Global Speakers

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Dr Liu Jian Jun

Deputy Executive Director & Senior Group Leader, Human Genetics

Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS)

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A/Prof Sonia Maria Davila Dominguez

Principal Investigator and Admin Lead, Institute of Precision Medicine (PRISM)

SingHealth Duke-NUS

Sonia Davila completed her undergraduate and graduate studies in Spain. The theme of her PhD thesis was “Molecular Genetics of inherited cystic kidney diseases”. Using a combination of linkage approaches and Sanger sequencing she identified new mutations in genes causing Autosomal dominant polycystic disease present only in Spanish families. Upon graduation she moved to Yale University (2001), to work with Prof Stephan Somlo on a subset of families diagnosed with a cystic disease affecting the liver. During those years she participated actively on the identification of two human genes causing Polycystic Liver Disease (PLD).

In 2004 she joined the Genome Institute of Singapore as a postdoctoral fellow on nephrogenomics, She was promoted to Research Scientist on 2007 and to Principal Investigator on 2010. Her work focused on human genetic susceptibility to infectious diseases. During that time she published several reports on new genetic variants associated to genetic susceptibility to meningococcal disease, Kawasaki disease, pulmonary tuberculosis and Dengue. Over the last two years she’s been also working on rare disorders, using NGS approaches to identify mutations in unique patients.

Her current work at SingHealth Duke-NUS Institute of Precision Medicine (PRISM) aims to implement Precision Medicine in a clinical setting. Sonia is an Adjunct Associate Professor at Duke-NUS and an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at Imperial College London.

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Dr Allen Lai

Sr VP & Regional MD

ACT Genomics

Dr. Allen Lai is now the senior vice president of ACT Genomics Singapore, strategizing corporate development, planning and execution of cancer genomics clinical & research projects in Southeast Asia. Allen has been frequently invited to speak on the topic of precision medicine in regional high level conferences such as Financial Times Healthcare Summit, International Conference in Cancer Control. He holds several high key profile roles as Advisor Board of ISPOR (International Society for Pharmacoecnomics and Outcomes Research) Asia Consortium, former President of ISPOR Singapore and concurrently Senior Consultant, Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Taiwan. He received his Ph.D. and MPA, from Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, M.Sc. (Preventive Medicine) from National Taiwan University and M.D. from Chung Shan Medical Dental University, Taiwan. He was the principal consultant at IMS Health Asia, and the director of Institute of Health Economics & Management and the academic director of MSc Management of Health Industries in ESSEC Business School.

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Dr Bertil Lindmark

Chief Medical Officer

ASLAN Pharmaceutical

Dr  Bertil  Lindmark  is  Chief  Medical  Officer   of ASLAN   Pharmaceuticals. In his most recent position as Executive Director of Research and Development and Member of the Board of Directors at Almirall, a European pharmaceutical company with global reach, he led the global R&D team of more than 500 R&D staff across three sites, focusing on respiratory, gastrointestinal, dermatology and neuroscience. He  secured  EU and  US approval of several important new drugs, including Eklira/Tudorza, Constella and  Eklira/formoterol, and was instrumental in the USD$2bn sale of Almirall’s respiratory franchise to AstraZeneca.

Prior to Almirall, Bertil was VP at AstraZeneca, leading global clinical development in Respiratory  and Inflammation, notably securing the global approval  of Symbicort Turbuhaler. He also served as VP and Head of Clinical Development at AstraZeneca Japan R&D leading 170 staff. During his career, Bertil has been responsible for the global approval of 10 drugs, with sales exceeding USD$4bn across three compounds into man.

Bertil holds a MD degree and PhD in Molecular Epidemiology from the University of Lund, and specialist qualification in Internal Medicine and in Gastroenterology.

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Prof Pierce Chow

Senior Consultant Surgeon

National Cancer Centre Singapore

Pierce Chow is an academic surgeon and Professor at the Duke-NUS Medical School. He is concurrently Senior Consultant Surgeon at the National Cancer Centre Singapore and the Singapore General Hospital, NMRC Senior Clinician Scientist and Adjunct Faculty at the Genome Institute of Singapore. He trained in Liver Transplantation with Professor Russell Strong in Australia. In 1998, he co-founded the Asia-Pacific Hepatocellular Carcinoma (AHCC) Trials Group and has been the protocol chair of 5 multi-centre clinical trials that have involved more than 30 centres in 14 countries. He was conferred the NMRC National Outstanding Clinician Scientist Award for improving clinical outcomes with his research on Liver Cancer in 2012.

Prof Chow was awarded him the NMRC grant for the Translational and Clinical Research (TCR) Flagship Programme in Liver Cancer in 2016.  Building on positive results of earlier genetic and immunology studies in surgically resected HCC, Prof Chow now leads a multi-national study on how genomic heterogeneity and the immune micro-environment in HCC impact clinical outcomes. The Programme will identify clonally dominant drivers, bring precision medicine to individuals with HCC and initiate new multi-national clinical studies across the Asia Pacific to advance treatment strategies for HCC.

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Dr Vincenzo Teneggi

Senior Medical Director, D3

A*STAR

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Vikash Sarda

Associate Finance Director

Johnson & Johnson, Asia Pacific

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Dr Pauline Ng

Consultant

POLARIS@GIS, Asia Genomics & NovogeneAIT

Pauline Ng is a seasoned pioneer in precision medicine with 15 years of experience and over 12,000 citations for her publications. With distinguished achievements in research, industry, and clinical settings, her breadth and depth is unparalleled. Her research accomplishments include characterizing the first personal human genome as an Assistant Professor at the J. Craig Venter Institute. She published a critical assessment of 23andMe’s direct-to-consumer personalized genetic test in Nature, as well as an article comparing next-generation sequencing technologies which was one of the year’s most-viewed articles in Genome Biology. Dr. Ng left her mark on industry during her tenure at Illumina, where she designed the content of the HumanHap BeadChips. Thanks to her superior design and on-time delivery, the product outperformed the competition and now accounts for the majority of genome-wide association studies. Dr. Ng also shaped the clinical landscape of Southeast Asia as a Group Leader at the Genome Institute of Singapore and the CIO of the POLARIS program. POLARIS was the first laboratory in Southeast Asia to be clinically certified for next-generation sequencing assays.

Her research interests include disease mutations, health trends in social media, and promoting open access to scientific literature. Dr. Ng received her PhD from the University of Washington. Her PhD thesis was the SIFT algorithm, which has been adopted by more than 100 pharma and biotech companies and is a staple algorithm for genetic disease. Dr. Ng is currently consulting.

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Nardev Ramanathan

Assistant Head, Industrial Development Group

A*STAR

Nardev Ramanathan is currently an Assistant Head with the Industrial Development Group at A*STAR (Agency for Science, Technology and Research).  He graduated with a PhD in Clinical Biochemistry from the University of Cambridge under the A*STAR Overseas PhD scholarship, where his research was focussed on understanding the molecular mechanisms that lead to rare forms of lipodystrophy, a disease where afflicted patients are unable to make fat (adipose) tissue. He continued to look deeper into adipose tissue dysfunction using rodent models as a research fellow at the Institute of Medical Biology, Singapore. He then moved to Davos Life Science Pte Ltd. This was originally a start-up company established in 2006 which eventually became acquired and vertically integrated into Kuala Lumpur-Kepong (KLK) Berhad, a Malaysian multinational and public listed company, and here, he was the team lead, exploring the benefits of palm-derived natural compounds in ameliorating metabolic and cardiovascular morbidities. In his current role, Nardev works to foster public-private partnerships for value and job creation for the Singapore economy in the biomedical sciences.

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Sanjeev Kumar

Industry Manager, Healthcare Asia Pacific

Frost & Sullivan

Sanjeev Kumar is an Industry Manager with the Healthcare Practice at Frost & Sullivan, Asia Pacific and has over nine years of consulting and analytics expertise, including research in areas such as pharmaceutical industry overview, therapeutic area research and diagnostic market research. His consulting expertise covers market intelligence, competitor analysis, market entry and distribution strategy.

He is sought after for his technical expertise base covering the key healthcare sectors from pharmaceuticals and biotechnology to clinical and molecular diagnostics matched by a strong background in statistical expertise and business intelligence. In addition, he has developed custom research in healthcare areas such as Clinical Trials, CRO CMO, Therapeutic Area research, Regenerative Medicine and Clinical Diagnostics.

Key projects he has worked on include Analysis of the Global & APAC Clinical trials and CRO Industry, Global CMO, Biologics Outsourcing market, Generics and Biosimilars and Immunochemistry Market. Research on therapeutic area such as Oncology, Diabetes and neurology.

He holds a Master of Business (Marketing) and a Bachelor of Pharmacy.

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Dr Owen Schaefer

Research Assistant Professor, Centre for Biomedical Ethics

Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS

Owen Schaefer is a Research Assistant Professor at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics, National University of Singapore. He received his DPhil in Philosophy from Oxford University, and has completed fellowships at the National Institutes of Health’s Department of Bioethics and the Oxford Centre for Neuroethics. His primary interests lie on the ethics of developing novel biomedical technologies.  He has written on ethical issues related to topics such as human subjects research, gene testing and editing, IVF (including mitochondrial replacement), and human enhancement.  He is also currently serving as a Global Future Councils Fellow for the Council on the Future of Technology, Values and Policy, an initiative of the World Economic Forum.

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Dr Tamra Maree Lysaght

Assistant Professor, Centre for Biomedical Ethics

Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, NUS

My research interests lie broadly around the sociopolitical, ethical and regulatory issues surrounding stem cell innovation, regenerative medicines, precision medicine, genomics and reproductive technologies. I have expertise in empirical bioethics and experience in using both qualitative and quantitative research methods to inform normative questions pertaining to emergent biotechnologies and the biomedical sciences. I have worked on policy issues with the Committee for Ethics, Law and Society of the Human Genome Organisation, the Technical Working Group on Ethics at the World Health Organization, the Singapore Ministry of Health and Bioethics Advisory Committee. I am currently an Assistant Professor and Phase Director of the Health Ethics, Law and Professionalism (HeLP) Programme at the Centre for Biomedical Ethics, National University of Singapore. I hold multiple grants on projects examining the ethics and regulation of innovative stem cell-based therapies, and have research interests in governance issues surrounding the return of incidental findings and data sharing in precision medicine.

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Dr Ryanne Wu

Assistant Professor, Health Services & Systems Research Programme

Duke-NUS Medical School

Dr. R. Ryanne Wu is an Internal Medicine physician and Health Services researcher with a focus on Implementation Science methodologies.

She holds joint appointments as Assistant Professor in the Signature Program in Health Services and Systems Research at Duke-NUS Medical School and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Duke University in the United States.  Dr. Wu completed her medical degree at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, residency at Georgetown University, and fellowship in Internal Medicine and Health Services research at Duke University.  Dr. Wu’s main research interest is risk stratification and risk counselling within medical care to improve tailoring of prevention, screening, and treatment strategies to the individual patient.  She is a member of the Center for Applied Genomics and Precision Medicine at Duke University and the Center for Precision Medicine (PRISM) at Duke-NUS Medical School.  She has been involved in the development and implementation of a family health history-based risk stratification tool, MeTree, in healthcare systems across the United States.  She is currently evaluating the implementation of MeTree within the Singapore and exploring the intersection between family health history and genomic data.

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Dr Khoo Kian Hoe

Patent Attorney

Davies Collison Cave

Kian Hoe is a Patent Attorney at Davies Collison Cave Asia Pte Ltd. He specializes in the preparation and prosecution of patent applications in the areas of life sciences, molecular biology, biotechnology, stem cell technology and protein engineering. Kian Hoe graduated from the Imperial College London in Biochemistry and completed his postgraduate studies at the University of Cambridge with a PhD in Protein Engineering. He was funded by the National Science (BS-PhD) Scholarship from the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) for his studies. Kian Hoe was also a research fellow at the p53lab, A*STAR, where he worked on understanding the mechanisms of drug–induced apoptosis in acute myeloid leukaemia. He was also concurrently involved in a number of antibody development projects.

Kian Hoe is a registered Singapore Patent Attorney and is a member of the Association of Singapore Patent Attorneys (ASPA). He is also an adjunct lecturer at the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine.

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Dr Saumya Shekhar Jamuar

PRISM Clinical Lead; Consultant, Dept of Paediatrics, Genetics Services

KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital Medicine, NUS

Dr Saumya Jamuar is a Consultant in the Genetics Service at KKH and co-founder of Global Gene Corp, a genomics data company, and serves as the Clinical Lead of the Institute of Precision Medicine, Duke-NUS and Singapore Childhood Undiagnosed Disease Programme. He completed his Genetics Fellowship at the Harvard Medical School Genetics Training Program and worked as a post-doctoral fellow in Christopher A Walsh lab in Harvard Medical School from January 2012- December 2013. He is actively involved in research and has presented at both local and international meetings. His research areas include genetic disorders, dysmorphology, skeletal dysplasia, and neurodevelopmental genetics. He was awarded the Young Investigator Award at the American Epilepsy Society meeting and is the recipient of the 2015 Singhealth Outstanding Young Researcher Award. Dr Saumya Jamuar is a Consultant in the Genetics Service at KKH and co-founder of Global Gene Corp, a genomics data company, and serves as the Clinical Lead of the Institute of Precision Medicine, Duke-NUS and Singapore Childhood Undiagnosed Disease Programme. He completed his Genetics Fellowship at the Harvard Medical School Genetics Training Program and worked as a post-doctoral fellow in Christopher A Walsh lab in Harvard Medical School from January 2012- December 2013. He is actively involved in research and has presented at both local and international meetings. His research areas include genetic disorders, dysmorphology, skeletal dysplasia, and neurodevelopmental genetics. He was awarded the Young Investigator Award at the American Epilepsy Society meeting and is the recipient of the 2015 Singhealth Outstanding Young Researcher Award.

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John Yoon

Director - Asia Pacific

Joint Commission International (JCI)

John Yoon is currently serving as Director Asia Pacific for Joint Commission International. In this capacity, he is responsible for development of relationships between JCI and Asia-Pacific health care organizations, governments and industry clients in their efforts to reduce risk and improve health outcomes.

Prior to this, John served as Director of Solutions and Philips Capital at Philips Healthcare Asia Pacific office in Singapore managing large scale hospital projects, capital asset financing and turnkey equipment solutions to healthcare organizations.

Previously, he was hospital administrator and worked as General Manager at Mubadala Development Company in Abu Dhabi managing a multi-specialty orthopedic and rehabilitation hospital. He also served as Director of International Business at a large privately-owned health system in Korea specializing in spine and orthopedics disease management where he led the organization’s first JCI accreditation.

He graduated with degree in business administration from Korea University in Korea and holds MBA from International Institute for Management Development (IMD) Business School in Switzerland. He serves as key opinion leader and consultant for Korea Ministry of Health and Welfare.

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Dr Folefac Aminkeng

Associate Head, Pharmacogenomics and Personalised Medicine Programme; Assistant Principal Investigator, TLGM

A*STAR

Dr. Folefac Aminkeng is an Assistant Principal Investigator and the Associate Head of the Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine Program at A*STAR. His research focuses on the “Pharrmacogenomics of Adverse Drug Reactions”. He trained at the University of British Columbia in Pharmacogenomics and Precision Medicine and was part of the Canadian Pharmacogenomics Network for Drug Safety, an active surveillance and Pharmacogenomics Consortium for studying adverse drug reactions in the Canadian Health Care system. He has made significant contributions to the field of pharmacogenomics including the identification of a gene that is involved in cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure after cancer treatment (Aminkeng F et al, Nature Genetics. 2015 Sep; 47(9):1079-84.). He is the recipient of a number of fellowships including the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research and the British Columbia Children Hospital Research Institute Bertram Hoffmeister Postdoctoral Fellowships. He has also been recognized for a distinguish academic and scientific career through a number of career awards including the Canadian Society of Pharmacology and Therapeutics Boehringer Ingelheim Postdoctoral Award in Pharmacology, the British Columbia Children Hospital Research Institute award for outstanding achievement by a postdoctoral fellow, the Golden Helix Top Prize and the Canadian Society of Pharmacology and Therapeutics Publication Award. He currently serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Population Therapeutics and Clinical Pharmacology and is a member of the Canadian Society of Pharmacology and Therapeutics Scientific Program Committee.

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Dr Marie Loh

Assistant Principal Investigator - Integrative Omics Programme, Translational Laboratory in Genetic Medicine (TLGM)

A*STAR

Dr Marie Loh is the Principal Investigator of the Integrative Omics group at the Translational Laboratory in Genetic Medicine (TLGM), A*STAR and Research Assistant Professor at NUS. Her basic training was in Statistics and Bioinformatics, and she obtained her PhD in Pharmacogenetics before her postdoc at University of Oulu and Imperial College London. She has a specific interest in diseases and phenotypes exhibiting ethnic differences in risk and outcome such as cardiometabolic diseases, and the role of DNA methylation in accounting for these differences.

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Dr Michael D Winther

Associate Director: Office of Strategic Alliances & Knowledge Management

Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS), A*STAR