Samuel C Wagner

Founder, President & Chief Executive Officer

Samuel Wagner is a founder of Batu Biologics and has served as its President and Chief Executive Officer since January of 2014. Mr. Wagner studied engineering at an honors level at the University of California at San Diego, but pursued an entrepreneurial path. Following a successful series of investments in various ventures, Mr. Wagner took a strong interest in biotechnology, where he is self-taught. He has since connected with leading biotechnology minds in San Diego and spear-headed their collaboration while garnering significant private investment. Mr. Wagner hopes to improve the lives of patients with devastating diseases by organizing and leading teams of highly qualified individuals to develop innovative therapeutics. He further seeks to utilize the success of Batu Biologics and future endeavors to drive his thirst for scientific entrepreneurship, and to give back to the communities that inspire him.

Santosh Kesari, M.D., Ph.D., FANA, FAAN

Consulting Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Kesari is one of “America’s Top Doctors” selected by Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. He is among the top 1% of neuro-oncologists and neurologists in the nation, according to Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. Each year, Castle Connolly surveys thousands of physicians and other healthcare professionals and asks them to identify excellent doctors in every specialty in their region and throughout the nation for their Top Doctors™ distinction. Dr. Kesari is often called upon by the media to comment on neurological issues and the non-surgical treatment of brain tumors. Dr. Kesari is currently the Chair and Professor of the Department of Translational Neurosciences and Neurotherapeutics at the John Wayne Cancer Institute.

Thomas Ichim, Ph.D.

Founder, Chief Scientific Officer

Dr. Ichim has extensive experience with stem cell therapy and cellular product development through FDA regulatory pathways. Dr. Ichim spent over 7 years as the President and Chief Scientific Officer of Medistem, developing and commercializing a novel stem cell, the Endometrial Regenerative Cell, through drug discovery, optimization, preclinical testing, IND filing, and up through Phase II clinical trials with the FDA. Subsequent to the acquisition of Medistem by Intrexon, in a deal worth $26 million, Dr. Ichim was brought on to the parent company in its cell engineering unit as Vice President of Cellular Therapy. Thomas Ichim hopes to greatly add to the value of Batu Biologics by leveraging his existing contacts and experience in product development, regulatory filings, and business development.

Dimitri Theofilopoulos, J.D.

Founder, Chief Operating Officer, General Counsel

Dimitri Theofilopoulous oversees operations and legal matters for Batu Biologics. Dimitri was in-house business counsel for consulting transactions and research compliance at The Scripps Research Institute from June 2010 – March 2013. Prior to that, he practiced employment and healthcare law. Dimitri holds a J.D. from USC School of Law and a B.A. in History from UCLA. He has also published The Bar Exam Memorization Book, a useful study aid for the bar exam.

Hong Ma, MD, Ph.D., M.B.A

VP of Business Development

Dr. Ma has an extensive history in academic and translational research. Subsequent to completing her medical degree, she performed basic research in the area of molecular biology of endothelial-associated pathways in her doctorate and postdoctoral studies. She has been critical in establishing numerous ventures and collaborations in the area of biosciences. Dr. Ma has over 20 peer-reviewed publications and has worked with prestigious institutions in the USA, China, and Japan. She received her M.D. from Dalian Medical University, her Ph.D in Cardiovascular Pharmacology at Asahikawa Medical College, and has also earned her MBA at the Rady School of Management at the University of California San Diego.

Gerry Berg

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Berg has over 30 years of senior management experience working with private and public companies. Mr. Berg has served a number of public companies as their Chief Executive Officer, President, Chief Financial Officer or as a financial consultant. He has also served on the Board of Directors for a number of public companies. He has been responsible for manufacturing, inventory control, product procurement, and quality control departments. He has managed shareholder relations, financial reviews, budgeting, contract analysis, legal services and banking relationships. Mr. Berg began his career as a Certified Public Accountant with the firm of Deloitte & Touche (Deloitte). He served as Audit Manager for the Buick Motor Division of General Motors Corporation as one of his primary assignments. Mr. Berg holds a Bachelors of Arts in Accounting from Walsh College where he graduated Cum Laude. Mr. Berg became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Michigan in 1979 and in the State of California in 1984.

Alan J Lewis, Ph.D.

Founder, Chairman

Dr. Lewis is an industry veteran with over 37 years of experience as an executive in the life science industry. He spent 15 years at the pharmaceutical company Wyeth-Ayerst, where he was Vice President of Research, leading translational research efforts in diabetes, CNS, cardiovascular, inflammatory, allergy, and bone metabolism diseases. He later became the CEO of Signal Pharmaceuticals, a company focusing on small-molecule drug discovery and development, which was eventually acquired by Celgene in 2010. Subsequent to his employment as President of Celgene, Dr. Lewis had several successful business ventures, including raising $27 million as CEO of Novocell, becoming the CEO of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and raising over $45 million as CEO of Ambit.

Thomas Ichim, Ph.D.

Founder, Chief Scientific Officer

Dr. Ichim has extensive experience with stem cell therapy and cellular product development through FDA regulatory pathways. Dr. Ichim spent over 7 years as the President and Chief Scientific Officer of Medistem, developing and commercializing a novel stem cell, the Endometrial Regenerative Cell, through drug discovery, optimization, preclinical testing, IND filing, and up through Phase II clinical trials with the FDA. Subsequent to the acquisition of Medistem by Intrexon, in a deal worth $26 million, Dr. Ichim was brought on to the parent company in its cell engineering unit as Vice President of Cellular Therapy. Thomas Ichim hopes to greatly add to the value of Batu Biologics by leveraging his existing contacts and experience in product development, regulatory filings, and business development.

John Chiplin, Ph.D.

Board Member

John Chiplin, PhD, has significant international experience in the life science and technology industries, from both an operational and investment perspective. Recent transactions that Dr. Chiplin has been involved in include Medistem (acquired by Intrexon), Arana (acquired by Cephalon), and Domantis (acquired by GSK). Immediately prior to running Arana, Dr. Chiplin was head of the ITI Life Sciences investment fund in the UK. His own investment vehicle, Newstar Ventures Ltd, has funded more than twenty early stage companies in the past ten years. Dr. Chiplin’s Pharmacy and Doctoral degrees are from the University of Nottingham, UK. He currently serves on several international boards as a director or advisor. These span the public, private, venture capital and banking sectors.

Vladimir Bogin, MD, FACP

Board Member

Dr. Bogin started his medical training at Moscow Medical Academy, then trained at Yale and Brown Universities and received his postgraduate training at the University of Rochester where he was also elected to a chief medical resident position. Vlad has been involved in the drug development cycle for over 15 years, from basic discovery research to clinical trial design and multinational phase III and IV trials. As the director at Boehringer Ingelheim he was in charge of late stage development of a leading cardiology product. As the Chairman of the Board at Medistem Inc. Vlad was instrumental in its advancement from preclinical to clinical stage, from a non-reporting to a fully reporting publicly trading company and for subsequent successful liquidity event in 2014. Vlad is founder and CEO of Cromos Pharma, a clinical research organization that has conducted over a hundred clinical trials in Eastern Europe and in former Soviet republics. He maintains active medical license and hospital privileges in Washington and is an advisor to numerous companies and non-profit organizations. Vlad is an author of many peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and patents.

Samuel C Wagner

Founder, President & Chief Executive Officer

Samuel Wagner is a founder of Batu Biologics and has served as its President and Chief Executive Officer since January of 2014. Wagner studied engineering at the University of California San Diego, and was a member of the esteemed engineering honor society, Tau Beta Pi. Following a successful series of investments in various ventures, Wagner took a dramatic change in his career path, seeking private investment and leadership opportunities in the biotech sector. Wagner hopes to help the lives of patients with devastating diseases by organizing and leading teams of highly qualified individuals to develop innovative therapeutics. Wagner hopes to utilize the success of this company and his future successes to drive his thirst for entrepreneurship, and to give back to the communities that helped foster his growth.

Hong Ma, MD, Ph.D., M.B.A.

VP of Business Development

Dr. Ma has an extensive history in academic and translational research. Subsequent to completing her medical degree, she performed basic research in the area of molecular biology of endothelial-associated pathways in her doctorate and postdoctoral studies. She has been critical in establishing numerous ventures and collaborations in the area of biosciences. Dr. Ma has over 20 peer-reviewed publications and has worked with prestigious institutions in the USA, China, and Japan. She received her M.D. from Dalian Medical University, her Ph.D in Cardiovascular Pharmacology at Asahikawa Medical College, and has also earned her MBA at the Rady School of Management at the University of California San Diego.

John Peck, Jr.

John Peck Jr graduated from Northern Illinois University in 1966 with a BS in Business. He spent the next three years in the US Army as an ordinance officer stationed in Southeast Asia. Upon returning to the States in 1969 he worked for RCA and Intel while pursuing an MBA at Depaul University. In 1976 John joined Meridian Leasing as employee number 5. In 1994 John (now CEO) and a Partner purchased Meridian Leasing (now 150 strong) from ownership that was in a consolidation mode. John’s share was bought out in 1997 and he started investing in commercial real estate with an emphasis on the large Multifamily properties. Currently John is doing a little land development work and has found the “New Wave of the Future”in the Biotech Community. At present he is invested in 7 Biotech firms. John and his wife,Vera, have been married for over 45 years and have had two children.

Gerry Berg

Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Berg has over 30 years of senior management experience working with private and public companies. Mr. Berg has served a number of public companies as their Chief Executive Officer, President, Chief Financial Officer or as a financial consultant. He has also served on the Board of Directors for a number of public companies. He has been responsible for manufacturing, inventory control, product procurement, and quality control departments. He has managed shareholder relations, financial reviews, budgeting, contract analysis, legal services and banking relationships. Mr. Berg began his career as a Certified Public Accountant with the firm of Deloitte & Touche (Deloitte). He served as Audit Manager for the Buick Motor Division of General Motors Corporation as one of his primary assignments. Mr. Berg holds a Bachelors of Arts in Accounting from Walsh College where he graduated Cum Laude. Mr. Berg became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Michigan in 1979 and in the State of California in 1984.

Yi Liang

Board Observer

Mr. Liang is an experienced Equity and venture investor with investment focus on new materials (Graphene, etc), and the development and application of high-tech energy technologies (hydrogen applications, hydrogen fuel cells, etc.). He currently holds executive positions in several companies including: Chairman of Dalian Lingfeng Investment, Chairman of Dalian Lingfeng Energy Co., and Chairman of Dalian Ai Mute Hydrogen Energy Co.

Argyrios Theofilopoulos, MD

Dr. Theofilopoulos has been working at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California since 1972, where he was trained in immunopathology under the guidance of the Institute’s director and founder, Dr. Frank Dixon. In 1983, he was promoted to professor and eventually chairman of the Department of Immunology and Microbial Science. After seven years of tenure in this position, he currently serves as vice chairman of the same Department. Dr. Theofilopoulos’ research is focused on defining the molecular and genetic basis of autoimmune diseases. His current work addresses the pathogenic role of nuclei acid-sensing Toll-like receptors and the immunological cross talk between the innate and adaptive immune system implicated in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases as well as cancer. He has published more than 300 articles and edited several textbooks on these and related topics.

Davorka Messmer, Ph.D.

Davorka is the inventor of the hp91 adjuvant technology that Batu Biologics recently licensed from UC San Diego. Messmer joined Batu Biologics to support the continued development and research of this immunostimulatory peptide shown to potentiate the efficacy of vaccines as a TLR-4 agonist. Her extensive experience in immunology and cancer vaccines will help to solidify the scientific rationale for Batu’s lung cancer vaccine, ValloVax™, as the company progresses towards clinical trials. Messmer is currently the assistant director of biology at Inception Sciences, focusing on small molecule drug discovery for cancer and neurological diseases of significant unmet need.

Vijay Mahant, Ph.D.

Dr. Mahant graduated from LUT (UK) and he received his second post-doctorate from UT Health Science Center at Houston/MD Anderson, TX, USA). Dr. Mahant is a scientist and an entrepreneur with 30 years of experience in immuno- and molecular diagnostics. He has held executive positions and he is founder/co-founder of diagnostic companies with diverse experiences in RD, worked with hospitals /medical institutes such as Mayo Clinic (‘87-’89, “New Generation” ultra-sensitive TSH test (evaluated and validated by Dr. George Klee , President of American Thyroid Association ) and worked (2005) with Long Beach Memorial Hospital in setting up a molecular diagnostic lab. Dr. Mahant has been involved in fund raisings, Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) and he has 25 issued patents and 15 patents pending; he has authored and/or co-authored publications. He has developed more than 35 products with multi million dollars in revenues. Dr. Mahant has managed intellectual property, including in and out licensing and he has experience in government regulations (FDA and foreign) and provided technical support for many of the products.

Dennis Van Epps, Ph.D.

Dennis Van Epps, Ph.D. is an experienced Research and Development Executive with over 25 years of industry experience in large corporations and small startup companies that have gone public. He obtained his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago and went on to become a tenured Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Pathology and Microbiology at the University of New Mexico Medical School. He later joined Baxter Healthcare Corporation as a Director of Immunology in their Corporate Research Facility and became Vice President of Research for the Immunotherapy Division. He later joined CancerVax Corporation as Vice President of R&D and served as a Corporate Officer. He then joined Allergan as Vice President Research for the Medical Device Division focused on implantable and injectable aesthetic devices and served as Vice President of New Device Technology Assessment exploring new product opportunities prior to the acquisition of Allergan by Actavis in 2015. He has published over 140 scientific articles in immunology, cell therapy, neuroimmunology, stem cell technology and inflammation and has been an inventor on over 20 patents.

Deyu Fang, Ph.D.

Deyu is an immunologist and professor working in the Department of Pathology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. Fang will provide Batu Biologics oversight in the development of ValloVax, assisting in the design and implementation of IND-enabling experiments. Dr. Fang has several lung cancer mouse models that can be used to quantify the anti-tumor activity of ValloVax™. Additionally, Dr. Fang has won several awards throughout his research career, including NIH Type 1 Diabetes Pathfinder Award and the AAI (American Association of Immunologist) Young Investigator Travel Award. Dr. Fang is a recipient of over 12 of NIH grants since 2009 to present. With the current active three of RO1 NIH, his research focuses on T cell activation, immune tolerance and autoimmunity.

Bradley Messmer, Ph.D.

Brad is an associate project scientist at UC San Diego focusing on the application of novel technologies to address problems in cancer diagnosis, monitoring and treatment. In 2012, Messmer founded Uroboros Technologies, LLC, which is dedicated to producing the next generation of cancer therapeutics with the DeNAno platform, a novel method of screening and generating checkpoint inhibitors. He is also the founder of Abreos Biosciences, which develops powerful immunoassay reagents that use laminar flow technology for counterfeit drug detection. He is both a recipient of and a reviewer for the NCI’s Innovative Molecular Analysis Technologies (IMAT) grant program. Dr. Messmer’s current position at UC San Diego provides an excellent channel for academic collaboration with Batu Biologics.

Harry Lander, PhD, MBA

Dr. Lander has over 20 years of professional scientific, business and financial management experience related to biomedical research. Dr. Lander has had extensive experience in establishing the Sidra Medical and Research Center in Qatar as well as the implementation of a $650MM research building at the Weill Cornell Medical College . He has extensive relationships with large and small biotechnology / pharmaceutical companies and entities that Brunei Cancer Center can leverage for economic and scientific growth. Dr. Lander is currently President of Regen BioPharma, Inc. a publicly traded biotechnology company. Formerly he has served as Research Chief / Administration for Sidra Medical and Research Center (Doha, Qatar) and Assistant Provost for Weill Cornell Medical College (Cornell University). He has extensive experience running complex organizations and establishing new ones.

John Peck, Jr.

John Peck Jr graduated from Northern Illinois University in 1966 with a BS in Business. He spent the next three years in the US Army as an ordinance officer stationed in Southeast Asia. Upon returning to the States in 1969 he worked for RCA and Intel while pursuing an MBA at Depaul University. In 1976 John joined Meridian Leasing as employee number 5. In 1994 John (now CEO) and a Partner purchased Meridian Leasing (now 150 strong) from ownership that was in a consolidation mode. John’s share was bought out in 1997 and he started investing in commercial real estate with an emphasis on the large Multifamily properties. Currently John is doing a little land development work and has found the “New Wave of the Future”in the Biotech Community. At present he is invested in 7 Biotech firms. John and his wife,Vera, have been married for over 45 years and have had two children.

Nimesh Goel, BSN

Nimesh Goel graduated with a BSN from West Coast University in California. He is a founder of multiple startups with the vision to achieve innovation in healthcare technology. He founded BrewMed, a company focused on developing medical devices for all professionals, with a keen focus on improving patient care. Nimesh is also a cofounder of Dyo Biotechnologies, a company focused on delivering end-to-end precision medicine solutions to organizations and institutions across the globe. His clinical experiences have enabled him to identify solutions to enhance patient care, he has filed several patents over the years for his inventions. His experience in managing the startups has included authoring various patent applications, secured funding from investors, leading the R&D for his devices, contracting manufacturing companies throughout Asia and integrating scalability solutions. In addition, he has managed logistics, trained and deployed a sales force, negotiated with various distribution channels, and managed company financials. His array of experience and visionary outlook has enabled him to identify and optimize new opportunities for continual business development.

Paulo Ferraz

Mr. Ferraz has pioneered the introduction of Information Technology in a variety of fields and markets around the world for four decades. In the eighties he developed multiple technical systems working as a systems analyst for Control Data Corporation in Brazil, including military and space applications using Artificial Intelligence. In the early nineties Paulo moved his interests and skills to biotech and the nascent internet industry, helping to open new markets in molecular modeling and drug discovery as Latin America Operations Director for San Diego-based Biosym Technologies. Paulo co-founded and was the CEO of biotech and IT companies like Biobras Software and Steps Technologies, setting up disruptive projects like a web-based insulin dosage platform in collaboration with University of Miami and an award-winning Virtual Reality industrial training tool, as well the invention and deployment of the US first internet-based Learning Management System and development of educational software reaching millions of students in the US, Europe, and Asia. Paulo studied Electrical Engineering and Information Systems at UFMG – Minas Gerais Federal University in Brazil. Mr. Ferraz is currently BRICS/Emerging Markets Director at Newstar Ventures, an international investment fund headquartered in La Jolla.

Shahriar Shahid

Shahriar Shahid is a 30-year veteran in the Pharmaceutical, Nutraceutical and Medical Device Industries. Full hands-on involvement in all aspects of Manufacturing, Packaging, Transportation and Logistics, Assigning and Contract Negotiations with the international distributors. Aid in Sales and Marketing efforts of the represented companies including identification of the Distribution Targets, Volume Forecasting, Financial Analysis, Key Account Planning, Strategic Partnering, and establishing Sales Policy and Procedures. Unique blend of staff, line, and senior management experience and expertise include; Strategic Planning & Analysis, Project Management Business Development Client Relations. For more than a decade Shahriar was Lead Architect, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs divisions at Amgen and earlier with Merck & Co, Inc., as a Systems and Business Analyst. Shahriar has a global network of experts in various countries to assess their medical and nutritional needs as it pertains to Batu Biologics.

Basir Sohail

Mr. Sohail brings more than 25 years of global experience in molecular, personalized medicine, companion diagnostics. Mr. Sohail has served on the Executive Management, Advisory Board for several companies including Consultant for Genetic Analysis Solutions Worldwide for Life Technologies, now Thermo Fisher Scientific. In the past he played the role of Vice President of Marketing for AutoGenomics, and as Vice President Commercial Operations for Thermo Electron Corporation (now Thermo-Fisher Scientific). As Director of Worldwide Marketing at Vysis – Abbott Laboratories, he drove significant sales and profit growth through pharmacogenomic oncology initiatives (i.e. PathVysion® HER-2 diagnostic for Herceptin® therapy) and was responsible for business development, licensing, and strategic planning. As the U.S. Marketing Director for Diagnostica Stago (France) Mr. Sohail spearheaded major change initiatives to resolve corporate image and brand. He has also lived in UK as International Marketing Manager for Sigma Aldrich Corporation with responsibilities including new product launch and to establish a technical service and training center.

Francesco Marincola, MD

Dr. Francesco M. Marincola is a Distinguished Research Fellow at AbbVie Biotherapeutics Corporation, in Redwood City, California. Previously, he was the Inaugural Chief Research Officer of Sidra Medical and Research Centre in Doha, Qatar. He was previously a tenured Senior Investigator at the U.S. National Institutes of Health. He is past-President of the Society for the Immunotherapy of Cancer and Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Translational Medicine. He received his MD summa cum laude from the University of Milan and did his surgery training at Stanford University, California. His scientific work deepened the understanding of the mechanisms leading to rejection of tumours or transplanted organs by the immune system and development of autoimmunity. With over 600 peer-reviewed scientific papers, Dr. Marincola is considered one of the world’s leading experts in cancer immunotherapy.

Mai H. Le, MD

Mai is a strategic advisor for biotechnology companies with a focus in oncology and immunotherapy. Dr. Le has over 8 years of oncology drug development experience that includes small molecules, biologics, medical devices and companion diagnostics strategy. She previously served as a medical director at Calithera Biosciences, Plexxikon Inc., Onyx Pharmaceuticals and Proteolix, Inc (acquired by Onyx Pharmaceuticals), and most recently, as the Chief Medical Officer at OncoSec Medical, Inc. Dr. Le obtained a medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and trained in Laboratory Medicine at University of California, San Francisco.

Boris Minev, MD, Ph.D.

Boris is currently the Director of Immunotherapy and Translational Oncology at Genelux Corporation studying the phenotype and characterization of metastasized cancer cells circulation. Dr. Minev previously worked as the Principal Investigate at the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Immunotherapy at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center. Dr. Minev has an extensive experience with cancer vaccines, having worked closely on the development of the first tumor vaccine to be approved by a regulatory body (Melacine).

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