Huan-Xiang Zhou received his Ph.D. from Drexel University in 1988 and did postdoctoral work at the National Institutes of Health. After faculty appointments at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Drexel University, and Florida State University, he moved in 2017 to the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he is Professor of Chemistry and Physics and holds an LAS Endowed Chair in the Natural Sciences. He has served on many grant review panels and journal editorial boards, and was elected as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a fellow of the American Physical Society. His group does theoretical, computational, and experimental research on molecular and cellular biophysics.
Mervyn Turner, Ph.D., accumulated over 25 years of experience at Merck Research Laboratories in pharmaceuticals drug discovery, research and development, licensing and business development, emerging markets analysis, and strategy development and implementation. For 7 years, he was head of world-wide licensing and external research at Merck, during a period of rapid expansion in Merck’s partnering activities. He became Merck’s first Chief Strategy Officer and a member of the senior executive team in 2008, before retiring from the company in 2011.
Dr. Turner currently operates his own consulting business. He is the Chairman of the Board of LUNAC, UK. He served on the Board of Preventice, LLC, Rochester, Minnesota until the merger with eCardio. He also serves on the Board of EnGeneIC, Sydney, Australia.
He was a member of the Steering Committee of the Seeding Drug Discovery Initiative of the Wellcome Trust, UK. He currently serves as an Advisor to Bay City Capital, San Francisco; to Adagene, Suzhou, China; and to Bridge Medicines, NYC. He is a member of the SAB for Spinogenix, San Diego, and Blade Therapeutics, San Francisco. He is also a Senior Advisor to the Lazard Health Care group, New York.
Anthony Tolcher, M.D., is a medical oncologist and co-founder of the NEXT Oncology. He is a graduate of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He performed his residency in internal medicine at the University of Toronto and his fellowship in oncology at the University of British Columbia. He followed this with a research fellowship at the National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland.
Dr. Tolcher was the director of clinical research at South Texas Accelerated Research Therapeutics in San Antonio from 2007 to 2018, and was the director of clinical research at the Cancer Therapy and Research Center in San Antonio from 2003 to 2007. Prior to that he served as the associate director at the CTRC from 1999 to 2003. He was a Fogarty Fellow at the National Institute of Health, and received the Murray Muirhead Award for humanitarian and academic excellence and the Goel Prize in Medicine for excellence in the Clinical Disciplines. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada; a Diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology; and a member of the American College of Physicians, and the American Society of Clinical Oncologists.
He also serves as a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Scientific Program Committee and the Cancer Education Committee. He is an Associate Editor of The Journal of New Anticancer Agents; and he is a scientific grant reviewer for the National Cancer Institute of Canada.
Dr. Tolcher has authored numerous publications, including 38 peer reviewed publications, 26 Conference Proceedings, and 5 book chapters. He serves as a reviewer for the following journals: Anti-Cancer Drugs, Journal of Clinical Oncology, Annals of Oncology, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Clinical Lung Cancer, Clinical Prostate Cancer, Human Gene Therapy, and the Journal of Cancer.
Feng Shao, Ph.D., is an investigator and deputy director at National Institute of Biological Sciences (NIBS), Beijing. He was a chemistry undergraduate of Peking University (1991-1996) and obtained his PhD from the University of Michigan in 2003. Before becoming a faculty member at NIBS in 2005, he was a Damon Runyon Postdoc Fellow at Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Shao’s research lies at the interface between bacterial pathogen and host immunity. He identified most of the known cytosolic pattern recognition receptors for bacterial molecules, including caspase-11/4/5 for LPS and ALPK1 for ADP-heptose (a precursor for LPS biosynthesis). He also identified gasdermin-D (GSDMD) whose cleavage by caspase-1/4/5/11 determines pyroptosis, which is critical for septic shock and other inflammatory diseases. His research further establishes the gasdermin family of pore-forming proteins, therefor re-defining pyroptosis as gasdermin-mediated programmed necrosis. Among the family, GSDME is activated by caspase-3, which occurs mostly in noncancer cells and contributes to the toxicity of chemotherapy drugs. His most recent work demonstrates that pyroptosis is a critical mechanism underlying lymphocyte cytotoxicity and gasdermin activation in cancer cells can stimulate potent antitumor immunity.
Dr. Shao‘s work has been recognized by numerous awards including the Future Science Prize, Qiu Shi Outstanding Scientist Award, HHMI International Early Career Award and the Protein Society Irving Sigal Young Investigator Award. He is a member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, an associate member of EMBO, and a fellow of American Academy of Microbiology.
Yiqin Gao, Ph.D., is a Professor at College of Chemistry and Molecular Engineering and an investigator at the Beijing Innovation Center of Genomics and the Biomedical Pioneering Innovation Center, Peking University. He is also a senior investigator at the Shenzhen Bay Lab. He received his B.S. from Sichuan University, his M.S from Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and his Ph.D. from California Institute of Technology. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Caltech and Harvard University from 2001 to 2004. He was an assistant professor at the chemistry department of Texas A&M University from 2005 to 2009 and moved to Peking University in 2010. He is a recipient of the Pople Medal, CMOA Prize, Searle Scholar, Dreyfus New Faculty Award, and the Clauser Prize. He is currently a member of editorial board of J. Chem. Phys., J. Phys. Chem., Chem. Phys. Lett., ACS Central Sci., Acta Phys. Chem., and Material of Chemistry.