David L. Stern, Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Stern has over 20 years of biopharmaceutical experience and has launched numerous brands into the US and Global Women’s Health, HIV, and Metabolic markets. Prior to joining Symbiomix, he served as the Chief Commercial Officer at Celmatix, responsible for launching the company’s first product, Polaris™ into the US Fertility market and establishing several research collaborations. Mr. Stern was also the Executive Vice President of Global Commercial Operations for OvaScience, leading the global launch of Augment®. Before that, he served as Senior Vice President and Head of the Global Business Franchise for Fertility at Merck Serono, responsible for the company’s market leading Fertility portfolio world-wide. Mr. Stern also worked at EMD Serono as Executive Vice President of Endocrinology, managing commercial operations in the Fertility, HIV and Growth Hormone markets. He began his career at Organon Pharmaceutical in Woman’s Health. Mr. Stern earned his bachelor’s degree in biology at Brandeis University and holds an MBA from the F.W. Olin School of Business at Babson College. He is a member of the European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, and serves as an independent board member of California Cryobank.
Robert Jacks, President & Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Jacks has over 15 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in corporate finance, business development, product development, and corporate strategy. Prior to co-founding Symbiomix, he founded and ran Daristen Health, a consultancy providing corporate development services to domestic and international clients. He was also was Senior Vice President of Corporate Development at Tobira Therapeutics, where he led business development efforts. In addition, he was Vice President and Head of Corporate Development for ACT Biotech, responsible for partnering strategy and execution. He was previously managing director at Paramount BioSciences, a private equity firm. Mr. Jacks began his pharmaceutical industry career at Pfizer, where he held leadership positions in corporate finance, global marketing, and business development. He earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at Duke University, a master’s degree in civil engineering from Stanford University, and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.
Tom Beck, M.D., Head of Research and Development/Chief Medical Officer
Tom joined F-Prime Capital Partners (formerly Fidelity Biosciences) as an Executive Partner in September, 2007. Most recently, he served as President, Chief Operating Officer at Dyax Corp. Prior to that, he held positions at UCB Pharma (Corporate Vice President, Director of Global Research and Development), CytoMed, Inc (Chairman and Chief Executive Officer), and Enzytech, Inc (President). He began his industry career at Smith Kline and French, where he held positions in both clinical development and business development. Dr. Beck is Board-certified in Internal Medicine and Nephrology and was Assistant Professor of Medicine at Temple University School of Medicine prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry. He received his B.S. degree from Yale University and his M.D. from Cornell University. Since joining F-Prime Capital, Dr. Beck has been on the boards of NeuroTherapeutics Pharma, Topaz Pharmaceuticals, Vicept Therapeutics, and Dimension Therapeutics. He is currently on the boards of Mersana Therapeutics, Adagene, Ltd., and is an observer at Aclaris Therapeutics. He has been CEO of Topaz Pharmaceuticals and Dimension Therapeutics.
Joseph L. Amprey, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Business Officer
Dr. Amprey is involved in both corporate strategy and scientific research, and was instrumental in helping Symbiomix with its first and second rounds of institutional funding. Prior to joining Symbiomix, he co-founded Zyngenia, an antibody-based drug development company focused on new therapeutics for breast cancer and autoimmune diseases. Before that, he ran the $300 million MedImmune Ventures, which is now part of AstraZeneca. Dr. Amprey also worked at Carrot Capital, where he was responsible for deal sourcing and had operational roles within their portfolio of companies. He also completed his internship in internal medicine through a joint residency training program at both New York-Presbyterian Hospital and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Amprey earned his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania and his doctorate of immunology and medical degree from Cornell University.
Helen S. Pentikis, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer
Dr. Pentikis co-founded in 2008 SAJE Consulting, a clinical, pharmacokinetic, and strategic regulatory consulting company. Prior to SAJE Consulting, she served as Head, Clinical Pharmacology at AkaRx Inc. Her work on the senior management team was instrumental in the $300-million acquisition of AkaRx. Previously, Dr. Pentikis was Global Vice President, Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics at ICON plc, responsible for the scientific management of the PK and biostatistics teams. She was a research fellow in the pharmacometrics section at Sanofi-Aventis, where she successfully applied PK and PD principles to the design of Phase 1-3 studies. Dr. Pentikis was also involved in several worldwide regulatory submissions in the areas of women’s health, allergy, and oncology supportive care. Dr. Pentikis received a Bachelor of Science in biology from Wake Forest University, a Ph.D. in pharmacology and toxicology from the University of Maryland, and completed a pharmacokinetics fellowship at the FDA.
Taunia Markvicka, PharmD, MBA, Chief Commercial Officer
Ms. Markvicka has over 20 years of pharmaceutical commercialization experience and was most recently the Chief Commercial Officer at Pacira Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: PCRX) where she led one of the most successful hospital specialty pharmaceutical launches. Dr. Markvicka joined Pacira in 2008 and lead building the launch strategy and resource deployment of various areas of the customer facing teams. Her responsibilities expanded with supporting the IPO in 2011 as the commercial management team leader and the launch of EXPAREL® in 2012. She has been an integral leader in more than a dozen launches as well as a commercial leader in a number of products from early stage to relaunches including Women’s Health, Cardiology, Dermatology, and CNS/Pain. Dr. Markvicka received her Bachelors in Pharmacy from Creighton University, Doctorate from University of Nebraska Medical Center, and MBA from St. Joseph’s University. She maintains her licensure in Nebraska and New Jersey. Ms. Markvicka also is on the Board of Directors at CorMedix (NYSE: CRMD) and serves as the Chair of the compensation committee.
Nikki Adetoro, Vice President, Clinical Operations & Project Management
Ms. Adetoro has over 15 years of operational experience in leading teams and overseeing programs throughout the drug development life cycle. Prior to joining Symbiomix, she worked at ICON plc where she assisted in growing and strengthening the project management and clinical operations department globally. Additionally, she oversaw multiple drug development programs and projects encompassing multiple scientific disciplines and spanning broad therapeutic areas, including infectious diseases, women’s health, oncology, cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disorders, CNS, and immunology. Ms. Adetoro holds a Master of Science degree from Johns Hopkins University and is a certified project management professional (PMP).