The 16th Annual
Peptide Therapeutics


October 21 – 22, 2021

Register Now!

Board Members

Phil Dawson, Ph.D.

Professor of Chemistry, Scripps Research

Phil Dawson is a Professor in the Department of Chemistry, Scripps Research in La Jolla, CA and Dean of the Skaggs Graduate School of Chemical and Biological Sciences. He received an A.B. (1992) in Chemistry from Washington University, and Ph.D. (1996) from Scripps Research under the guidance of Steve Kent. After pursuing postdoctoral work at Caltech, he returned to Scripps as an Assistant Professor. He has served as President of the American Peptide Society, the Board of Directors for FASEB and co-chaired the 22nd American Peptide Symposium and the 2016 GRC. He has published over 180 papers, and has been honored with an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation fellowship, the Vincent du Vigneaud Award, the Max Bergmann Kreis Gold Medal, the Zervas Award and the RSC MedImmune Protein and Peptide Science Award and the Akabori Memorial Award. Professor Dawson is a pioneer of chemoselective ligation methods for macromolecule synthesis and modification and has applied these tools broadly to better understand biological systems.

Robert Hagopian

Director Business Development, Polypeptide Group

Mr. Robert A. Hagopian received his M.S. degree in Organic Chemistry from the University of California San Diego and his M.B.A from San Diego State University. His experience in peptide research and production spans over twenty five years which includes: Telios Pharmaceuticals (Manager, Peptide Production, 3 years) and NeoMPS, Inc. (Director, GMP Production 14 years). In his current position as Director of Business Development (13 years) at PolyPeptide Group, San Diego, Mr. Hagopian overseas the customer support activities for new and existing sales related to pre-clinical, clinical and commercial grade peptides.

Rie Schultz Hansen

Vice President of Research, Zealand Pharma

Dr. Hansen has 18 years of work experience from biotech companies. Working at Zealand Pharma for the last 9 years, the focus of her research and industrial work has been in translational pharmacology for peptide and small molecule drug candidates. Prior to joining Zealand, Rie was a research scientist at NeuroSearch. Rie holds a Ph.D. in medicinal research from the University of Copenhagen. She is the author of more than 50 publications, published conference reports and patent applications.

Lutz Jermutus, PhD FRSC FFPM (Hons)

PDTL & Senior Director, R&D

Lutz Jermutus is Product Development Team Leader and Senior Director, R&D, in the cardiovascular, metabolic and renal diseases unit of AstraZeneca. He is responsible for leading novel candidate drugs to clinical proof-of-concept including MEDI0382, a GLP-1/Glucagon dual peptide agonist for the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes.
MEDI0382 was discovered during his previous position as Global Head, Research Technology, overseeing teams in the UK and US. In this role, he delivered and advanced novel biopharmaceutical discovery platforms including the initiation of a peptide discovery team, multi-selective antibodies, antibody conjugates and oligonucleotides. His team also established a phenotypic screening platform that delivered novel antibody leads for the treatment of cancer (oleclumab, an anti-CD73 antibody) and infectious diseases (MEDI3902, a bispecific anti-Psl/PcrV antibody). His responsibilities included numerous biotech collaborations eg. Evotec, Direvo, PeptiDream, Molecular Partners, Silence Therapeutics, Xenome and Retrogenix.
Previously at Cambridge Antibody Technology (CAT), until its acquisition by AstraZeneca, Lutz was Director of Discovery Oncology, and Director of Protein Engineering where he developed CAT’s leading protein optimisation platform resulting in a number of clinical leads including (eg. tralokinumab, an anti-IL13 antibody, for the treatment of atopic dermatitis).
Following studies in chemical engineering in Karlsruhe (Germany) and biotechnology in Strasbourg (France), he completed his PhD in biochemistry in Zurich (Switzerland) with Andreas Plückthun.
He was a pre-doctoral Kekulé-Fellow of the German Chemical Industry Association, a recipient of a graduate fellowship at the German National Academic Foundation and in 2009 was admitted as Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. In 2013 Lutz was elected Industrial Fellow at Trinity Hall, University of Cambridge, and in 2015, he was appointed Honorary Fellow in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine of the Royal Colleges of Physicians.
Lutz has published over 60 manuscripts and is an inventor on 16 product and technology patents.

Nick Cox, Ph.D.

Associate Director of Discovery Chemistry, Novo Nordisk

Dr. Cox is the Associate Director of Discovery Chemistry at the Novo Nordisk Research Center in Seattle, WA. He is leading the chemistry department to drive peptide, protein, and other therapeutic discovery efforts targeting chronic conditions including rare endocrine and blood disorders, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Prior to joining Novo Nordisk, he completed his training as a Postdoctoral Scholar in Stanford’s ChEM-H institute (2014-2016) under the mentorship of Prof. Chaitan Khosla and Dr. Mark Smith, serving as chemistry lead on numerous projects in early stage drug discovery. Dr. Cox received his PhD in Chemistry from the University of Washington (2013) in the laboratory of Prof. Gojko Lalic, where he studied organic methodology and transition metal catalysis

Adrienne Day, Ph.D.

President Blue Gum Advisors LLC

Dr. Day is the President of Blue Gum Advisors LLC, a consulting firm focused on providing business development support to the life science industry.  She is a seasoned business development professional with more than 30 years of experience in the biotechnology and biopharmaceutical industries. Dr. Day has hands-on operational and executive management experience in the non-profit, for-profit and startup environments.

Most recently she was Senior Director of Business Development for Ferring  Pharmaceuticals.  Prior to that Dr. Day ran a successful consulting practice. She has previously served as Vice President of Business Development at what is now the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, Vice President of Business Development Conforma Therapeutics, Senior Director of Business Development at Molecumetics Ltd., Associate Director of Corporate Development at Ligand Pharmaceuticals. She was Ligand Pharmaceuticals’ first Project Manager, and began her biotechnology career at Invitrogen Corporation where she held various positions.

Dr. Day received her B.Sc., B.Sc. Honors, and Ph.D. degrees in Biochemistry from the University of Adelaide, Australia. She completed her postdoctoral training at the University of Southern California  and the La Jolla Cancer Research Center.

Adam Mezo

Senior Director, Discovery Chemistry, Ferring Research Institute

Adam Mezo joined the Ferring Research Institute (San Diego) in 2017 as Sr. Director, Head of Molecular Design.  In his current role, he leads a discovery group of peptide, protein and small molecule chemists in search of next-generation therapeutics across a number of therapeutic areas.  Prior to this role, he spent 5 years at Eli Lilly and Company, leading the peptide discovery group in Indianapolis, focusing primarily on endocrinology and neurology. He also spent 12 years at Biogen Idec and Syntonix Pharmaceuticals in a variety of roles, most recently as a Director, Molecular Discovery, where he led a diverse team of chemists, biochemists, and molecular biologists in the discovery and development of peptide and protein therapeutics in the fields of hemophilia and immunology. He performed postdoctoral work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the field of peptide chemistry, received a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of British Columbia and a B.Sc. from Queen’s University (Kingston, Canada).


Peptide Therapeutic Foundation 

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