BioBeat15: Translating genomics into biobusiness

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BioBeat15: Translating genomics into biobusiness

Friday 20 November 2015

On 20 November 2015, BioBeat, the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and EMBL-EBI presented BioBeat15: a fascinating, one-day conference exploring the burgeoning opportunities for developing companies that harness the potential of genomics. Women scientific leaders including keynote speaker Professor Dame Sally Davies shared their perspectives on challenges and successes in starting and growing biotech businesses, and inspired a full audience of entrepreneurs, basic researchers, funders and many others with a passion for bio-innovation.

A write-up of BioBeat15 is available on the EMBL news site.

BioBeat15 themes

  • Challenges of the Genomics Landscape
  • Keynote address: Defining the "Why now?"
  • Mindsets, Money and Innovation
  • Inspirational Stories
  • Driving Capacity and Growth with Teams and Boards

Registration

  • When: Friday, 20 November 2015, 9.00am to 5.30pm
  • Where: Conference Centre, Wellcome Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1RQ, United Kingdom
  • Directions: Comprehensive directions to the Wellcome Genome Campus are available on our travel pages.

Programme

This short film from BioBeat15, videos of the speaker sessions, a photo gallery and storify are all available through the EMBL news site.

8.30 to 8.55 - Registration

9.00 to 9.20 - Opening remarks by Miranda Weston-Smith, founder of BioBeat, and welcome address by Professor Sir Mike Stratton, Director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

9.20 to 10.20 - Challenges of the Genomics Landscape

  • Professor Ele Zeggini, Group Leader, Analytical Genomics, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (Chair)
  • Dr Edith Hessel, Vice President and Head of Refractory Respiratory Inflammation Discovery Performance Unit, GSK
  • Dr Ewan Birney, Director, European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI)

10.20 to 10.50 - Keynote address: Defining the "Why now?"

10:50 to 11.30 - Break for refreshment

11.30 to 12.30 - Mindsets, Money and Innovation

  • Dr Julie Barnes, Chief Executive Officer of Abcodia (Chair)
  • Dr Ruth McKernan, Chief Executive, Innovate UK
  • Dr Jeanne Bolger, Vice President Venture Investments, Johnson & Johnson Innovation

12.30 to 13.30 - Lunch at the Wellcome Trust Conference Centre Restaurant, Hinxton Hall, followed by coffee/tea and dessert in the Conference Centre exhibition space.

13.30 to 14.30 – Inspirational Stories

14.30 to 15.30 - Driving Capacity and Growth with Teams and Boards

15.30 to 15.45 - Closing remarks by Professor Dame Janet Thornton, Director Emeritus of EMBL-EBI

15.45 to 17.15 - Drinks and networking

Speakers


Miranda Weston-Smith

Miranda Weston-Smith

Miranda helps early-stage biomedical businesses attract investment and develop their business strategy. Based in Cambridge, UK, she founded and runs BioBeat, a programme to inspire the next wave of bioentrepreneurs and business leaders.


Professor Sir Mike Stratton

Professor Sir Mike Stratton

Mike Stratton is Director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute. He qualified in medicine at Oxford University and Guy's Hospital, trained as a histopathologist and obtained a PhD in the molecular biology of cancer at the Institute of Cancer Research, London. His primary research interests have been in the genetics of cancer. His early work focused on inherited susceptibility. He mapped and identified the major high risk breast cancer susceptibility gene BRCA2 and subsequently a series of moderate risk breast cancer and other cancer susceptibility genes. In 2000 he initiated the Cancer Genome Project at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute which conducts systematic genome-wide searches for somatic mutations in human cancer. Through these studies he discovered somatic mutations of the BRAF gene in malignant melanoma and several other mutated cancer genes in breast, lung, renal, bone, myeloid malignancies and other cancers. He has described the basic patterns of somatic mutation in cancer genomes revealing underlying DNA mutational and repair processes. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) and was Knighted in the Queen's birthday honours in 2013.


Professor Dame Sally Davies

Professor Dame Sally Davies

Professor Dame Sally Davies was appointed Chief Medical Officer in 2010. Previous career highlights include developing the National Institute for Health Research. Sally chairs the UK Clinical Research Collaboration, and is a member of the board of the Office for Strategic Co-ordination of Health Research and the Medical Research Council; the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Advisory Committee on Health Research; the International Advisory Committee for A*STAR, Singapore; and the Caribbean Health Research Council. In addition, Sally advises many organisations on research strategy and evaluation - including the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council. As Chief Medical Officer (CMO), she acts as the UK government’s principal medical adviser and the professional head of all directors of public health in local government.


Professor Ele Zeggini

Professor Ele Zeggini

Ele's work aims to help elucidate the genetic determinants of complex human traits by using next-generation association studies to identify novel disease loci. Ele obtained a BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) in 1999 and a PhD in Immunogenetics of Juvenile Arthritis from the arc Epidemiology Unit, University of Manchester, in 2003. She then undertook a brief statistical genetics post doc, focusing on rheumatic disorders, at the Centre for Integrated Genomic and Medical Research, University of Manchester, before moving to the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford, to work on the genetics of type 2 diabetes. In 2006, Ele was awarded a Wellcome Trust Research Career Development Fellowship to examine design, analysis and interpretation issues in large-scale association studies. She joined the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute Faculty in November 2008 and leads the Analytical Genomics of Complex Traits group. Ele's scientific interests focus on the genetics of complex traits, primarily cardiometabolic and musculoskeletal phenotypes, and on addressing relevant statistical genetics issues.


Dr Edith Hessel

Dr Edith Hessel

Edith Hessel joined GSK in 2009 after eight years in the California biotechnology sector, where she was developing a Toll-like receptor agonist for the treatment of asthma at Dynavax Technologies. She is an acknowledged expert in the field of inflammatory and respiratory disease biology, and has worked for many years on oligonucleotide-based therapeutic approaches. Edith initially joined GSK in the immuno-inflammation-therapy area and was appointed in 2011 to lead the Refractory Respiratory Inflammation Discovery Performance Unit (RRI DPU) within the respiratory therapy area. The RRI DPU is developing an inhaled PI3Kdelta inhibitor for the treatment of respiratory disorders with high unmet need (including a rare disease); this asset is currently in Phase 2a. Edith has pioneered innovative approaches to COPD target discovery within her unit, making use of phenotypic screening in patient-derived cells. She and her team closed a deal with FivePrime Therapeutics (San Francisco, CA) in 2012 that is now driving the discovery of novel therapeutic targets. Edith received her PhD from Utrecht University in the Netherlands and completed her postdoctoral training at DNAX Research Institute in California.


Dr Pam Cheng

Dr Pam Cheng

Pam has over 10 years of experience in software product development and management for microarray gene expression, genome-wide association, and genomic copy number data analysis at Agilent Technologies and pipelines for whole genome sequencing analysis at Complete Genomics. Currently, she is the Senior Manager of the clinical informatics portfolio at Illumina, overseeing the commercialisation of software products that aim to extract disease relevant and actionable insight from sequencing data. Pam completed her PhD studies in glycobiology at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine.


Dr Julie Barnes

Dr Julie Barnes

Dr Julie Barnes is CEO of Abcodia Ltd, an innovative company engaged in the validation and discovery of biomarkers for the early detection and screening of disease. Julie has over 20 years experience of the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industry, including 15 years experience of early R&D with GlaxoSmithKline. More recently Julie was director and Chief Scientific Officer at BioWisdom, a healthcare technology company. She brings her mix of scientific and commercial experience in large pharmaceutical companies, small start-ups and academic network to bear in leading Abcodia as an ethical, collaborative organisation.


Dr Ruth McKernan

Dr Ruth McKernan

Dr Ruth McKernan joined Innovate UK as Chief Executive in May 2015. She has 25 years of research and commercial experience in the pharmaceutical industry, including heading up research units in the UK and the US. She is a member of the Science, Industry and Translation Committee of the Royal Society and a Council Member for the Medical Research Council. Ruth’s previous roles include Senior Vice President, Pfizer and Head of the Merck Neuroscience Research Centre. Her awards and achievements include a CBE in 2013 for services to Business, Innovation and Skills; a Fulbright Scholarship; the Glaxo/ABSW Science Writers’ Award. Ruth is a published author with more than 120 scientific papers and 15 patents, and a book for non-scientists called “Billy’s Halo”. She holds a BSc in Pharmacology and Biochemistry and PhD in Molecular Neuroscience from King’s College, London. As Chief Executive of Innovate UK, Ruth is the operational head of the organisation, as it continues its leading role in driving the UK’s technology and innovation strategy.


Dr Jeanne Bolger

Dr Jeanne Bolger

Dr Jeanne Bolger has over 25 years of pharmaceutical industry experience in management roles across R&D, commercial and business development. She spent 11 years in Licensing and Acquisition, most recently as Global Head of Scientific Licensing for Johnson & Johnson’s Pharmaceutical business, having joined Johnson & Johnson in 2005 from the Business Development group at GlaxoSmithKline. In 2009, Jeanne Bolger became Vice President, Alliance Management at Janssen Alzheimer Immunotherapy, working with Pfizer and Elan. Jeanne received her medical degree from University College Dublin. She also holds diplomas in Child Health (NUI) and in Finance and Accounting (ACCA). She is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Medicine of Ireland. Jeanne has served as the sole pharma industry representative on two Irish government taskforces seeking to enhance the commercialization of IP from Irish academic centres. She is a visiting lecturer on the MSc Pharmaceutical Medicine curriculum at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland.


Vivienne Parry

Vivienne Parry

A scientist by training, Vivienne hosts medical programmes for Radio 4, writes widely on health, presents films, facilitates many high level conferences and debates and trains young researchers. She also has a part time role as head of engagement at Genomics England which is delivering the 100,000 Genomes Project.


Dr Helen Lee

Dr Helen Lee

Dr Helen Lee founded Diagnostics for the Real World Ltd (DRW), a University of Cambridge spin-off company, in 2002. She chaired the Diagnostic Steering Committee at the World Health Organization (WHO) and has received a number of prestigious awards, including the 2005 Lord Lloyd Kilgerran Award, the 2006 British Female Inventor in Industry Award, the 2006 European Women of Achievement Award and the 2007 Asian Women of Achievement Award. Helen received her PhD from Cornell University, an MSc from Oxford University and completed post-doctoral training at Churchill Hospital in Oxford, the University of Geneva and St Louis Hospital in Paris. She began her career in diagnostics at the Centre National de Transfusion Sanguine in Paris, where she was responsible for developing monoclonal blood typing reagents, the first widely used liquid blood typing reagents in Paris. Her group accomplished one of the first monoclonal antibody-based assays for hepatitis B surface antigen, which was licensed to the Pasteur Institute as the MONLISA HBsAg assay. Helen then joined Abbott Laboratories to be responsible for R&D, was General Manager of the Probe Diagnostics Business Unit and was responsible for production of instruments as well as chemistry, marketing, quality and regulatory affairs of the product line. She founded a biotech company, Sentinel Biosciences Inc. in Palo Alto, CA, developing technologies for virus discovery. After the company was sold to one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, she left industry for the University of Cambridge to focus on the development of technology and diagnostic assay for resource-poor settings. The products and technologies developed by DDU scientists received the Medical Futures Innovation Award (UK) for innovative sample collection device and the 2007 Tech Museum Innovation Award (US) for innovation in the Health Category, in recognition of the Signal Amplification technology, which greatly improves the sensitivity of rapid test for the detection of infectious diseases. The unit has filed 12 families of patent applications, with 20 granted or allowed national patents, detailing inventions that improve the performance of rapid diagnostic tests.


Dr Julia Fan Li

Dr Julia Fan Li

Julia Fan Li Julia leads Seven Bridges efforts in the UK to build self-improving systems to analyse millions of genomes. Seven Bridges has simplified bioinformatics infrastructure and has software to enable analysis at scale. Prior to joining Seven Bridges, she helped launch the pioneering $108 million Global Health Investment Fund that focuses on accelerating biomedical innovation in vaccines, drugs, diagnostics and devices for diseases which disproportionately affect poor countries. Julia completed her PhD at University of Cambridge as a Gates Scholar and has a background in finance and immunology across four continents.

 


Elaine Warburton

Elaine Warburton

Elaine Warburton, OBE, Chief Executive Officer of QuantuMDx, is driven to find solutions to seemingly impossible humanitarian health challenges. She has over 25 years of experience in healthcare/hospital management, introducing new technologies into mainstream medicine. For example, QuantuMDx technologies are making it possible to harness mobile DNA sequencing and whole proteome arrays to provide a full diagnostic result - quickly - to healthcare professionals in a developing country. As a serial entrepreneur, Elaine has raised over £25m in angel, grant and VC investment. 


Dr Ipshita Mandal

Dr Ipshita Mandal

Dr Ipshita Mandal is Head of Business Development at Cambridge-based Bactevo, a next-gen breakthrough biotech company focussing on microbial-derived therapeutics and potentially high-value industrial chemicals. Ipshita handles all business development and technology growth aspects to grow the company substantially and strategically. She also leads Global Biotech Revolution C.I.C., a not-for-profit organisation with a mission to develop the next generation of leaders in biotechnology.


Dr Fiona Marshall

Dr Fiona Marshall

Fiona has a BSc in biochemistry from Bath University and a PhD in neuroscience from Cambridge University. She has more than 20 years' experience in drug discovery with particular expertise on GPCRs. She led the first group to show that GPCRs could form heterodimers and has published more than 60 peer-reviewed papers in the area of GPCRs. She spent 12 years at GlaxoWellcome/GlaxoSmithKline where she held a number of senior positions including Head of the Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Head of GPCR research. She was Director of Discovery Pharmacology, Europe for Millennium Pharmaceuticals and then spent several years as an independent consultant to a variety of venture capital and biotech companies, including Inpharmatica, Merlion, Galapagos, Paradigm, Cancer Research Technology, Shire, CellAura, Bioimage, Chroma, Ablynx and Sentinel. She was chair of the BBSRC biochemistry and cell biology committee for three years and is currently Chair of the CRUK Drug Discovery Committee and Vice-chair of the Wellcome Trust Seeding Drug Discovery Committee. Fiona received the Malcolm Campbell Memorial Prize 2015, awarded by the UK Royal Society of Chemistry’s Biological and Medicinal Chemistry Sector, in recognition of her contribution to GPCR drug discovery. Fiona is Executive VP and CSO of Sosei Group.


Kym Denny

Kym Denny

Kym Denny was appointed CEO of Retroscreen Virology Group plc in April 2012. For over 15 years her work has spanned international clinical trials including Phase I-IV clinical operations, project management, drug safety, data management and site management. Kym has experience in wide range of therapeutic areas, including infectious disease, and respiratory disease, CNS, oncology and women’s health. She began her career as a Clinical Research Associate at Kendle Research and went on to found InSite Clinical Trials, a hybrid CRO and site management company in Atlanta, Georgia, US. From there she moved to the UK, where she was appointed to the Board of Profiad Limited and oversaw Clinical Operations. She became Managing Director, UK, for Harrison Clinical Research and then joined Origin as Head of International Clinical Operations, where she became Vice President of Clinical Research when the company was acquired by Constella LLC and later, SRA International.


Anne Hyland

Anne Hyland

Anne has a strong track record within the biopharma sector, bringing with her over 25 years of financial experience with both public and private companies. Most recently, Anne served as Chief Financial Officer of BBI Diagnostics Group Ltd and FTSE-listed Vectura Group plc (LSE: VEC). She currently serves as Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee of the FTSE-250 global specialty chemicals company, Elementis plc (LSE:ELM). Prior to Vectura, Anne held a number of senior finance position, including Director of Corporate Finance at the then FTSE 100 Celltech Group plc, Medeva plc and KPMG.


Professor Lucy Raymond

Professor Lucy Raymond

Lucy Raymond is Professor of Medical Genetics and Neurodevelopment at the University of Cambridge and Honorary Consultant in Medical Genetics at Cambridge University Hospital, Cambridge Biomedical Campus, UK. Her research interest is understanding the genetic basis of intellectual disability and has identified disease causing genes over the years which have been rapidly translated into clinical service. She is a leader of large collaborative efforts to identify the remaining causes of rare disease genes where intellectual disability, epilepsy or neurological conditions predominate. She is currently Assistant Director of the UK NIHR Rare Diseases Bioresource and Director of the East of England Genomics Medicine Centre.


Dr Sarah Howell

Dr Sarah Howell

Dr Howell has a strong background in clinical and commercial pharmaceutical product development, manufacture, supply and licensing across a range of product types and therapeutic areas having served in a number of leading roles in the pharmaceutical industry, most recently as Vice President for CMC (Chemistry, Manufacturing & Controls) and Technical Development for BTG where she had full responsibility for CMC development and supply across BTG’s diverse portfolio of clinical and commercial products. Previously Sarah held senior roles in product development and manufacturing for UCB-Celltech and GlaxoSmithKline. She is also an active member of the BioIndustry Association (BIA) Manufacturing Advisory Committee. Sarah has an honours degree in Chemistry from the University of Birmingham and a PhD in Physical Organic Chemistry from the University of St Andrews.


Janet Thornton

Janet Thornton

Professor Dame Janet Thornton was Director of EMBL-EBI from October 2001 to June 2015, and played a key role in ELIXIR, the pan-European infrastructure for biological data, since its inception. Her research group focuses on understanding protein structure, function and evolution using computational approaches. After a physics degree she completed her PhD at the UK NIMR before post doctoral studies at Oxford. She then held a joint appointment at University College London and the Bernal Chair in the Crystallography Department at Birkbeck College. Professor Thornton is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, a member of EMBO and a foreign associate of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Wellcome Genome Campus Conference Centre
Wellcome Genome Campus Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1RQ United Kingdom

The Wellcome Genome Campus Conference Centre was purpose-built within Hinxton Hall, a Grade II* listed country house. Set in over 100 acres of parkland on the banks of the River Cam, the conference centre has been an integral part of the campus since 1998.

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Contact us

Have questions about the event? Please contact:

+ 44 (0) 1223 494 626

Twitter: #BioBeat15

   

Event organiser

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