Scientific Advisory Board

Onxeo established its Scientific Advisory Board with international experts in cellular biology, oncology and DNA Damage Response in 2017.

Professor Tomas Lindahl MD, FRS, FMedSci, a joint recipient of the 2015 Nobel Prize in chemistry for his mechanistic studies of DNA repair, serves as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board.

Scientific evidence has shown that modulating DNA repair activity offers an opportunity to change the course of a disease, notably in cancers. AsiDNA™ has a new and unique mechanism of action with the potential to bypass cancer cells resistance to treatment while sparing healthy cells.

 

Scientific Advisory Board Chair & Members

Tomas Lindahl, (Chair) MD, FRS, FMedSci, (Fellow of the Royal Society, Fellow of the United Kingdom Academy of Medical Science) is a Swedish-born British scientist, recognized as one of the founders of the DNA repair field. His achievements include being the first to isolate DNA ligase enzymes in mammalian cells and discover the suicidal DNA methyltransferase. In 2015, he was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Paul L. Modrich, Ph.D., and Aziz Sancar M.D., Ph.D., for mechanistic studies of DNA repair.

Professor Lindahl is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the Swedish National Academy of Sciences, and EMBO.   He was also awarded the Royal Society's Royal Medal in 2007, the INSERM Prix Etranger in 2009, and the Copley Medal in 2010. He was the first director of Cancer Research UK-funded labs at Clare Hall in London when it opened in 1986, and served as its director for over 20 years. Professor Lindahl is currently Emeritus Professor at the Francis Crick Institute in London, as Clare Hall became part of the Institute in 2015. His distinguished career also includes positions at Rockefeller University, Princeton University, Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, and the University of Gothenburg. He is currently the Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board Committee of IFOM, (Molecular Oncology Institute) in Milan.

Professor Lindahl’s work has profoundly transformed cancer research. Newer treatments, such as PARP inhibitors, now target the weakness in cancer cells based on faults in their DNA repair abilities. These new treatments, as well as promising candidates, such as Onxeo’s AsiDNA™ DNA break repair inhibitor, wouldn’t exist without the fundamental knowledge developed from Professor Lindahl’s research.


Marie Dutreix, Ph.D., is Director of Research at the Centre for National Research in Science (CNRS) and the co-founder of DNA Therapeutics, the company acquired by Onxeo in 2016. She is an expert in DNA repair & genetic instability, cancer biology and radiobiology, and the inventor of the new siDNA strategy (signal interfering DNA) to inhibit DNA repair, the basis for AsiDNA™. Throughout her career at the Research Department of the Institut Curie, Dr. Dutreix has worked on developing innovative approaches to treat tumors that are resistant to conventional cancer treatments. Before joining the Institut Curie in Paris, she spent three years in the Department of Human Genetics at Yale University with Professor Charles Radding, working on genetics and biochemistry of
DNA recombination.

Dr. Dutreix has published over 96 articles in international peer-reviewed journals and has been awarded a number of highly distinguished prizes in science and entrepreneurship. She is a member of several scientific boards (Oxford University, Aviesan Therapeutic Innovation and European Synchrotron Research Facility) and the President of the French Cancer Society. Based on her outstanding accomplishments, Dr. Dutreix was awarded the National Order of Merit in 2013, and is a Knight of the National Legion of Honor since 2017.


Penny Jeggo, Ph.D., is a Professorial Fellow at the Genome Damage and Stability Centre (GDSC) of the School of Life Sciences at the University of Sussex in Brighton, England. Dr. Jeggo has spent a significant number of years studying the response to DNA double strand breaks (DSBs), including pathways of DSB repair, the signaling response to DSBs and, more recently, the interplay between the repair pathways and the signaling response. She has identified two components of the DNA-dependent protein kinase (DNA-PK) enzyme as being important in DNA non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), a pathway by which mammalian cells repair themselves. This discovery was a major breakthrough in understanding the double strand break repair pathway in mammals.

Dr. Jeggo is also an Editor for the scientific journal, DNA Repair, as well as for the International Journal of Radiation Biology, and Nucleic Acids Research. She was Chair and today a committee member of the UK Association for Radiation Research as well as secretary-treasurer of the International association of radiation research. Dr. Jeggo was a member of a number of organizations, including the Cancer Research UK scientific funding committee.


Yves Pommier, M.D., Ph.D., has been with the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) since 1981. He is the Chief of the Developmental Therapeutics Branch and Laboratory of Molecular Pharmacology of the NIH since 1981. Dr. Pommier is co-Chair of the Discovery Committee of the NCI Experimental Therapeutics Program (NExT), and a member of the NCI Drug Development Collaborative (DDC). He is also an Honorary Professor of the Shanghai Institute Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Dr. Pommier received a Federal Technology Transfer Award for discovering DNA topoisomerase, HIV-1 integrase and cell cycle checkpoint inhibitors, as well as a NIH Merit Award for his role in elucidating the function of topoisomerases as targets for anticancer drugs.

Today, three of the drugs he discovered are in clinical development. Dr. Pommier received the "Paul Ehrlich lecture award" from the French Society of Therapeutic Chemistry in 2005 based on his discovery of the Interfacial inhibition concept.  He is the author of over 600 publications and holds over 30 patents. He is a Senior Editor for the Therapeutics, Targets, and Chemical Biology section of Cancer Research, and the founding organizer of the "International Conferences on Retroviral Integrase: Molecular Biology and Pharmacology". Dr. Pommier is Chair of the 2004-2005 Gordon conferences on the Molecular Therapeutics of Cancer and was also appointed for the 2016 and 2018 Gordon conferences on DNA Topoisomerases in Biology & Medicine. He serves on the External Advisory Boards of the European Institute of Chemical Biology (IECB) and on two US multi institution teams (Targeting APOBEC mutagenesis in breast cancer, and Understanding DNA repair alterations in prostate cancer).


Robert Bristow, M.D., PhD, FRCPC (Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada), was a Clinician-Scientist and Professor of the Departments of Radiation Oncology and Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto and a Senior Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. His research interests are focused on tumor hypoxia, DNA damage signaling and DNA repair in tumors, and the genomics of prostate cancer progression and cancer treatment response. Dr. Bristow is particularly interested in novel clinical trials that intensify cancer therapy to prostate cancer patients whose tumors harbor aggressive genetic changes and hypoxic sub-regions.

He is a member of multiple scientific advisory boards and committees, including Prostate Cancer Canada, the Prostate Cancer Foundation (US), the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute, the MOVEMBER Foundation, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) and the American Society for Therapeutic Radiation Oncology (ASTRO). Dr. Bristow has published 250 scientific papers and book chapters. He was twice a recipient of the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) award, and became an ESTRO Honorary Fellow in 2011. In August 2017, he was appointed by The University of Manchester to lead its cancer research strategy as the new Director of the Manchester Cancer Research Centre (MCRC).


Sebastian Amigorena, Ph.D., began his career at the Inserm AVENIR group in 1995 after completing a 3-year post-doc at Yale University. He heads the Immunology Department (INSERM U932, “Cancer Immunity”) at the Institut Curie. His primary scientific interests overlap immunology and cell biology. Dr. Amigorena is an expert in antigen presentation and cross presentation in dendritic cells. He analyzed the endocytic pathway of dendritic cells and described several unique specializations of their phagocytic pathway, and has also made significant contributions to the analysis of cytotoxic T cells dynamics in vivo, during the initiation of immune responses in lymph nodes and during the invasion and rejection of solid tumors.

Dr. Amigorena is a member of the French Academy of Science and EMBO. He was awarded several national and international awards. He has published over 200 articles that are cited over 20,000 times in the literature.


Josef Jiricny, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus at the Institute of Biochemistry of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich. He has spent most of his career studying the biochemistry and biology of human DNA mismatch repair, which is linked to a predisposition to colon cancer and other organ cancers. Dr. Jiricny currently investigates the link between MMR malfunction and Fanconi anaemia, as well as the role of DNA repair in active DNA demethylation. Dr Jiricny completed two post-docs, one at King’s College, London, on the development of novel protecting groups for DNA synthesis, and the second at Imperial Cancer Research Fund Laboratories, London, on the mechanisms of DNA repair.

He has published over 170 peer-reviewed publications, as well as a number of editorials and reviews that have appeared in renowned scientific journals, including Nature, Science, Cell, Molecular Cell, PNAS, Genes and Development. Dr. Jiricny is a member of the editorial board of the EMBO Journal, EMBO Reports and Chemistry and Biology since 1996.