Leadership
Mark S. Cohen – Chairman of the Board

Mark Cohen is a founder of Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer Baratz LLP, Senior Partner, Chair of the Life Sciences Practice Group, and a member of the firm’s Executive Committee. Mark is admitted to the New York bar, and is a registered patent attorney in the United States with extensive international experience in patent prosecution, opinion, commercial transactional and licensing matters in the pharmaceutical, chemical, biological and medical device areas. His clients that he represents range from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies.  Mark was named by New York Metro Super Lawyers for 2019 as “Top Rated Intellectual Property Lawyer in New York”.  Mark was a Board Director of Masthercell Global Inc, a subsidiary of Orgenesis Inc. (NASDAQ: ORGS), prior to its acquisition in February 2020 by Catalant Inc. He was also Vice-Chairman of the Board and Chairman of Governance of at Akari Therapeutics, Plc. (NASDAQ: AKTX).

David Epstein – Independent Director

David R. Epstein is executive partner at Flagship Pioneering, chairman of Axcella Health, chairman of Rubius Therapeutics and chairman of Evelo Biosciences. David is also a board member at International Flavors and Fragrances and Integral Health. From early 2010 to mid 2016 he served as chief executive officer of Novartis Pharmaceuticals, a division of Novartis AG. Previously, David started and led Novartis’ Oncology and Molecular Diagnostic units. Under his leadership the company’s oncology business grew to the second largest in the world. David has more than 25 years of extensive drug development, deal making, commercialization and leadership experience on a global scale. Over the course of his career he led the development and commercialization of over 30 new molecular entities, including major breakthroughs such as Glivec, Tasigna, Gilenya, Afinitor, Cosentyx and Entresto. His teams developed 3 Prix Galien award winning medicines and he has developed several CEOs. He was named by FierceBiotech as one of the “25 most influential people in biopharma.”Early in his career, David was an associate in the strategy practice of consulting firm Booz, Allen and Hamilton. David holds a B.S. in pharmacy from Rutgers University College of Pharmacy (1984) and an M.B.A. in finance and marketing from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business (1987).

Paolo Pucci – Independent Director

Mr. Paolo Pucci most recently served as the Chief Executive Officer of ArQule, Inc., a biopharmaceutical oncology company engaged in the research and development of targeted therapeutics that was acquired by Merck in January 2020. Prior to joining ArQule in 2008, Mr. Pucci worked at Bayer AG from 2001 to 2008, where he served in a number of leadership capacities including President of the Oncology & Global Specialty Medicines Business Units and was a member of the Bayer Pharmaceuticals Global Management Committee. Before Bayer, Mr. Pucci held positions of increasing responsibility with Eli Lilly and Company from 1991 to 2001, culminating with his appointment as Managing Director, Eli Lilly Sweden AB. Mr. Pucci earned an MS in economics and accounting from Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II and an MBA in marketing and finance from the University of Chicago. Mr. Pucci has previously served on the Boards of several successful biotech companies including Algeta ASA, until it was acquired by Bayer AG and Dyax Inc., until it was acquired by Shire Plc. He currently serves as a board member of West Pharmaceuticals Services, Inc., Replimune, Inc., Merus, N.V., and Trillium Therapeutics, Inc.

Robert Glassman, MD PhD - Independent Director

Dr. Glassman has been a senior investment banker for 17 years, at Merrill Lynch for the majority of his career and as Vice Chairman at Credit Suisse since 2015. On transitioning from banking to OrbiMed Advisors, one of the world’s largest dedicated healthcare investment firms, Dr Glassman will be their only venture partner in public equity; he had been a private equity partner at OrbiMed 2009-2010. Earlier in his career, Dr. Glassman was with Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity where he oversaw a very successful healthcare portfolio and at McKinsey & Company for four years, where he consulted for a wide range of healthcare clients in the U.S. and Europe. Dr. Glassman is a board certified hematologist-oncologist who remains on the faculty as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Weill Cornell. He has co-authored numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals and spoken widely in industry and academic forums on oncology clinical development, reimbursement, and data interpretation. Dr. Glassman has an AB from Harvard College and an MD from Harvard Medical School. He completed his residency in internal medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and his fellowship in hematology and oncology at Weill Cornell. He also spent several years as a basic science investigator at Rockefeller University in the laboratory of Hidesaburo Hanafusa, where he received Howard Hughes Medical Institute and American Cancer Society awards.

Sushant Kumar, PhD - Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer

Sushant has over 20 years of experience in business development, strategic advisory, and investing globally in the BioPharma sector. Prior to founding Tarus Therapeutics, he negotiated and consummated cross-border R&D transactions and targeted acquisitions within the healthcare industry. He was senior partner at Mehta Partners (predecessor firm Mehta & Isaly) and MP Asset Management, a healthcare-focused investment and strategic advisory firm, and managing director at Edison Group, an established investment research and consulting firm. Previously he was co-founder and managing partner at Ardana Capital, a pharmaceutical and biotechnology investment advisory firm. Sushant is also the co-founder of a targeted oncology company focused on genomically-defined cancers. Sushant received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Rutgers Medical School and was American Cancer Society post-doctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School, where his research focused on the role of the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway in cancer.

Peter Molloy - Co-Founder, Executive Director

Peter Molloy has 25 years of experience creating, advising and investing in private and public companies, with a particular focus on the healthcare sector. He was previously the founder and CEO of Edison Group where he spent 15 years building the company into an international brand with a global team in excess of 100 people, recognized for its world class equity research platform, advisory services, and deep sector expertise. He remains a Director and principle shareholder of Edison. Peter is also the co-founder of various other companies including, most recently, Tarus Therapeutics. Peter’s earlier career includes a successful period as an institutional investor, most notably at Hermes Investment Management in London, managing a healthcare and technology focused small/mid-cap portfolio, and with a close involvement in Hermes’ shareholder activism initiatives. Peter currently sits on the Boards of several private and public companies and is also Chair of the African based charity Kick4Life. Peter graduated from Exeter University (UK) with a degree in Economics and is an alumni of London Business School. He holds the CFA (UK ) and FINRA Series 7.

Kasim Mookhtiar, PhD - Chief Scientific Officer

Kasim has over 25 years of experience in Drug Discovery and innovative pharmaceutical research, and building leading teams and companies in the pharma/biotech industry. He co-founded Advinus Therapeutics, a TATA Enterprise, where he began as the Chief Scientific Officer and eventually became its CEO. Previously Kasim was Vice President, New Drug Discovery Research, at Ranbaxy Laboratories. He began his career at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute in Princeton, where he was Director of Drug Discovery Department focused on Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases, Inflammation, and Cancer. Kasim is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, in Chemistry. He received his doctoral degree from the Institute of Molecular Biophysics, Florida State University, Tallahassee, followed by post-doctoral fellowship at the Yale University School of Medicine.

Brian Schwartz - Interim Chief Medical Officer, Head of SAB

Dr. Schwartz was Chief Medical Officer at ArQule from 2008, and also Head of Research & Development from 2013, until the company’s acquisition by Merck in 2020 for $2.7 billion. Dr. Schwartz has extensive experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Prior to joining ArQule, he was Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Clinical and Regulatory Affairs, at Ziopharm Oncology where he built and led the clinical, regulatory, and quality assurance departments with responsibilities for the development of new cancer drugs. Prior to Ziopharm, Dr. Schwartz held a number of leadership positions at Bayer Healthcare. At Bayer, Dr. Schwartz was a key physician responsible for the global clinical development of sorafenib (Nexavar®) and led the clinical team through a successful Phase 3 trial in renal cell cancer, leading to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval. He has extensive regulatory experience working with the FDA’s Oncology Division, the European Medicines Agency (EMA), and numerous other health authorities. Dr. Schwartz has been involved in multiple clinical and regulatory activities, including Phase 4 studies and interactions with the National Cancer Institute and other oncology cooperative groups. Dr. Schwartz received his medical degree from the University of Pretoria, South Africa, practiced medicine, and worked at the University of Toronto prior to his career in industry. Dr. Schwartz serves on the Boards of Mereo Pharma Group Plc, LifeSci Acquisition Corp and Enlivex Therapeutics Ltd. He is also an advisor to the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine and Pontifax Venture Capital.