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GeneTether: Roland Boivin, Jean Jen, and Peter Sampson

Biotech company GeneTether, which develops technologies to increase the correction efficiency of targeted genome editing technologies, has appointed Roland Boivin as CEO, Jean Jen as CFO, and Peter Sampson as vice president of R&D.

Boivin has nearly 25 years of public company leadership experience, with a focus on strategic operations, finance, business development, and general management. He most recently served as CFO of Medexus Pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining Medexus, Boivin served as CFO of Golden Hope Mines, and held a variety of progressive positions at 3M Canada, including leading the company's consumer division as business unit manager, and serving as a member of the firm's executive committee.

Boivin succeeds Har Grover, who will continue to serve in a consulting role at GeneTether until the end of 2021.

Jen has more than 12 years of finance and accounting experience in the life sciences sector, having worked with businesses ranging from venture-backed start-ups to publicly traded companies. She has held various senior level positions as an independent financial consultant, and most recently served as VP of finance at Anandia Laboratories. From 2013 to 2018, Jen held increasingly senior positions at Arbutus Biopharma, and previously spent nearly five years with KPMG's advisory and audit practices, with a primary focus on publicly-listed companies.

Sampson has more than 20 years of drug development experience, including discovery chemistry, CMC regulatory affairs, and IP portfolio management. He joins GeneTether from Scientus Pharma where he served as the director of R&D. Prior to Scientus, Sampson spent 10 years as a scientist in the therapeutics group at the University Health Network. Prior to UHN, he held various R&D leadership roles of increasing responsibility at Affinium Pharmaceuticals, GlycoDesign, and Albany Molecular Research.

Vizgen: Dale Levitzke

Vizgen has appointed Dale Levitzke as senior VP of global sales and support. He will be responsible for the global product launch of Vizgen's Merscope platform, including growing distribution channels, and growing the firm's sales and service teams.

Levitzke comes to Vizgen from Dropworks, where he was VP of worldwide sales and marketing. He has nearly 20 years of experience, including global commercial roles at NanoString Technologies, where he was VP of worldwide sales, and Illumina, where he led the PCR division following that firm's acquisition of Helixis, where he was senior director for global sales.

Encodia: Nigel Beard

Biotech company Encodia hired Nigel Beard as its chief technology officer (CTO). Bear recently served as CTO and senior vice president of operations at Mission Bio, where he was involved in launching and scaling up that company's multiomic single cell analysis Tapestri platform. 

Prior to Mission, Beard worked as CTO and chief operating officer at Feetz, head of R&D at Life Technologies' Human Identification Business, and as senior program manager at Applied Biosystems. Additionally, Beard serves as a board member at Savran Technologies. 

Enzo Biochem: Hamid Erfanian, Elazar Rabbani

Enzo Biochem has appointed Hamid Erfanian as its CEO. Elazar Rabbani, the firm's outgoing CEO, remains chairperson of the board of directors and will assume the role of chief scientific officer.

Erfanian was most recently chief commercial officer of PerkinElmer's Euroimmun. From June 2014 to Aug. 2021, he was CEO of Euroimmun's US subsidiary. Prior to Euroimmun, Erfanian held executive and senior positions at several diagnostics companies including Diagnostica Stago, Beckman Coulter, and Abbott Laboratories. Earlier in his career, he worked at Quest Diagnostics and Laboratory Corporation of America.

Geneoscopy: Haytham Gareer

Geneoscopy has appointed Haytham Gareer as chief medical officer. Gareer will assist in the company's efforts to launch its non-invasive RNA-FIT colorectal cancer screening test and in expanding Geneoscopy's gastrointestinal diagnostics portfolio. 

Gareer previously served as vice president and global head of medical and clinical affairs for Olympus Corporation, where he led clinical research efforts and collaborations with medical advisors in support of commercialization and technology development across the company's medical products portfolio. Prior to that, Gareer practised as as surgeon, with internation experience in Egypt, Italy, and Japan. 

Grail: Bob Ragusa, Hans Bishop

Illumina has appointed Bob Ragusa as CEO of its subsidiary Grail. He succeeds Hans Bishop, who will serve as advisor to the CEO through the end of 2021 and then step down.

Ragusa is Illumina's chief operations officer, a role in which he helped scale the business globally. He was responsible for the company's clinical lab services, supply chain, quality, life cycle management, information technology, global facilities, and real estate teams.

Prior to Illumina, he was executive VP of engineering and global operations at Accuray, a radiation oncology company, and senior VP of global operations at Applied Biosystems.

Ragusa holds a master's degree in biomedical and electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from the University of Connecticut.

Bishop joined Grail's board of directors in 2018 before becoming CEO. He founded Juno Therapeutics in 2013 and was the firm's president and CEO until it was acquired by Celgene. He serves on the boards of Celgene and Agilent Technologies.

 

Caris Life Sciences: Andreas Tsukada

Andreas Tsukada has joined Caris Life Sciences as senior vice president, president of Japanese operations and head of international. In his new role, Tsukada will oversee operations, market development, regulatory strategy, biopharma partnerships, and strategic initiatives in the region, as well as support Caris' molecular profiling collaboration with the National Cancer Center Japan for the MONSTAR-SCREEN-2 of SCRUM-Japan, the largest cancer genomic screening consortium in the country.

Before joining Caris, Tsukada was general manager and representative director for Japan at Guardant Health. He has over 20 years experience in oncology and diagnostics across the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific, including working with Thermo Fisher Scientific, where he directed clinical NGS partnerships. Prior to that, Tsukada worked for Merck Biopharma in Japan leading the oncology business unit.

Personalis: Robert Bruce

Personalis has appointed Robert Bruce to the newly created position of vice president of reimbursement. Bruce previously worked at Clinical Genomics, where he served as VP of reimbursement and interim CFO. Prior to Clinical Genomics he provided reimbursement and financial consulting services to a range of private and public companies, after serving in senior management roles with Enterix and Binax. He holds a BA in East Asian studies from Princeton University and an MBA from the School of Management at Yale University.

IDbyDNA: Adrian Egli, Tamara Feldblyum, Karl Voelkderding, Christopher Woods, Stephen Young

IDbyDNA has made several appointments to its scientific advisory board. Joining the board are Adrian Egli, head of clinical bacteriology and mycology at University Hospital Basel, Switzerland; Tamara Feldblyum, former branch chief in the Division of Microbiology Devices at the US Food and Drug Administration's Center for Devices and Radiological Health Office of In Vitro Diagnostics and Radiological Health; Karl Voelkerding, an expert in genomics and a member of the College of American Pathologists and the Association for Molecular Pathology; Christopher Woods, executive director of the Hubert-Yeargan Center for Global Health and professor of medicine and pathology at Duke University; and Stephen Young, director of research and clinical trials at TriCore Reference Laboratory.

Metabolon Appoints Rangaprasad Sarangarajan to Chief Scientific Officer

Metabolomics and precision medicine company Metabolon has appointed Rangaprasad (Ranga) Sarangarajan as its chief scientific officer (CSO). 

Sarangarajan previously served as CSO and senior vice president of clinical and translational sciences at BERG, where he led the development of a multi-omic, biology-based platform for identifying disease-specific targets and novel therapeutics, and developing diagnostics. He also helped establish that company's pipeline of assets in various diseases and indications, and led several programs through early IND, including enabling a first-in-human Phase I and proof-concept Phase II clinical program.

Sarangarajan obtained a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Cincinnati and is part of over 40 pending or approved patents.

The Scan

Could Mix It Up

The US Food and Drug Administration is considering a plan that would allow for the mixing-and-matching of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and boosters, the New York Times says.

Closest to the Dog

New Scientist reports that extinct Japanese wolf appears to be the closest known wild relative of dogs.

Offer to Come Back

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that the University of Tennessee is offering Anming Hu, a professor who was acquitted of charges that he hid ties to China, his position back.

PNAS Papers on Myeloid Differentiation MicroRNAs, Urinary Exosomes, Maize Domestication

In PNAS this week: role of microRNAs in myeloid differentiation, exosomes in urine, and more.