BioSpace Movers and Shakers: April 12

Three people leaping up an animated arrow with a downtown skyline in the background

Metrion Biosciences – Andrew Southan was named chief executive officer of Cambridge, U.K.-based Metrion Biosciences. Prior to this appointment, Southan, who has been with Metrion since 2016, was the company’s chief operating officer. His first role at Metrion was as head of commercial operations. Southan has held leadership roles at CeNeS Pharmaceuticals and Ionix Pharmaceuticals. He has also worked with BioFocus and Charles River Laboratories.

Jay Pharma Inc. – Allan Oberman was named chairman of Jay Pharma’s board of directors. Oberman has held senior leadership roles at major pharmaceutical companies, including CEO roles at Concordia International, Sagent Pharmaceuticals and various subsidiaries of Teva Pharmaceuticals. Oberman also served as the COO of Teva International and president and CEO of Teva Canada, formerly known as Novopharm Limited. Oberman also serves on the board of directors of Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.

JDRF -- Aaron J. Kowalski was named president and chief executive officer of the nonprofit organization JDRF, which funds type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Kowalski takes over the reins from Derek Rapp, who announced his decision to step down from the top spot last fall, after serving as CEO for five years. Prior to his role as CEO, Kowalski served as chief mission officer and was responsible for JDRF’s research portfolio. Kowalski has also served as a policy leader for JDRF, regularly advising members of Congress and leaders of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Food and Drug Administration regarding access to T1D therapies and regulatory frameworks that promote innovation.

Arcadia Biosciences – California-based Arcadia Biosciences named Randy Schultz as its head of research and development. Prior to his role at Arcadia, he served as former global crop lead at Inari Agriculture where he oversaw research and development. Before Inari, Shultz spent several years leading various scientific production teams at Monsanto (now Bayer Crop Science), including their Genome Editing Platform team.

Akili Interactive – Digital medicine company Akili added two executives to its leadership team. Santosh Shanbhag has been named chief financial officer and Jacqueline Studer has been named senior vice president and general counsel of Akili. Prior to joining Akili, Shanbhag held senior finance leadership roles at Vertex Pharmaceuticals, most recently as vice president and head of international finance and accounting where he helped build-out the international business and secure reimbursement for novel medicines in key international markets. Before Vertex, Shanbhag served in positions of increasing responsibility at Capgemini Consulting and Texas Instruments. Prior to joining Akili, Studer served as corporate vice president, general counsel and secretary at IDEXX Laboratories, where she led the legal, compliance and regulatory organizations. She also held roles at Blue Health Intelligence, Allscripts Healthcare Solutions, and various leadership positions at GE Healthcare including as General Counsel of the GE Healthcare IT & Performance Solutions division.

Profusa – South San Francisco-based Profusa expanded its leadership team to further the company's ability to transform the health and well-being of patients worldwide. The new hires include David Icke, head of digital health business; Sean Givens, head of government business; and Hesham Younis, head of business development. All three will report directly to Ben Hwang, chairman and CEO. Icke will lead the architecture, development and commercialization of insight-driven solutions and partnerships enabled by continuous body chemistry data. Prior to Profusa, Icke led the digital health business unit at Becton Dickinson, where he focused on consumer-centric digital solutions outside the hospital, including chronic disease management. Most recently. Givens was co-founder and COO of MIODx, a company focused on immune repertoire profiling to predict patient response to immunotherapy regimens. Younis will be responsible for driving partnerships, licensing and M&A. Prior to taking this role, Younis was VP of marketing at Cardinal Health, the global head of marketing for "hospital to home" at Philips and held various commercial and product leadership roles at GE Healthcare during his 10-year tenure there.

Click to browse jobs in the life sciences

Ribometrix – North Carolina-based Ribometrix tapped industry veteran John Reardon as its chief scientific officer. Reardon will lead the strategic development of Ribometrix platform for novel RNA drug discovery. Most recently, Reardon was head of research and development at HemoShear Therapeutics, a rare disease drug developer, and chief scientific officer at Revivo Therapeutics. Reardon also previously served as CSO at Cardioxyl Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2015 for $2.2 billion. In addition to Reardon, Ribometrix also recently appointed Don Hertzog, as vice president of drug discovery and Bill Janzen as vice president of lead discovery and research operations. Don formerly served as head of chemistry at HemoShear and as vice president of early lead identification at Abide Therapeutics. Janzen has held executive and operational positions including executive director of lead generation at Epizyme, director of assay development and compound profiling at the University of North Carolina, president and chief operating officer of Amphora Discovery and director of lead generation technologies at Eli Lilly and Company.

Know about someone making a big move in the life sciences industry? Send editorial suggestions to for inclusion in our Friday Movers and Shakers roundup. Looking to make a move yourself? Check out BioSpace’s job board for thousands of the latest life sciences jobs.

Back to news