Chief Executive Officer and Chief Scientific Officer
Steven has extensive experience in therapeutic development in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. He previously led research at Circuit Therapeutics, drug discovery at Signum Biosciences, headed the cellular neurodegeneration group at Wyeth/Pfizer, and was a program leader at AGY Therapeutics. In these roles he has led both small molecule and biological research and development programs across a diverse range of indications in the field of neuroscience. Steven is a graduate of the University of Cambridge, UK, received his PhD from the University of Bristol, UK and performed postdoctoral work at Stanford University. He also serves as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Neurology at Rutgers University.
Chief Medical Officer
Cesar Cerezo is an experienced pharmaceutical industry leader with extensive and significant contributions to the advancement of clinical development programs across different therapeutic areas. Prior to his position at Alkahest, Dr. Cerezo served as Vice President and Therapeutic Area Head of Global Medical Affairs General Medicine at Amgen. In this role, he led the development and execution of the medical strategic and tactical plans, scientific dissemination activities and life-cycle management programs across multiple therapeutics areas, including, Cardiovascular-Metabolic, Bone, Inflammation, Nephrology and Neuroscience. Prior to this, and other positions of increasing responsibility at Amgen, Cesar occupied various Global Medical Affairs Lead roles at Pfizer. Prior to joining the biotechnology industry, Dr. Cerezo practiced for over 15 years in different Internal and Family medicine units. In his last seven years he was a member of a specialized cardiovascular unit, in which he served as a researcher and a practitioner, publishing and lecturing in multiple scientific relevant journals and forums. He also worked as a professor at the European University in Madrid. Cesar received his degree in Medicine and Surgery from the Complutense University in Madrid, Spain, and holds a Specialist Degree in Vascular Risk Prevention from the same institution. He completed a residency in Family and Community Medicine. Cesar also received his Ph.D. in cardiovascular disease from the Autonoma University in Madrid Spain.
Vice President Human Resources
Tammy has over 20 years of experience working with start-up biotechnology companies and privately held businesses, providing human resources leadership and expertise. She has worked with companies that are just getting off the ground, growing and developing, or facing times of uncertainty, with responsibility for creating strategic and tactical HR programs, scaling organizations during times of rapid change, organizational design and employee engagement. Tammy holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and is a Senior Certified Professional in Human Resources.
Bryan has over 20 years of combined experience in the Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical industries, including as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University focusing on cancer therapeutics and signaling mechanisms, as a scientist at Hyseq/Nuvelo Inc. identifying novel drug targets, and as an attorney at both prestigious international and IP boutique law firms where he concentrated on intellectual property prosecution and technology-based and general litigation. Bryan is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, received both his MS in Physiology & Biophysics and PhD in Pharmacology from Georgetown University, and his JD magna cum laude from the Santa Clara University School of Law.
Senior Vice President Discovery Research
Viktoria Kheifets is Senior Vice President of Biology at Alkahest where she leads a cross-functional team to identify plasma bioactives and their mechanisms of reversing age-dependent decline in CNS and peripheral functions. Prior to Alkahest, Viktoria focused on new company formation at Third Rock Ventures in the fields of liver regeneration and immunometabolism. She was a Senior Group Leader of Biology at Edison Pharmaceuticals where she headed drug discovery efforts in orphan mitochondrial diseases and diseases of aging. Prior to Edison, Viktoria was at Ampere Life Sciences, where she led skin aging and medical foods research programs. Viktoria obtained her scientific training at MIT and Stanford.
Joseph S. McCracken
Vice President of Business Development
Joe has more than 25 years of experience in research, business development and commercial development roles in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. Joe was previously Vice President and Global Head of Business Development & Licensing for Roche Pharma, where he was responsible for Roche Pharma’s global in-licensing and out-licensing activities. Prior to joining Roche Pharma, Joe held the position of Vice President, Business Development at Genentech for more than 10 years, and previously held similar positions at Aventis Pharma and Rhone-Poulenc Rorer. Dr. McCracken holds a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology, a Master of Science in Pharmacology and a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from The Ohio State University.
Senior Vice President Translational Medicine
Carl is a physician scientist leader with 24 years combined clinical and biopharma industry experience. He has expertise in translational research, translational medicine, biomarker and diagnostics development, drug development, patient tailoring, companion diagnostics, and experimental pathology. He previously led translational groups focused on immuno-oncology at Atreca and age-related diseases at Unity Biotechnology. His prior industry experience also includes oncology biomarker and clinical development roles at Eli Lilly, and diagnostics development at Genomic Health. Prior to joining the biopharma industry, Carl practiced clinical medicine as a pathologist in academic and private practice settings. After earning his medical degree at Thomas Jefferson Medical College, he completed an anatomic/clinical pathology residency and surgical pathology fellowship training at the University of California, San Francisco.
Vice President Clinical Biometrics
Claire has more than 30 years of experience in mathematical, statistical, and computational roles in academe, federal and state government research and regulatory environments, and biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Prior to Alkahest, Claire has been instrumental in building Biostatistics and Biometrics teams in mid and small/start-up companies. She has held positions of increasing responsibility at Merck, Genentech, Cerus, Puma Biotechnology, Theravance Biopharma, Global Blood Therapeutics, and most recently CytomX Therapeutics. Claire received her Ph.D. in Statistics from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. She is a life-long learner of statistical and programming techniques with the objective of discovering useful information, informing conclusions, and supporting decision-making from the data she manages with her teams.
Vice President Clinical Development
Esther has 15 years of experience in clinical medicine and leadership roles driving advancements across a wide range of disease areas including neurologic, ophthalmologic and dermatologic conditions. Immediately before joining Alkahest she served as Medical Director of Stroke at the University of Washington NW Hospital and Regional Medical Director at Neurotech NW, merging effective medical treatment with the needs of business strategies to streamline practices for maximizing the impact of program efficiency and resource optimization. She has a passion for collaboration, leveraging her clinical research skills and broad professional background, for the ultimate purpose of enabling people to live healthier. After earning her MD at New York Medical College, she completed her internship at Tulane University, her neurology residency at Yale, and fellowship at the University of Washington. She is an adjunct clinical professor at the University of Washington.
Vice President Regulatory Affairs
Sabrina has more than 15 years of comprehensive Regulatory Affairs, operations, and management experience in biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and medical device companies. Sabrina’s experience spans multiple therapeutic modalities, including small molecules, proteins, cell and gene therapies, and medical devices, and includes establishing internal guidelines as well as knowledge of the guidance and regulations necessary for effective operation in a regulatory environment. Her experience includes regulatory strategy development for early-stage to commercial programs, inclusive of dossier composition and review, and supervising multidisciplinary teams in the submission of INDs/CTAs as well as marketing applications globally. Sabrina previously held the position of Sr. Director of Regulatory Affairs at BioMarin Pharmaceuticals and held prior positions of increasing responsibility at The Medicines Company, ProFibrix, and Dendreon. Sabrina received an undergraduate degree in Human Biology from Scripps College, completed postgraduate training at Harvard University, and received her M.S. in Biomedical Regulatory Affairs from the University of Washington.
Senior Vice President Portfolio Management
Erin has over 20 years of experience working in clinical research supporting drug and device development from pre-IND through FDA approval. Erin joined Alkahest following 9 years as a consultant with Actelion/Cotherix where she was responsible for various project management and clinical operation functions within pulmonary and oncology indications. Prior to that, she consulted for Zogenix and was responsible for conducting the registrational trials and supporting regulatory submissions for an approved drug-device combination therapy. Additionally, she served as a consultant for Scios, Allergan and various CROs in cardiology, neurology and ophthalmology. Erin earned a BS in microbiology, with an emphasis in genetic engineering, from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Our Core Values
Passion, Collaboration, Integrity, Boldness
Vice President Clinical Operations
Jessica has over 20 years of experience in academic and pharmaceutical research and operations management. Jessica leads the Clinical Operations team at Alkahest and is responsible for developing and implementing the clinical operations strategy and overseeing the execution of clinical studies across Alkahest’s pipeline. Jessica has managed programs from pre-IND through Phase 3 clinical trials across disease areas including inflammation, ophthalmology, cardiovascular disease, and neurodegenerative diseases with particular expertise in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease clinical trials. Prior to joining Alkahest, Jessica held roles in research and program management with Bioclinica, SRI International, Stanford University, UCLA School of Medicine, and UT MD Anderson Cancer Research Center. Jessica has a B.A. in Biology from Texas A&M University.
Therapies Born from the Science of AgingSM