Leadership, Board and Advisors

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Charlotte Casebourne
CEO and Co-Founder

Charlotte believes in equitable access to effective therapies. In addition to her role with Theolytics, she is a Board Member of the UK BioIndustry Association. Previously with New Medicine Partners, Charlotte is an entrepreneur with international leadership, operational and management experience. She has worked with government ministries, national funding bodies and research institutes to transform life science technologies into commercially viable products. She previously held leadership roles with the WEF Global Shapers Network; HealthTech Women; and Hello Tomorrow. Charlotte graduated as a University of Cambridge Bioscience Enterprise M.Phil Scholar and was a shortlisted finalist for Cambridge Entrepreneur of the Year.

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Margaret Duffy
CSO and Co-Founder

Margaret is committed to the translation of innovative biological approaches into viable patient care. With over ten years’ international research experience, she specialises in virology and leads the scientific teams in the discovery of powerful new oncolytic viruses for clinical development. Previously a Fellow with the Kay Kendall Leukaemia Fund at the University of Oxford, Margaret also spent several years as a Postdoctoral Researcher with the University of Glasgow and with Batavia Biosciences in Leiden as part of the Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnerships programme. Margaret has a PhD in Adenoviral Gene Therapy from the University of Glasgow.

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Kerry Fisher
President of Research and Co-Founder

Kerry is dedicated to exploring how best to deliver therapeutic viruses, genes and proteins into the tumour microenvironment. As well as bridging the gap between our commercial and scientific strategies, he holds a lectureship with the University of Oxford. Previously with PsiOxus, Kerry has over 25 years’ experience in translating oncolytic viruses from new product innovation all the way through early clinical trials to commercial development. During his career, Kerry has filed more than a dozen patent applications and has authored over sixty peer-reviewed publications.  Kerry has a PhD in Therapeutic Gene Delivery from the University of Birmingham.

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Ken Powell
Chair

Ken has over 35 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors. He is an expert virologist and has been involved in the development of multiple drugs including antiviral compounds for Herpes, HIV, Hepatitis C and RSV. He is also the Chair of ReViral, a company developing antiviral drugs to treat Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) infection. Previously Ken was the Executive Chairman of Q-Chip, a company developing novel formulations of drugs. He was also the Founder and CEO of Arrow Therapeutics, a specialised antiviral drug discovery company acquired by Astra-Zeneca in 2007. Ken has held a professorship with UCL and was a senior pharmaceutical executive with the Wellcome Foundation. He has a PhD in Virology from the University of Birmingham.

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Carsten Reinhardt

Carsten has extensive experience in translational development. He has progressed multiple biological compounds for oncology and immunology diseases, spanning early preclinical development through first-in-man studies, to approvals in the US and Europe.
He is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Society of Hematology, the Association for Cancer Immunotherapy as well as of the European Society of Medical Oncology, and is Visiting Professor for Pharmaceutical Medicine at the University of Basel. Previously, as International Medical Leader at Hoffmann-La Roche (Basel, Switzerland), Carsten had global responsibility for the development of Herceptin®.
Carsten received a Medical Degree in 1993 from the University of Munich, Germany. In addition, he completed a Ph.D. thesis in Cellular Immunology at the Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München in Munich, Germany (summa cum laude).

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Adam Workman
Board Observer

Adam is the Head of Investments & New Ventures at Oxford University Innovation and has over 15 years of experience in the venture capital sector. Having joined Oxford University Innovation in October 2016, his responsibilities include liaising with early stage investors through the Oxford Angel Network, investing in new technologies through Oxford University Innovation’s Proof of Concept funds and advising on the Parkwalk Oxford Innovation Fund I, II and III. Prior to OUI Adam was a Partner in the cleantech focused venture capital fund manager 350 Investment Partners. He formerly worked with the Carbon Trust, 3i and Shell Exploration. He has an MA in Natural Sciences and a Postgraduate diploma in Computer Science from Cambridge University.

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Len Seymour
SAB Chair and Co-Founder

Len is a Professor of Gene Therapies within the Department of Oncology at the University of Oxford. He was the Founding President of the British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy, is the Secretary and Trustee of the European Society of Gene and Cell Therapy and is an Executive Council Member of the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy of Cancer. Len is also the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Chronic Granulomatous Disorder Research Trust, as well as the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Muscular Dystrophy Consortium.

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Susan Clement-Davies
Corporate Finance Advisor

Susan is a financier with 25 years of capital markets and investment banking experience, including 10 years at Citigroup and Salomon Smith Barney as Managing Director of Equity Capital Markets and most recently as Managing Director of Torreya, an investment bank solely focused on life sciences. She has worked on strategic and financing transactions with an aggregate value of $100billion. Susan is non-executive director and chair of the audit committee at Evgen Pharma plc and is on the Innovations advisory board at Chelsea & Westminster NHS Trust Hospital. Susan has a BSc in Economics from University College London and a MSc in Economics from London School of Economics.

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Annalisa Jenkins
Commercial Advisor

Annalisa is a biopharma thought leader with over 25 years of industry experience. She has extensive experience in building and financing biotech companies pursuing cures for the most challenging rare diseases, advancing programs from scientific research through clinical development, regulatory approval, and into healthcare systems globally.

Annalisa is a board member of over 10 growing companies globally. She also is a committee member of the Science Board to the U.S. FDA, a board member at Faster Cures of The Milken Institute and the Chair of The Court The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Previously, Annalisa has served as president and CEO of Dimension Therapeutics, a leading gene therapy company. She has also held leadership roles at Merck Serono and Bristol Myers-Squibb for over 15 years. Annalisa has a MD from St Bartholemew’s Hospital in the University of London.

Team

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Julie Farr
Head of Finance

Julie has over thirty years’ international finance experience across the US, Europe and Asia-Pacific, working with both private and listed companies. As Group Finance Controller for cancer diagnostics company VolitionRx, Julie worked with the C-Suite to up-list onto NYSE American and to raise multiple rounds of capital. She has worked with management teams within the biotech and technology sectors to raise both private financing and public capital, and has also led financial due diligence through M&A activities. Julie has a BA (hons) from the University of Cambridge in Management Studies with a Natural Sciences background. She qualified as a Chartered Accountant with BDO.

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Carmen Bedford
Scientist

Carmen recently completed her PhD in Virology at Cardiff University, which explored the role of RL13 in HCMV Pathogenesis. Previously, she studied for a BSc in Medical Genetics at Swansea University. During her time at Swansea, the Microbiology Society awarded her the Undergraduate Microbiology Prize for 2013. Upon graduation in 2014, she was awarded the Graduates’ Prize in Genetics. Carmen is focused on creating a future in which effective and safe therapies are available for all.

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Nick Buxey
Accounts & Administration Co-Ordinator

Nicholas is passionate about creating highly effective organisations in which each individual can thrive. His expertise bridges people, operations and communications to support the Theolytics team to revolutionise patient care. Previously with Opus Energy, Nicholas has experience in areas including multi-channel marketing, event management and communications. He has also worked in various administrative support roles, and has been an active volunteer for heritage and wildlife charities. Nicholas holds a BA (Hons) in English and Italian Literature from the University of Warwick.

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Sterenn Davis
Team Lead

Sterenn has expertise in molecular biology and next generation sequencing, and is excited to explore how the application of innovations in these fields can revolutionise the drug discovery process and pipeline. Sterenn has over eight years of experience in therapeutics discovery. Prior to joining Theolytics, she created and established a bespoke single-cell next generation sequencing pipeline at Immunocore. Furthermore, while at the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology she contributed to the discovery of a new therapeutic monoclonal antibody. Sterenn has a PhD in Physics from the University of Exeter.

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Sally Frost
Scientist

Sally is an ambitious and skilled cancer researcher with over five years’ experience in the fields of immunology and virology, focusing on primary patient work. She is approaching the end of her PhD in Oncology at the University of Oxford.

Throughout her PhD, Sally has taken onexternal consultancy work and mentored other students whilst advancing multiple projects under Professor Len Seymour.

Previously, Sally studied for a MNatSci at the University of Southamptoion, during which she was awarded with “Outstanding performance in a Natural Scieneces degree.”

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Matt Hayman
Lab Manager

Matthew enjoys supporting efficient, fun and successful teams to translate innovative research into effective cancer therapies. Formerly with Canterbury District Health Board in New Zealand, Matthew has over twenty years’ experience of researching diseases including brain cancer, immunodeficiency and rheumatoid arthritis. Matthew has worked in world-class medical laboratories in London, New Zealand and Australia, leading large teams on complex projects to deliver the best possible service for patients. Matthew has a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Durham.

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Alfred Lim
Team Lead

Alfred is excited about the development of novel therapeutics, particularly through the application of directed evolution. Prior to his appointment at Theolytics, he was a Principal Scientist at Immunocore, where his focus was on platform enhancement and the development of new assays. He was also previously awarded a Career Development Fellowship to train in immunology at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology. Alfred has a PhD in Molecular Immunology from the University of Cambridge.

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Caterina Negroni
Scientist

Caterina has over four years’ experience in the field of cancer research and is eager to help discover new and innovative therapies. Before joining Theolytics, Caterina worked as a Research Technician at the University of Plymouth, where she explored the role of miRNome in meningioma tumours.
Caterina has also completed her PhD in Medical Studies at the University of Plymouth. Prior to her PhD, she studied for her MSc and BSc at the University of Milano-Bicocca in Italy, where she was awarded first-class honours.

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Heath O'Brien
Bioinformatician

With over 7 years’ experience in bioinformatics, Heath enjoys engineering software solutions to biological problems. Previously the Lead Bioinformatician at Living DNA, Heath has overseen the development of methods to derive health and ancestry insights from genotyping data and worked to improve sample processing and data delivery.

Before Living DNA, Heath was a Research Associate at the MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics, where he explored differential gene expression and eQTL analyses on human brain samples, as well as the integration of functional genomic and large-scale population genetic datasets for schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric disorders.

Heath holds a PhD (Hons) in Molecular systematics of cyanobacteria from Duke University.

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Deanna Saunders
Lab Technician

Deanna enjoys working in a research environment, honing her skills in tissue culture and maintenance of cell lines. Previously with Bio-Rad, Deanna has over two years of manufacturing experience for antibody production. She has substantial knowledge of tissue culture, the control and diversification of virus stocks. She also understands and champions the importance of standardised processes within the drug discovery and clinical development processes.  Deanna has a BsC (Hons) in Biochemistry from the University of Worcester.

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Kritika Sharad
Lab Technician

Kritika enjoys working at the forefront of innovation, technology and development. She believes in oncolytic viruses as a novel therapeutic approach for cancer patients. Previously with the Disability Resource Centre at the University of Cambridge, Kritika has more than eight years’ experience in the education sector. Before moving to the UK in 2014, she was a lecturer at Doon Para-Medical College in India, where she taught Cell Biology within the Biotechnology department. Kritika has an MSc in Biochemistry from HNB Garwhal University and an MPhil from the University of Solan.

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William Taverner
Scientist

William is passionate about the translation of science and innovation for the development of novel cancer therapies. Before joining Theolytics, William completed his PhD studies in Oncolytic Immunotherapy at the University of Oxford. He was a part of the synthetic biology doctoral training programme during his PhD studies, and his research interests focused on the application of synthetic biology approaches to the development of cancer killing viral agents. William also has a BSc and Mbiol in Genetics from the University of Leeds.

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Suzanne Vjestica-Brown
Head of People and Operations

Previously the Head of Portfolio Services for Oxford Sciences Innovation (OSI), Suzanne has considerable experience supporting early stage companies to: secure funding; grow their teams; and scale-up facilities, in addition to successfully performing other commercial and operational activities. Suzanne has also spent over ten years working in law firms as both a legal executive and a paralegal, specialising in a range of areas across immigration, employment, commercial and corporate law. She is currently studying for her CIPD Level 7 in Human Resource Management.

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Theo Litik
Head of Wellbeing

Since joining the company in January 2018, Theo has been promoted from Team Mascot to Head of Wellbeing. Always ready to win a staring contest, he keeps a watchful eye over the office. His extraordinary telepathic abilities and dry humour ensure that all conversations with him are guaranteed to be both private and highly amusing. As the company socialite, he’s always at the centre of any and all team-building activities, and has proven himself an excellent plus-one for both formal and informal gatherings.