Sophiris is led by a team that has achieved more than twenty drug approvals including several blockbusters. In connection with our company refocus, Dr. Lars Ekman accepted an appointment as Executive Chairman of the Company. Our management transition continued swiftly as we made a concerted effort to build a senior management team with significant experience developing and commercializing therapeutics and with strong networks in the industry.
Dr. Ekman joined Sophiris as Chairman in November 2010 and accepted the role of Executive Chairman in April 2011.
Dr. Ekman is an advisor of Warburg Pincus and Executive Partner of Sofinnova Ventures. During 2001 to 2007, Dr. Ekman was EVP & President of R & D at Elan Pharmaceuticals where he advanced Elan’s drug development pipeline by securing four US New Drug Applications, three European Marketing Authorization Applications and five Investigational New Drug applications.
Prior to joining Elan, Dr. Ekman was EVP, R and D at Schwartz Pharma AG (now UCB) and held executive R&D roles at Pharmacia (now Pfizer) from 1984-1997. Dr. Ekman is a director of Cebix Inc, InterMune Inc., Ocera Therapeutics, Inc., Elan and Amarin Corporation. Dr. Ekman is a board certified surgeon with a Ph.D. in experimental biology. He obtained his Ph.D. and M.D. from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
Randall E. Woods joined Sophiris as Chief Executive Officer in August 2012 and brings with him 40 years of biotech and pharmaceutical leadership experience. Prior to joining Sophiris, Mr. Woods was President and CEO of Sequel Pharmaceuticals, a spin-out of NovaCardia developing a potential treatment for atrial fibrillation. Mr. Woods was previously the President and CEO of NovaCardia, a pharmaceutical company focused on cardiovascular diseases until its acquisition by Merck & Co for $350 million in 2007. Prior to NovaCardia, Mr. Woods was President and CEO of Corvas International, a publicly held biopharmaceutical company focused on cardiovascular disease and cancer until its acquisition by Dendreon in 2003. Before joining Corvas, he served as President of Boehringer Mannheim’s U.S. Pharmaceutical operations, and spent 20 years at Eli Lilly & Company in various sales and marketing positions. Mr. Woods is a past Chairman for the Advisory Board of UC San Diego’s Sulpizio Family Cardiovascular Center and is a past Chairman of the Board of Directors for BIOCOM, a life science industry association in Southern California. Mr. Woods serves on the Board of Arena Pharmaceuticals and is Chairman of the Board for Sorbent Therapeutics. He received his B.S. in Biology and Chemistry from Ball State University and an MBA in Marketing from Western Michigan University.
Dr. Hulme joined Sophiris in April 2011 and brings over 20 years of drug development experience.
She most recently served as Executive Vice President and Head of Global Development at Elan Pharmaceuticals, and has a proven track record in all phases of global clinical drug development. Dr. Hulme joined Elan Corp. Plc. in October 1995 and served as an Executive Vice President since January 2005. She has achieved multiple regulatory approvals in the United States and Europe, coupled with hands on global commercial launch experience for the blockbuster drug Tysabri.
Dr. Hulme held several positions in Clinical Research at Glaxo Wellcome Pharmaceuticals (United Kingdom) and served as Lecturer at Luton University. Dr. Hulme holds a first class honors Degree in Science from Luton University and earned her Ph.D. from Cranfield Institute of Technology.
Dr. Yocum joined Sophiris in November 2011 and has spent 29 years in the medical and drug development industry.
Before Sophiris he served as Vice President of Drug/Clinical Development and Medical Affairs at Rockwell Medical Technologies, Halozyme Pharmaceuticals, and Chugai Pharma USA. This was preceded by clinical research experience as Executive Medical Director at Ligand Pharmaceuticals and Associate Director at Gensia. Dr. Yocum graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College and earned his medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. After completing his internal medicine residency at the University of California San Diego, he was board certified and maintained an Internal Medicine practice for 10 years.
Dr. Brunswick joined Sophiris in April 2011. He has over 25 years of experience in Regulated Industry including over 9 years at the US FDA, Center for Biologics, Division of Monoclonal Antibodies.
Most recently he was Head of Regulatory Affairs at Arena Pharmaceuticals, a company specializing in therapies directed at G Protein receptors. Prior to that he lead the regulatory group at Elan Pharmaceuticals concentrating on Alzheimer Disease and the pain compound, ziconotide. He obtained his PhD from University College London, University of London.
Dr. Mårtensson joined the Sophiris team in June 2011 with over 8 years in the pharmaceutical industry.
She most recently served as Head of Corporate Development and Finance at the San Diego based biotech Cebix. Prior to Cebix, Dr. Mårtensson held various roles in Project Management at Elan Pharmaceuticals on the Alzheimers Immunotherapy Program. She is a trained immunologist with over 8 years in academia. Dr. Mårtensson has a PhD from Lund University in Sweden and an MBA from UC San Diego.
Mr. Slover joined Sophiris in April 2012. Prior to joining Sophiris, Mr. Slover was the Vice President, Finance and Operations at Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
During Mr. Slover’s 8-year tenure at Anadys, he held a variety of significant management positions including: Senior Director, Finance and Corporate Controller; Senior Manager, Financial Reporting and Internal Controls and Manager of Financial Reporting. Prior to joining Anadys, Mr. Slover was an auditor at KPMG LLP where he spent seven years in public accounting. Mr. Slover is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of California. Mr. Slover received a B.S. degree in Business Administration from Shippensburg University.