medical School and UCSF Ph.D. at The Ohio State University BA & MS at Seoul National University

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

12:15 pm | ABL301, BBB-Crossing Trojan Horse Bispecific Antibody Targeting Aggregated α-Synuclein for the Treatment of Parkinson’s Disease (PD) & Grabody-B, Novel BBB Shuttle Platform

Steven Stice
Co-Founder, Chief Scientific Officer
Aruna Bio

Dr. Steve Stice is Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Aruna Bio, where he directs the company’s research operations. He is also University of Georgia, DW Brooks Distinguished Professor and Director of the Regenerative Bioscience Center, and holds a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar endowed chair

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

2:00 pm | Exploring Neural Exosomes as a Delivery Approach to Cross the BBB

Elisa Konofagou
Robert and Margaret Hariri Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Professor of Radiology (Physics), Dept of Biomedical Engineering
Columbia University

Prof. Konofagou received her B.Sc. (Licence) in chemical physics from the Paris VI University (Université de Pierre et Marie Curie; Paris, France) and her M.Sc. in biomedical engineering from Imperial College (London, UK) in 1992 and 1993, respectively. In 1999, Prof. Konofagou received her Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from the University of Houston (Houston, TX, USA) for her work in elastography at the University of Texas Medical School. She then carried out postdoctoral work in elasticity-based monitoring of focused ultrasound therapy at Brigham and Women's Hospital (Boston, MA, USA), an affiliate of the Harvard Medical School. Prof. Konofagou is currently a Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology and is also the Director of the Ultrasound and Elasticity Imaging Laboratory at Columbia University. She is a member of the IEEE Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control group; the Acoustical Society of America; and the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. Prof. Konofagou's main interests are in the development of novel elasticity imaging techniques and applications, such as breast elastography, ligament elastography, electromechanical wave imaging (EWI), myocardial elastography, harmonic motion imaging (HMI), pulse wave imaging (PWI), and focused ultrasound therapy, in particular research on the blood-brain barrier opening. Prof. Konofagou maintains several close clinical collaborations in the Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center.

Benjamin S. Bleier
Associate Professor, Claire and John Bertucci Chair in OHNS, Director of Translational Research, Director of Endoscopic Skull Base Surgery, Director (Co) of Center for Orbital Surgery, Department of Otolaryngology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary
Harvard Medical School

Benjamin S. Bleier, MD, FACS, is an Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts Eye and Ear. Dr. Bleier is the Director of Translational Research, Endoscopic Skull Base Surgery, and Co-Director of the Center for Thyroid Eye Disease and Orbital Surgery. Dr. Bleier is an R01 funded surgeon-scientist with 10 patents and over 150 peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and textbooks. He lectures internationally on endoscopic management of orbit and skull base tumors as well as intranasal drug delivery to the brain. His work has been featured in Boston Magazine, Harvard Medicine Magazine, and the Scientist Magazine.

Susan Rosenbaum
Founder, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
Lauren Sciences LLC

Susan Rosenbaum, J.D., is Founder, Chairman, CEO, successful biotech leader, strategic executive, visionary entrepreneur in drug development, at Lauren Sciences LLC, New York brain biotech, to develop robust V-Smart® Pipeline of transformative V-Smart® Nanomedicines, with innovative V-Smart® Platform from breakthrough V-Smart® Technology, Global Solution for CNS: non-invasive, dual-targeted (macro/micro) BBB delivery of non-brain penetrant therapeutic agents, including biologics, to CNS, currently in development for ALS, PD, Neuro-HIV, Pain, AD, GBM, with each V-Smart® Nanomedicine designed for particular indication, engineered for specific target/selective release, custoamized for chosen therapeutic agent.

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

3:00 pm | Non-Invasive, Dual-Targeted Delivery of Non-BBB Penetrant Therapeutic Agents to CNS

Peter Bloomingdale
Senior Scientist, Quantitative Pharmacology and Pharmacometrics
Merck & Co

Dr. Peter Bloomingdale is a Senior Scientist in the Quantitative Pharmacology & Pharmacometrics (QP2) group at Merck. Peter obtained his PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University at Buffalo. Peter’s interests lie in leveraging a combination of quantitative systems pharmacology and machine learning approaches to augment the drug discovery and development process. At Merck, Peter provides modeling and simulation support to programs in the neuroscience therapeutic area and is responsible for developing PK/PD/systems models for applications ranging from target identification/validation to clinical dose selection.

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

12:00 pm | Application of Physiologically-Based Pharmacokinetic (PBPK) Modeling to Predict Antibody Exposure in Brain

Roger Dale Kamm
Cecil & Ida Green Distinguished Professor, Biological & Mechanical Engineering
MIT

Professor Kamm began his career at Northwestern University earning a degree in Mechanical Engineering. He subsequently earned both a Master’s and a PhD in Mechanical Engineering at MIT. Since 1978, he has been a Professor of Mechanical Engineering at MIT. Professor Kamm was one of the founding members of the Biological Engineering department when it was created in 1998. An overriding objective of the Kamm Lab is to elucidate the fundamental nature of how cells sense and respond to mechanical stimuli, and to employ the principles revealed by these studies to seek new treatments for neurological disease and cancer, and to develop tissue constructs for drug and toxicity screening. Both experimental and computational approaches are employed in a manner that encourages the constant interplay between the two for purposes of model validation, direct measurement of critical parameters, and identifying new hypotheses to be tested through experiment. The Kamm research group works on five broad areas: Multi-cellular Engineered Living Systems, Angiogenesis/Vasculogenesis, Neurological Diseases, Cancer, and Simulation and modeling.

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

2:15 pm | Self-Assembled Vascular Networks as a Tool for Studying Barrier Function in the Brain

Danica Stanimirovic
Director, Translational Bioscience Department, Human Health Therapeutics Research Centre
National Research Council of Canada

Dr. Danica Stanimirovic, Director of the Translational Bioscience Department, NRC’s Human Health Therapeutics Portfolio, manages a portfolio of R&D projects in partnership with Canadian and international biopharma companies and university partners aimed at de-risking and advancing biologics CNS pipeline in preclinical development. She leads NRC’s Strategic Program, Therapeutics beyond Brain Barriers, focussed on developing new delivery strategies for therapeutics targeting CNS indications. She holds an M.D. and PhD degree in Neurochemistry from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade. She was trained in cerebrovascular and stroke research at the Stroke Branch, NINDS, NIH. She is Adjunct Professor at the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of Ottawa and founding member of the International Brain Barriers Society. Her recent interests are in developing single-domain antibodies for ‘difficult’ targets in the CNS, including ion channels and blood-brain barrier transporters and receptors. Dr. Stanimirovic is recipient of funding from various consortia, including private-public ‘Focus on Brain’ initiative by Brain Canada. She serves on Advisory Board of biotechnology companies and is recipient of several Canadian and international awards. She has authored over 150 manuscripts and 17 patents in the field of brain vascular physiology and drug delivery across the blood-brain barrier.

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

11:30 am | Quantitative Methodologies for Measuring Amount & Distribution of Antibodies in the Brain

Mansoor M. Amiji
University Distinguished Professor, Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Professor of Chemical Engineering
Northeastern University

Dr. Mansoor Amiji, PhD in pharmaceutical sciences from Purdue University in 1992, is currently the University Distinguished Professor, Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Professor of Chemical Engineering at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Dr. Amiji’s research is focused on development of biocompatible materials from natural and synthetic polymers, target-specific drug and gene delivery systems for cancer and infectious diseases, and nanotechnology applications for medical diagnosis, imaging, and therapy. His research has received over $20 million in sustained funding from the NIH, NSF, private foundations, and the pharmaceutical/biotech industries. Dr. Amiji teaches in the professional pharmacy program and in the graduate programs of Pharmaceutical Science, Biotechnology, and Nanomedicine. He has edited ten books and has published over 50 books chapters and over 350 peer-reviewed articles. He has received a number of honors and awards including the Nano Science and Technology Institute’s Award for Outstanding Contributions towards the Advancement of Nanotechnology, Microtechnology, and Biotechnology, American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) Meritorious Manuscript Award, Controlled Release Society’s (CRS) Nagai Award, and the AAPS and CRS Fellowships.

Larry Brown
Executive Vice President & Chief Scientific Officer
Noveome Biotherapeutics

Dr. Brown obtained his doctor of science degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under Professor Robert Langer and in the laboratory of Dr. Judah Foldkman at Childrens Hospital in Boston. He has over 30 years experience in the biotechnology industry and currently serves as Executive Vice President of Research and Chief Scientific Officer of Noveome Biotherapeutics in Pittsburgh, PA  

Pawel Stocki
Director of Research
Ossianix

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

9:10 am | Transferrin Receptor-Mediated BBB Shuttling Antibodies Based on VNARs

Roberto Villaseñor Solorio
Lab Head, Investigative Safety
Roche pRED

Roberto obtained his PhD in Cellular Biology at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany after developing novel quantitative assays to investigate receptor trafficking and signalling with sub-cellular resolution. In 2014 he joined Roche's Neuroscience Department to investigate the transport of brain shuttle antibodies across the blood-brain barrier. He pioneered the use of super-resolution microscopy and live-cell imaging to analyze intracellular trafficking in brain endothelial cells and discovered a new mechanism for receptor-mediated transcytosis. Since 2017 he leads the Brain Barriers lab in pRED Roche Innovation Center Basel where he supports early optimization, selection and de-risking for pre-clinical projects. His team combines 3D in vitro models, genome editing and advanced microscopy to dissect the mechanisms of protein transport across the blood-brain barrier and accelerate the development of new modalities for brain delivery.  

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

11:45 am | A Garden of Forking Paths: Deepening our Understanding of Intracellular Sorting & Transcytosis

Bernd Stowasser
Head Global Public Private Partnerships & R&D Alliance Management, Strategy & Business Development
Sanofi

Dr Bernd Stowasser holds a Doctorate in Physical Organic Chemistry and a Master degree in Chemistry and Engineering. He was granted an Alexander von Humboldt research fellowship at Caltech, Pasadena, USA. Starting as Laboratory Head Medicinal Chemistry at Hoechst AG, Frankfurt he took leadership positions in Europe, North and Latin America in Sales and Marketing, Product Development and General Management. Today he is Global Head - Alliance Management of Public-Private Partnerships and Head Sanofi Partnering (Pharma) Germany at Sanofi. He is a core member of the EFPIA Research and Innovation Strategy Working Group with one of the mandates being the implementation of the new EU Health Public Private Partnership starting in 2021  

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

8:40 am | Exploring How Public-Private Partnerships can Enhance Progress on BBB Research

Rikke Hahn Kofoed
Post-doctoral fellow
Sunnybrook Research Institute

Dr. Kofoed is currently a post-doctoral fellow at Sunnybrook Research Institute, Canada–Centre of Excellence in Focused Ultrasound. Dr. Kofoed obtained her PhD from Aarhus University, Denmark, investigating cell signaling mechanisms relevant to Parkinson’s disease. At Sunnybrook, Dr. Kofoed is developing novel gene therapy approaches applicable to neurodegenerative disorders and using MR-guided focused ultrasound for non-invasive delivery to relevant brain areas. She is an expert in focused ultrasound-mediated delivery of adeno-associated virus and her research aims to solve technical and immunological challenges for the translation of gene-based therapies into the clinic.

Dennis Keefe
Executive Director of Discovery Biology
Stealth BioTherapeutics

Dennis Keefe is the Executive Director of Discovery Biology at Stealth BioTherapeutics, a Newton, MA biotechnology company specializing in mitochondrial medicine. Dr. Keefe is responsible for the management of Stealth’s preclinical neurology portfolio, with a strategic focus on orphan neurodegenerative diseases with high unmet medical need in which mitochondrial dysfunction is thought to be a significant driver of pathophysiology. Prior to joining Stealth, Dr. Keefe held various positions of increasing responsibility at Shire Pharmaceuticals, where he spent over a decade developing therapies for orphan neurodegenerative and neuromuscular disease. He received his PhD in Cellular Immunology at Tufts University and his post-doctoral training was completed at the Center for Blood Research at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Keefe also holds an MBA from Northeastern University.    

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

3:30 pm | Discovery & Development of Peptides Targeting Brain Mitochondria for the Treatment of Neurodegenerative Disease

Richard Daneman
Assistant Professor, Departments of Neurosciences & Pharmacology
University of California, San Diego

Richard Daneman received his Bachelor of Science McGill University, in Montreal Canada majoring in biochemistry. He then received his Ph.D in developmental biology from Stanford University where he studied the molecular mechanisms that regulate blood-brain barrier formation in the laboratory of Dr. Ben Barres. Dr. Daneman then started his own lab as a Sandler Fellow at UCSF, before moving to a position as Assistant Professor in the departments of Pharmacology and Neuroscience at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Daneman focuses his studies on understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate blood-brain barrier (BBB) function during health and disease. He has received a number of honors including the Klingenstein-Simons Award in Neuroscience, the Rita Allen Foundation Milton E. Cassel Scholar award, the AAA young investigator award and the ASPET Neuropharmacology Early Career award.

Day Two

Wednesday 2 September 2020

9:10 am | Exploring the BBB as a Dynamic Interface to Elucidate Cellular & Molecular Mechanisms involved in BBB Function

James J. Hickman
Professor, NanoScience Technology Center
University of Central Florida

James published the first serum-free, defined culture system for neuronal systems in 1995 (Schaffner et al. 1995) and has now extended this from rat to mouse, both embryonic and adult, as well as to human. He has also pioneered the establishment of functional in vitro systems and was one of the first to report toxicity studies from neurons on microelectrode arrays in a defined system back in the 90’s (Jung et al. 1998). He has extended these defined in vitro systems now to cardiac, skeletal muscle, neurons, endothelial, hepatocytes, bone marrow, kidney, cancer, skin and epithelial cells. He has also pioneered the development of functional electrical and mechanical systems to model clinical outcomes. His work developed a common media system for multiple cell types with a high degree of test/retest reliability essential to commercial utility. He has collaborated with Michael Shuler to develop multi-organ systems of up to 6 organ mimics of the organ models. J received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Chemistry), his M.S. and B.A. from Penn State, he was on the Board of Directors of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineers, of which he is a Fellow. He has over 210 invited presentations with more than 256 total presentations, 148 publications and 20 book chapters, as well as 49 pending and issued U.S. and international patents.

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

1:45 pm | Pioneering a Multidisciplinary Approach to Drive the Development of Advanced Multi-Organ Human In Vitro Models

William A. Banks
Associate Chief of Staff - Research & Development | Professor, Division of Gerontology & Geriatric Medicine, Department of Medicine
VA Puget Sound | University of Washington

Dr. William A. Banks was a Professor at Saint Louis University in the departments of Internal Medicine and Pharmacological and Physiological Sciences. Since 2010 he is the Associate Chief of Staff for Research and Development at the VA in Puget Sound and a Professor in the Division of Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine, Dept of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Seattle. He is Editor-in-Chief of Current Pharmaceutical Design. He received his MD from University of MO-Columbia in 1979 and did training at Tulane University. He is author of over 500 non-abstract publications, over 350 of which are original works. His research interests for 40 years have been the investigation of the mechanisms by which the brain and body communicate through blood-borne mechanisms and how such knowledge can be used to treat human diseases. Understanding these mechanisms has necessitated an in-depth study of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). The work has contributed to modern concepts of the BBB, including its ability to act more as a regulatory interface between the blood and brain than as an absolute barrier. He has strong interests in understanding how the BBB responds to physiological changes and reacts to, mediates, and even causes disease states. In this regard, he has a long standing interest in questions related to the mechanisms by which pathogens interact with and cross the BBB. Current areas of interest include blood-brain barrier, peptides, cytokines, obesity, drug delivery, Alzheimer’s disease, LRP-1, P-gp, diabetes and the CNS, neuroAIDS, diabetes, neuroinflammation, neuroimmunology, aging, and insulin.  

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

8:40 am | High Level Review of the Recent Advances of Drug Delivery Across the BBB

James Gorman
Brain Targeting Program
Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Harvard

Jim leads with Don Ingber the Wyss Institute Brain Targeting Program. In this role, Jim is working with internal and external colleagues to identify and pursue new approaches to transport drugs and diagnostics through the blood brain barrier (BBB) to the CNS. With the BBB-on-Chip team, he has initiated and launched projects, which he now oversees, to identify new molecular targets and compounds for BBB transport. His current priorities include developing improved antibody shuttles to transport drugs into the brain, expanding the Wyss portfolio of brain targeting approaches through internal and external collaborations, and developing improved models, therapeutics and diagnostics for Alzheimer’s and other CNS diseases. Jim worked for 7 years in licensing, acquisitions, portfolio management and strategic initiatives at Abbott Laboratories (now Abbvie). There, he received the Abbott President’s Award for his role in initiating, championing and executing the 2001 acquisition of the blockbuster anti-TNF antibody Humira® and the fully human antibody platform in Abbott’s acquisition of BASF Pharmaceuticals. Humira is now the top-selling drug worldwide, with annual sales projected to exceed $20 billion in 2019. Jim formed and led Abbott’s Antibody Strategy Team through a series of licensing and acquisition transactions to expand Abbott’s biologics discovery technology platform and pipeline. He subsequently co-chaired the Portfolio Management Committee, initiating and overseeing a new targets and new projects process that led to the launch of ten new inflammation and oncology discovery projects. After leaving Abbott, he was CEO and co-founder of two biotech startups, BioAssets Development and 121 Bio. BioAssets Development, a company developing antibody-based anti-inflammatory therapies for treatment of pain in patients with disk herniation and sciatica, was acquired by Cephalon in 2010. 121 Bio, an immune-oncology focused company using single domain antibodies for imaging and therapy, was acquired by Agenus, a public biopharmaceutical company, in 2016. He recently served as VP of Corporate Development and Strategy at Agenus, where he oversaw partnering and funding strategy, portfolio management processes, and strategic alignment across functions. Jim obtained his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees at Harvard Medical School, where he conducted research in molecular genetics and antibody formation in the lab of Dr. Frederick Alt. He graduated summa cum laude from Yale University.

Day One

Tuesday 1 September 2020

11:15 am | Seeking Improved Targets & Compounds for Targeted Brain Delivery