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CONFIRM
Team of Experts

Acepodia’s management team is comprised of expert cell biologists, biochemists, oncologists and engineers with extensive experience in immune cell therapy R&D. With deep roots in cell therapy development and expertise in driving the clinical and business operations of biopharmaceutical companies such as Genentech/Roche and Juno Therapeutics, Acepodia’s leadership is well-equipped to deliver value to its stakeholders and successfully advance its cell therapy candidates through clinical trials and into the hands of patients in need.

MANAGEMENT
  • Patrick Y. Yang, Ph.D.

    Patrick Y. Yang, Ph.D.

    Chairman and Co-Founder
    Dr. Yang is the Chairman and Co-Founder of Acepodia. Dr. Yang was formerly Executive Vice President at Juno Therapeutics. Prior to Juno, he served as Executive Vice President of Technical Operations at Roche and Genentech, where he was responsible for biopharmaceutical manufacturing, process development, engineering, technical regulatory, quality, procurement, and global supply chain management. Prior to Genentech, he served in various leadership roles in the industry with Merck, General Electric and Life Systems. Dr. Yang earned his B.S. in Engineering from National Chiao Tung University (Taiwan), his M.S. from the University of Cincinnati, and his Ph.D. in Engineering from Ohio State University.
  • Sonny Hsiao, Ph.D.

    Sonny Hsiao, Ph.D.

    Chief Executive Officer, President and Co-Founder
    Dr. Hsiao is the Chief Executive Officer, President and Co-Founder of Acepodia. He was awarded Dr. Y-T Lee Prize, which named after Nobel Laureate Dr. Lee, for his research achievement in Chemistry. Dr. Hsiao has extensive research experience in immune cell therapy development, which led to the discovery and invention of Acepodia’s novel cellular immunotherapy development platform, ACC (Antibody-Cell Conjugation). Dr. Hsiao earned his B.S. in Chemistry from National Taiwan University, and his Ph.D. in Chemistry and Molecular Cell Biology from the University of California, Berkeley.
  • Harry Lam, Ph.D.

    Harry Lam, Ph.D.

    Chief Technical Officer and EVP of Technical Operations
    Dr. Lam is a seasoned industrial veteran with extensive leadership experience in biopharmaceutical manufacturing and operations. Prior to join Acepodia, Dr. Lam was CTO and EVP at JW Therapeutics; VP & Head of Biologics Manufacturing at Sanofi; VP of Manufacturing & Technical Operations at Progenitor Cell Therapy; and VP of Manufacturing & Process Development at Shire Regenerative Medicine.

    Prior to Shire, Dr. Lam spent 17 years at Genentech/Roche with increasing responsibilities in various functions in South San Francisco and Singapore, including engineering, manufacturing, manufacturing science & technology, and CMO operations. Prior to Genentech, Harry spent 11 years at Pfizer Bioprocess R&D.

    Dr. Lam received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Birmingham, and his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
  • Joseph S. McCracken, D.V.M., M.S.

    Joseph S. McCracken, D.V.M., M.S.

    Senior Vice President of Business Development
    Dr. McCracken has more than 25 years of experience in research, strategic business development and commercial roles in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. He was previously vice president and global head of business development and licensing for Roche Pharma, where he was responsible for Roche Pharma’s global in-licensing and out-licensing activities. Prior to joining Roche Pharma, Dr. McCracken held the position of vice president of business development at Genentech for more than nine years, and previously held similar positions at Aventis Pharma and Rhone-Poulenc Rorer. Dr. McCracken holds a B.S. in Microbiology, a M.S. in Pharmacology, and a D.V.M. from Ohio State University. 
  • Bill Mackin, Ph.D., RAC

    Bill Mackin, Ph.D., RAC

    Head of Regulatory Affairs
    As a seasoned drug development and regulatory affairs expert with over 25 years in the biopharmaceutical industry, Dr. Mackin has held senior leadership positions in regulatory and manufacturing functions within a number of biopharmaceutical companies and consultant agencies, including Aptuit Consulting. Dr. Mackin received his B.S. in Biology and Microbiology from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr. Mackin was a post-doctoral fellow at University of Connecticut Health Center. Dr. Mackin also currently serves as President of WMackin & Associates.
  • Michael Kurman, M.D.

    Michael Kurman, M.D.

    Head of Clinical Development
    Dr. Kurman has spent over forty years in the oncology drug development field. He is a board-certified medical oncologist who practiced community oncology and has participated as an investigator in oncology clinical trials sponsored by the National Cancer Institute. During his career in the pharmaceutical industry, he has held positions of progressive responsibility at Janssen Pharmaceutica, Cytogen Corporation, U.S. Bioscience, and Quintiles’ (now IQVIA) Oncology Therapeutics Division. During his career in the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Kurman has been involved in the regulatory review or commercial launch of four new oncology products. Dr. Kurman received his B.A., summa cum laude in biology from Syracuse University and his M.D. from Cornell University Medical College. He has held teaching positions at New York University and Stevens Institute and is an entrepreneur-in-residence at the Yale Office of Cooperative Research and a mentor for the Weill Cornell Bioventure eLAB.  
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
  • Patrick Y. Yang, Ph.D.

    Patrick Y. Yang, Ph.D.

    Dr. Yang is the Chairman and Co-Founder of Acepodia. Dr. Yang was formerly Executive Vice President at Juno Therapeutics. Prior to Juno, he served as Executive Vice President of Technical Operations at Roche and Genentech, where he was responsible for biopharmaceutical manufacturing, process development, engineering, technical regulatory, quality, procurement, and global supply chain management. Prior to Genentech, he served in various leadership roles in the industry with Merck, General Electric and Life Systems. Dr. Yang earned his B.S. in Engineering from National Chiao Tung University (Taiwan), his M.S. from the University of Cincinnati, and his Ph.D. in Engineering from Ohio State University.
  • Sonny Hsiao, Ph.D.

    Sonny Hsiao, Ph.D.

    Dr. Hsiao is the Chief Executive Officer, President and Co-Founder of Acepodia. He was awarded Dr. Y-T Lee Prize, which named after Nobel Laureate Dr. Lee, for his research achievement in Chemistry. Dr. Hsiao has extensive research experience in immune cell therapy development, which led to the discovery and invention of Acepodia’s novel cellular immunotherapy development platform, ACC (Antibody-Cell Conjugation). Dr. Hsiao earned his B.S. in Chemistry from National Taiwan University, and his Ph.D. in Chemistry and Molecular Cell Biology from the University of California, Berkeley.
  • Sue Yang, Ph.D.

    Sue Yang, Ph.D.

    Dr. Yang has many years of experience working in various operations of the global pharmaceutical and biotech industry. She has held management and analytical positions in market analysis at Merck, Genentech and Roche. The most recent position was serving as a VP of business operations for a start-up company. Dr. Yang is an expert in market research, market strategy development, and big data analysis. She received a M.S. from Ohio University and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University.
  • Hong Jen Chang, M.D.

    Hong Jen Chang, M.D.

    Dr. Chang is Chairman and CEO of YFY Biotech Management Company and is an adjunct professor at the Institute of Public Health at National Yang-Ming University. Prior to joining YFY Group, Dr. Chang held several key positions in the Taiwanese Ministry of Health and served as President and CEO at the Bureau of National Health Insurance (BNHI) and has extensive experiences in health care and disease control. During Dr. Chang’s tenure at BNHI, he established the Smart Card System for every citizen’s access to health care. Dr. Chang earned his M.D. from National Yang-Ming University and he also received his M.P.H. from National Taiwan University and M.S. in Health Policy and Management from Harvard School of Public Health.
  • Robin Andrulevich

    Robin Andrulevich

    Robin Andrulevich is currently the Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer at Sana Biotechnology. Robin has more than 25 years of experience in human resources and operations at high-growth companies. Most recently, Robin served as the Senior Vice President of People at Juno Therapeutics. She has also held several key senior leadership roles in human resources and talent at Amazon and Google. She has worked in early-and mid-stage venture capital with firms including Madrona Venture Group and Union Square Ventures. Robin earned her B.A. in communications science from the University of Connecticut.
  • David V. Smith, MBA

    David V. Smith, MBA

    Mr. David V. Smith was the chief financial officer and the executive vice president of Five Prime Therapeutics when Amgen acquired the company. He was previously the chief operating officer of IntegenX, the executive vice president and CFO of Thoratec Corporation, the vice president and CFO at Chiron Corp., vice president and CFO of Anergen, Inc., and held various financial management positions with Genentech, Inc., IBM Corporation and Snytex Corporation. David also serves as a member of the board of directors of Codexis Inc., a public traded biotechnology company. 

    Mr. Smith holds a BA in economics and history from Willamette University and an MBA in finance from Golden Gate University. 
ADVISORS
  • Gwendolyn Fyfe, M.D.

    Gwendolyn Fyfe, M.D.

    Dr. Fyfe has more than 20 years of drug development experience in oncology and currently serves as a board member of Molecular Partners AG. Prior to joining Molecular partners AG, she had held various position at Genentech Inc. and played an important role in the development of Genentech’s approved oncology agents including Rituxan®, Herceptin®, Avastin® and Tarceva®. Dr. Fyfe is a recognized expert in the broader oncology community and has been an invited member of Institute of Medicine panels, National Cancer Institute working groups and grant committees and American Society of Clinical Oncologists oversight committees. Dr. Fyfe is a graduate of Washington University School of Medicine and a board-certified pediatric oncologist.
  • Alice Yu, M.D., Ph.D.

    Alice Yu, M.D., Ph.D.

    Dr. Yu is Distinguished Chair Professor and Co-Director of the Institute of Stem Cell and Translational Cancer Research at Chang Gung University (Taiwan). She is also the Academician and Visiting Research Fellow of the Genomic Research Center at Academia Sinica (Taiwan), Professor in Pediatrics and Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Yu earned her medical degree from the National Taiwan University, her M.S. from Yale University, and her Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from University of Chicago.
  • Sanchi Chen, M.D.

    Sanchi Chen, M.D.

    Dr. Chen is a clinician at the Department of Oncology, Taipei Veterans General Hospital. Dr. Chen has extensive experience in research and development of immunotherapies in solid tumors and has overseen numerous successful enrollment efforts in several major pivotal immunotherapy trials in liver cancer. Dr. Chen received his M.D. from Taipei Medical University.
  • Richard Lopez, M.D.

    Richard Lopez, M.D.

    Dr. Richard Lopez is Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University and is also CEO and Founder of PhosphoGam, a biotechnology company developing gamma delta T cell therapies. Dr. Lopez is an experienced medical oncologist specializing in hematology and stem cell therapies.

    Dr. Lopez graduated and completed his residency training both in Stanford University School of Medicine.
  • Elizabeth Smith

    Elizabeth Smith

    Liz Smith is currently Deputy Director of Regulatory Affairs for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Ms. Smith has more than three decades of leadership experience in the field of regulatory affairs, quality, and manufacturing, with an emphasis on biologics and advanced cellular therapies in oncology. Previously, Ms. Smith served as SVP, Regulatory and Quality Assurance at Juno Therapeutics; and the VP of Regulatory Affairs at Dendreon and led the regulatory efforts resulting in FDA licensure of Provenge, the first approved active cellular therapy for the treatment of cancer. Prior to Dendreon, Ms. Smith held regulatory and manufacturing positions at Genentech and Immunex. 

    Ms. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in biology (cum laude) from Central Washington University.
  • Eileen Higham, Ph.D.

    Eileen Higham, Ph.D.

    Dr. Eileen Higham has over 20 years of experience leveraging diverse strategic, scientific, and technical expertise to develop innovative strategies to rapidly deliver novel cell-, viral-, and protein-based therapies to improve human health.

    Dr. Higham is currently Senior Vice President, Head of Technical Operations at Intergalactic Therapeutics, a stealth non-viral gene therapy company. Prior to Intergalactic, Dr. Higham was Vice President, Head of Analytical & Process Development at Sana Biotechnology, where she led a team developing best-in-class manufacturing processes and analytical packages for production of next generation cell and gene therapies. Prior to Sana, Dr. Higham was Senior Director, Head of Analytical & Process Development at Juno Therapeutics (Celgene/Bristol Myers Squibb), where she provided strategic, scientific, and technical leadership for development of best-in-class manufacturing processes and analytical packages for production of autologous T cell therapies. In this role, she led an organization of 100+ scientists and engineers developing strategies to enable robust, well-controlled, and well-characterized Drug Product process design and associated analytical packages to support Phase 0 through commercialization.  Prior to Juno, Dr. Higham served as Associate Director/Product Development Team Leader - Adoptive Cellular Therapy at MedImmune/AstraZeneca, with joint appointments in Biopharmaceutical Development (BPD) and the Oncology Innovative Medicines Unit (iMED). Dr Higham started her career in industry at Merck as a Biochemical Engineer developing in-house, serum-free cell culture media for use in the efficient-large scale production of viral products.

    Dr. Higham received a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University and a Doctorate in Biological Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.