Hanadie Yousef, PhD
Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder
Dr. Hanadie Yousef is a leading expert on the biology of aging and mechanisms underlying tissue degeneration. A scientific pioneer with two decades experience in biomedical research, she is the co-founder and CEO of Juvena Therapeutics, a venture-backed biotechnology company mapping the therapeutic potential of secreted proteins to develop biologics that prevent, reverse and cure chronic and age-related diseases.
Dr. Yousef’s high-impact published research has been supported by fellowships and grants from the National Institute of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), SPARK at Stanford, and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) and led to multiple issued and pending patents. Under Dr. Yousef’s leadership, Juvena has secured nearly $50M since launching in 2018 and developed a proprietary pro-regenerative protein library supported by an artificial intelligence-enabled drug discovery and development platform.
The platform has enabled the identification, extensive preclinical validation, and lead optimization of three novel drug candidates, as well as discovery candidates for several chronic and age-related degenerative diseases.
Dr. Yousef earned her B.S. in Chemistry with a Spanish minor, summa cum laude from Carnegie Mellon University and a PhD in Molecular and Cell Biology from UC Berkeley as an NSF graduate research fellow. She pursued a 5-year postdoctoral fellowship in Neurology at Stanford School of Medicine as an NIH fellow and SPARK scholar. Her early research began at Regeneron and Genentech.
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Undergraduate Research and Achievements
Jeremy O’Connell, PhD
Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder
As Chief Scientific Officer and Co-Founder of Juvena Therapeutics, Dr. O’Connell oversees research strategy, pre-clinical science and manufacturing, and intellectual property efforts. Dr. O’Connell’s expertise in proteomics and systems biology expert accrued during a PhD from UT Austin, a postdoc at Harvard, and his time in industry.
Prior to Juvena Therapeutics, in his postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical school in the lab of Steven Gygi, he leveraged large proteomics datasets to build machine learning classifiers to improve protein-protein interaction predictions within the ubiquitin system.
He has spearheaded research projects in multiple tier-one research institutions, including Harvard and Stanford, employing a combination of mass spectrometry, high throughput imaging, and computational approaches. His work has resulted in numerous peer-reviewed publications, approved and pending patents, millions in award grant funding as the primary PI, fellowships, and awards.
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Neil Berkley, MS, MBA
Chief Corporate Development Officer
Neil Berkley brings over 20 years of experience in corporate development, business development, and strategic planning from large pharma, midsize biotech/pharma and small biotech companies. He has completed a wide variety of transactions including in- and out-licensing transactions, M&A transactions, co-development/co-investment/co-commercialization transactions, research collaborations, financing transactions, device and supply agreements, etc. Neil has built and lead multiple business development, corporate development and alliance management teams.
Prior to joining Juvena, Neil was Chief Business Officer at AbCellera, a public biotech company focused on discovering novel antibody therapeutics. Previous to AbCellera, Neil was Vice President, Head of Business Development at Halozyme Therapeutics, a public biotechnology company focused on enabling platforms for the pharmaceutical industry. Neil has also held various business development and corporate development roles at Axerovision, COI (Avalon Incubator), Acadia, and GSK. Earlier in his career, Neil was Head of Business development at Cadence Pharmaceuticals, where he helped sell the company for $1.3B in cash. Neil also co-founded and helped build two San Diego-based biotechnology companies, Mpex Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Aptalis) and Vaxiion (a clinical stage bladder cancer company).
Neil holds a BS in molecular biology from the UC San Diego, as well as a Master of Science in cellular and molecular biology and an MBA from San Diego State University.
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Gayathri Swaminath, PhD, MBA
Senior Vice President of Discovery
Gayathri Swaminath, PhD, MBA brings over 17 years of preclinical, translational research & drug development experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Dr. Swaminath has strong drug discovery expertise in multiple therapeutic areas including diabetes, cardiovascular, fibrosis, inflammation, ophthalmology, oncology, immunology, pulmonary hypertension & renal diseases. Prior to joining Juvena Therapeutics, she served as Vice President for Research & Business Development at GreenfireBio, overseeing nonclinical & clinical development efforts for an oncology program, including fund raising & in-licensing activities. As a co-founder of MGFB Bio, she led the immuno-oncology preclinical activities for a cancer vaccine platform.
She was a Director in Cardiometabolic at Merck Research Laboratories, with previous leadership roles at Amgen. At Merck, & Amgen, she contributed to the preclinical pipeline in several therapeutic areas and advanced small molecules to the clinic, including Verquvo for heart failure. She has co-authored 35 publications in peer-reviewed journals, a book chapter, and holds several patents. As an invited speaker, she has presented at many national & international conferences. Dr. Swaminath completed her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Hyderabad, India, postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University, and holds an MBA from Cornell University.
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Mo (Mohammad) Tabrizi, PhD
Vice President of Preclinical and Nonclinical Development
Mo (Mohammad) Tabrizi, PhD brings over 25 years of experience in basic research, integrative pharmacology, translational sciences, and development of biologics. Prior to Joining Juvena Therapeutics, Dr. Tabrizi served in positions with increasing responsibilities at large companies such as Merck Research Laboratories, Medimmune (acquired by AstraZeneca), Abgenix (acquired by Amgen), and biotech companies such as Soteria Biotherapeutics and Acendis pharma. His product development experience spans many therapeutic areas including oncology, immune-oncology, and inflammatory diseases.
He has been an author or co-inventor on more than 50 original papers, reviews articles, published books and patents. Dr. Tabrizi has been an invited speaker to numerous national and international conferences. Dr. Tabrizi received his bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy from University of Houston (Summa Cum Laude) and his PhD from University at Buffalo, State University of New York (SUNY) in Pharmaceutical Sciences. He completed a postdoctoral training in Pharmacology at University of New York at Buffalo (SUNY) with a focus on therapeutics.
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Eddie Moler, PhD
Vice President of Data Science
Eddie Moler brings over 20 years of experience leading pharmaceutical and clinical diagnostics R&D, data-science/algorithm/software intensive platform development, gene-target and biomarker discovery and validation, establishing and scaling high-performing data-science & software teams, and collaboration management.
Previously, Eddie led Quest Diagnostics’ Bioinformatics organization, leading the development and launch of dozens of advanced clinical genomic diagnostic tests while more than quadrupling the size of the team across multiple sites. He has led clinical/biological research projects and the development of production-scale clinical and research platforms at Quest Diagnostics, GE Healthcare, Tethys Bioscience, Novartis, and the US Department of Energy.
Dr. Moler has published over 50 peer-reviewed papers including clinical and molecular medicine, population health, and health economics, and has 7 issued patents on clinical risk algorithms, biomarkers, automated histopathology image analysis, drug targets, and discovery technology. Eddie received a PhD in Chemistry from UC Berkeley and a BS in Chemistry from Texas A&M University.
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