Paul Castella Chief Executive Officer
Paul Castella co-founded Santalis in 2010 as a joint venture with Quintis Ltd. (formerly TFS corporation, Ltd.), to develop healthcare applications for Quintis’ sustainable Sandalwood Album Oil (SAO). Quintis acquired the entire business in 2015, along with ViroXis Corporation (which Paul co-founded in 2008) to develop antiviral applications of SAO, and the merged entities adopted the Santalis name.
Prior to co-founding Santalis and ViroXis, Paul co-founded and managed a number of other life science businesses, including; CardioSpectra, Inc., which was acquired by Volcano Corporation (NASDAQ: VOLC) in December 2007; Xenotope Diagnostics, Inc., which developed the only FDA approved rapid test (sold worldwide under the OSOM® brand) for Trichomonas, the world’s most prevalent non-viral sexually transmitted disease; BiO2 Medical, Inc., which developed the Angel™ Catheter, the first device indicated for the prevention of pulmonary embolism (PE) in hospitalized patients; and the San Antonio-based Targeted Technology Funds, which focus on early-stage life science investing.
Paul received his PhD in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University Medical College in Manhattan, received his MBA from the University of Texas, a BS (Hons) in biochemistry the University of London, and has been granted ten US patents. In 2008, Paul was inducted into San Antonio’s SATAI Technology Hall of Fame.
Ian Clements Chief Operating Officer
Ian Clements has broad commercial, corporate and business development experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries including sales and marketing, medical affairs, product and clinical development, program management as well as commercial, corporate and business development.
Prior to co-founding Santalis and ViroXis, Ian had over 20 years of experience in senior Sales and Marketing, and Business Development positions, including Head of Oncology Product Management at Lederle labs in UK, Head of Global Oncology Product Management at the Upjohn company where he managed the global launch of Camptosar and Head of US Oncology Marketing for Novartis launching three new products in three years.
Ian served for six years as Head of Commercial Operations and Corporate Development for ILEX Oncology in San Antonio where he established the new Business Development and Medical Affairs departments. While at ILEX he optimized the Project Management systems for oncology clinical development. He headed the clinical and medical development activities for Campath in solid organ transplantation and MS and helped gain regulatory approval for Clofarabine.
Ian received his BS (Hons) degree in Genetics from Swansea University, UK and his MS. in Immunology from King’s College, London, UK.
Karthik Radhakrishnan Chief Financial Officer
Karthik Radhakrishnan joins Santalis with 15 years of experience in Healthcare Finance. Karthik brings both private company and public company experiences from his prior roles as CFO of Medicenna Therapeutics, Inc. and Opexa Therapeutics, Inc. During his roles as CFO he structured and executed on approximately $55 million in capital raising activities which helped transform these companies and forge ahead on their clinical programs. Prior to that, Karthik was Vice President and Senior Research Analyst at ING Investment Management in New York where he managed investments in the healthcare sector. From 2002 to 2007, Karthik held senior financial research analyst roles at The Dow Chemical Company and Eagle Asset Management, specializing in large cap growth healthcare companies.
Karthik has a BS in Chemical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, a MS in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo and an MBA from The University of Michigan Business School. He received his Certified Financial Risk Manager designation from The Global Association of Risk Professionals and is a CFA charter holder. Previously, Karthik served as a member of the Board of Trustees for Cares Foundation from 2008-2011, a non-profit organization that helps improve the lives of families and individuals who are affected by Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia.
Corey Levenson Chief Scientific Officer
Corey Levenson has senior managerial experience in the private sector with expertise in pharmaceutical R&D and business development. He has been involved in organic and medicinal chemistry discovery programs, preclinical and clinical drug development, technology assessment, and in-licensing activities in corporate environments ranging from small start-ups to large global pharmas.
Prior to joining Santalis, Corey served as Director of Scientific Affairs and Senior Director of Licensing at ILEX Oncology, leading technology assessment programs and coordinating evaluation of drug pipeline candidates, leading to the in-licensing of various drug candidates, including Clofarabine which was ultimately approved for marketing in the U.S. for the treatment of leukemia.
Corey’s early career focused on development of nucleic acid-based diagnostic technologies and was followed by many years of developing drugs to prevent and treat cancer. At Roche Molecular Systems, he worked on the development of novel DNA labelling methods and nucleic acid-based assays for medical and forensic applications, including automated DNA synthesis and implementation of robotics for rapid purification and QC.
As Co-Manager of the Chemistry department at Cetus Corporation, Corey developed and patented several novel methods of non-isotopically labelling DNA. He also managed the DNA synthesis group and produced the probes and primers used in the development of the Nobel Prize-winning polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technology.
Corey received his PhD in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the University of California, San Francisco and his BA from Hampshire College in Amherst MA.
Jim Traa Chief Business Officer
Jim Traa is a recognized healthcare industry veteran with broad experience in top-level executive and leadership positions where he has built and led highly productive, cross-functional teams in creating markets for innovative technologies. Jim has direct experience in the medical device, life sciences, and personalized medicine arenas with special emphasis in sales and marketing, operations, product development and introduction, e-commerce, compliance and regulatory affairs, as well as strategic planning, commercialization, and business development.
Prior to joining Santalis, Jim was a Vice President for Caris Life Sciences Oncology Division responsible for building the Caris Target Now™ molecular profiling business from a start-up to a market leader. Prior to joining Caris, Jim held numerous senior leadership positions within Sanofi Genzyme Corporation’s Biosurgical Specialties business unit where he specialized in the development and introduction of novel biotherapeutic and biomaterial products and establishing the Sepra™ brand and Sanofi Genzyme Biosurgery as the recognized leader in the biomaterials marketplace.
Jim began his career as a Commissioned Officer in the United States Navy where he held several leadership positions within the Surface Warfare and Aviation communities.
Jim earned his BS Degree from the United States Naval Academy and MBA from the University of Texas.