Chunfang (Vicky) Gu serves as Senior Director of Finance at Adagene. Reporting to the Chief Financial Officer, Ms. Gu manages its finance team, and plays a key role in the company’s financial and capital market transactions. She played an important role in the successful completion of its Series C-1 in 2018, and Series C-2 and Series C-3 in 2019, as well as its initial public offering on Nasdaq in February 2021. In addition, Ms. Gu made significant contribution to establish the company’s employee incentive plans.
Ms. Gu has over 17 years of experience in financial management with exposure to audit firm and multinational corporations. Prior to joining Adagene, Ms. Gu worked in the finance and accounting department at several companies including Sulzer Pumps, Bluescope Steel and Mercury Marine, where she gained extensive experience in financial reporting, financial planning and analysis, internal control and compliance, tax planning, as well as project management.
Ms. Gu received her Master of Business Administration degree from Xiamen University in 2016 and bachelor’s degree in accounting from Tianjin University of Commerce in 2003.
Ling (Jolin) Zhou has served as our Head of Human Resources since October 2019. Before joining Adagene, Ms. Zhou served as the HR director of Asia Pacific at Tekni-Plex, where she was responsible for the HR initiatives including strategic planning and business support from May 2010 to August 2019. Between October 2004 and May 2010, Ms. Zhou served as the HR supervisor at Suzhou Capsugel Ltd., a division of Pfizer, where she was responsible for all HR functions and personnel training. Ms. Zhou received her bachelor’s degree in law from South-Central University for Nationalities in 2003. She is a DDI Certified Trainer.
Dana Hu-Lowe, Ph.D., is the VP of Global Product Team Leadership of Adagene. Dr. Hu-Lowe has more than 20 years of experience in oncology drug discovery, pharmacology, translational research, and clinical development, with over seven years of experience in project and strategic alliance management, and leadership of both preclinical and clinical product programs.
Before joining Adagene, Dr. Hu-Lowe was the Executive Director and Global Product Team Lead (GPTL) for enzolvantinib and TPX-0046 at Turning Point Therapeutics, responsible for early clinical development of the assets. Before that, Dr. Hu-Lowe was the Senior Director of Strategic Alliance and Program management at Wellspring Biosciences Inc., where she successfully managed both internal discovery and IND-enabling programs, as well as strategic partnership with pharma and academic research entities. Prior to this, Dr. Hu-Lowe spent over 12 years at Pfizer Oncology as a functional group leader (angiogenesis and TME) and research project leader, where she led multiple cross-functional teams advancing programs from preclinical to IND submission/clearance and into clinical development. During her Pfizer tenure, Dr. Hu-Lowe also served as the translational research representative to clinical development programs, directly contributed to the NDA and approvals of axitinib (Inlyta™) and sunitinib (Sutent™) by the U.S. FDA, and was a recipient of the prestigious Pfizer “Career Achievement Award”.
Dr. Hu-Lowe received her undergraduate degree in Chemistry from BNU of China, Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Mississippi and completed her post-doctoral training and academic research track at the Scripps Research Institute and the Burnham Cancer Institute (now the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute) with a focus on integrins, extracellular metrix, and angiogenesis.
Jiping Zha, M.D., Ph.D. is our Executive Vice President of Clinical Development. Dr. Zha is a physician scientist with over 20 years of formative experience in both academia and biotech industry. He received Howard Temin Award from National Cancer Institute. Previously, he was also an instructor at Harvard Medical School and an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. He has extensive experience in disease biology, drug discovery, translational sciences and clinical development, and successfully led multiple small and large molecule programs from IND-enabling stages to clinical testing. He also played key roles in the development and execution of multiple biomarker/companion diagnostic programs at Genentech and MedImmune, and was a development team lead and clinical lead for a phase 1/2 solid tumor program at NGM Biopharmaceuticals.
Dr. Zha has served multiple leadership positions, which include the discovery/diagnostic/translational science team leaderships at Genentech and MedImmune, SVP of Drug Discovery Technologies and VP of Cancer Biology at Crown Bioscience, and most recently as executive director of Translational Sciences at NGM Biopharmaceuticals. He has over 40 publications in high-impact scientific journals, such as Cell, Science and Nature, and authored multiple patents.
Dr. Zha received his M.D. from Shanghai Medical University, and Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. He completed his anatomic pathology residency training at Washington University School of Medicine and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Zha is a licensed physician in the State of California and board-certified in Anatomic Pathology.
Ami Celeste Knoefler is the Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications, responsible for managing communications to support and optimize the long-term value of Adagene on behalf of all stakeholders. Ami has more than 25 years of global experience in pharmaceutical, biotech and medical technology communications, including positions at Ascendis Pharma, Jazz Pharmaceuticals, PDL BioPharma, Abgenix and Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Previously, she has led investor and corporate communications for PDL Biopharma and Abgenix, Inc., two antibody platform companies. Her career focus includes Corporate Communications, Product Communications, Patient Advocacy, and Investor Relations. She previously held roles in Global Communications at Ascendis Pharma, where she led corporate marketing, patient advocacy and product communications, and at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, where she led Corporate & Investor Relations activities during a period of transformation and sustained earnings growth.
Ami also founded her own company, Spark BioComm LLC, where she integrated communications and acted as strategic advisor covering investor, corporate, media, and medical communications for small and mid-cap clients.
Ami holds a B.S. from Boston University where she graduated magna cum laude with distinction in International Communications.
Wenlin Zeng, Ph.D., is the VP of Early Stage CMC. Dr. Zeng has over 20 years of experience in drug discovery and drug development in the biopharmaceutical industry.
Prior to joining Adagene, Dr. Zeng was the Senior Director of Upstream Process Development responsible for both early and late stage programs at Gilead Sciences, Inc. Prior to that, she was the Senior Director of Cell Line and Upstream Process Development at Forty-Seven Inc., where she was responsible for cell line, upstream process development and manufacturing for a number of programs, including magrolimab. Prior to Forty-Seven, Dr. Zeng held leadership positions at multiple biopharmaceutical companies, including NGM Bio, GSK, MedImmune, and Abgenix.
Dr. Zeng began her career in biopharmaceutical industry after completing her post-doctoral training at Stanford University. She earned her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from The University of Iowa and B.S. in Cell Biology from Wuhan University in China.
Mr. Peter Luo is our Co-Founder and has served as our Chief Executive Officer since November 2011 and Chairman of the Board of the Directors since February 2018. Dr. Luo served as the first lead scientist in computational protein design and protein laboratory at Xencor (Nasdaq: XNCR) from July 1998 to August 2000. In September 2000, Dr. Luo founded Abmaxis Inc. and served as its Co-Founder, Chief Technology Officer, president, and director. In May 2006, Dr. Luo led the acquisition of Abmaxis Inc. by Merck & Co. (NYSE: MRK), after which Dr. Luo served as a director of Biologics Technology at Merck, and Chief Technology Officer of Abmaxis, the subsidiary of Merck & Co. Throughout his career, Dr. Luo also led the business development efforts in connection with collaborations and strategic partnerships with multiple global partners. Dr. Luo received his bachelor’s degree in applied chemistry in technical physics from Peking University in 1986, master’s degree in applied physics from The Institute of High Energy Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 1989, and Ph.D. degree in chemistry from The University of Chicago in 1995. Dr. Luo also completed his postdoctoral research in protein folding at Stanford University in 1998.
Songmao Zheng, Ph.D., is currently Vice President, Head of Clinical and Quantitative Pharmacology at Adagene, leading preclinical and clinical quantitative model-informed drug discovery and development. He joined Adagene as Associate VP of R&D in early 2021.
Previously, as Scientific Director/Group Leader at Janssen BioTherapeutics, Songmao guided the preclinical, translational, and early clinical PK/TE/PD characterization of numerous biologics across oncology, immunology, and other therapeutic areas. He was awarded the prestigious Philip B. Hofmann Research Scientist Award, the second highest recognition in Johnson & Johnson, given to researchers for “major contributions of leadership, original ideas and research leading toward development of a technology platform, process or better understanding of a scientific technical phenomenon”. As a recognized key member of the Janssen teams, he also received >25 J&J Leadership, Innovation Leadership, and Encore/Inspire awards.
Songmao has authored approximately 30 peer-reviewed publications (accumulative Impact Factor approximately 150) and book chapters, has presented in over 30 national and international conferences with 6 awards, and is named as co-inventor on approximately 10 patent filings. Currently, he serves as a Member of Scientific Program Committee of the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (ASCPT), and an Editorial Board member for ASCPT’s peer-reviewed journals Clinical and Translational Science (CTS) and Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics (CPT), the flagship journal of ASCPT.
Songmao received his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Washington (UW), followed by postdoctoral training at the Center for Pharmacometrics & Systems Pharmacology (CPSP) in the Department of Pharmaceutics at the University of Florida (UF). He currently is appointed Affiliate Associate Professor at the UW and Courtesy Adjunct Assistant Professor at the UF. He is also serving as a Corporate Advisory Board Member at the UW School of Pharmacy. Songmao graduated from Sichuan University with a B.S. degree in Biological Sciences, during which time he was awarded a one-year honored exchange at the UW Department of Hematology. He received further training as an intern at Seattle Genetics and as an ORISE Fellow at US FDA.
Dr. Guizhong Liu, Head of biology and pharmacology in Adagene, leading the preclinical pharmacology and toxicology research for product development. Dr. Liu has over 15-year experience in drug discovery and development, both in small molecule kinase inhibitors and large molecule antibodies in oncology and immunology field.
Prior to joining Adagene, Dr. Liu served as head of molecular cancer biology in CrownBio, where he was in charge of contracted research projects from various big pharma and small biotech companies, as well as leading the novel drug development programs from biology and pharmacology side. Prior to CrownBio, Dr. Liu had worked as Assistant Professor in the department of oncological sciences at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, with over 40 peer-reviewed publications in high-profile journals.
Dr. Liu completed his postdoctoral research with Dr. Stuart Aaronson at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, received his Ph.D. from Peking Union Medical College, and obtained his B.S. and M.S. degrees at Beijing Normal University.
Qinghai Zhao, Ph.D., is the Chief Manufacturing Officer of Adagene. He has over 25 years of drug development experience in the biopharmaceutical industry.
Most recently, he served as the Vice President of Technical Development and Manufacturing at Forty Seven Inc., an immunology company acquired by Gilead in early 2020. There, he was responsible for CMC development and clinical supply management for a number of programs, including magrolimab. Prior to Forty Seven, Dr. Zhao was the Vice President of CMC and Manufacturing at AnaptysBio. Prior to that, he held leadership positions in managing biological process development and manufacturing, including Head of CMC at NGM Bio and Director of CMC management at Teva Biopharmaceuticals USA, where he led multiple CMC programs including reslizumab, which was approved by the FDA for commercial manufacturing in 2016. In his early career in China, he served as Head of Plasma Protein Therapeutics R/D at Shanghai Institute of Biological Products.
Dr. Zhao earned his Ph.D. in life sciences from Uppsala University, his MS in biochemistry from Fudan University (Shanghai Medical University) and BE degree in biochemistry from East China University of Science and Technology.