Alain Laederach, Ph.D.
Alain Laederach, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Biology department and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. His main area of expertise is RNA bioinformatics, with a focus on developing algorithms and computational methods to study RNA structure and transcriptome scale.
Alain received his Ph.D. in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology from Iowa State University, and then went on to a post-doc at Stanford University (Genetics). His main area of research focuses on integrating large scale whole genome sequencing data with RNA structural probing experiments to identify structured, functional regions in the human transcriptome.
William S. Marshall, Ph.D.
William S. Marshall, Ph.D., is the President, Chief Executive Officer, Co-Founder and Director of miRagen, a company dedicated to improving patients’ lives through the discovery and development of innovative RNA-based therapeutics, with a specific focus on microRNAs. Prior to establishing miRagen, Dr. Marshall was Vice President of Technology and Business Development for Bioscience at Thermo Fisher Scientific. In this role, he was responsible for leading technology assessment and strategic planning for the Thermo Fisher Biosciences Division, a unit with revenues of approximately $1 billion that manufactures and supplies a wide range of products and services across the general-chemistry and life-sciences arenas.
Dr. Marshall was one of the scientific founders of Dharmacon, Inc., which was acquired by Fisher Scientific International, serving as the Executive Vice President for Research and Operations and General Manager. Prior to joining Dharmacon, Dr. Marshall served in many capacities at Amgen, Inc., most recently as Associate Director of Research, Site Head for Research and Head of the Nucleic Acid and Peptide Technology Department. In these positions, he participated in a wide variety of therapeutic development approaches throughout the drug discovery process leading to the development of clinical candidates.
Dr. Marshall earned his B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his Ph.D. in Chemistry in the laboratory of Professor Marvin Caruthers at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is author and co-author of over 50 research papers and 80 patents. Dr. Marshall currently serves on the Board of FluoroFinder, LLC.
David Corey, Ph.D.
David Corey received his Ph.D. in 1990 from Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley under the guidance of Professor Peter Schultz and did his postdoctoral work at the University of California, San Francisco under the direction of Professor Charles Craik. In 1992 he joined the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and specializes in the molecular recognition of cellular nucleic acids.
Joshua Mendell, Ph.D.
Dr. Joshua Mendell is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, a Professor of Molecular Biology, and a member of the Harold C. Simmons Cancer Center and the Center for Regenerative Science and Medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, in Dallas, Texas. Since 2004, Dr. Mendell has directed a research laboratory focused on investigating RNA biology in normal physiology and disease. In particular, the Mendell laboratory has devoted significant effort towards elucidating functions of noncoding RNAs, including microRNAs (miRNAs) and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs), and has made major contributions to our understanding of how these RNA transcripts contribute to diseases such as cancer. For his work in this area, Dr. Mendell has been the recipient of several prestigious awards including the Allan C. Davis Medal for the Outstanding Young Scientist in the State of Maryland in 2007, the AACR Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cancer Research in 2010, and the O’Donnell Award from the Academy of Medicine, Engineering, and Science of Texas in 2016.
Matthew S. Sigman, Ph.D.
Matthew S. Sigman, Ph.D., is the Peter J. Christine S. Stang Presidential Endowed Chair of Chemistry at the University of Utah. He earned his B.S. at Sonoma State University, 1992, his Ph.D. at Washington State University, 1996, and was a NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, at Harvard University, 1997-1999.
Dr. Sigman's research program is focused on the discovery of new practical catalytic reactions with broad substrate scope, excellent chemoselectivity, and high stereoselectivity to access novel medicinally relevant architectures. He believes the best strategy for developing new classes of catalysts and reactions applicable to organic synthesis is using mechanistic insights to guide the discovery process. This allows him to design new reaction motifs or catalysts in which unique bond constructions can be implemented furthering new approaches to molecule construction.
An underlying theme to these methodologies is to convert relatively simple substrates into much more complex compounds allowing for access to known and novel pharmacaphores in a modular manner. This provides the ability to readily synthesize analogs enabling the understanding of important structural features responsible for a phenotypic response in a given biological assay. Dr. Sigman is currently engaged in several collaborative projects to evaluate his group's compound collections for various cancer types at the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah and is engaged in follow-up investigations to identify improved compounds as well as understanding the mechanism of action.
Dr. Sigman's awards include the Peter J. Christine S. Stang Presidential Endowed Chair of Chemistry, 2012-present, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2011, U of U Distinguished Scholarly & Creative Research Award, 2011, Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award, 2010, Robert W. Parry Teaching Award, 2009, University of Utah Distinguished Honors Professor, 2008, NSF Faculty Early Career Development, CAREER Award, 2001-2006, Research Innovation Award, Research Corporation, 2000-2002, Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, 2004, Pfizer Award for Creativity in Organic Chemistry, 2004, NSF Faculty Early Career Development, CAREER Award, 2001-2006, and a Research Innovation Award, Research Corporation, 2000-2002
Gene Yeo, Ph.D.
Gene Yeo is a Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). Dr. Yeo has a BSc in Chemical Engineering and a BA in Economics from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, a Ph.D. in Computational Neuroscience from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an MBA from the UCSD Rady School of Management. Dr. Yeo’s research interest is in understanding and manipulating RNA processing in development and disease using induced pluripotent stem cell and murine models. His lab demonstrated in vivo RNA targeting with CRISPR/Cas proteins with proof of concept in repeat expansion disorders. The Yeo research group members also developed enhanced CLIP for the purposes of large-scale mapping of protein-RNA interactions.
Gene's lab is an active participant in RNA genomics technology and therapeutics development. Dr. Yeo is on the Editorial Boards of the journals Cell Reports and Cell Research. Dr. Yeo is a recipient of Alfred P Sloan Fellowship in recognition of his work in computational molecular biology (2011) and the inaugural Early Career Award from the International RNA Society (2017). Gene is a co-founder of several biotech companies including Locana, Eclipse Bioinnovations, Enzerna and Proteona. Gene serves or had served on the scientific advisory boards of the Allen Institute of Immunology, Locana, Eclipse Bioinnovations, Proteona, Aquinnah, LGC, Nugen and Ribometrix.