Peter G. Milner, MD, FACC
Peter is a co-founder and Executive Chairman of Armetheon, Inc. He has been CEO of Heart Metabolics Limited UK (now HMBL) since 2011 and was also CEO of Heart Metabolics Limited Ireland from 2014 to 2015. During this time, initially at the UK and then at the Irish company, he developed perhexiline maleate as an orphan drug treatment for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). He previously co-founded Optivia Biotechnology, ARYx Therapeutics, and CV Therapeutics. He is the co-inventor on 50 issued patents and has authored 28 original scientific articles in Science, Biochemistry, Circulation, Cancer, JCI, and JBC.
In 2007, Peter co-founded Optivia Biotechnology, a private company now recognized as a leader in the emerging field of transporter biology. He is also a co-founder and President & CEO of AshHill Pharmaceutical Investments, LLC. In 1997, Peter co-founded ARYx Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ARYX), where he served as CEO until 2005, and President from 2005 to 2010 with overall responsibility for R&D. In 1990, he co-founded CV Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CVTX), where as a member of senior management from 1992-1996, he in-licensed and co-invented several successful pharmaceuticals. CV Therapeutics was acquired by Gilead for $1.5B in cash in 2009.
In 2005, Peter was instrumental in restructuring his family pharmaceutical company ML Laboratories (MLB.LSE) and its subsequent merger to form Vectura (VEC.LSE), a profitable company and one of the world’s leading makers of inhaled products.
Prior to 1992, Peter was an assistant professor of medicine at Washington University in St. Louis. His research led to the discovery of pleiotrophin (PTN), a novel growth factor that regulates stem cell differentiation, organ development, and the epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT). He was educated at the University of Liverpool, receiving his medical degree in 1980, before completing his postgraduate training at Johns Hopkins Hospital, The University of Virginia, and Washington University in St. Louis.
He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology (FACC), and a board-certified physician and cardiologist. He serves as adjunct clinical faculty at Stanford University School of Medicine and as a board member of the California Healthcare Institute (CHI).
Jon Saxe, JD
Jon S. Saxe, Esq., is Chairman of SciClone Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and VistaGen, Inc., and a Director of Durect Corporation. In the past, he has served as a Director of other companies, including ID Biomedical, acquired by GSK, Sciele Pharmaceuticals, Inc., acquired by Shionogi, and PDL BioPharma.
Jon received his B.S. Ch.E. from Carnegie-Mellon University, a J.D. from George Washington University School of Law, an LL.M. from New York University School of Law and a Certificate in Business Administration from the Fuqua School of Business, Duke University.
Sharon Tetlow, MBA
Sharon brings 30 years of experience in life sciences finance to Armetheon. She has served as CFO in public companies (CEGE, OCRX) and several private companies. She is founder of Potrero Hill Advisors, a consulting firm which provides financial leadership and accounting support services to life science companies preparing for transitions such as IPOs, growth, financings, or team turnover.
Sharon graduated from the University of Delaware, magna cum laude, phi beta kappa, and has her MBA from Stanford University.
M. (Ken) Kengatharan, PHD, MBA
President & Co-CEO
Dr. M. (Ken) Kengatharan is currently a co-founder, President and Co-CEO of Armetheon, Inc. He is the former President & CSO and a co-founder of Altheos, Inc., and a co-founder and former Vice President, Pre-Clinical R&D of Athenagen, Inc. (re-named CoMentis, Inc), all three biopharmaceutical companies are based in San Francisco bay area.
Since 2000, Dr. Kengatharan has been critical to the development of multiple drug candidates (NCEs and re-purposed drugs) from concept to Phase II. Since setting-up his first company in the late 1990s, Dr. Kengatharan has been instrumental in raising more than $160MM in private equity for 6 start-up companies. He is also a founder and General Partner at Atheneos Capital, a San Francisco bay area-based evergreen healthcare incubator fund.
In 2004, Dr. Kengatharan co-founded Athenagen, Inc. (re-named CoMentis, Inc.), which in 2008 completed a licensing and drug development collaboration deal with Astellas Pharmaceutical worth $760+ MM, with an upfront payment of $100MM. He joined the company as its Vice-President of Pre-Clinical Research and Development and then became Vice-President of Translational Research and Scientific Affairs. Prior to joining CoMentis, he was a staff scientist in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at Stanford University, where he continued his affiliation as a visiting scientist until June 2013. Dr. Kengatharan has also served as Director of Corporate Development (from initial stage), and later, Vice President of Pre-Clinical R&D at OxoN Medica Inc., where he spearheaded pre-clinical drug development as well as R&D operations. He is currently a member of the board of directors at Armetheon, Inc., a mentor at SPIRE Ventures, an advisor to Stanford’s SPARK program, a technology translation project for biotech ideas, since it was founded in 2006. Previously, he was a board observer at CoMentis, Inc., and Altheos, Inc. and has served on the boards of EPi3 (UK) Ltd, Athenagen, Inc., and Altheos, Inc., and as a member of the advisory board of Cardinal Free Clinics at Stanford University School of Medicine. In addition, he has been a mentor at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF Entrepreneurship Center) and a panel judge for the Stanford GSB’s Ignite Program (Palo Alto).
Dr. Kengatharan obtained his PhD in pharmacology from the University of London at the William Harvey Research Institute under the supervision of Nobel laureate Sir John Vane and Professor Christoph Thiemermann. Thereafter, he held a post-doctoral position at the same institute under the supervision of Professor Erik Änggård as a recipient of a British Heart Foundation Fellowship. He obtained his MBA (with Distinction) from Durham University in England, where he focused on Biotech Finance and Entrepreneurship.
Pascal Druzgala, PharmD, PhD
Senior Vice President, Research & Development
Pascal is a co-founder of Armetheon, Inc., where he serves as Senior Vice President, Research & Development. He is in charge of all discovery programs. Pascal is also a co-founder and board member of Optivia Biotechnology, and a co-founder of ARYx Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ARYX), where he served as senior VP and CSO from 1997 to 2011, as well as chairman of the scientific advisory board.
Dr. Druzgala received a Pharm.D. degree in 1978 from the University of Montpellier, France, and then went on to earn a diplôme d’études approfondies degree (DEA) at the European Institute of Industrial Pharmaceutical Sciences (IPIM), also in Montpellier, France. Dr. Druzgala later graduated in 1985 from the University of Florida with a doctorate in medicinal chemistry. He completed his post-doctorate work at the Center for Drug Design and Discovery at the University of Florida, where he first experimented with various drug discovery programs utilizing retrometabolic techniques. These techniques, pioneered by Dr. Nicholas Bodor in the late 1970s, are the basis for the research into the enhanced safety of Armetheon’s clinical-stage drugs candidate: tecarfarin.