Team

Leadership

Our team leads the industry with over 1,000 successful antibody discovery programs and 13 marketed therapeutics.

stacy-borders

Experience:

Global Marketing Manager, BD
Market Development Partner, AlivaMab Discovery Services
Director of Marketing, Tonbo Biosciences
Events and Digital Marketing Manager, Eurofins DiscoverX
Product Manager, eBioscience, an Affymetrix company

Stacey is the Marketing and Communications Strategist at AbTherx. She has over 10 years of experience in the biotech industry where her scope has included global marketing, digital marketing, business development, product marketing, and event management. Previously, Stacey worked as Market Development Partner for AlivaMab Discovery Services where she contributed to the company’s marketing efforts. Prior, Stacey served as Director of Marketing at Tonbo Biosciences, where she developed and executed the commercial marketing strategy and managed the business development and sales teams. Stacey spent over 5 years in various marketing roles at eBioscience, an Affymetrix company early in her career.

Stacey received her Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of San Diego.

Peter-Brams

Experience:

VP, Antibody Discovery, Zai Lab
Senior Director, Antibody Center of Excellence, Bristol Myers Squibb
Director, Antibody Discovery, Medarex
Senior Scientist, Biogen Idec

Peter is the Chief Scientific Officer of AbTherx. He has spent his career focused on the generation of clinical-grade human antibodies, e.g., Opdivo (anti-PD1), Ofatumumab (anti-CD20), Ulocuplomab (anti-CXCR4), and  anti-CCR8 antibodies in clinical trials1 for BMS and Zai Lab. Peter grew the antibody-generating unit at Medarex from seven people using hybridoma and only manual protocols, to a multi-site, multidisciplinary, highly automated unit, supplying all antibodies to meet the needs of the entire Bristol Myers Squibb corporation. Peter was involved at all levels of the pursuit, adding novel conceptual approaches to antigen design, automation strategies, immunization developments, and electrofusion protocols, as well as single cell antibody cloning and antibody gene analysis. He has authored over 100 submitted and approved patents.

Peter has worked with some of the most disruptive thinkers in the field: Lennard Olson (first human human hybridoma), Robert Gallo (advanced HIV research on all fronts), Ivor Royston (human antibody pioneer), Nabil Hannah (identified CD20 as clinical antibody target: Rituximab was the first curative anti-cancer antibody), Nils Lonberg (generated the HuMAb Mouse® platform at Medarex), and Alan Korman (moved immuno-oncology from lab bench to bedside).  

Peter received his PhD from the University of Aarhus in Denmark.

1Campbell JR et al, Cancer Res 2021;81:2983–94. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-20-3585

Brian-Conn

 Experience:

CFO, Ra Medical Systems (NYSE:RMED)
CFO, Switchback Systems
CFO, Quantapore, Inc.
CFO, Imagion BioSystems (ASX:IBX)
Co-founder and CFO, Pyrone Systems
CFO, Verdezyne
Board Member, Biosensis

Brian Conn is the Chief Financial Officer of AbTherx. He has over 20 years of experience as the CFO of numerous public and private biotech companies, spanning all areas of life sciences. During his career, Brian has raised over $300 million in capital and completed more than 20 M&A deals. Brian is an advisor/CFO to several early-stage biotech companies and is a co-founder of the synthetic biology startup, Pyrone Systems. Before AbTherx, Brian completed the merger between Ra Medical Systems (NYSE: RMED) and Catheter Precision. In 2017, he successfully listed Imagion Biosystems (ASX:IBX) on the Australian Stock Exchange and helped organize the company’s first clinical trial, which was completed in 2022. From 2011 to 2016, Brian was the CFO of Verdezyne, a San Diego synthetic biology company where he secured funding and negotiated contracts for a large-scale project in Malaysia.

viktoriya-dubrovskaya

Experience:

Associate Director, Amunix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. a Sanofi Company
Principal Scientist, Zai Lab
Specialist, OHSU Knight Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research Center
Staff Scientist, The Scripps Research Institute

Viktoriya is the Director of Antibody Discovery at AbTherx. She is an innovative scientist with an extensive background in antibody discovery, immuno-oncology, infectious diseases, vaccine design, and preclinical drug development. In her most recent role at Amunix Pharmaceuticals, Viktoriya served as the Associate Director of the Discovery Group where she led the preclinical program for conditionally activated T-cell engagers. Viktoriya’s skillset includes protein engineering, phage display, single B-cell cloning, antigen generation (including GPCRs), T-cell engager optimization, and NGS sequencing.

Viktoriya received her PhD from the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology in Koltsovo, Russia and her MS from Novosibirsk State University in Novosibirsk, Russia.

Catherine-Kara

Experience:

Independent IP Consultant, Kara Patents
Chief Patent Counsel, Medarex, Inc. 
Associate, Lahive & Cockfield, LLP

Catherine is the Head of IP at AbTherx. She has over 25 years of experience in strategic and supervisory roles for intellectual property management in both law firm and in-house positions, including over 15 years providing IP consultancy in a wide range of biotechnology fields. Her technical background is in immunology, and she has been involved in the development of IP protection for immunotherapeutic approaches from the earliest fully human antibodies. She has extensive expertise in patent portfolio development and prosecution, IP considerations for early-stage companies, and strategic IP advice in the immunotherapy space. 

 Catherine received a PhD from Harvard University, a JD from Suffolk University Law School, and a BSc from McGill University. 

david-meininger

Experience:

Co-founder and CEO, Link Immunotherapeutics
Chief Business Officer, Trianni
Executive Director, Business Development & Licensing, Merck
Executive Director, Molecular Discovery, Merck
Senior Director, Biologics Discovery, Merck
Vice President, Biotherapeutics, Boehringer Ingelheim

Various roles at Amgen and Genentech

David is the Chief Business Officer at AbTherx. He has over 25 years of biopharma experience and a diverse background that spans startup, midsize, and industry-leading organizations where he has proven himself successful in new company formation, business development, and licensing. Prior to joining AbTherx, David was the Co-founder and CEO of Link Immunotherapeutics. While there, he played an integral role in the company’s formation, successful fundraising, and development of next-generation T-cell engaging therapies. Prior to his time at Link, David was Chief Business Officer at Trianni where he was responsible for defining the company’s growth and partnering activities, including value creation through partnerships with large pharmaceutical and biotech partners. Earlier in his career, David held senior BD&L and biotherapeutic research roles of increasing responsibility at a number of companies, including Merck, Boehringer Ingelheim, Amgen, and Genentech.

David received his PhD from the University of California, San Diego and his MBA from the University of Washington, Michael G. Foster School of Business.

Experience:

Entrepreneur In Residence, University Health Network
Board Member, PhenoVista
CEO, AlivaMab Discovery Services
SVP, Eurofins
SVP and Chief Commercial Lead, DiscoverX (acquired by Eurofins)

Justin is the Chief Executive Officer of AbTherx. He has served in executive and advisory roles in biotechnology, drug discovery platform, and healthcare investment organizations for over 15 years. His most recent position was CEO of AlivaMab Discovery Services (ADS), where he led the organization through a period of rapid growth. Before ADS, Justin was the Senior Vice President of the Eurofins Drug Discovery division, where his scope included leading strategy across nine global sites, innovation, and M&A. Before Eurofins, Justin led the Drug Discovery Service division of DiscoverX, including the acquisitions of Ambit Bioscience’s KINOMEscan platform and Asterand’s BioSeek platform. In 2017, DiscoverX was acquired by Eurofins.

Justin received his MBA and MS from the University of Delaware and his BSc from Penn State University.

David-Passmore

Experience:

Director, Business Development, YUMAB
Head of Business Development, RubrYc Therapeutics
Group Leader, Research and Development, Bristol Myers Squibb

David is the Head of Business Development at AbTherx. He has held senior positions in business development and biologics drug discovery for over 20 years. David served as the US Business Development representative for YUMAB, an antibody discovery CRO based in Germany. Prior to YUMAB, he led business development and operations at RubrYc Therapeutics. David gained broad experience in therapeutic antibody discovery and early development as a Group Leader at Medarex/BMS for 15 years. 

David received his MBA from Pepperdine University and his BSc from California State University Fresno.

Dan-Rohrer

Experience:

Senior Director, Zai Lab
Senior Director, Bristol Myers Squib
Member, Biotech Industry Advisory Council, Cal Poly SLO
Senior Director, Medarex
Senior Scientist, Chiron Corp.
Board Member, Aldar Academy
Scientist, Roche Bioscience
Postdoctoral Fellow, Stanford University

Dan is the Chief Technology Officer of AbTherx. He has over 25 years of broad experience in therapeutic drug discovery. Over the last 20 years, Dan and his scientific teams have specialized in creating therapeutic antibody discovery platforms in transgenic mice, including managing and refining the HuMAb Mouse® platform – the most successful platform based on the number of FDA approvals to date. More recent applications of this technology at Zai Lab resulted in the creation of a novel and differentiated antibody discovery toolset which is poised to address the evolving antibody therapeutics market. Dan has an established background and publication record in transgenic methodologies and G-protein coupled receptors, and he is recognized throughout the industry for his leadership of therapeutic discovery campaigns.

Leadership Team Developed and Managed the Platform Responsible for

  • COSENTYX® (secukinumab)
  • DARZALEX® (daratumumab)
  • ILARIS® (canakinumab)
  • KESIMPTA® (ofatumumab)
  • LARTRUVO® (olaratumab)
  • OPDIVO® (nivolumab)
  • RABISHIELD
  • SAPHNELO™ (anifrolumab-fnia)
  • SIMPONI® (golimumab)
  • STELARA® (ustekinumab)
  • TEPEZZA® (teprotumumab-trbw)
  • YERVOY® (ipilimumab)
  • ZINPLAVA™ (bezlotoxumab)

Scientific Advisors

janine-schuurman

Experience:

President, The Antibody Society
Advisor, Bioqube Ventures
Scientific Advisory Board member, Cartography Biosciences
Independent Biotech Consultant, Lust for Life Science B.V.
Senior Vice President, Genmab

Dr. Schuurman’s career centers around the antibody molecule as a biological source of inspiration and therapeutic modality. Dr. Schuurman joined Genmab’s R&D team in 2000 as one of the first scientists—her most recent position being Senior Vice President heading Genmab’s Antibody Research and Technologies. She is a co-inventor of many therapeutic antibodies and of the DuoBody®, HexaBody®, and HexElect® technologies, which enable the generation of bispecific and effector-function enhanced antibodies. These technologies are being applied to antibody therapeutic discovery programs at leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies worldwide and have resulted in FDA-approved therapies such as RYBREVANT® (amivantamab), EPKINLY® (epcoritamab), TECVAYLY® (teclistamab), and TALVEY® (talquatamab). Dr. Schuurman has championed many successful academic and industry partnerships in antibody therapeutics and complementary research fields.

Dr. Schuurman joined The Antibody Society’s Board of Directors in 2020 and currently serves as President of this international, non-profit trade association which represents individuals and organizations involved in antibody-related research and development. Dr. Schuurman is frequently invited to serve as a speaker, as well as a chair, at scientific conferences around the world due to her vision, impactful scientific publication track record, and dynamic presentations. She received her PhD in immunology from the University of Amsterdam. Dr. Schuurman is currently an independent biotech consultant (Lust for Life Science B.V.) and collaborates with many organizations, including Bioqube Ventures and Cartography Biosciences.

gavin-thurston

Experience:

SVP Oncology Research, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals

Gavin is a Scientific Advisor at AbTherx. He spent the last 22 years of his career at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, his most recent position being SVP of Oncology Research. Gavin has authored over 150 publications and is the inventor on over 50 US patents and ongoing patent applications. His efforts at Regeneron led to the successful clinical development of LIBTAYO® and ongoing late-stage clinical testing of several other antibodies and bispecific antibodies. In addition to his advisory role at AbTherx, Gavin is also doing consulting work on several other antibody and bispecifc projects. 

Gavin earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in biophysics from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, and a postdoctoral research fellowship in tumor vasculature at CRC Gray Laboratory, London, England.

jessica-stark

Experience:

Assistant Professor and Underwood Prescott Career Development Chair, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Co-founder, BioBits®
Postdoctoral Fellow, Stanford University
PhD, Northwestern University

Dr. Stark’s career is marked by her pioneering work in developing biological technologies to unlock the vast potential of cell-surface sugars, known as glycans, for immunological discovery and immunotherapy. Glycans form a protective layer on the surface of every cell, influencing immunological processes. Despite their significance, drug developers’ ability to identify the specific glycans that regulate immune responses and design targeted therapies remains limited. Dr. Stark’s lab is at the forefront of efforts to comprehend and manipulate the roles of glycans in the immune system, aiming to 1) bridge crucial gaps in immunobiology and 2) forge the path for next-generation immunotherapies.

As a postdoctoral fellow with Nobel Laureate, Professor Carolyn Bertozzi at Stanford University, Jessica’s work focused on identifying and targeting glycans. She is a co-inventor of antibody-lectin chimeras (AbLecs), a modular platform for glyco-immune checkpoint blockade. She received her PhD in chemical and biological engineering with Professor Michael Jewett at Northwestern University. Dr. Stark is currently an Assistant Professor in the departments of Biological and Chemical Engineering at MIT and an intramural faculty member in MIT’s Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research.