Leadership

About Us

Leadership Senior Management

  • photo:Keita Mori, MBA

    SanBio Co., Ltd. President

    Keita Mori, MBA

    SanBio, Inc. Chairman

    Mr. Mori has been Co-Chief Executive Officer and has served as a member of the Board since SanBio's inception in 2001. Prior to founding SanBio, Mr. Mori was Head of New Product Development from 2000 to 2001 at Xuma, an informatics startup in San Francisco. From 1993 to 1999, Mr. Mori held positions of increasing responsibility in R&D and Manufacturing at Kirin Holdings, Ltd. in Japan. Mr. Mori holds an MBA degree from the University of California, Berkeley and a master's degree in Biochemistry from the University of Tokyo.

  • photo:Toru Kawanishi

    SanBio Co., Ltd. Executive Chairman

    Toru Kawanishi

    Mr. Kawanishi served as SanBio's Chairman of the Board from 2001 to 2005 and has been Co-Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board since 2005. Prior to founding SanBio, Mr. Kawanishi co-founded CareNet, Inc. (TSE: 2150) and was Executive Vice President from 1996 to 1999. At CareNet, Mr. Kawanishi established eHealthcare in Japan. From 1993 to 1996, Mr. Kawanishi was a management consultant at the Boston Consulting Group. Mr. Kawanishi has a master's degree in Biochemistry from the University of Tokyo.

  • photo:Akihiro Tsujimura, MBA

    SanBio Co., Ltd. Corporate Officer, Senior Managing Director

    Akihiro Tsujimura, MBA

    SanBio, Inc. CEO

    Mr. Tsujimura amassed wide-ranging experience regarding overseas business administration with Nichimen Corporation (now Sojitz Corporation) and also collected a wealth of pharmaceutical business experience working with Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., where he concluded sales license agreements, conducted M&A, and managed overseas expansion. Mr. Tsujimura is a former member of the Board at Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and served as CEO of Santen Inc. He graduated from Kanazawa University with a B.S. in Chemical Industry. Mr. Tsujimura holds an MBA from Kobe University.

  • photo:Bijan Nejadnik, M.D.

    Corporate Officer, Chief Medical Officer and Head of Research

    Bijan Nejadnik, M.D.

    Dr. Nejadnik has more than two decades of productive experience in large pharma and small biotech companies, as well as in academic institutions, leading research teams and organizations in developing and marketing biologics, small molecules and genetically modified cell therapy. He led the programs from early phase to registration trials, with successful BLA/NDA/MAA submissions and market launch. He was teaching faculty at University of California and Stanford University. He held multiple key roles at Johnson & Johnson working on numerous compounds in early and late stage registrational trials in Alzheimer diseases immunology, autoimmune disorders, hematology and oncology. After more than seven years of highly successful work, he joined Jazz Pharmaceuticals as Executive Director, where he led the clinical team towards an approved biologic license application (BLA) and was the lead of medical affairs division, for the launch of the FDA approved drugs. Dr. Nejadnik was –Chief Medical Officer, at Galena Biopharma and later at Eureka Therapeutics, where he was responsible for all clinical development programs, regulatory, cell manufacturing and medical affairs. Dr. Nejadnik graduated from the University of Louvain in Belgium for both his undergraduate degree in premedical studies, graduating Summa Cum Laude, and his medical degree (M.D.), graduating Magna Cum Laude. He completed his post graduate fellowships at Cornell University and Johns Hopkins University.

  • photo:Mohammad El-Kalay, Ph.D.

    Senior Vice President, Technical Operations

    Mohammad El-Kalay, Ph.D.

    Dr. El-Kalay has one of the extensive background in the development and manufacturing of cell therapies. He served as a key team member in pioneering companies such as Applied Immune Sciences, Systemix, and Osiris Therapeutics, then led technical operations teams in Vice President roles at Morphogen Pharmaceuticals, Telos Pharmaceuticals, and MicroIslet. Dr. El-Kalay founded a cellular therapy company EyeCyte, focusing on retinal diseases, and served as its Chief Executive Officer until 2013. Recently he served as Vice President of Process Development and Manufacturing at StemCells, Inc. and as Vice President of Technical Operations at Sangamo Therapeutics.
    Dr. El-Kalay holds a Ph.D. in Chemical/Biomedical from Strathclyde University, Glasgow.

  • photo:Haruhiko Tsumura, Ph.D.

    Head of Production

    Haruhiko Tsumura, Ph.D.

    Dr. Tsumura has extensive experience in production, development, and education of biopharmaceuticals. Prior to joining SanBio, he served as Head of Production Planning and Director of Production & Development Centre at Fujifilm Kyowa Kirin Biologics Co., Ltd. He was a senior researcher at Bio Process Research and Development Laboratories of Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co., Ltd. Dr. Tsumura is also involved in the academic world, presently serving as a Director of Japanese Association for Animal Cell Technology. He taught as a visiting professor at Tokyo University of Pharmacy and Life Sciences and Gunma University Graduate School, and as a visiting lecturer at Nagoya University Graduate School. He was the leader of BIO COP at ISPE Japan Affiliate. Dr. Tsumura graduated from Kyoto University with a B.S. & M.S. in Applied Microbiology. He holds a Ph.D. in Protein Chemistry from Niigata University.

  • photo:Hiroshi Yamamoto, MBA

    Corporate Officer, Business Head (Japan/Asia)

    Hiroshi Yamamoto, MBA

    Initially in charge of domestic sales and Asian business at Eisai Co., Ltd., Mr. Yamamoto later moved to AbbVie Inc., where his business was related to the launch of the cranial nerve (Parkinson’s disease). At Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., he gained broad-ranging pan-Asian business expertise, handling the launch and management of business in the ASEAN region, as well as the management of the company’s business in China. While at Santen Pharmaceutical, he served as vice president of Santen China and president of Santen Asia, the company’s regional headquarters. Mr. Yamamoto holds a degree in chemical engineering from Doshisha University and an MBA from the National University of Singapore.

  • photo:Michael P. McGrogan, Ph.D.

    Senior Production Development Fellow

    Michael P. McGrogan, Ph.D.

    Dr. McGrogan joined SanBio in 2003. Dr. McGrogan has over 25 years of biopharmaceutical R&D and production development experience. Prior to joining SanBio, Dr. McGrogan was Vice President of Research and Development at Layton BioScience (1996 to 2003). At Layton, Dr. McGrogan successfully managed the first cell therapy product to enter clinical trials for a CNS application, LBS-Neuron, from inception through a Phase II clinical trial. Prior to Layton, Dr. McGrogan held positions of increasing responsibility at several biotech companies including Berlex Biosciences, Invitron, and Cetus. Dr. McGrogan holds a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri.

  • photo:Yoshihiro Kakutani

    Corporate Officer, Management Administration

    Yoshihiro Kakutani

    Previously, Mr. Kakutani was Executive Officer and General Manager of Finance Department of CareNet, Inc. (TSE, Mothers: 2150). Mr. Kakutani is a US Certified Public Accountant.

Leadership Founding Scientist

  • Hideyuki Okano, M.D.

    Professor, Department of Physiology at Keio University School of Medicine. Dr. Okano is a world-recognized expert in regulatory mechanisms of neuronal development and stem cell biology.

Leadership Board of Directors

  • Co-Founder, SanBio Co., Ltd. Executive Chairman Toru Kawanishi

    Mr. Kawanishi served as SanBio's Chairman of the Board from 2001 to 2005 and has been Co-Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board since 2005. Prior to founding SanBio, Mr. Kawanishi co-founded CareNet, Inc. (TSE: 2150) and was Executive Vice President from 1996 to 1999. At CareNet, Mr. Kawanishi established eHealthcare in Japan. From 1993 to 1996, Mr. Kawanishi was a management consultant at the Boston Consulting Group. Mr. Kawanishi has a master's degree in Biochemistry from the University of Tokyo.

  • Co-Founder, SanBio Co., Ltd. President, SanBio, Inc. Chairman Keita Mori, MBA

    Mr. Mori has been Co-Chief Executive Officer and has served as a member of the Board since SanBio's inception in 2001. Prior to founding SanBio, Mr. Mori was Head of New Product Development from 2000 to 2001 at Xuma, an informatics startup in San Francisco. From 1993 to 1999, Mr. Mori held positions of increasing responsibility in R&D and Manufacturing at Kirin Holdings, Ltd. in Japan. Mr. Mori holds an MBA degree from the University of California, Berkeley and a master's degree in Biochemistry from the University of Tokyo.

  • SanBio Co., Ltd. Corporate Officer, Senior Managing Director, SanBio, Inc. CEO Akihiro Tsujimura, MBA

    Mr. Tsujimura amassed wide-ranging experience regarding overseas business administration with Nichimen Corporation (now Sojitz Corporation) and also collected a wealth of pharmaceutical business experience working with Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., where he concluded sales license agreements, conducted M&A, and managed overseas expansion. Mr. Tsujimura is a former member of the Board at Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and served as CEO of Santen Inc. He graduated from Kanazawa University with a B.S. in Chemical Industry. Mr. Tsujimura holds an MBA from Kobe University.

  • External Director Noboru Kotani

    Mr. Kotani previously worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a management consulting firm, where he developed business strategies for research and development, manufacturing, new businesses, marketing, sales, organizational structuring, and project management in a variety of businesses, including pharmaceuticals, automobiles, and consumer goods. Mr. Kotani was formerly a BCG senior vice president, a core member of the BCG Worldwide Health Care Practice Group (advisory committee on pharmaceutical businesses). Mr. Kotani established Dream Incubator Inc., a management consulting and a venture capital firm which was listed on the Mothers Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange in its 2nd year, and on the First Section of Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE, First Section: 4310) in the 6th year after founding. Mr. Kotani has served as an outside director at a number of companies such as Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. [TSE, First Section: 4536], JINS Inc. [TSE, First Section: 3046], and Combi Corporation). Mr. Kotani graduated from the Faculty of Engineering and completed bachelor’s degree requirements in the Department of Mathematical Engineering and Information Physics, School of Engineering, the University of Tokyo. Mr. Kotani received a Master’s degree in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University.

  • External Auditor (full-time) Masaaki Tanahashi

    Mr. Tanahashi has extensive experience in business planning, management and external review. Formerly Managing Director of GLAMS Inc., he has also served as external auditor for eole Inc. and SELTECH Corporation. Previously Mr. Tanahashi served in progressively senior roles at Konami Co. Ltd., a leading entertainment and gaming company. He is a graduate of the Faculty of Economics at Rikkyo University.

  • External Auditor Yoichi Sato

    Mr. Sato previously participated in R&D of pharmaceuticals at Kirin Brewery Company, Ltd. He served as Head of Development Division at Kirin Pharma Company, Ltd., and as Head of Pharmacovigilance and Quality Assurance Division, Head of Development Division, and Head of Research and Development Division at Kyowa Hakko Kirin Co., Ltd. (TSE, First Section: 4151). Mr. Sato was former member of the Board, Senior Corporate Officer, and Head of Research and Development Division at Kyowa Hakko Kirin. Mr. Sato graduated with a bachelor's degree in Political Science and Economics from Waseda University. He is a veterinary physician with a D.V.M. degree from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Nippon Veterinary and Animal Science University (currently Nippon Veterinary and Life Science University).

  • External Auditor Toshimichi Ueda

    Mr. Ueda worked for ChuoAoyama Audit Corporation, IPO Department of Daiwa Securities, AnGes MG, Inc. (TSE, Mothers: 4563). He currently serves as a partner in HIBIKI Partners Co., Ltd., an IPO consulting firm. Mr. Ueda was former Executive Officer of AnGes MG, Inc. Mr. Ueda graduated from the Faculty of Business and Commerce, Keio University. Mr. Ueda is a Certified Public Accountant.

Leadership Senior Advisors

  • photo:Damien Bates, M.D., PhD, FRACS, MBA, Senior Advisor

    Damien Bates, M.D., PhD, FRACS, MBA, Senior Advisor

    Dr. Bates is a board certified reconstructive surgeon who has held senior positions in clinical development and medical affairs at Baxter, Organogenesis, and Allergan. In these roles, Dr. Bates specialized in the surgical applications of regenerative medicine and has the distinction of leading the first and only successful regulatory approval of an allogeneic cell therapy product in the US. Dr. Bates received his medical degree from the University of Sydney, his PhD in Developmental Biology from the University of Melbourne, and his MBA from the Wharton Business School.

  • Charles Garvin, Senior Advisor

    Principal, Palisades Associates, a merchant banking firm. A founding principal of The Beta Group, a Silicon Valley business development organization.

  • Donald Kennedy, PhD, Senior Advisor

    Former President of Stanford University, Commissioner of the United States Food and Drug Administration, and Editor-in-Chief of Science.

  • Mario Rosati, Senior Advisor

    Partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Managing partner of WS Investments, an investment partnership composed of the partners and associates of the firm.