Seiji Shinkai, Ph.D.
University Professor, Institute for Advanced Study, Kyushu University
President, Institute of Systems, Information Technologies and Nanotechnologies
Dr. Shinkai is an internationally recognized organic chemistry expert and leader in mechanism of molecular recognition and manipulation, and their applications in molecular machinery design. He was the recipient of numerous academic research awards including The Japanese Emperor Purple Ribbon. His lifetime research contributions have exceeded 1,000 original publications and 100 review articles. He was appointed advisory board member of Angewandte Chemie, a worldwide recognized Wiley chemistry journal. He has led multiple national research projects in Japan over a long career including several JST projects and a Kyushu University Global Center of Excellence program.
Susumu Satoh, Ph.D.
Chief Scientific Officer, Y's Corporation
Dr. Satoh became an actively-involved advisor to NapaJen in 2004 after leaving Fujisawa Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (now Astellas Pharma Inc.) following a 26-years role as principal investigator, spanning activities from drug discovery to regulatory submission. He has been a major contributor to NapaJen’s early R&D roadmap and manufacturing development. At Fujisawa, he was appointed to special honor assignments including research at Pittsburg University, and as a central figure in the Japanese Genome Association. After Fujisawa, he was appointed CSO of Y’s Corporation, and currently he is also an Invited Professor of Plasma and Energy Application Research Laboratories in Ehime University and Visiting Professor of Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology.
Yoshikazu Koyama, Ph.D.
Professor of Life Science and Technology, Hokkai-Gakuen University
Dr. Koyama has been a scientific advisor to NapaJen since 2005. His research career has focused on molecular biology of iatrochemistry at Hokkaido University. Earlier period of his research career included 2 years overseas at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla in the area of tumor specific antigen analyses in pulmonary small cell lung carcinoma and melanoma. After returning to Hokkaido University, his research interest shifted to structure and function of alpha-fetoprotein in cancer and to macrophage adhesion molecules with special interest in anti-MIF DNA vaccine development.
Yoshifumi Takei, Ph.D.
Professor of Medical Biochemistry, Aichi Gakuin University,
Dr. Takei has been an advisor to NapaJen since Spring 2005. He is well recognized for prolific research in understanding the molecular biology of RNA interference, for leading a double doctorate program in pharmaceutical chemistry and medical sciences and for work that has spanned the development of new tools at Nagoya University. His knowledge of RNAi molecular design and biology mechanisms has been instrumental in NapaJen’s early development. He is currently appointed as a professor of Medicinal Biochemitry in Aichi Gakuin University.
Babak N. Alizadeh, Ph.D.
Executive Advisor, U.S. Operations, NapaJen Pharma
Dr. Alizadeh has been advising NapaJen in scientific and business development affairs since 2006 and most recently he has managed the company’s North American operations for IND-enabling activities. Over the past 30 years in the biotech field, active mostly in the San Francisco Bay Area industry, he has played R&D, operations, business development, intellectual asset management, corporate venture capital fund management and entrepreneurship roles in the fields of genomics, circulating tumors cells, oligonucleotide therapeutics and epigenetics. Most of his career has been involved with the delivery of DNA/RNA therapeutics in pre-clinical models. He completed his Ph.D. and post-doctoral training in Cancer Biology at Stanford University School of Medicine, after earning a B.S. degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.
Reiko Namikawa, M.D., Ph.D.
Scientific Advisor, Pre-clinical Operations, NapaJen Pharma
Dr. Namikawa has been supporting NapaJen’s pre-clinical development since 2014. She has been active in clinical and pre-clinical development of a wide range of therapeutics products in the areas of oncology and immune diseases, both as a consultant as well as an executive within the biotech industry for the last 2 decades. Earlier in her career she conducted research at DNAX, and prior to that at SyStemix as the scientific co-founder after completing her post-doctoral training with Irv Weissman at Stanford University School of Medicine. She received her M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Nagoya University School of Medicine in Japan.
Aaron C. Logan, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplantation
University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)
Dr. Logan is an expert in the clinical management of patients undergoing allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, as well as the treatment of transplant-related complications, including graft-versus-host disease. His research interests include ultrasensitive detection of minimal residual disease and pre-emption of relapse, immune reconstitution following transplantation, and novel methods for preventing and treating graft-versus-host disease. He has extensive experience with pre-clinical models of graft-versus-host disease, antibody-mediated transplant conditioning, and hematopoietic stem cell biology. Prior to joining the faculty at UCSF, Dr. Logan received his training in hematology and blood and marrow transplantation at Stanford University.
John J. Rossi, Ph.D.
Dean, Graduate School of Biological Sciences
Chair and Professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope Medical Center
An eminent figure and pioneer in the biology of RNA interference (RNAi), Professor Rossi is Dean of Graduate School of Biological Sciences and Chair of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the Beckman Research Institute at the City of Hope Medical Center. He is the recipient of numerous honors including the prestigious MERIT Award of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Dr. Rossi’s research team is focused on functions and therapeutic applications of small RNAs with special focus on the development of anti-HIV treatments. His group discovered Dicer-substrate siRNA molecules. His team has also been utilizing ribozymes and aptamers for targeting HIV. He has been the senior author on more than 250 peer-reviewed publications. In addition to being an accomplished academic figure, Dr. Rossi has significantly contributed to the development of the RNAi therapeutics biotechnology industry and co-founded Calando, Dicerna and MiNA Therapeutics.