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Personalized Medicine: How Genomics and Wireless Technologies are Making Healthcare More Predictive, Preventive, Personalized and Participatory

January 24, 2012

The Healthcare Communications SIG Presents…

Physicians  can now individualize care according to each patient’s unique biology and engage patients in health and wellness promotion in unprecedented fashion.  This opportunity has been enabled by wireless technologies, dramatic cost reductions in DNA sequencing, and increased access to health information via websites, blogs and online social networking. A panel of experts in medicine, genomics, and wireless health will discuss the opportunities and challenges presented by the convergence of these technological advances, and their relevance to the recent focus on cost containment and accountability in health care. The panelists will also address how this convergence can help stem the tide of rising chronic disease including diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and cancer.

Nicholas J. Schork, PhD
Founder & Acting CEO, Cypher Genomics,
Director of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics, STSI, Director of Research, SGM, Professor, Department of Molecular and Experimental Medicine , TSRI

Nicholas J. Schork, Ph.D., is Professor, Molecular and Experimental Medicine,  at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) and Director of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics at the Scripps Translational Science Institute (STSI). Dr. Schork’s interests and expertise are quantitative human genetics and integrated approaches to complex biological and medical problems, especially the design and implementation of methodologies to dissect the determinants of complex traits and diseases. He has published over 350 scientific articles and book chapters on the analysis of complex, multifactorial traits and diseases.Prior to joining Scripps in 2007, Dr. Schork was a Professor of Biostatistics and Psychiatry, and Co-Director of the Center for Human Genetics and Genomics at the University of California, San Diego for 7 years. From 1994 to 2000, he was an Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and an Adjunct Associate Professor of Biostatistics at Harvard University. During 1999 and 2000, Dr. Schork took a leave of absence to conduct research as the Vice President of Statistical Genomics at the French biotechnology company, Genset, where he helped guide efforts to construct the first high-density map of the human genome. A member of several scientific journal editorial boards, Dr. Schork is a frequent participant in U.S. National Institutes of Health-related steering committees and review boards, and has served on the advisory board of five companies. In addition, he is currently director of the quantitative components of a number of national research consortia, include the NIA-sponsored Longevity Consortium and the NIMH-sponsored Bipolar Consortium.  Dr. Schork is on the Board of Directors for MD Revolution and founder and acting CEO of Cypher Genomics. Dr. Schork earned the B.A. in Philosophy, M.A. in Philosophy, M.A. in Statistics, and Ph.D. in Epidemiology, all from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Samir Damani, M.D., Pharm.D., F.A.C.C.
Co-Founder, Principal & Medical Director, MD Revolution,
Practicing Cardiologist, Scripps Clinic 

Samir Damani, who is certified in both cardiology and internal medicine by the American Board of Internal Medicine, is a practicing cardiologist at Scripps Clinic. He completed his residency training at Scripps Clinic, and was subsequently nominated for and served an additional year as Chief Resident of Internal Medicine.  He then completed a fellowship in cardiovascular diseases, while also obtaining a Master’s degree in Translational Investigation at The Scripps Research Institute’s Kellogg School of Science and Technology, a top 5 ranked graduate program in the biological sciences by US News and World Report.  Dr. Damani has been a “change agent” in cardiovascular medicine because of his emphasis on a more individualized approach to therapy based on the patient’s genetics, medical and family history, lifestyle, and life goals. He also is one of the nation’s few physicians who has professionally trained and practiced as a clinical pharmacist – an advantage because of the increasing importance of pharmacogenomics in health care.In 2009, Dr. Damani was selected as one of the Scripps Translational Science Institute’s inaugural clinical scholars in a program sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. He recently helped direct a large multi-center NIH sponsored study that is assessing novel predictive biomarkers of arterial injury in patients with impending heart attack. His work has resulted in patent applications by Scripps Health for the use of circulating endothelial cells in heart attack, and has spawned collaborations between Scripps Health and many biotechnology and diagnostic companies including Johnson & Johnson.  Because of his expertise in translational medicine, he was appointed a contributing editor for the prominent journal Science Translational Medicine. He is the author of over 40  articles and editorial contributions, as well as 3, book chapters on the emerging applications of genomic medicine.  He also serves as a reviewer for Nature Genetics, Annals of Internal Medicine, American Journal of Cardiology, and the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, among others.  Dr. Damani is the executive editor of the blog, “Translating Science” and is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology.

Patrick Merel, PhD
Founder, Portable Genomics

Patrick Merel got his Ph.D. in molecular biology in 1986 from Bordeaux University.  He started his career by developing molecular diagnostic at the Blood Bank Center of Bordeaux in 1987. He has been involved rapidly in robotics for medical diagnostic, immunology and hematology as soon as PCR procedures started to be available. In 1996 he was the first to publish a magnetic procedure for nucleic acid extraction on a robotic workstation. Since then he has been involved in high-throughput projects for infectious disease screening, sequence based monitoring for HIV drug resistance, and real-time quantitative assays development in Europe, US and developing countries. His involvement in emerging technologies allowed him to publish the 1st French review on DNA Chips back in 1994 and the 1st French overview of Lab-on-a-Chip technologies in 1999. Patrick has joined University Hospital of Bordeaux in 1998, working at the Virology Dept., a high end molecular diagnostic facilty, and participating into the setup of a multidisciplinary molecular diagnostic core facility. Between 2004 and 2005, Patrick Merel had joined Beckman Coulter Inc. in San Diego for a sabbatical year, to focus on molecular diagnostic market from the industrial side. A unique situation which has gave him a global vision from the world of the industry and the world of the end-users on molecular diagnostic future perspectives.  Back in Bordeaux, Patrick is in charge with a new Molecular Biology Research and Development facility within University Hospital of Bordeaux, the Biomedical Innovation Platform (PTIB), dedicated to biomarkers discovery and validation, exploration of new technologies for diagnostic and personalized medicine. A facility which is also a startup incubator, and where the concept of Portable Genomics came to life.Portable Genomics is still an emerging startup company, now based in La Jolla, to provide a new concept for the visualization of clinically important data within partial or full genome sequencing results. To focus onto portable devices to develop a new field of genomic wireless healthcare applications, and to enhance patients connection and communication with healthcare providers, pharma, nutrition and wellness industries.

Ron Richard
Director Business Development, Qualcomm Wireless Health

Ron has been involved in the medical industry spanning over thirty years and has extensive knowledge in respiratory, pulmonary, and sleep medicine. He began his medical career in a large teaching institution, Wesley Medical Center, located in Wichita, Kansas—the heart of America. Prior to leaving the medical center Ron worked as a respiratory therapist and developed his first invention, the “Speak E-Z communication board.” Patients were enabled to communicate with hospital staff through the aid of this innovative product. This was the beginning of his career in marketing and product development. After working at Respiratory Services Inc. for about three years, the company was sold to a larger competitor.  Ron then helped found Medical Concepts in 1983, and eventually the company was sold to a national competitor. Within six years the business grew to sales of over $2 million.  Nellcor Puritan Bennett, a leading manufacturer of pulse oximeters, critical care, and home care ventilators recognized that Ron would be a beneficial addition to the expansion of their critical care sales team. His broad background in a number of areas inside the medical field made him an ideal candidate to become a sales account executive. It was here that he earned multiple sales awards for his accomplishments and, after four years in sales, eventually transferred into product marketing management. He was responsible for launching five major products globally, which included a new CPAP line and noninvasive ventilator line along with several nasal mask interfaces. He was also able to travel extensively with this position and worked in Europe and Asia training and launching new products.

Based on his experience in sleep and respiratory, Ron was approached by a group of private investors who owned and operated multiple sleep centers nationally. He was offered a position as a partner and general manager opening new centers in the Midwest. It is here that he gained new experiences negotiating service contracts with insurance providers, hospital administrators and physicians related to service contracts. Ron maintains a position with the company and retains an active interest in the investment.  Ron then joined Thermo-Electron and was given the challenge of evaluating and finally launching several new products as well as merging multiple companies underneath one common umbrella.  In 2000, Ron joined ResMed where he took on the challenge of restructuring the marketing department and building the brand for the future of the company. Since Ron’s joining ResMed Corp, they have been recognized for several awards and accolades. In 2007 Mr. Richard joined SeQual Technologies, a San Diego based manufacturer of portable and stationary oxygen generators. He initially took the role of Sr VP of Sales and Marketing and held that position for over 12 months and in July of 2008 transitioned into the title and role of President and CEO. He led the company to a successful acquisition by Chart Industries in 2010 and currently serves as the VP and GM for their Respiratory Division.  Ron has served on a number of industry panels in sleep and respiratory medicine and has multiple patents on medical devices.  He has been with Qualcomm since August 2011 as the Senior Director of Business Development for the Telehealth Group.

Noel Gillespie
Partner, Procopio
Noel Gillespie is the chair of Procopio’s Wireless Health Care and Medical Device Practice Group.  Mr. Gillespie regularly assists clients with strategic patent portfolio development and implementation so as to protect their technology and help them achieve their business objectives. This process includes developing claim strategies that create market barriers and protect or create revenue streams, as well as preparing and prosecuting U.S. and foreign Patent Applications.  Mr. Gillespie has extensive experience in dealing with telecommunications companies, including those involved with wireless, wired, and optical communications technology, medical device companies, semiconductor companies and software/Internet companies. For example, Mr. Gillespie has helped clients build portfolios and protect or build market positions in the areas of wireless sensors for health applications, smart grids, semiconductor memories, lab and chip technology and energy efficient data storage.  In addition to his extensive legal experience, Mr. Gillespie has also served as Senior Design Engineer and Product Team leader for Sony Digital Telecommunications of America in San Diego, where he was responsible for the comprehensive baseband design for several CDMA handsets that used the latest Qualcomm Mobile Station Modem (MSM) chipsets.  He received extensive training in CDMA and wireless communication technology and his design responsibilities fell under the areas of microprocessor circuits, audio circuits, power management circuits, and user interfaces such as keypads and LCDs. Prior to this, he was a Design Engineer and Product Team Leader at Cubic Defense Systems in San Diego, where he was responsible for the design and testing of several portable electronic systems.  Mr. Gillespie successfully managed a team of engineers in the completion of Cubic’s Manworn Laser Detection System, which was part of the MILES 2000 product line, an optical communication system. Mr. Gillespie’s design responsibilities on the product included the areas of optical communications, ASICs, microprocessor circuits, user interfaces, and power management.

Noel Gillespie, Partner, Procopio
Nate Heintzman, Dir., Wireless Health Innovations, San Diego Beacon Collaborative, Calit2 UCSD
Don Jones, Vice President, Business Development Health and Life Sciences, Qualcomm
Alean Kirnak, President, Software Partners LLC
Michael Martino, SVP Innovation, Business Development & Strategy, CareFusion
Clint McClellan, Senior Director of Market Development, Qualcomm
Peter Pardee, VP Business Development, Hughes Network Systems, LLC
Alex Robertson, CEO, MediAccess Solutions LLC
Paul Sonnier, Wireless Health Strategies

January 24th, 2012

5:30PM Registration/Networking/Refreshments
6:00PM Program Begins
7:30PM Program Ends


12400 High Bluff Drive
San Diego, CA 92130

Pre-Registration: (Please pre-register by noon on 1/23/12)
$10.00 – CommNexus Sponsor
$20.00 – Non-Sponsor
FREE –  Mentor Sponsor

At the Door:
$20.00 – CommNexus Sponsor
$30.00 – Non-Sponsor
FREE –  Mentor Sponsor

Students, Military & Press: FREE


Questions? Contact Michele Yoshioka at


January 24, 2012
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