The management team at AltheaDx has a proven record of success in clinical diagnostics. Meet our team.
François Ferré, Ph.D.
Chairman of the Board
Dr. Ferré is a co-founder of Althea Technologies, Inc, a San Diego company that provides services and technologies to streamline drug development. He has over twenty years of experience in cancer research and HIV clinical development. Dr. Ferré has held management positions at Cytometrics and The Immune Response Corporation. Dr. Ferré is a leader in gene quantification and biomarker development with over fifteen years of experience in the field. He has published several authoritative reviews on the topic of gene quantification, co-edited a bestseller book on PCR with Dr. Kary Mullis and Dr. Richard Gibbs, and edited a book on the topic of gene quantification. Dr. Ferré received his Ph.D. in Molecular Oncology from the Pasteur Institute in Lille, France and did his post-doctoral training at the University of California-San Diego. Dr. Ferré was the winner of the 2005 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Life Sciences category.
Jorge Garces, Ph.D.
President & Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Garces joins the AltheaDx team with extensive diagnostics experience, including most recently serving as SVP at GenMark Diagnostics. Prior to GenMark, he served as Chief Executive Officer and President of Enigma Diagnostics, Inc. Dr. Garces also served as Vice President and Site Operations Manager at Hologic, Inc., where he led the development and submission to FDA for approval of their Cystic Fibrosis and HPV products. Additionally, Dr. Garces held senior executive roles at Third Wave Technologies Inc. and earlier in his career held positions in major clinical diagnostic laboratories including Genzyme Genetics and Athena Diagnostics, Inc. Dr. Garces earned his doctorate in Cell and Molecular Biology from the City University of New York. He completed his post-doctoral training at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and received an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management.
Ann Kessler, Ph.D.
Dr. Kessler has 27 years of full-time pharmaceutical industry experience in the United States and Europe with Hoffmann – La Roche, where she served as Director of International Project Management and was responsible for global project development decisions. She also held previous positions as Director of the Division of Exploratory Research, the Departments of Pharmacology and Chemotherapy and the Department of Biochemical Nutrition. Her managerial responsibilities in Research and Development concerned the discovery and development of novel drugs for global registration and launch in a number of therapeutic areas, including nervous system disorders. She holds 16 patents concerning pharmacological approaches to diseases.
Wei Li, Ph.D.
Prior to joining WuXi Healthcare Ventures, Dr. Li focused his effort on healthcare and life science investment opportunities at Fidelity Biosciences, Fidelity Growth Partner Asia, and Baird Venture Partners. He also led drug discovery projects and technology licensing due diligence at Vertex Pharmaceuticals, a biotech company in Boston, MA. During his scientific career, Wei first-authored numerous scientific publications in journals including Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Journal of Biological Chemistry.
Wei received a B.S., with distinction, in Chemical Physics from University of Science and Technology of China, a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Mammalian Genetics from Harvard University, and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, where he was elected Beta Gamma Sigma, with a concentration in Finance, Accounting and Marketing.
Jason Liu, Ph.D., MBA
Dr. Liu is the Senior Vice President and head of Lab Testing Division at WuXi AppTec Inc, a global health care/CRO/biotech company. Dr. Liu is a seasoned executive with over 19 years of experience in clinical diagnostic, medical device, and life science industry. He has rich experience and proven track record on general business management, sales and marketing, business and organization development. Prior to joining WuXi, he worked at Hologic-Gen Probe, Life Technologies-AppliedBiosystems, and Bio-Rad in a variety of roles, including business unit general manager at US headquarter, global business portfolio leader, and regional GM for APAC and China.
Dr. Liu received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology & Human Genetics from Loma Linda University, MBA from Pepperdine University, and BA in Biochemistry from Shandong University.
David Nikodem, Ph.D.
As a senior representative of Ally Bridge Group (“ABG”), Dr. Nikodem plays an important role in ABG’s biopharmaceutical investments and serves on the boards of several of ABG’s U.S.-based biopharmaceutical companies. Dr. Nikodem has more than 13 years of experience in capital markets and financial analysis of biotechnology and healthcare companies. Prior to joining ABG in 2013, Dr. Nikodem served as Portfolio Manager at Exane Asset Management where he managed a global healthcare fund. He also managed a U.S.-focused healthcare fund as a Director at BNP Paribas in New York on the long/short proprietary trading desk. During his seven years as a Portfolio Manager in the healthcare industry, Dr. Nikodem covered a diversified range of healthcare subsectors for public equities and was involved with numerous private deals. Dr. Nikodem began his Wall Street career as a biotechnology analyst at Orbitex Asset Management in 2001, followed by analyst roles at Acacia Research Investment Corporation and Blumberg Capital Management.
From 1991 to 1999, Dr. Nikodem conducted basic science research at the National Institutes of Health as well as at Georgetown University, where he earned his Ph.D. in molecular biology. From 1999 to 2001, Dr. Nikodem was a patent examiner at the United States Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, D.C. Dr. Nikodem holds undergraduate degrees in Chemistry and English Language and Literature from the University of Virginia.
Yuh-geng Tsay, Ph.D.
Dr. Tsay has extensive experience and track record in building successful businesses that were eventually acquired or went public. Prior to his retirement in 2010 from Thermo Fisher Scientific, Dr. Tsay served as Senior Vice President and Group President of the company’s Specialty Diagnostic business with worldwide annual revenue of US $2 billion. He was the Group President of Immunodiagnostics of Fisher Scientific (NYSE: FSH) prior to Fisher’s merger with Thermo Electron in 2006. From 2000 to 2004 he served as Group President of Immunodiagnostic of Apogent, which was acquired by Fisher in 2000. While working for these public companies, he was instrumental in engineering the acquisition of multiple diagnostics companies including Phadia, One Lambda, BRAHMS, Microgenics, Seradyne, Duke Scientifics and Applied Biotech Inc. etc. He was the founder of Diagnostics Reagents Inc., which was acquired by Apogent in 1998. In 1987, he cofounded Yellowstone Diagnostics, which merged with another diagnostic company and became Adeza Biomedical.
Prior to Adeza, he was involved with the establishment and management of several biotech startups and held executive positions with these companies. Dr. Tsay received his B.S. in chemistry from the National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan, his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of Rochester. He received the Distinguished Scholar Award from the University of Rochester (2014), and the Distinguished Alumni Awards from Cheng Kung University (2012). Currently, Dr. Tsay serves as a board member of PEG Bioscience, an early stage pharma company with special emphasis on biosimilar drugs development. He is a Scientific Advisor of Personal Genomics that focused on the development of next generation sequencing (NGC) technology as well as a Limited Partner of Vivo PANDA Fund. He also serves as Executive Chairman of PharmaLegacy, a CRO company located in Shanghai.