Management Team

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    Pu Sun, PhD

    Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer

    Dr. Sun is a co-founder of Atengen and has served as the company’s Chief Executive Officer since its founding in August of 2017. Prior to starting Atengen, Dr. Sun’s career focused on the development of automated and high throughput solutions for a broad spectrum of research areas, including small and large molecule pharmaceutical research. His previous roles involved extensive collaboration with several major pharmaceutical and biotech companies and his efforts contributed to the publication of 12 patents. Since starting Atengen, Dr. Sun has led the company’s overall synthetic efforts, designing all 400+ structural iterations of Atengen’s lead compound that ultimately resulted in the discovery of the drug candidate that is currently in preclinical development.
    Dr. Sun received his BA in Chemistry from Hanover College and his PhD from Penn State University in Organic Chemistry under the guidance of Professor Steven Weinreb.
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Scientific Advisory Board

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    Napoleone Ferrara, MD

    UCSD

    Dr. Ferrara is a Distinguished Professor at UCSD. He obtained his M.D. from the University of Catania and conducted post-doctoral research at UCSF. While at Genentech, Dr. Ferrara discovered VEGF, which led to the development of blockbuster drugs Avastin® and Lucentis®. Avastin has been approved by the FDA for 11 indications in multiple cancer types and Lucentis has been approved for therapy of neovascular age-related macular degeneration and other ocular vascular disorders. In 2018, anti-VEGF therapies generated approximately $13 billion in revenue. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and has won numerous awards including the Lasker Award and the Breakthrough Prize.  
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    Yihai Cao, MD, PhD

    Professor at the Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden

    Dr. Cao is a Distinguished Professor of Vascular Biology at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. He received his Ph.D. from the Karolinska Institute and trained with Dr. Judah Folkman at Harvard. Dr. Cao is a leading international expert on tumor angiogenesis and endogenous inhibitors of angiogenesis. His team also revealed mechanisms of pathogenic angiogenesis in many other diseases. He is a member of Academy of Europe, a member of European Academy of Sciences and Arts, and a member of National Academy of Inventors (US). He received the Fernström research prize in 2004 and the Axel Hirsch Prize in medicine 2014.   
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    Ernest Wright, PhD, FRS

    UCLA

    Dr. Wright is a Distinguished Professor of Physiology and Medicine at UCLA. He received his Ph.D. at University of Sheffield and was trained at Harvard before starting his distinguished career at UCLA School of Medicine. Dr. Wright is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a member of the German Academy of Science, and a member of the Royal Society. His discovery led to a new class of drugs to control diabetes. He also developed novel chemical probes to detect cancer. He has served on many advisory boards including for Boehringer Ingelheim.
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    Jeremy Nathans, MD, PhD

    Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine 

    Dr. Nathans is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and Professor at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He received his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Stanford University and conducted post-doctoral research at Genentech in Axel Ullrich’s lab. Dr. Nathans was the first scientist to clone a GPCR and he has made seminal discoveries in vision and vision diseases, including retinal vascular diseases. Dr. Nathans has received numerous awards including the Champalimaud Award and the Edward Scolnick Prize. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine, and has served on the scientific advisory board of Merck Research Laboratories.
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    Steven McKnight, PhD

    UT Southwestern  

    Dr. McKnight is a Distinguished Professor at UT Southwestern Medical Center. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia and conducted post-doctoral research at the Carnegie Institute of Washington. Dr. McKnight has made many important contributions to biomedical research and has received numerous awards including the Eli Lilly Award, National Academy of Sciences Award in Molecular Biology, and the Wiley Prize in Biomedical Sciences. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine and was the past President of American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Dr. McKnight also co-founded Tularik (acquired by Amgen for $1.3 billion in 2004) and Peloton Therapeutics (acquired by Merck for $2.2 billion in 2019). 
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