2017 Bay Area Biotechnology Symposium (BABS) Big Pharma and Big Biotech in the Bay Area

San Francisco


8:30am - 12:30pm

Open to the Bay Area scientific community and the public.
No pre-registration needed for conference.

8:45 A.M. – B. Joseph Guglielmo, Pharm. D., Dean, UCSF School of Pharmacy
Introductory remarks

9:00 A.M.
Aarif Khakoo, MD, MBA, Vice President Research, Cardiometabolic Disorders, and Site Head,
Amgen, San Francisco

“Utilizing human genetics to inform drug development in cardiovascular disease”

A cardiologist and physician-scientist, Aarif Khakoo is responsible for the discovery and advancement of Amgen’s Cardiometabolic Disorders pipeline including cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, bone disease, and chronic kidney disease. Aarif’s research organization is focused on leveraging findings from common and rare variant human genetics in an effort to increase the speed and success rate of drug development in complex cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Prior to Amgen, Aarif led an NIH-funded laboratory at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center focused on understanding the cellular mechanisms of cardiac toxicity due to novel, molecularly targeted anti-cancer therapeutics. Aarif continues to practice cardiovascular medicine on a consultative basis at the Palo Alto VA Medical Center as an Adjunct Associate Professor at Stanford University. He serves on the board of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group. Aarif received his MD and his MBA from Columbia University, and completed his internal medicine residency and a fellowship in cardiovascular medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

9:35 A.M.

Stephen J. Rossi, PharmD, Senior Director, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs, NGM Bio

“Clinical development of NGM282 – a novel variant of human FGF-19 – for the treatment of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis”

Stephen Rossi currently oversees the early and late stage clinical development for liver disease therapeutics at NGM Bio. He initially received his B.A. in Zoology from the University of California at Davis and Doctor of Pharmacy from University of California at San Francisco. This was followed by postdoctoral work at University of Nebraska Medical Center and University of Cincinnati focusing on immunotherapeutics in the liver transplant population. He subsequently held academic research and clinical positions with the Departments of Surgery at the University of Michigan and the Gastroenterology Division at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center. He has over 25 years of experience in clinical research and development of treatments and diagnostics for patients with liver disease during his academic career and at SangStat Medical, Roche Pharmaceuticals, Roche Molecular Sciences and Gilead Sciences prior to joining NGM Bio in 2013. His primary activities are now focused on developing novel biologic treatments for cholestatic liver diseases and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis.
10:10 A.M. Coffee Break

10:25 A.M.

Arvind Rajpal, PhD, Vice President, Protein Therapeutics at Biologics Discovery California, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Inc.

“The evolving role of protein engineering in Oncology”

Arvind Rajpal leads the Protein Therapeutics group at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) in Redwood City.  He has more than fifteen years of experience in antibody engineering and biochemistry.  He received his B.A. from Knox College in Chemistry and Computer Science, Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in Chemistry, and postdoctoral studies at Pfizer Inc. and University of California at Berkeley in Immunology.  Prior to BMS he led protein engineering group at Rinat-Pfizer where his group pioneered antibody repertoire analysis, developed site-specific conjugation, bispecific IgG, and pH-switch technologies highlighted in numerous publications.  Recently, Arvind joined BMS and is responsible for establishing a protein engineering to generate effective and differentiated clinical candidates in oncology.

11:00 A.M.

Hing L. Sham, PhD, Senior Vice President of Research, Global Blood Therapeutics

“GBT440, a novel anti-polymerization agent, for the treatment of Sickle Cell Disease”

Dr. Sham joined GBT in July 2014 as senior vice president, chemistry and was appointed senior vice president, research in May 2016. He has significant experience and accomplishments in pharmaceutical research and discovery. Prior to GBT, he served as head of research and development at iOneWorldHealth/ (PATH), a non-profit pharmaceutical development organization. Prior to that, he served as senior vice president of research and head of chemical sciences at Elan Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where he led the chemistry team in the discovery of two clinical candidates for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Before that, he worked at Abbott Laboratories Inc., where he and his team discovered and advanced 10 clinical candidates spanning cardiovascular disease, HIV, oncology and diabetes. His 24-year tenure at Abbott Laboratories culminated in his appointment as a distinguished research fellow in global pharmaceutical discovery. Dr. Sham is the co-inventor of Norvir® and the primary inventor of Kaletra®, Abbott Laboratories’ first- and second-generation HIV protease inhibitors approved for the treatment of HIV. Dr. Sham has published more than 180 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals and is a named inventor on 84 issued U.S. patents and numerous international patents. Dr. Sham was named National Inventor of the year in 1997; Hero of Chemistry by the American Chemical Society in 2003. Dr. Sham holds a Ph.D. in synthetic organic chemistry from the University of Hawaii and completed his post-doctoral training in the department of chemistry at Indiana University.

11:35 A.M.
Alan Northrup, PhD, Chemistry Site Lead, Merck, South San Francisco
“Discovery Chemistry at Merck”
Alan Northrup is currently Chemistry Site Lead for Merck’s new research facility in South San Francisco, CA.  Alan received an A.B. degree in chemistry, summa cum laude from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the California Institute of Technology.  Following his academic training, Alan joined Merck in 2004 as one of the founding members of the Boston site’s medicinal chemistry department.  During that time, Alan has made contributions to multiple development candidates in Oncology and Immunology and led early portfolios in Oncology, Immunology and Cardiometabolic areas.  He is an author or co-inventor of more than 50 peer-reviewed articles and patent applications.

12:15 P.M.
Sponsored by Bayer:
Lunch for Symposium Attendees

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Contact: JoAnne Williams
Contact Email:

Event Address:

UCSF Mission Bay
Genentech Hall, Auditorium
600 16th Street
San Francisco, CA 94158