October 4-5, 2018 | Boston, MA
Pre-Conference Workshop Days | October 2-3, 2018

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2018 Speakers


Drug Developers

Slava Akmaev
Co-Founder, Senior Vice President & Chief Analytics Officer

Slava Akmaev, Ph.D., is the Senior VP and Chief Analytics Officer at BERG.  Dr. Akmaev is the industry leader in AI and machine learning applications in life sciences and healthcare. He heads the BERG Analytics business division and is the chief architect of Bayesian Artificial Intelligence software, bAIcis®.  Dr. Akmaev is an avid advocate for data driven research and promotes wider utility of advanced mathematical modeling techniques in pharmaceutical and clinical research. Prior to his role at BERG, Dr. Akmaev spent a decade at Genzyme R&D and the CLIA diagnostic laboratory, Genzyme Genetics. He led the development and commercialization of novel multi-omic panel diagnostics in oncology and prenatal medicine. Dr. Akmaev has published numerous peer-reviewed manuscripts in genomics, systems biology, biochemistry and human genetics. He is a frequent speaker at AI, analytics and precision medicine conferences.  Dr. Akmaev holds a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Joshua Bilenker
President & CEO
Loxo Oncology

Josh Bilenker, M.D., founder of Loxo Oncology, serves as President and Chief Executive Officer, and sits on the board of directors. Previously, Dr. Bilenker was a Partner at Aisling Capital, a multi-strategy healthcare investment firm based in NY, where he remains an Operating Partner. From 2004-2006, Dr. Bilenker worked as a Medical Officer at the U.S. FDA in the Office of Oncology. Dr. Bilenker trained at the University of Pennsylvania in internal medicine and medical oncology, earning board certification in these specialties. He received his M.D. from The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and his A.B. from Princeton University.  

Michael Burczynski
Senior Director & Head, Translational Medicine
Teva Pharmaceuticals

Dr. Michael E. (Ted) Burczynski is a Senior Director and Head of Translational Medicine at Teva Pharmaceuticals. He received a PhD in pharmacology from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and conducted his postdoctoral work in Toxicogenomics at Johnson and Johnson’s R.W. Johnson Pharmaceutical Research Institute.  He has previously led translational research groups and biomarker laboratories at Wyeth, Roche and BMS. He is currently an adjunct professor in the Department of Systems Pharmacology and Translational Therapeutics at the University of Pennsylvania.  He has edited two textbooks and published over a hundred abstracts, articles, reviews and book chapters in the fields of genomics and biomedical research.  In his spare time he is the novelist Michael Ransom whose debut novel THE RIPPER GENE  won the prestigious Silver Falchion literary award for “Best Horror Novel” in 2016 (www.michaelransombooks.com).

Peggy Carter
Global Head, Drug Regulatory Affairs, Companion Diagnostics

Emmanuelle di Tomaso
Vice President & Head of Translational Medicine
Syros Pharmaceuticals

Dr. di Tomaso obtained her Ph.D. in Clinical Chemistry at the Institute of Child Health, University College, London, UK. She first focused her career in academia spending 11 years at the Massachusetts General Hospital studying angiogenesis and vascular biology in the context of several cancers. This included the first successful implementation of anti-angiogenic therapy to restore hearing in patients with NF2 acoustic neuroma. She then spent 7 years at Novartis where she led the precision medicine strategy for multiple clinical programs in late development with a focus on the breast cancer portfolio (including PI3K and CDK4/6 inhibitors). She is currently Head of Translation Medicine at Syros Pharmaceuticals where she established and developed the Translational Medicine function to leverage precision medicine for two drug target candidates discovered by the Syros gene control discovery platform.

Kenneth Emancipator
Executive Medical Director & Head of Companion Diagnostics

Dr. Emancipator led the Merck team which partnered with Agilent Technologies to develop the 22C3 PD-L1 immunohistochemistry test which identifies those non-small cell lung cancer patients most likely to benefit from Keytruda® (pembrolizumab), which is the first FDA-approved companion diagnostic in cancer immunotherapy, and which enabled Keytruda to become the first immunotherapy to be approved for first-line treatment of lung cancer. He was one of six members of the Keytruda Team to receive the 2015 PhRMA Research and Hope Award for Biopharmaceutical Industry Research on behalf of Merck. His has held positions at National Institutes of Health, Cornell University Medical College, Beth Israel Medical Center (NY), and Bayer Healthcare. He is a former officer of the American Society for Clinical Pathology, and is a regular reviewer for the American Journal of Clinical Pathology. His credits include more than 100 papers and abstracts, and more than 100 extramural presentations.

Day One

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

08.00 | The First Biomarker-Defined Tumor Indication: FDA Approval of Pembrolizumab For MSI-High Cancer

Jeffrey Emch
Biomarker & Companion Diagnostic Lead

Jeff holds the role of Biomarker and Companion Diagnostic Lead at Merck, where he owns the development and delivery of the US Companion Diagnostics Marketing Plan, integrating with the pebrolizumab (KEYTRUDA) Global strategic marketing plan and local therapeutic marketing plans. He has previously held positions at GSK, Roche Dx and Ventana. He gained his BSc in Microbiology from the University of Guelph in 1995 and his MBA in Pharmaceutical and Healthcare from Saint Joseph’s University in 2017.

Feng Gao
Head & Director, Nonclinical & Biomarker Statistics

Majid Ghoddusi
Head of Pathology
Juno Therapeutics

George Green
Head of Pharmacodiagnostics
Bristol-Myers Squibb

Peter Juhn
Vice President & Head, Global Value-Based Partnerships

Pavan Kumar
Head, Biomarkers & Companion Diagnostics
H3 Biomedicine

Julianna Lisziewicz
Chief Scientific Officer
Treos Bio

Robert Loberg
Executive Director & Head, Clinical Biomarkers & Diagnostics

Matthew Onsum
Director & Head, Diagnostics, Analytics & Biomarkers
Seattle Genetics

Matt holds the role of Director and Head of Bioinformatics at Seattle Genetics. He has previously held positions at Silver Creek Pharmaceuticals, Merrimack Pharmaceuticals and Astrazeneca. He gained his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 2005.

Terri Ozegovich
Commercial Head US, Oncology Companion Diagnostics


Shashi Ramaiah
Global Head of Biomarkers

Soma Ray
Head, Clinical Biomarkers
Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Carolina Rizo
Just Biotherapeutics

Hakan Sakul
Vice President & Head of Diagnostics

Matthew Squires
Vice President, Oncology Precision Medicine

Matthew Szapacs
GSK Fellow & Group Leader Exploratory Biomarker Assay Group

Rafael Vargas
Director, LATAM Biomarker & Diagnostics Leader

Duncan Whitney
Vice President, Molecular Diagnostics

Eric Yang
Vice President, Bioanalysis, Immunogenicity & Biomarkers

Roman Yelensky
Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer
Gritstone Oncology

Dr. Roman Yelensky serves as chief technology officer and is responsible for overseeing the Company’s genomics, proteomics and informatics programs. He joined Gritstone at its inception in October 2015 as executive vice president of sequencing and bioinformatics. Prior to that, he was vice president of biomarker and companion diagnostic development at Foundation Medicine, which he also joined at its inception. While at Foundation Medicine, he co-led sequence data analysis for FoundationOne™ and led validation studies supporting clinical laboratory accreditation and testing of more than 100,000 patients. Dr. Yelensky established Foundation Medicine’s FDA-regulated products program, leading to the FDA approval of FoundationFocus CDxBRCA, the first NGS-based companion diagnostic. He also contributed to key national initiatives on the clinical implementation of next-generation sequencing (NGS), leading the diagnostic implementation of Lung-MAP, a first-of-its-kind NCI-sponsored trial matching lung cancer patients to investigational treatments using comprehensive genomic testing. Prior to Foundation Medicine, Dr. Yelensky was a senior scientist in biomarker development at Novartis. He has co-authored more than 75 manuscripts on bioinformatics, statistical genetics, NGS biomarker and assay development and cancer genomics. He earned an M.S. in computer science from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in bioinformatics and integrative genomics from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.

Academics, Advocates & Associations

Roy Beveridge
Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Roy Beveridge is Humana's Chief Medical Officer, where he is responsible for developing and implementing the company's clinical strategy and advancing its integrated care delivery model. He is known for creating collaborative environments among physician communities and providing thought leadership, publishing extensively in the fields of medical oncology, quality design, ethics, and population health. Previously, Dr. Beveridge served as Chief Medical Officer for McKesson Specialty Health and as Executive VP and Chief Medical Officer for US Oncology. He practiced for more than 20 years in medical oncology and stem cell transplant in northern Virginia.

Darrell Borger
Scientific Director, Immuno-Oncology Lab & Director,
Translational Research/Biomarker Lab, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

Jennifer Hall
Chief, The Institute for Precision Cardiovascular Medicine
American Heart Association

Lauren Leiman
Executive Director

Phillip Lerner
Vice President & National Medical Director

Dr. Phil Lerner is a Vice President and National Medical Director at Aetna.   He is the Head of Condition Analysis and leads multiple clinical teams that analyze claims data and develop strategies to help Aetna members receive evidence based cost effective health care.  He also leads Aetna’s strategy to prepare for emerging medical technologies.   In addition, Dr. Lerner serves as Aetna’s National Medical Director for Pharmacy Policy and Strategy and the National Medical Director for Aetna’s Institutes of Quality. Dr. Lerner has 20 years of Corporate Occupational Medicine experience.  He was previously Medical Director for United Technologies’ Pratt & Whitney division and Consulting Medical Director for their Hamilton Sundstrand, Carrier and Otis divisions.   Prior to United Technologies, he held Corporate Occupational Medicine leadership positions at 3M and the Dow Chemical Company. Dr. Lerner earned his B.A. Magna Cum Laude in Economics from Brandeis University and his M.D. from the University Of Cincinnati College Of Medicine.  He completed his Occupational Medicine Fellowship and Masters of Public Health at the University of Michigan.   He is Board Certified in Occupational Medicine, a Fellow of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Past President of the New England College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, and an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University Of Connecticut School Of Medicine.

Day One

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

10.00 | Keynote Panel: “Precision Medicine” Under the Microscope: A Frank Look at the Impact of Precision Medicine on Patient Welfare

Stuart Martin
University of Maryland

Dr. Martin received his Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego, after training as a Howard Hughes undergraduate research fellow at the University of Virginia.  Dr. Martin completed a Damon Runyon postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School that combined functional genomic studies with mouse models of breast tumor metastasis, under the mentorship of Dr. Phil Leder.  In 2004, Dr. Martin joined the Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center (UMGCC) and the Department of Physiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.  Dr. Martin is working to apply physical science and engineering approaches to study the mechanical properties of circulating tumor cells.  In 2010, Dr. Martin was one of only 3 investigators in the United States recognized with an Era of Hope Scholar Award from the Congressionally-directed Medical Research Program for his innovative research on breast cancer metastasis.

Day One

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

09.00 | Microfluidic Cell Tethering Enables Rapid Analysis of Drug Responses in Live Patient CTCs

Charles Mathews
Clearview Healthcare

Zhaoling Meng
Head of Statistical Method & Trial Simulation
Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute

Nicholas Robert
Medical Director, HEOR/Health Informatics
McKesson Specialty Health/US Oncology Network

Daryl Spinner
MD, Real-World Value & Strategy

Andreas Stange
Vice President, Global MHS IVD

Robyn Sussman
R&D Coordinator, Center for Personalized Diagnostics
University of Pennsylvania

Francisco Velazquez
President & CEO

Heng Zhu
Professor, Department of Pharmacology
Johns Hopkins Medical School

Diagnostic & Technology Developers

Steve Anderson
Chief Scientific Officer

Dan Edelstein
Director, Clinical Diagnostics New Technology
Sysmex Inostics

Jim Godsey
Vice President, R&D, Clinical Sequencing Division
Thermo Fisher Scientific

Jakob Gjørret
Unilabs Denmark

Claire Huguet
Head, Biomarker Services

Claire Huguet is a PhD Pharmacist with 15 years’ experience in the CRO industry as a Central Lab and Biomarker expert. Claire joined Randox Laboratories to develop the Biomarker services already provided by Randox Biosciences to the Pharma Industry, CROs and other key players in the field of biomarker discovery, research and clinical diagnostic use.

Anna Juncker-Jensen
Senior Scientist
NeoGenomics Laboratories


Sebastian Kronmueller
Global Head, Molecular Services
Siemens Healthineers

Joseph Krueger
Chief Scientific Officer
Flagship Biosciences

Florian Leiss
Director, Profiling & Diagnostics

Dawn McHugh
Vice President, Business Development, Personalized Diagnostics

Dawn has a background in Sales, Marketing, Pharma Advertising and Business Development and has spent most of her career in Personalized Medicine.  She recently joined Corgenix from QIAGEN, where she spent 5.5 years as a member of the Companion Diagnostics Business Development Team, responsible for establishing collaborations with Pharma, for the development, registration and commercialization of Molecular Companion Diagnostics. Prior to joining QIAGEN, Dawn managed the pharma advertising team that developed the global campaign for the launch of Pfizer’s XALKORI (crizotinib), a first-in-class ALK-inhibitor for treatment of ALK-positive non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC). Dawn’s other experience spans the oncology therapeutic and diagnostic markets with roles at AstraZeneca (Oncology Sales-Iressa), Becton Dickinson (Oncology Diagnostic Marketing), and Oncor, Inc (Diagnostic Sales, Product Management and Marketing-HER2 FISH IVD).  At Corgenix, Dawn will focus on growing their Personalized Diagnostics program by establishing relationships and collaborations with Pharma and other Personalized Medicine stakeholders for the development of serum protein-based companion diagnostics.

Matthew McManus

Dr. McManus joined in August 2014 bringing more than 20 years of clinical diagnostic leadership experience. Matt was most recently CEO and President of PrimeraDx, Inc., a molecular diagnostics company acquired by Qiagen. He has held leadership positions in a number of other companies, including as Head of Cleveland Clinic Laboratories, COO of the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Institute at the Cleveland Clinic, and a variety of positions at Novartis, McKinsey & Co., and Procter & Gamble. Dr. McManus received his M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, M.B.A from Boston College and B.A. from the College of the Holy Cross.

Day One

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

10.00 | Keynote Panel: “Precision Medicine” Under the Microscope: A Frank Look at the Impact of Precision Medicine on Patient Welfare

David Messina
Chief Operating Officer
Cofactor Genomics

Philippe Mourere
Senior Vice President

Donna Nicol
Associate Director, Diagnostic Strategy

Suso Platero
Head, Biomarker Solution Center, Global Leader Precision Medicine

Aditya Rajagopal
Chief Technical Officer

Jess Riley
Senior Director, Pharma Business Development
Guardant Health

Mark Roberts
Senior Director, Diagnostics Development


Steve Rosen
Vice President, Business Development & Strategy
Elucida Oncology

Steve Rosen is the Vice President of Business Development and Strategy at Elucida Oncology, Inc. He has an excellent track record of maximizing the impact and success of both diagnostic and therapeutic assets. Dr. Rosen has more than 30 years of operational and leadership experience in the life sciences industry. Prior to Elucida, he was Executive Director, Pipeline and Commercial Strategy for the Oncology Business Unit of Novartis Pharmaceuticals. In this role, he led a team responsible for strategic direction for global personalized medicine commercial strategy for Phase I through III compounds in the Novartis Oncology pipeline as well as supported execution of personalized medicine commercial programs for in-line brands. He was also a Novartis representative on the Oncology Strategic Governance Group of the European Innovative Medicines Initiative, the Novartis representative to the US Personalized Medicine Coalition and member of the Novartis translational Clinical Oncology/ Companion Diagnostics Committee Prior to Novartis, Dr. Rosen enjoyed a 14 year career at Johnson & Johnson as a co-founder of the Veridex circulating tumor cell-focused division and as a World-Wide Senior Director of Business Development and Healthcare Investment for the Ortho Clinical Diagnostics franchise. In this role, he oversaw 5 strategic business alliances that created over $300MM per year in revenue and delivered 10 significant business transactions, driving overall business growth. He also managed the company’s complex IP portfolio of hundreds of patents.

Vishal Sikri
US General Manager

Vishal Sikri is the General Manager for Biocartis US.  He has been in the diagnostics industry for over 20 years with extensive experience identifying new and emerging technologies focused on cancer theranostics and bringing them to market. Prior to Biocartis, Vishal worked in various management positions in both the life sciences and diagnostics industries.

Cindy Spittle
Vice President, Development & Scientific Affairs
Molecular MD

Dr. Spittle joined MolecularMD in 2010 as Scientific Affairs Liaison. In her current role as Vice President, Development and Scientific Affairs she provides strategic scientific leadership related to oncology drug development and biomarker trends as well as new technology platforms and products. Her responsibilities include identifying and initiating opportunities to collaborate in clinical biomarker studies with both industry and academic partners. She also oversees the assay development teams, and facilitates scientific communications between external and internal stakeholders. With over 20 years of experience in oncology biomarker translational research and diagnostic assay development, Dr. Spittle has held leadership positions at Pfizer, Fox Chase Cancer Center, and SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories. She has authored numerous peer-reviewed publications and abstracts, and has been awarded research grants as Principal Investigator. Dr. Spittle holds a BS in Microbiology from The Pennsylvania State University, an ASCP Medical Technology Certification from Pennsylvania Hospital and a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Lehigh University.

Bob Terbrueggen
Founder & CEO

Bob Terbrueggen is the CEO and Founder of DxTerity, a molecular diagnostic and information company that is transforming the management of chronic autoimmune disease with from home RNA monitoring. Bob has 20 years of experience in the development of genomic tests and technologies. He started out his career at Clinical Micro Sensors (CMS), where as Director of R&D he oversaw the development of the world’s first bio-electronic DNA detection platform, the e-Sensor.  Bob then became Director of Research at Motorola Life Sciences following Motorola’s acquisition of CMS on 2000 for $300 million.  He then left Motorola to start DxTerity.

Tom Turi
Vice President, Companion Diagnostics

Thomas Turi, Ph.D. is Vice President Companion Diagnostics for Covance Central Laboratory Services. He joined Covance in 2008 to establish the Biomarker Center of Excellence and was integral to the acquisition of the Covance Genomics Laboratory and the formation of Discovery and Translational Services. He is currently responsible for Covance’s Companion Diagnostics efforts.  Prior to Covance, Dr. Turi spent fifteen years in the pharmaceutical industry, where he held a broad array of scientific leadership positions of increasing responsibility. Most recently he served as the Senior Director of Translational Biomarkers and Mechanistic Biology at Pfizer. In addition to his current responsibilities, Dr. Turi has served on the Board of Trustees for The Life Sciences Foundation and is a member of the Global Health Research Roundtable of the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute.  He has previously served on the Board of Directors for Caprion Proteomics and led several external partnerships including those with Rules Based Medicine, Celera, Incyte, and Affymetrix. He has also served on grant and program project review boards for NASA’s Section for Biotechnology and Tissue Engineering. Dr. Turi received dual bachelors degrees in Biochemistry and Chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his doctorate in Molecular Genetics from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. He completed postdoctoral training at the Yale University School of Medicine applying molecular genetic techniques to investigate the mechanisms of protein transport.

Jacinto Villanueva
President & CEO
Calico Biolabs

Richard Watts
Vice President, Business Development, Oncology & Precision Diagnostics

Rosanne Welcher
Chief Science Officer, Companion Diagnostics
Agilent Technologies

Katarina Wikstrom
Head, US Operations
Almac Diagnostics

Jay Wohlgemuth
Senior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer, R&D, Medical & Employee Health
Quest Diagnostics

Xiaolei Xu
Director, Global Regulatory Affairs, Companion Diagnostics
Agilent Technologies