Science Advisory Council
Allan Goldberg, President & CEO, Avacyn Pharmaceuticals
Allan is the founder, President and CEO of Avacyn Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biotechnology company developing a new generation of antibiotics. He was a co-founder and director of ZyStor Therapeutics, Inc., a Milwaukee-based biotechnology company (acquired by BioMarin in 2010) that developed a protein manufacturing and delivery platform technology for the treatment of various lysosomal storage diseases, including an enzyme-based protein therapeutic for Pompe disease that is currently undergoing a Phase II/III clinical trial. He was a co-founder and Managing Partner of the venture-management company The Channel Group and served on several boards of private and public companies. Allan was a director of the publicly-listed oncology company Astex Pharmaceuticals, and at one point was Chairman of its Scientific Advisory Board. Astex was sold in 2013 to Otsuka Pharmaceuticals. He founded the therapeutics company Innovir Laboratories and held various senior management positions including chairman, chief executive officer, and chief scientific officer. Prior to Innovir, Allan was a professor of virology at The Rockefeller University. He earned a B.A. from Cornell University, a Ph.D. from Princeton University, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
Peter Farina, Executive in Residence, Canaan Partners
Peter is an Executive in Residence at Canaan Partners, a venture capital firm located in Westport, Connecticut that has invested in four of the ten antibiotics approved in the last decade. He is also the Managing Partner of Salient Science & Technology, LLC, which advises several US and Asian biotech firms on strategic and technical matters in pharmaceutical R&D. Previously, Peter served as Senior Vice President (SVP) of Development at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in Ridgefield, Connecticut where he was responsible for North American pre-clinical development of drugs in the therapeutic areas of Immunology/Inflammation, Virology, and Cardiovascular Disease. His career spanned 28 years, and he retired from the company in 2008. During his tenure as SVP, his interdisciplinary team worked on the development and successful registration of Aptivus®, an HIV protease inhibitor, Viramune XR® for HIV, and Atrovent HFA® for COPD and emphysema. Prior to this position, he served as Vice President of Research at the Ridgefield Center. He has also held positions as Director of Inflammatory Diseases and Director of Biochemistry. Prior to joining BI, Peter spent six years in the Corporate Research Laboratories and Medical Products Division of Union Carbide Corporation in Tarrytown, New York where he worked on immunodiagnostics. His research interests have been focused on chemical and biological mechanisms impacting human disease. Peter has worked over his career to develop drugs to modulate inflammatory and immunological processes and was also engaged in HIV virology research, which led to the discovery and successful registration of one of the first non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors Viramune® (nevirapine).
Peter also serves as the Co-Chair and a Board Member of Connecticut United for Research Excellence (CURE); on the Advisory Board of the University of Connecticut School of Pharmacy (Emeritus); as a member of the NIH Blueprint Neurotherapeutics Network (BPN) Steering Committee; on the Emory University DRIVE Advisory Board; and on the State of Connecticut Bioscience Innovation Advisory Board. He was a Founder and CEO of Developing World Cures, a nonprofit company working on neglected diseases. Peter has a PhD in organic chemistry from SUNY Buffalo and did postdoctoral work in bioorganic chemistry at Pennsylvania State University.
Vincent Fischetti, Professor and Head, Laboratory of Bacterial Pathogenesis, Rockefeller University
Dr. Fischetti has over 40 years experience in the anti-infectives field. He is Professor and Head of the Laboratory of Bacterial Pathogenesis and Immunology at the Rockefeller University, in NY. Over those years his laboratory has been involved in understanding the earliest events in gram-positive bacterial infection, so that strategies may be devised to prevent infection. His laboratory was the first to identify lytic enzymes as novel therapeutics to decolonize human mucous membranes of bacterial pathogens and treat systemic infections caused by these organisms. The first lysin against serious Staphylococcal infections has successfully completed phase 1 and is currently in phase 2 testing in hospitals. His laboratory also identified the mechanism by which gram-positive bacteria attach their surface proteins in the cell, which is now being used as a target for antibiotic development. Dr. Fischetti is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, the National Academy of Inventors, and was the recipient of two NIH MERIT awards. He has been editor-in-chief of the scientific journal Infection and Immunity for 10 years, and serves as advisory editor for the Journal of Experimental Medicine and Trends in Microbiology among others. Dr. Fischetti serves on the scientific advisory board of ContraFect, Bioharmony, and the Trudeau institute and is also a trustee of the Trudeau Institute. He has published over 240 primary research articles and over 70 textbook chapters and is a co-editor of two major books on gram-positive pathogens. He is an inventor of over 40 issued patents dealing with the control of infectious diseases. Dr. Fischetti received a Ph.D. in Microbiology from New York University.
Susan Froshauer, President & CEO, CURE; President, CURE Innovations
Susan is President and CEO of CURE and President of CURE Innovations, LLC. She is an experienced scientist, mentor, entrepreneur, and angel investor with skill at connecting academic expertise and technology with the commercial sector. Susan is involved with the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute, the CTNEXT-funded group, SECT Tech, the Creative Arts Workshop, and the Angel Investor Forum. Prior to joining CURE, Susan was Director of the Technology Exchange Portal at the University of Connecticut’s Office of Economic Development. In this role, Susan assisted Connecticut-based entrepreneurs and organizations with initiatives that train students, create jobs, and contribute to economic development. She connected ideas with business expertise, business plans with investors, and industry with scholars. Her passion and commitment is helping bioscience entrepreneurs build successful companies.
Until 2010, Susan served as President and CEO of Rib-X Pharmaceuticals, which she co-founded in New Haven in 2000 with Yale scientists Tom Steitz, Peter Moore, and Bill Jorgensen. Under her leadership, Rib-X raised more than $160 million in private equity, bridge financing, and government grants and built an emerging pipeline of antibiotics to treat serious multidrug-resistant infections. Prior to Rib-X, Susan served as a member of Pfizer’s Strategic Alliance Group where she was part of a team involved in the creation of a significant technology investment portfolio, introducing new approaches to the Pfizer global research and development strategy.
Susan received her Ph.D. in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics from Harvard University and a B.A. from Connecticut College. She performed post-doctoral research at Yale Medical School in the Department of Cell Biology as a Jane Coffin Child’s Fellow.
Kaury Kucera, Chief Scientific Officer, Valisure
Dr. Kaury Kucera is the Chief Scientific Officer at Valisure, which applies cutting-edge technology developed to provide consumers with chemically validated medications. Kaury has managed scientific challenges at Yale University as a Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry Graduate Student, Postdoctoral Fellow, and Research Scientist in the Department of Pharmacology. As a scientist educator, Kaury was the research director for a $2.5M HHMI matched grant program and personally oversaw development of 200+ unique assays to investigate bioactive molecules. In her current role, Kaury is dedicated to the highest standards of consumer transparency, safety, and education.
Joyce Sutcliffe, Former Senior VP, Biology, Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals
Joyce has more than 35 years of experience in antibiotic research and development. She is the former Senior Vice President for Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals, Inc. where her responsibilities encompassed managing discovery biology and preclinical development internally and with outside contractors. She was part of the executive team involved in strategy for clinical development, marketing assessments, budgeting, resource allocation, interactions with regulatory agencies, government contract writing, and management of awarded contracts. Tetraphase antibiotics eravacycline and TP-271 received support for their development from BARDA and NIAID respectively of $100 million.
Prior to joining Tetraphase, Joyce was Vice President of Research at NanoBio Corporation where she led antimicrobial, antiviral, and antifungal discovery activities. In addition, she was Chief Research Scientist for six years at Rib-X Pharmaceuticals and spent 20 years at Pfizer and Abbott where she played key roles in early-stage antibiotic discovery and development through Phase 2 activities. Antibiotics that entered phase 2 and beyond that she helped develop are eravacycline, radezolid, delafloxacin, nanoemulsions as antifungals and for adjuvant vaccines, and azithromycin.
Joyce is part of the Scientific Advisory Board for Innovative Platforms for Antimicrobial Therapy and Vaccine Development awarded to Harvard University by NIAID and has served as a scientific advisor to PEW Charitable Trusts and the Institute for Life Science Entrepreneurship.
Joyce received her Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of Florida, Gainesville, followed by a postdoctoral position at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and a staff fellowship at the National Institutes of Health.