What We Do

We are pioneering safe innovative and novel therapies for patients with fibrotic, autoimmune, and CNS diseases. Our scientists aim to alleviate disease while restoring homeostasis through multiple concerted molecular pathways.


scientists and researchers


drug candidates in development


patents filed

Science Visionaries

Driving Innovation with Expertise

Samuel Waksal, PhD

Founder & CEO

Amy Melsaether, MD

Chief Medical Officer

Rui Wu, PhD

Senior Vice President, Head of Research & Pre-Clinical, Chief CMC Officer

Alexandra Zanin-Zhorov, PhD

Senior Vice President Translational Medicine

Samia Shamim

Senior Vice President, Head of Business Development & Operations

Justin Stebbing, MD, PhD

Senior Vice President, Clinical & Scientific Strategy

Jean (Ji-In) Kim, PhD

Senior Vice President, Head of Chemistry

Julia Balanova

Vice President, Corporate Communications & Strategy

Board of Directors
Ran Nussbaum, Chairman

Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Pontifax

Ran serves as the Managing Partner and Co-founder of Pontifax, a global investment firm with a diversified portfolio of more than 55 companies worldwide. Pontifax is recognized for its focus on investing in cutting-edge biotech and life science companies, managing assets valued at approximately $1.2bn under management. 

Ran holds board positions in several of Pontifax's portfolio companies, such as Keros Therapeutics (Ticker:"KROS"), Kamari Pharma, Luris Therapeutics, and Adcytherix Therapeutics.

Previously, Ran served on boards of directors for Kite Pharma (acquired by Gilead), cCAM Therapeutics Ltd (acquired by Merk), ArQule Inc. (acquired by Merk), and Prevail Therapeutics (acquired by Eli Lilly).

Dr. Samuel Waksal

Founder & CEO

Dr. Samuel Waksal, Founder and CEO of Graviton Bioscience Corporation, is a distinguished figure in biotech innovation. His career is marked by founding and leading several pioneering biotech companies. He founded and led ImClone Systems, a company that redefined biotech innovation and led to a $7 billion acquisition by Eli Lilly & Company. Dr. Waksal also founded Meira GTx, a leader in gene therapy innovation. He also founded and led Kadmon Corporation, where he was pivotal in developing a selective ROCK2 inhibitor, leading to a $2 billion acquisition by Sanofi.

Dr. Waksal's academic tenure is equally robust, having served in esteemed roles at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, National Cancer Institute, as a visiting fellow at Weil Cornell Medical College, as an assistant professor at Tufts University School of Medicine and a senior scientist at the Tufts Cancer Research Center. Additionally, his work at Stanford University Medical School, as a scholar at the Leukemia Society of America, as a visiting professor at the Pasteur Institute in France and the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel highlights his profound scientific insights.

Dr. Stelios Papadopoulos

Co-founder and Chairman of Exelixis, Inc., Epikast, Inc., Chairman of Regulus Therapeutics, Inc.

Dr. Stelios Papadopoulos is co-founder and chairman of Exelixis, Inc., Epikast, Inc., and chairman of Regulus Therapeutics, Inc. In the not-for-profit sector, Dr. Papadopoulos is co-founder and Chairman of Fondation Santé, a foundation providing research support and mentorship to biomedical scientists in Greece and Cyprus.

Dr. Stelios Papadopoulos spent six years (2000-06) at Cowen & Co., LLC, and 13 years at PaineWebber, Incorporated (1987-2000), where as an investment banker he focused on the biotech and pharma sectors. Prior to investment banking he was an equity analyst covering the biotechnology industry (at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette and Drexel, Burnham, Lambert).

Before coming to Wall Street, Dr. Papadopoulos was on the faculty of the Department of Cell Biology at New York University School of Medicine. Dr. Papadopoulos holds an M.S. in physics, a Ph.D. in biophysics and an M.B.A. in finance, from New York University.

Dr. Jeremy Levin

Chairman and CEO of Ovid Therapeutics Inc, Chairman of Opthea

Dr. Levin is Chairman and CEO of Ovid Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: OVID) and the chairman of Opthea (NASDAQ:OPT). Prior to founding Ovid, Dr. Levin was president and CEO of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., (TLV: TEVA) and prior was a member of the executive committee Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE: BMY). Dr. Levin joined BMY from Novartis (SWX: NOVN) where he was global head of strategic alliances and created and lead the “String of Pearls Strategy,” bringing immuno-oncology into the Biopharma industry. Dr. Levin previously served on public company boards including Biocon and Lundbeck.

Dr. Levin earned a First-Class bachelor’s degree in zoology, and a master’s degree and doctorate in chromatin structure at the University of Oxford. Thereafter he earned his medical and surgical degrees from the University of Cambridge where he won the Kermode Prize for his work on Captopril.

In 2023 Dr. Levin was awarded the Scrip Lifetime Achievement Award. He was selected by Endpoints in 2021 as one of the 60 living pioneers of the industry and was voted as one of the 25 most influential biotechnology leaders by Fierce Biotech, one of the top 3 biotechnology CEOs by The Healthcare Technology Report and one of the PharmaVoice100 CEOs in 2020. He is the recipient of the Albert Einstein Award for Leadership in Life Sciences and the B’nai B’rith Award for Distinguished Achievement.

James Boylan

Chief Executive Officer of Enavate Sciences

James Boylan is Chief Executive Officer of Enavate Sciences and is an accomplished health care executive, entrepreneur, and innovator. Mr. Boylan was the President and Head of Investment Banking at SVB Leerink from 2009-2021 and Managing Director in the healthcare investment banking group at Merrill Lynch from 1997-2009. Mr. Boylan has worked with hundreds of life sciences and biotechnology companies to develop strategy and complete transactions in capital markets and mergers & acquisitions.

Mr. Boylan earned an M.B.A in finance from the Columbia Business School and a B.S. in finance from Lehigh University

Dr. David MacMillan

James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor, Princeton University, 
2021 Nobel Prize Winner in Chemistry

David MacMillan (Sir) was born in Scotland and was educated at the University of Glasgow, UC Irvine, and Harvard. He began his independent career at UC Berkeley, before moving to a Chaired position at Caltech in 2000. In 2006, Dave joined Princeton University, where he is the James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor. Dave shares the 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Benjamin List and was Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2022. Dave continues to consult with many of the world’s major pharmaceutical companies (Merck, Pfizer, Gilead, Abbvie) and has founded several biotech companies.

Bihua Chen

Founder of Cormorant Asset Management, LP

Bihua Chen is the founder of Cormorant Asset Management, LP (“Cormorant”), an investment firm focused on innovative biotech, medtech and life science companies with approximately $3 billion assets under management. Ms. Chen manages Cormorant’s public fund as well as its private funds. Prior to founding Cormorant, Ms. Chen managed a separately managed account focused on the healthcare sector as a sub-adviser to a large, multi-strategy hedge fund based in New York. Ms. Chen obtained an MBA from the Wharton School of Business and a Master of Science, Molecular Biology, from the Graduate School of Biomedical Science at Cornell Medical College. Ms. Chen also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Genetics and Genetic Engineering from Fudan University, Shanghai, China.


We seek to create innovative therapies and conduct groundbreaking research to advance the science of medicine by engaging in synergistic opportunities and bringing treatments to market as quickly and safely as possible.

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