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The R&D challenge: What are the best practices in drug development today?

Once again John Carroll has analyzed the ranking of the top 15 pharma players in R&D, outlining what the largest companies are paying for advancing their pipelines. As drug development costs are rising, and spending surges, what do the most successful people in drug research say are the best practices they’ve followed for achieving the biggest advances with the most efficient use of cash. This is one round table discussion you won’t want to miss.

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Alise Reicin

Alise Reicin

President and CEO, Director, Tectonic Therapeutic, Inc.

Alise Reicin, MD, is CEO and President of Tectonic Therapeutic, Inc., and a Director at Sana Biotechnology.

Alise was previously President, Global Clinical Development at Celgene Corporation, where she oversaw the development and approval of drugs across their pipeline in oncology, hematology and autoimmune diseases and fibrosis. She currently serves on the board of directors of Homology Medicines and Sharsheret. Alise has extensive early and late clinical development experience working across a broad range of therapeutic areas, including oncology, hematology, rheumatology, dermatology, gastroenterology, pain, respiratory and allergic diseases. She played a leadership role which led to the initial approval of 10 novel medicines and the approval of more than 10 indications for an additional 5 drugs.

Alise previously served as Head of Global Clinical Development at EMD Serono. Prior to this, she served as Vice President, Program and Pipeline Leadership, Oncology at Merck and Co. In this capacity, Alise led Merck’s Keytruda (anti-PD-1) program and oversaw the initial development and filing activities worldwide for melanoma and non-small cell lung cancer, and the initiation of development plans in 7 additional indications. Prior to Merck, she was a faculty member at Columbia Medical School, and a physician and researcher at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital.

Alise has a BS in biochemistry from Barnard College of Columbia University (summa cum laude) and received her MD from Harvard Medical School (cum laude), where she was enrolled in the Health Sciences and Technology program with MIT.

Arie Belldegrun

Arie Belldegrun

Executive Chairman and Co-Founder, Allogene Therapeutics

Arie Belldegrun, MD, is the Executive Chairman and Co-Founder of Allogene. As a visionary entrepreneur, Arie founded Kite Pharma, a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the development of innovative cancer immunotherapies, where he served as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer until the acquisition of Kite by Gilead Sciences in October 2017. Arie has had a distinguished tenure in the life sciences, having been closely involved with the founding and advancement of several successful biopharmaceutical companies including Cougar Biotechnology and Agensys. Abiraterone, developed by Cougar, is a mainstay of therapy for patients with metastatic prostate cancer. He currently serves as Chairman of Two River Group, UroGen Pharma, Kronos Bio, and as Co-Chairman of Breakthrough Properties, and is on the Board of Gingko Bioworks, IconOVir, ByHeart and is a Co-Founder and Senior Managing Director of Vida Ventures. Arie is Research Professor, holds the Roy and Carol Doumani Chair in Urologic Oncology, and is Director of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Prior to joining UCLA, Arie was at the National Cancer Institute/NIH as a research fellow in surgical oncology and immunotherapy under Dr. Steven A. Rosenberg. He completed his MD at the Hebrew University Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem, his post-graduate studies in Immunology at the Weizmann Institute of Science, and his residency in urologic surgery at Harvard Medical School. He has authored several books on oncology and more than 500 scientific and medical papers related to urological cancers, immunotherapy, gene therapy and cancer vaccines. He is certified by the American Board of Urology and is a member of the American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons.

Norbert Bischofberger

Norbert Bischofberger

President & Chief Executive Officer, Kronos Bio

Norbert Bischofberger has served as president and chief executive officer of Kronos Bio, a biotech company that is focused on advancing therapeutics that target dysregulated transcription to treat cancer and other serious diseases, since 2018. Prior to Kronos Bio, Bischofberger spent 28 years at Gilead Sciences, where he served as chief scientific officer and executive vice president of Research and Development. At Gilead, he presided over the development and approval of more than 25 medicines, which transformed the treatment of diseases including HIV and viral hepatitis. Norbert was a core member of the management team that grew Gilead from a company with fewer than 50 employees and no revenue to an organization with more than 10,000 employees and $25 billion in annual revenue at the time of his departure. Norbert received a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Zurich’s Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule and performed postdoctoral research in steroid chemistry at Syntex. He conducted additional research in organic chemistry and applied enzymology in Professor George Whiteside’s lab at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Norbert received an honorary doctorate in Natural Sciences (2016) from The University of Innsbruck and an honorary doctorate in Letters in Medicine (2017) from Baylor College of Medicine. Norbert was elected a Fellow of The American Association for Advancement of Science (2018). In addition to Kronos Bio, Norbert serves on the Supervisory Board of Bayer AG and Board of Directors of Morphic Therapeutic.

David Schenkein

David Schenkein

General Partner, GV

Dr. David Schenkein is a general partner at GV, where he co-leads the life science investment team. Previously, Dr. Schenkein spent ten years as chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors at Agios Pharmaceuticals, where he remains chairman.

Dr. Schenkein has been a hematologist and medical oncologist for 30 years. He currently serves as an adjunct attending physician in hematology at Tufts Medical Center. Prior to joining Agios, Dr. Schenkein was the senior vice president, clinical hematology/oncology at Genentech, where he was responsible for numerous successful oncology drug approvals and leading the medical and scientific strategies for their BioOncology portfolio. While at Genentech, he served as an adjunct clinical professor of medical oncology at Stanford University School of Medicine.

Prior to joining Genentech, he served as the senior vice president of clinical research at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, overseeing the clinical development and worldwide approval of Velcade, a first-in-class cancer therapy now approved to treat multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He serves on the board of directors of Denali Therapeutics.

Dr. Schenkein holds a B.A. in chemistry from Wesleyan University and an M.D. from the State University of New York Upstate Medical School.

John Carroll

John Carroll


John D. Carroll is a biotech analyst and writer with decades of prize-winning experience in journalism. A co-founder of Endpoints News, he has covered biopharma for the past 17 years. Aside from his daily industry coverage for FierceBiotech, where he was named editor in 2003, leaving in 2016, Carroll has been a regular speaker at biotech events around the globe. He’s been quoted by The New York Times, The New Yorker, Financial Times, The Times of London and more. He’s also keynoted at biotech gatherings around the world and addressed student audiences at MIT and Harvard.

Abhay Kini

Abhay Kini

Director of Life Sciences, Egnyte

Abhay has over 20 years of experience leading high-performing marketing and product teams within the life science industry. He is passionate about empowering life science customers to unlock the value of data by optimal use of business processes and technology to facilitate better decisions throughout the value chain of drug discovery & development.

At Egnyte, Abhay serves as a life science domain expert focussed on strategy definition and capturing voice of the customer. Before Egnyte, Abhay has worked at startups and large organizations, including GE Life Sciences, Oracle, Medidata, and IDBS, within their marketing and product management functions. He has a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, and conducted post-doctoral research in olfaction at Columbia University, New York, NY.