Wilbur H. Gantz III, Executive Chairman
Wilbur H. Gantz III
Mr. Gantz is President of PathoCapital LLC, a private investment firm. He was formerly executive chairman of Ovation Pharmaceuticals, a closely held biopharmaceutical company that was acquired by Lundbeck in 2009. Prior to Ovation, Mr. Gantz founded and served as chairman and CEO of PathoGenesis Corporation, a publicly traded biopharmaceutical company that was acquired by Chiron Corp. in 2000. Previously, he held a number of executive positions over a 25-year career at Baxter International, capping his tenure as president of the company. Mr. Gantz serves as a director of Adams Street Partners and W. W. Grainger and is a trustee of the Field Museum. He received a BA from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Norbert G. Riedel, PhD, President & CEO
President & CEO
Dr. Riedel formerly was corporate vice president and chief science and innovation officer at Baxter International. Earlier in his tenure at Baxter, Dr. Riedel was president and general manager of the recombinant proteins unit and vice president of research and development for Baxter’s Bioscience business. Previously, Dr. Riedel was head of worldwide biotechnology and core research functions at Hoechst Marion Roussel, now Sanofi. He also held a number of scientific management positions at Hoechst-Marion Roussel and Hoechst. Dr. Riedel serves on the boards of Jazz Pharmaceuticals, Ariad Pharmaceuticals and the Illinois Biotechnology Industry Organization. Dr. Riedel is a member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and was appointed by Governor Pat Quinn to serve on the Illinois Innovation Council. Dr. Riedel received a Diploma and Ph.D. from the University of Frankfurt and was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University and a visiting professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Joseph R. Moskal, PhD, Founder & Chief Scientific Officer
Joseph R. Moskal, PhD
Founder & Chief Scientific Officer
Dr. Moskal is also director of the Falk Center for Molecular Therapeutics and professor of Biomedical Engineering at Northwestern University. He previously served as a professor and director of the neurosurgery laboratories at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and was a staff fellow at the National Institutes of Health in the laboratories of Marshall Nirenberg and Michael Brownstein/Julius Axelrod. Dr. Moskal is well known for his research on the NMDA receptor. He discovered Naurex’s lead molecule, GLYX-13, and also discovered Naurex’s 2nd-generation series in conjunction with Dr. Amin Khan. He received his BSc and his PhD from the University of Notre Dame.
Ronald M. Burch, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer
Ronald M. Burch, MD, PhD
Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Burch has more than 20 years’ experience in various aspects of discovery research, drug development, regulatory affairs and new product assessment, including working on two NMDAR drug development programs. He has developed a number of CNS programs through successful product registration. Dr. Burch was previously founder and CEO of Biowave Corp., AlgoRx Pharmaceuticals and Cure Therapeutics, and has held senior positions at Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Purdue Pharma, Zeneca, Rhone Poulenc-Rorer, Nova Pharmaceutical and the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Burch received BS degrees in chemistry and marine biology from the College of Charleston, and PhD and MD degrees from the Medical University of South Carolina. He served as medical staff fellow at the National Institutes of Health in the laboratory of Nobel laureate Julius Axelrod.
J. David Leander, PhD, Chief Scientific Advisor
J. David Leander, PhD
Chief Scientific Advisor
Dr. Leander is currently an advisor to a number of biopharmaceutical companies. Previously, he worked for more than 20 years at Eli Lilly & Co., where he was a Lilly Research Fellow and chair of the neuroscience discovery group that produced Prozac®, Zyprexa®, Strattera® and Cymbalta®, as well as many other drug development programs, including Lilly’s NMDA receptor modulator program. Dr. Leander has authored more than 200 scientific publications. He received a BA from Pacific Lutheran University, an MA from Western Washington University, a PhD from the University of Florida and an MBA from Indiana University.
James Schulz, Chief Financial Officer
Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Schulz was formerly a partner at Milestone Advisors, LLC and Upward Focus, LLC, providing senior level financial and accounting services to emerging companies. Previously, he was director of finance at Suros Surgical Systems, where he implemented operational and financial improvements and assisted in the company’s acquisition by Hologic, Inc. Prior to Suros, Mr. Schulz served in a number of financial and operational roles at Eli Lilly & Co. He began his career working with a variety of clients as an accountant at Ernst & Young. Mr. Schulz holds a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University, Bloomington and is a licensed CPA.
Jaswant Gidda, PhD, Vice President, Research & Development
Jaswant Gidda, PhD
Vice President, Research & Development
Dr. Gidda was formerly vice president of R&D at Marcadia Biotech, a biopharmaceutical start-up acquired by Roche in 2010, where he was responsible for taking three drug candidates through Phase I clinical trials. Previously, he had an 18-year career at Eli Lilly & Co., serving as group leader of the CNS/GI/GU division and retiring as senior research advisor. Dr. Gidda co-discovered two marketed drugs and has been responsible for the successful development of over 10 drug candidates. He currently holds an adjunct appointment at the Indiana University School of Medicine and previously served on the faculties of Harvard Medical School and the University of Texas (UT) Health Science Center at San Antonio and UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. During his academic career, his research was focused on CNS control of peripheral organ systems. Dr. Gidda received a PhD in Zoology from Panjab University in India.
David R. Houck, PhD, Vice President, Drug Development Operations & Quality
David R. Houck, PhD
Vice President, Drug Development Operations & Quality
Dr. Houck is an accomplished chemist and drug developer with nearly 35 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. His technical expertise is formulation development, manufacture, and quality control of new chemical entities. Most recently, Dr. Houck was CEO at Pharmakey LLC, a provider of regulatory, CMC, preclinical, and translational medicine services to biopharmaceutical companies. Previously, he held senior positions at Merck, Sanofi, OSI Pharmaceuticals, and Scynexis. Dr. Houck has authored or co-authored over 30 articles and is an inventor on more than 10 patents. He received a BS degree from Alma College, an MS degree from Purdue University, and a PhD from Ohio State University, and served as a postdoctoral fellow in isotope and nuclear chemistry at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
M. Amin Khan, PhD, Vice President, Chemistry R&D
M. Amin Khan, PhD
Vice President Chemistry, R&D
Dr. Khan has over 20 years’ experience as a senior chemist at several biotechnology companies, including Elan and Gliatech. He discovered and developed multiple novel CNS molecules that have entered human clinical trials. Dr. Khan discovered Naurex’s 2nd-generation series of partial agonists of the NMDA receptor in conjunction with Dr. Joseph R. Moskal. Dr. Khan holds a BSc and BEd from the Regional Institute of Education, Bhopal, India, and MSc and PhD degrees from Kanpur University in India. He was a Post Doctoral Fellow at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India.
Ashish Khanna, Vice President, Corporate Development
Vice President, Corporate Development
Mr. Khanna previously served as director of business development at Vanda Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical start-up focused on applying pharmacogenetics to develop therapies for CNS disorders. At Vanda, he managed multiple transactions including the company’s $400+ million partnership with Novartis on Fanapt® for the treatment of schizophrenia. He was formerly a member of the cardiology strategic marketing team at Cordis Corporation, a Johnson & Johnson company. Earlier in his career, he was a strategy consultant with the Palladium Group and with the Strategic Advisory Services practice of Ernst & Young (now Capgemini). Mr. Khanna holds a BS in finance and BAS in systems engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, as well as an MBA from the Wharton School.