LEADERSHIP & BOARD of DIRECTORS
Anand Padmanabhan MD, PhD
President & CMO
Dr. Anand Padmanabhan, MD PhD is a Laboratory Medicine and Transfusion Medicine/Apheresis-trained physician at the BloodCenter of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. He received his medical degree from Thanjavur Medical College (India), PhD in Biochemistry from Brown University, and trained in leading programs in Laboratory Medicine (College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University) and Transfusion Medicine/Apheresis (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) before joining BloodCenter of Wisconsin in 2010. He is funded by the NIH to study Heparin induced Thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (HIT), a major cause of morbidity (30% thrombosis rate) and mortality (10%) in heparin-treated patients. Dr. Padmanabhan's interests include HIT epidemiology, pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment and he has published in these areas in leading journals such as Blood, Chest and Lancet Haematology. He is lead inventor of technology (USPTO Patent #9,851,361) that uses PF4-treated platelets to facilitate HIT diagnosis. Dr. Padmanabhan also serves as the Medical Director of Therapeutic Services at BloodCenter of Wisconsin and is Director of the Apheresis program at the Medical College of Wisconsin's Blood and Marrow Transplant and Effector Cell Therapy programs.
PhD, MBA, JD
CEO & General Counsel
Dr. Sem is also Dean and Professor of Business, Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Director of Technology Transfer at Concordia University Wisconsin. He also serves on the editorial board of PLoS One Life Sciences, the Boards of Directors for the BBB and for Ozaukee County Economic Development Corp. Dr. Sem has over 20 years of experience in drug discovery and development, and has over 60 papers and 10 issued patents. He co-founded two drug discovery and development companies (Triad and AviMed) and one social venture (Bridge to Cures) before Retham. He served as VP for Biophysics at Triad Therapeutics, where he developed a platform technology for designing focused combinatorial libraries targeting kinases and dehydrogenases. He co-founded Triad Therapeutics based on technology he developed and patented, and he assisted in securing two rounds of venture financing, totaling over $40 million. Triad was voted one of the top 10 biotech startups in the U.S. in 2001 by Drug Discovery Today, and licensed kinase drug leads to Novartis for up to $60 million. Dr. Sem received his B.S. in Chemistry from UW-Milwaukee, his Ph.D. from UW-Madison in Biochemistry and his MBA and JD degrees from Marquette University.
Director, Research & Development
Curtis received his Bachelor's of Science in Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He has been employed at the Bloodcenter of Wisconsin since 2012 in the laboratory of Anand Padmanabhan MD PhD. Curtis is a co-inventor on the HITDx Technology (USPTO Patent #9,851,361) and author on numerous papers published in high impact journals on HIT diagnosis, treatment and pathogenesis. He is intimately familiar with the technical and scientific aspects of HITDx development.
Gian Paolo Visentin
Consultant, IVD Development &
Gian received his M.D. degree from the Federico II University, School of Medicine (Naples, Italy) and the board certification in Clinical Pathology from the Sapienza University, School of Medicine (Rome, Italy; board certified for the European Community). Gian has extensive professional experience in medical and clinical affairs, laboratory diagnostic medicine, transfusion medicine, thrombosis and hemostasis, biochemical research and translational science. One of his inventions on the use of PF4/Polyvinylsulfonate complexes for identification of HIT antibodies formed the basis of a very extensively used diagnostic assay for HIT testing (currently sold by Immucor, Inc.). Gian has been working in the IVD industry in a variety of important roles to advance diagnostic assays in a variety of settings. He has authored numerous scientific papers, is listed as an inventor on five patents, and has been an active member of review panels at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI). Gian’s international experience includes consultancies in Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Italy and Spain.
Dr. Coutts is the Principal of Alembic Biotech Consultants, LLC, a firm specializing in services to both established and start-up biotechnology companies and to venture capital firms with a focus on the life science industry. Dr. Coutts has over 37 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical/biotech industry employing both small molecule and biologic approaches to drug development, as well as extensive immunoassay experience in two diagnostic companies. Most recently, he was Vice President of R&D at Alere San Diego, part of a $2.4 B global company. Before that, he was CEO of Biocept Laboratories, a company that analyzes genetic content in circulating tumor cells that are captured in a microfluidic device. Prior to that, Coutts spent one year as a Director of Pharmaceutical Development at Cypress Biosciences, which was preceded by his role as a Co-Founder of Triad Therapeutics where he was a member of its Board of Directors, as well as its President and COO, from 1998 to the end of 2004. From 1987 to 1998, Dr. Coutts was Executive Vice President for Research and Development at La Jolla Pharmaceutical Company (LJP), a biopharmaceutical company which he co-founded. At La Jolla Pharmaceutical he was responsible for establishing that company’s B cell Tolerance Technology™ platform and was an inventor of Riquent™ (LJP 394), a drug that ultimately failed phase 3 trials well after he left the company. Coutts was Executive Director of Drug Discovery for one year at Purdue Frederick, now Purdue Pharma. Prior to that, Dr. Coutts was at Revlon Health Care Group in Tuckahoe New York, for 11 years. As Department Director of Immunobiology he played a major role in the submission of four INDs for anti-allergic drug candidates. Dr. Coutts received his B.S. in Chemistry, with highest honors, at San Diego State University and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry with Frank Westheimer at Harvard University. He trained in biophysics as a postdoctoral fellow with Nobel Laureate Manfred Eigen in Germany, and was later a postdoctoral fellow and an instructor in Biochemistry at Princeton University. Dr. Coutts holds an M.B.A., with honors, from New York University.
Mr. Tidey received his Bachelor of Science degree from Tufts University where he majored in Mathematics followed by a Master of Science degree in Industrial Relations from Loyola University in Chicago. Jim has worked for leading diagnostic/medical companies in the US in the transfusion medicine, tissue typing (HLA) and coagulation space for more than 40 years. Jim, his wife Leigh Ann and the Blood Center of Wisconsin Research Foundation acquired “Genetic Testing Institute (GTI)” more than 30 years ago and established the company in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Jim served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of GTI Diagnostics from December 1984 until he retired in December 2011 during which time he grew GTI Diagnostics from a total of five employees to over 100 talented individuals dedicated to the development, manufacturing and sale of specialty in vitro diagnostic assays for immunohematology, histocompatibility and hemostasis. In 2008 he oversaw the highly successful sale of GTI to a medium size Private Equity Firm and the subsequent acquisition by Gen-Probe in 2010.