Thomas Steckler

Thomas Steckler, MD, is Associate Director, Bioresearch Quality & Compliance, Preclinical Quality Risk Management and global Bioresearch Quality & Compliance Lead Animal Welfare, Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, Belgium. He studied Medicine at the Free University of Berlin, Germany and habilitated in Biological Psychology at the Heinrich-Heine University, Düsseldorf, Germany. Prior to joining the Bioresearch Quality & Compliance organization at Janssen he was a Senior Director in Neuroscience Drug Discovery at Janssen and a Senior Janssen Research Fellow for 15 years, a group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry, Munich, Germany, postdoctoral fellow at the MRC Neurochemical Pathology Unit, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, and MD student at Schering, Berlin, Germany. Dr. Steckler is the project leader of the Enhancing Quality in Preclinical Data (EQIPD) Innovate Medicines Initiative (IMI), a co-lead of the ECNP Preclinical Data Quality Network consortium and serves as an AAALAC ad-hoc specialist. He has co-authored more than 140 peer reviewed publications, has been a principal editor of the journal Psychopharmacology for several years, is co-editor of a number of books, and most recently co-edited a Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology on Good Research Practice in Non-Clinical Pharmacology and Biomedicine. He has a focus on the non-regulated Discovery space, with a passion for data integrity, research ethics and animal welfare.

Rita Balice-Gordon

Rita Balice-Gordon, Ph.D., is the CSO of Muna Therapeutics, a newly formed Neurology focused biotech company working on developing novel therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases. She is working with Anders Hinsby, Jakob Busch-Petersen, Joachim Vilstrup, Simon Glerup Pedersen and the team at Novo Ventures to transform cutting-edge science into impactful therapeutics for CNS diseases.

Dr. Balice_Gordon was the Global Head, Rare and Neurologic Diseases Research Therapeutic Area at Sanofi, Inc.  She lead groups of scientists based in Boston and Paris working on small molecules, antibodies and gene therapy as modalities for discovering and developing innovative and transformative therapeutics for patients with rare genetic disorders, Multiple Sclerosis and neurodegenerative diseases.  

Dr. Balice-Gordon was formerly Vice-President and Head of Circuits, Neurotransmitters and Signaling in Pfizer’s Neuroscience and Pain Research Unit, and was Head of the Worldwide Research and Development Postdoctoral Program there.  Prior to joining Pfizer, Dr. Balice-Gordon was Professor of Neuroscience and Chair of the Neuroscience Graduate Group in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, where she currently holds an appointment as Adjunct Professor.  

Dr. Balice-Gordon and her laboratory have studied the cell-cell signaling mechanisms underlying synapse formation and maintenance, the mechanisms underlying neuromuscular development and disease and the pathophysiologic mechanisms underlying autoimmune CNS disorders that affect cognition and behavior.  She was continuously funded by the NIH for more than 30 years.  

Dr. Balice-Gordon has authored more than 100 scientific papers, has been the recipient of several awards and honors, has given hundreds of invited research talks around the world, has chaired or served on many NIH, national and international committees and study sections, has served on the editorial board of several leading scientific journals, and has served on the scientific advisory boards of several startups/biotechs.  Dr. Balice-Gordon is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  

Phil Skolnick

Dr. Skolnick is the Chief Scientific Officer at Opiant Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Prior to joining Opiant, he was the Director, Division of Therapeutics and Medical Consequences at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIH (2010-2017).  He served as Chief Scientific Officer (2001-2009) and President (2007-2009) of DOV Pharmaceutical, Inc.  Dr. Skolnick was a Lilly Research Fellow (Neuroscience) at Lilly Research Laboratories (1997-2000).  His 25 year career at the NIH intramural research program began with a postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Dr. John W. Daly and ended as Chief, Laboratory of Neuroscience (1986-1997).  Dr. Skolnick has received multiple honors and awards, including the A.E. Bennett Award in Biological Psychiatry, an Anna Monika Prize, the Experimental Therapeutics Prize from the American Society of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology. He has also twice been awarded the Doctor of Science, honoris causa.Dr. Skolnick has co‑authored more than 580 articles. The Institute of Scientific Information (ISI) has named him to the elite group of “Highly Cited” authors. 

C. Glenn Begley

M.B., B.S., Ph.D., F.R.A.C.P., F.R.C.P.A., F.R.C.Path., F.A.H.M.S.

Dr Begley is the inaugural CEO of BioCurate, a joint initiative of Monash and Melbourne Universities and created to provide commercial focus in the early phases of drug development.

He served as Chief Scientific Officer at Akriveia Therapeutics, California (2016-2027) and TetraLogic Pharmaceuticals, Pennsylvania (2012-2016).  From 2002-2012, he was Vice-President and Global Head of Hematology/Oncology Research at Amgen, responsible for building, directing and integrating Amgen’s 5 research sites.  There he highlighted the issue of research integrity and scientific reproducibility. Since then he has made multiple presentations on the subject of scientific integrity including to President Obama’s Science Council, the White House, US National Institutes of Health, US Academies of Science, US National Institute of Standards and Technology, the British Broadcasting Company, Wellcome Trust, Australian National Health and Medical Research Council, and numerous Universities, Research Institutes and companies.

Before Amgen he had over 20 years of clinical experience in medical oncology and hematology.  His personal research focused on regulation of hematopoietic cells and translational clinical trials.  His early studies, in Prof Donald Metcalf’s department first described human G-CSF, and in later clinical studies, performed in Professor Richard Fox’s Department at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, the group first demonstrated that G-CSF-“mobilized” blood stem cells hastened hematopoietic recovery, a finding that revolutionized bone-marrow transplantation.

His honors include being elected as the first Foreign Fellow to the American Society of Clinical Investigation in 2000, to the Association of American Physicians in 2008, and in 2014 to the Research “Hall of Fame” at his alma mater, the Royal Melbourne Hospital and to the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

Prof. Dr. Malcolm Macleod

Malcolm Macleod, BSc(Hons) MBChB PhD FRCP Ed, is Professor of Neurology and Translational Neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh, head of Neurology at Forth Valley Royal Hospital, and Honorary Principal Research Fellow, Florey Neurosciences Unit, Melbourne, Australia.  Prof. Macleod was a founding co-ordinator of the Collaborative Approach to Meta-Analysis and Review of Animal Data in Experimental Studies (CAMARADES), leader in advancing education about systematic reviews in animal research. Prof. Macleod is a member of the UK Home Office Animals in Science Committee.

Publication highlights:

Macleod MR, Lawson McLean A, Kyriakopoulou A, Serghiou S, de Wilde A, Sherratt N, Hirst T, Hemblade R, Bahor Z, Nunes-Fonseca C, Potluru A, Thomson A, Baginskitae J, Egan K, Vesterinen H, Currie GL, Churilov L, Howells DW, Sena ES (2015) Risk of Bias in Reports of In Vivo Research: A Focus for Improvement. PLoS Biol 13 (10): e1002273.

Macleod MR, Michie S, Roberts I, Dirnagl U, Chalmers I, Ioannidis JP, Al-Shahi Salman R, Chan AW, Glasziou P (2014) Biomedical research: increasing value, reducing waste. Lancet 383 (9912): 101-4.

Landis SC, Amara SG, Asadullah K, Austin CP, Blumenstein R, Bradley EW, Crystal RG, Darnell RB, Ferrante RJ, Fillit H, Finkelstein R, Fisher M, Gendelman HE, Golub RM, Goudreau JL, Gross RA, Gubitz AK, Hesterlee SE, Howells DW, Huguenard J, Kelner K, Koroshetz W, Krainc D, Lazic SE, Levine MS, Macleod MR, McCall JM, Moxley RT 3rd, Narasimhan K, Noble LJ, Perrin S, Porter JD, Steward O, Unger E, Utz U, Silberberg SD (2012) A call for transparent reporting to optimize the predictive value of preclinical research. Nature 490 (7419): 187-91.

Dr. Magali Haas

Magali Haas is CEO and President of Cohen Veterans Bioscience, a non-profit brain research organization based in Cambridge, MA. She previously served as founding Chief Science and Technology Officer for One Mind for Research.  Magali has over 15 years of pharmaceutical executive and clinical research experience, predominantly at Johnson & Johnson, where she assumed broad end-to-end development leadership roles. As an “intrapreneur” she established the first CNS Translational Medicine & Integrative Solutions departments, and co-founded the first Companion Diagnostics Center of Excellence as well as J&J’s Healthcare Innovation team. Magali earned her BS in bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania, an MS in biomedical engineering from Rutgers University, and her MD and PhD in neuroscience from Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Publication highlight:

Steckler T, Brose K, Haas M, Kas MJ, Koustova E, Bespalov A; ECNP Preclinical Data Forum Network (2015) The preclinical data forum network: A new ECNP initiative to improve data quality and robustness for (preclinical) neuroscience. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol 25 (10): 1803-7.