OUR TEAM

SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY BOARD

Sir Gregory Winter

CBE, FRS, FMedSci, HonFRCP
2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry

Sir Gregory Winter is the most recent former Master of Trinity College Cambridge and until recently a member of the Medical Research Council’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB) in Cambridge. He is a scientist, inventor and entrepreneur. His scientific career has almost entirely been based in Cambridge where his work has involved the development of technologies for making pharmaceutical antibodies by genetic engineering. Such antibodies have proved useful for treatment of cancer and immune disorders, and now comprise many of the world’s top selling pharmaceutical drugs. These include the “humanized” antibodies Herceptin (for treatment of breast cancer) and Lucentis (for treatment of wet acute macular degeneration), and the human antibody Humira (for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis), currently the world’s top selling pharmaceutical drug.

In order to advance his discoveries, Sir Gregory has founded several successful start-up companies, including Cambridge Antibody Technology in 1990 (acquired by Astra Zeneca in 2006), Domantis in 2000 (acquired by GSK in 2006) and Bicycle Therapeutics in 2010, which is developing a peptide product for the treatment of cancer. He is a Trustee of the Kennedy Trust for Rheumatology Research, non-executive director of Bicycle Therapeutics and consults to Biosceptre.

Sir Gregory is a Fellow of the Royal Society, has received numerous international prizes and awards, and in 2004 was knighted for his services to Molecular Biology. In 2018 he was awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

Professor Terence Rabbitts

FRS, FMedSci

Professor Terence Rabbitts worked in Cambridge from 1973-2006 in the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology. He succeeded Fred Sanger as joint Head of the Division of Protein and Nucleic Acid Chemistry together with the Nobel Laureate César Milstein and later with Sir Greg Winter. He became the Director of the Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine (2007 to 2012), Professor of Molecular Biology at the Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford in 2012 and will move to the Institute of Cancer Research in March 2020. He has been awarded the Colworth Medal of the Biochemical Society and the CIBA Prize and was elected as a Member of the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) (1981), a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) (1987) and a Founder Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences (FMedSci) (1998). He has considerable experience with biotechnology. He was Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) of Cambridge Antibody Technology from its instigation until its Stock Market IPO and Chairman of the SAB of Quadrant Healthcare, until its trade sale to Elan. He was a member of the Domantis SAB until the Company’s acquisition by GSK, a Non-Executive Director of Iclectus for three years and a Non-Executive Director of Aptuscan for three years until its acquisition by Avacta. He was the Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of Kymab. He is co-founder of Orbit Discovery and of Quadrucept Bio Ltd and is a member of the SAB of Biosceptre and Avacta Life Sciences.

Professor Francesco Di Virgilio

MD

Professor Francesco Di Virgilio is Professor of Clinical Pathology, University of Ferrara, Head of the Postgraduate School in Clinical Pathology and of the PhD School in Molecular Medicine and Pharmacology. He has published over 270 scientific papers, of which over 200 on purinergic receptor signalling, making him the most quoted investigator in P2X7 scientific literature world wide, was an inventor of 3 international patents and his corporate experience includes being on the Scientific Advisory Board of Duska Therapeutics Inc and Affectis Pharmaceuticals AG. He obtained a Medical Degree (MD) from the University of Padova. In 1982-3 he was an Honorary Research Assistant at the University College London and in 1986-7 a Visiting Fellow, Department of Physiology and Cellular Biophysics, Columbia University, New York, before becoming Associate Professor of Molecular Pathology at the University of Padova in 1988, and Professor of General Pathology at the University of Ferrara in 1992. He was Chairman of the Centre of Excellence for the Study of Inflammation (2001-2010), Deputy-Rector for Research and Technology Transfer of the University of Ferrara (2011-2015) and consultant with Janssen Pharmaceuticals from March to September 2017. He is a member of the Faculty of 1000, Cell Biology Section, an Academic Member of the European Academy of Tumor Immunology and a Member of Academia Europea.

Professor Ruth Plummer

MA, DPhil, BMBCh, MD, FRCP

Ruth Plummer is Professor of Experimental Cancer Medicine in The Translational and Clinical Research Institute, Newcastle University and an honorary consultant medical oncologist in Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. She is a deputy director of Newcastle University Centre for Cancer, and also Director of the Sir Bobby Robson Cancer Trials Research Centre within the Northern Centre for Cancer Care, a dedicated early phase clinical trials. She leads the Newcastle Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre and also the CRUK Newcastle Cancer Centre. She trained at Cambridge and Oxford before moving back home to Newcastle and settling with her family in the Tyne valley. Her clinical practice involves leading on the systemic therapies for skin cancer, with a portfolio of trials across all phases of drug development. In addition, she runs a phase I all-comers practice, taking responsibility for one of the most active phase I unit’s in the UK. Her research interests are in the field of DNA repair and early phase clinical trials of novel agents or novel imaging targets, taking the first in class PARP inhibitor into the clinic in 2003, ATR inhibitor in 2012 and MCT1 inhibitor in 2014. At a national level, she sits on CRUK’s Clinical Research Committee, chaired the CRUK New Agents Committee 2012-2019 and is a member of the NIHR EME Board, MRC Precision Medicine Group and the NCRI Strategy Advisory Group.

Dr Toh Han Chong

BSc (London), MBBChir (Cambridge), MRCP (UK), FRCP (Edinburgh), FAMS (Singapore)

Dr Toh is Deputy Medical Director, National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS), Associate Professor at the Cancer & Stem Cell Biology Program, Duke-NUS and PI at the Singapore Immunology Network.

Dr Toh graduated from the University of London, UK, with an Intercalated Bachelor of Science in ‘Infection and Immunity’ from St Mary’s Hospital Medical School and qualified as a medical doctor from University of Cambridge, United Kingdom. Dr Toh obtained his Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians in 2003. He received his medical oncology fellowship training at the Singapore General Hospital, and at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA. He then completed a research fellowship in cancer immunotherapy at the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA. He is a graduate of the General Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Dr Toh received the National Outstanding Clinician Scientist Award 2018, and has published over 100 peer-review journal articles. He is founding chairman of the Singapore Cancer Immunotherapy Consortium, a member of the World Immunotherapy Council and on the Cancer Immunotherapy faculty of the European Society of Medical Oncology.

MANAGEMENT TEAM

Mr Gavin Currie

Chief Executive Officer

Mr Gavin Currie has been the Chief Executive Officer of Biosceptre since October 2012. Gavin’s leadership has brought a strong commercial focus to Biosceptre and has transitioned the company from a primarily research driven organisation to a development-based biopharmaceutical with a core focus being to expedite lead products through the clinic. Prior to Biosceptre, Mr Currie was General Manager for a private (international) investment fund with a strong biotech focus, sitting on numerous company boards. Mr Currie originally started his career as a CPA however moved into industry management roles where he has developed a reputation for delivering value by converting synergies from previously unseen opportunities. He has been employed internationally in Australia, New Zealand, USA, UK and Hong Kong, with considerable experience in cross-border transactions and investments.

Mr Braden Roberts

Chief Business Officer

Braden’s focus is on Biosceptre’s strategic and operational planning and corporate development. Prior to Biosceptre, Braden had spent much of his 25 year career as a management consultant and business analyst across a broad range of industries in multiple countries, and has a proven ability to connect strategic direction with operational execution. Braden holds a Bachelor of Business (Distinction), and qualified as a Certified Practising Accountant in 1995.

Mr Gary Faull

Chief Financial Officer

Gary has over 20 years experience leading international finance teams. Prior to joining Biosceptre he was CFO of a private hospital group in HK and then a global private family company (with a large family office) with 18 offices around the world. Gary has developed strong skills ranging from accounting, information systems and logistics, banking, investment monitoring, corporate structures and negotiations. Gary holds an MBA, and is a Fellow of CPA Australia, the Financial Services Institute of Australasia, and the Governance Institute of Australia.

Mr Brad Miller

Senior Manager – Legal, Compliance & Operations

Brad joined Biosceptre as Senior Manager – Legal & Compliance in May 2013 after five years with a private international investment fund. With practical knowledge in both financial management and legal documentation, Brad gained hands on experience across a broad range of cross-border transactions including mergers and acquisitions, debt financing and equity investments, primarily in the life sciences sector. Brad holds a Masters of Business Law from the University of Sydney and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Macquarie University.

SCIENCE OPERATIONS

Professor Paul de Souza

Chief Medical Officer

Professor Paul de Souza has been a practicing medical oncologist for over 25 years, having obtained the FRACP in 1992. He trained in medical oncology at St George and Prince of Wales Hospitals, and was Research Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia (1994-1997) before returning to Wollongong and St George Hospitals as a staff specialist (1997-2010). In 2011, he was appointed Foundation Professor of Medical Oncology at Western Sydney University and a Conjoint Professor, UNSW. He has sub-specialty interests in genitourinary cancer, brain cancer and rare cancers such as sarcoma. He is currently the Head and Dean of School of Medicine at University of Wollongong.

Julian Barden

Research Director

Julian leads Biosceptre’s therapeutic discovery efforts. Following a 30 year research career, his research focused on the structure and function of the family of purinergic receptors of type P2X and their role in disease, including cancer. Discoveries within the field led to the numerous patent families now held by Biosceptre, encompassing diagnostic and therapeutic elements, chief among many being the discovery of the cancer target nfP2X7.

Dr Romain Lara

Lead Scientist

Romain gained his PhD at Imperial College London and is a senior scientist and scientific project manager with strong experience in the life science sector with a proven track record in academic and biotech research and development with experience in oncology. Romain has shown strong commercial skills and during his time at Biosceptre, he has completed his Master of Business Administration. Romain utilises his strong commercial and scientific background in the ongoing coordination of activities with our external collaborators.

Susan Sherlock

Senior Research Manager

Susan gained a BSc (Hons) Biological Science at the University of Edinburgh and has a wealth of experience gained in both the public and private sector organisations particularly around antibody discovery and development. Susan primarily works with our external collaborators who are focussed on our antibody program.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Andrew Walton-Green

Chairman

Mr Walton-Green is a Chartered Accountant and a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation. Mr Walton-Green is a serial entrepreneur with significant interests in biotech, pharmaceutical distribution, renewables and financial services. Before this, Mr Walton-Green was the CEO of Gresham Computing plc for 10 years, gaining significant exposure to the banking and financial services sector at a senior level. Mr Walton-Green spent the first 13 years of his career in practice as a Chartered Accountant predominately with Ernst & Young and Deloitte.

Mr Gavin Currie

Chief Executive Officer

Mr Gavin Currie has been the Chief Executive Officer of Biosceptre since October 2012. Gavin’s leadership has brought a strong commercial focus to Biosceptre and has transitioned the company from a primarily research driven organisation to a development-based biopharmaceutical with a core focus being to expedite lead products through the clinic. Prior to Biosceptre, Mr Currie was General Manager for a private (international) investment fund with a strong biotech focus, sitting on numerous company boards. Mr Currie originally started his career as a CPA however moved into industry management roles where he has developed a reputation for delivering value by converting synergies from previously unseen opportunities. He has been employed internationally in Australia, New Zealand, USA, UK and Hong Kong, with considerable experience in cross-border transactions and investments.

Dr Ronald Watts

Non-Executive Director

Dr Ronald Watts has worked at senior levels in government and at CEO and board level across a range of technology-based enterprises. His management experience covers software and telecommunications industries, and as a consultant he has worked with companies on strategy and fund-raising in biotechnology, utilities, food processing and energy. He co-founded Australia’s largest energy market intermediary, Energy Action and served as Chairman until 2015. Dr Watts has served on a number of government and industry oversight bodies, and as Adjunct Research Fellow at UniSA. He currently acts as a trustee of the medical charity, the Wenkart Foundation. He has a Bachelor of Science (Honours) from the University of New South Wales and a PhD from Cambridge University.

Mr Jonathan Collins

Non-Executive Director

Mr. Jonathan Collins has held various management and director level roles in the sales and leasing of capital equipment in the United States and Europe before relocating to Australia in 1987 to re-build an existing group business. Having successfully implemented a management buy-out in 1993, and becoming the sole owner in 1997, the business developed into a major manufacturer of specialized pumping equipment with offices in the United States, Indonesia, United Kingdom, Middle East and South Africa, where both rental and sales contributed to significant growth, before being sold to an ASX-listed company in November 2010. With a keen interest in rugby, Mr. Collins has served as a director of the New South Wales Waratahs (Super 15) and the Australian Rugby Union and is currently the owner and Chairman of the Coco Group.

Mr Michael Lovett

Non-Executive Director

Mr Michael Lovett is the owner of Bioption Investments (HK) Ltd – a private investment fund; the owner of Ambrosia Trading (Shanghai) Ltd – a China based manufacturing business; a Director of KaosKey Pty Ltd – a medical device company. Mr Lovett is a qualified psychologist. He founded and was the CEO of the UK’s largest social care businesses, which after growing organically and through acquisitions, he sold to Private Equity. After moving to Hong Kong Michael set up a private investment vehicle through which he invests predominantly in the medical sciences and medical device sector. Mr Lovett is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and of the Institute of Directors.

Mr Paul Axon

Alternate Director to Mr Jonathan Collins

Mr Paul Axon is a qualified Pharmacist and a Chartered Accountant in the UK and Australia, having vast experience in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and general management. Previously, Paul was a partner in corporate finance at BDO in the UK and had owned his own mergers and acquisitions practice. More recently, Mr Axon was the CEO of Sykes Pumps, until the sale of the business to National Hire in 2010. Currently, Mr Axon is the CEO and equity holder of the Coco Group, who invests in and manages a vast array of businesses in Australia and the Middle East, including interests in equipment rental, mining services, retail, biotechnology and resources.