Dr Shinji Okitsu
Shinji is an immunologist specialized in drug development for autoimmune and inflammatory disease. He has led programs and global cross-functional teams from concept generation and target discovery through preclinical development steps. He was also part of clinical teams including one that repositioned a TLR7/8 inhibitor for COVID-19. In his current role he focuses on partnering, licensing and M&A efforts in neurology and immunology. Shinji has a PhD from the University of Basel and did his postdoc at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla San Diego where he used single cell sequencing to study mechanisms of antibody affinity maturation. He moved on to develop systems for the discovery of new vaccine targets for malaria in a collaboration between the University of California San Diego and The Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation. Shinji has a special interest in transcriptomics and big data for translational studies enabling target discovery, preclinical and clinical drug development.