Neil McDonnell, CEO and Co-Founder

Neil has spent 25 years in drug development and executive leadership in small- and mid-size biotechs, global pharmaceutical companies and global health institutions.  Neil was most recently CEO of Metacrine, a venture-backed startup with programs in NASH and diabetes. Prior to Metacrine, Neil was Senior Vice President and Therapeutic Area Leader for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, responsible for R&D in those areas. Neil was previously Chief of Staff for the Global Health Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation where he was involved with strategy development and interactions with senior officials from multilateral organizations and governmental agencies involved in global health.  Neil was Vice President of Program Management at the Seattle-based public biotech Zymogenetics, where he oversaw all program development teams, and began his biotech career at Immunex, an oncology and immunology company acquired by Amgen.

Artur Plonowski PhD, CSO and Co-Founder

Artur has broad drug discovery expertise and 15+ year experience in both global pharmaceutical and small biotech companies. Most recently he held position of Director of Pharmacology at Akarna Therapeutics, Ltd., a NASH start-up that was acquired by Allergan in 2016 for $50 million and $1 billion in milestones, after less than two years in existence. Prior to Akarna, Artur led the Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolic Disease Pharmacology group at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and before that he worked for 10 years at Exelixis with scientific and leadership responsibilities in CV, metabolic, renal, oncology, and inflammation therapeutic areas. Artur has directly contributed to 12 IND filings, including two market launched products. He is author or co-author of more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications.

Kathleen Elias PhD,VP Research and Translational Medicine, Co-Founder

Kathleen has over 25 years of drug development experience working in biotech and pharmaceutical settings. Dr. Elias previously worked at Takeda, as a Director of Preclinical Research, and led efforts to develop small molecule, antibody, and ADC oncology therapeutics, as well as immunological and metabolic therapies. Prior to that, she worked at Cytokinetics to establish and lead the cell biology and pharmacology efforts to identity and develop a myosin activator therapeutic for heart failure currently in Phase 3 with Amgen. At Genentech, she was a scientist working in endocrine and cardiac therapeutic areas. During her career Dr. Elias has contributed to multiple agents that have advanced to clinical development, and is an author on numerous publications and patents. She received a PhD from the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and was a post-doctoral fellow at the University of California, San Francisco.

David Brown PhD, Director, Chemistry

David designs and manages the synthesis of novel ASK1 kinase inhibitors at Seal Rock Therapeutics. David has 20 years of experience in the biotechnology industry with a particular focus on kinase inhibition. He spent 12 years at Exelixis where his kinase work contributed to 5 clinical candidates in the areas of oncology and inflammation. More recently, David directed the medicinal chemistry team at Pathway Therapeutics which led to the selective PI3Kdelta kinase inhibitor PWT143/MEI-401 which in Phase 1b clinical trials. David graduated from Stanford University and holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry from UCLA.

Terry Porter PhD, SVP Business Development

Terry Porter has over twenty-five years of global R&D and business development experience within the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. In over 12 years within the Worldwide Business Development group at GlaxoSmithKline he covered a broad range of business development roles covering platform technologies, discovery and clinical pipeline licensing as well as M&A. During this time he headed Oncology licensing, created and led the External Science and Technology group and co-led GSK’s $450 million acquisition of Domantis. As Managing Director of the corporate advisory group AquaPartners for three years Terry obtained direct sell-side experience by helping young companies with their business development needs. In his last role Terry spent 5 years as Vice President of Search & Evaluation within the Global Business Development at Takeda Pharmaceuticals contributing to the identification, evaluation, due diligence and successful completion of multiple licensing and M&A opportunities.



Seal Rock Therapeutics - 500 Yale Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109, USA - -786.453.0593