Why did you decide to take on the role of CEO at Factor Therapeutics?
It’s a fantastic opportunity for me and it’s great that a company such as Factor is based in Brisbane. We have a wonderful team, a really commercial Board, and we are working on some exciting science. We’re running a cutting-edge trial in the US for people with long-term, hard to heal ulcers whom we hope will really benefit from our technology.
Your experience spans big pharma, biotech and the not-for-profit sector. How has this breadth of experience prepared you for your new role?
Across all my roles there has been a common theme of working at the interface of science, patients and commercial interests. To be successful in developing new medicines, as a company or an individual, you need to be able to work with a range of different people, from patients, carers and family members through to those who are ultimately measured by financial and commercial performance. What’s important is being able to understand and appreciate the needs of each group, and find the sweet spot – where those needs (or most of them) intersect.
What do you have in store for the future?
The broader pipeline is exciting to me, and gives us the potential to extract greater value from our technology. In wound care, ulcers that affect people with diabetes (diabetic foot ulcer) is the next obvious condition to evaluate our technology – there is a huge unmet need there.
We are also excited about the potential for applications for treating eye “wounds”. Although it seems like a very different area to a leg ulcer, a wound – even in the eye – is still a wound. We see a lot of opportunity here – good eyesight is a critical sense, and this application sits well with our safety profile. We also have a really interesting collaboration with Monash University, exploring a rare skin condition called Harlequin Icthyosis.