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Scientific Advisory Board

Ralph Bradshaw, PhD
Chairman of Scientific Advisory Board


Ralph A. Bradshaw earned degrees in chemistry and biochemistry from Colby College (1962) and Duke University (1966), respectively, and received additional research training at Indiana University and the University of Washington. He served on the faculties of Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis (1969-82) and the Irvine (1982-2006) and San Francisco (2006-2015) campuses of the University of California. He is presently professor in the Dept of Pharmacology, UC San Diego. From 1982 to 1993, he was chair of the Dept. of Biological Chemistry at UCI. He has served as president of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) (1995-96), treasurer of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (1991-97) and was the founding president of the Protein Society (1986-87).  He has also been Editor-in-Chief/Associate Editor of several journals (TIBS, Protein Science and the Journal of Biological Chemistry) and in 2000, he founded Molecular and Cellular Proteomics, serving as the Editor until 2013.   Among other honors, he received the Passano Foundation Young Scientist Award (1976), the gold medal of the Italian National Research Council (CNR) (1986), the Australian Society of Medical Research Gold Medal (1999) and the HUPO Distinguished Accomplishment in Proteomics Award (2016). He has founded four biotechnology companies (Cortex, EB Technologies, Cavtherx and Trefoil Therapeutics). His research interests have centered on the structure and function of proteins, with much of it focused on polypeptide growth factors, their receptors and the intracellular signals they induce.

Ken Thomas, PhD

Dr. Thomas received his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Delaware and Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Duke University for his work in David Richardson’s laboratory on the crystal structure of superoxide dismutase.  He subsequently did postdoctoral research in the laboratories of Chris Anfinsen at the National Institutes of Health and Ralph Bradshaw at Washington University in St. Louis, where he identified and partially purified FGF-1 (aFGF).  On moving to the Merck Research Laboratories Ken established a lab in which he completed the purification of bovine and human FGF-1, determined their amino acid sequences, established their activities both on cultured cells and in animals, collaborated with Dr. Blaber to elucidate the crystal structure of human FGF-1, and initiated a development program culminating in successful proof-of-principle Phase I and II clinical trials for dermal tissue regeneration to promote cutaneous healing.  During his 25 years at Merck, he initiated, built and directed the Growth Factor Research Department and program, leading to six regenerative medicine protein and anti-angiogenic small molecule development candidates, and subsequently worked with and consulted for several pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.  Ken has published extensively in the field of growth factors and their receptors, served on The Journal of Biological Chemistry editorial board, co-organized national and international meetings on growth factors, angiogenesis, protein kinases and signal transduction, and has over 40 issued patents in the US and other major jurisdictions.

Jeffrey M. Davidson, PhD
Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Dr. Davidson has published over 175 original articles and more than 40 book chapters and reviews on connective tissue biochemistry and the interplay of growth factors in wound healing. In addition to substantial support from industry, his federally funded research, which has been continuous since 1981, includes investigation of the role of growth factors in age- and diabetes related healing defects, gene therapy of wounds, biomaterial-tissue interactions, and wound proteomics. Jeff served as chair of the NIH Pathobiochemistry Study Section and he continues to be an ad hoc reviewer for NIAMS and NIBIB. He is a past president of the Wound Healing Society (WHS) and immediate past president of the American Society for Matrix Biology (ASMB). He is currently on the editorial boards of the Journal of Investigative Dermatology (Associate Editor), Wounds, Matrix Biology, Wound Repair and Regeneration (Section Editor), the Wound Healing Yearbook (Section Editor), and the International Wound Journal. He continues to serve as a member of program committees for the national meetings of the ASMB, the WHS, the Symposium on Advanced Wound Care and the Gordon Research Conference on Tissue Repair and Regeneration, which he founded. He has chaired or co-chaired the Gordon Research Conference on Elastic Tissue, a Keystone Conference on the wound healing, and the annual meeting of the ASMB. He has served on numerous government advisory panels, and has had an extensive series of scientific collaborations and consultancies with the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors for over 25 years. Dr. Davidson received his BS from Tufts (1963), an MS (1969) and a PhD(1975) from Stanford, and postdoctoral training at the University of Washington with Paul Bornstein (1973-78). His previous professional positions were at the NHLBI with Ronald G Crystal (1978-81) and the University of Utah (1981-85), and he is currently Professor of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and a tenured Senior Research Career Scientist at the VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System, Nashville Campus. Areas of expertise: animal models of tissue repair, gene therapy and functional genomics, molecular and cellular biology of connective tissue; wound healing.

David Ornitz, MD, PhD
Alumni Endowed Professor
Department of Developmental Biology
Washington University School of Medicine


David M. Ornitz is Alumni Endowed Professor in the Department of Developmental Biology at Washington University School of Medicine. His research uses molecular, genetic and biochemical approaches to study the regulation of cell growth, development and response to injury, in the mouse. Current studies are examining FGFs, FGF receptors and a variety of other interacting signaling pathways (hedgehog, Wnt, BMP, TGFβ, VEGF) in the mouse embryo and in adult mice, with a focus on inner ear, skeletal, cardiovascular and pulmonary development and physiology. Using knockout and conditional knockout technology the Ornitz laboratory has constructed FGF and FGF receptor mutants with defects in these and other organ systems. Mutant mice are being studied as genetic and developmental model systems for mesodermal and epithelial patterning, organogenesis, tissue repair, and cancer.        

Sabine Werner, PhD
Professor of Cell Biology
ETH Zurich

Dr. Werner has been Professor of Cell Biology at the ETH Zurich since February 1999.  She is from Reutlingen, Germany, and she studied Biochemistry at the Universities of Tubingen and Munich. In 1989 she earned her Ph.D. at the University of Munich, after having completed her dissertation at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried in the department of Prof. Peter Hans Hofschneider. After a short postdoctoral period at the same institute, she moved to the University of California San Francisco, where she started to work on the molecular mechanisms of growth factor action and tissue repair as a postdoctoral scientist in the laboratory of Prof. Lewis T. Williams. From 1993-1999 she was a group leader at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried, Germany. In 1996 she obtained a Hermann-and-Lilly Schilling professorship of Medical Research at the same institute and from 1995-1999 she was also Associate Professor of Biochemistry at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich.

Russ Middaugh, PhD
Distinguished Professor
School of Pharmacy
Kansas University

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