Join KASTx Ventures in collaboration with Catalytic Life Sciences for an in-depth panel discussion on investing in and growing businesses in the biotech sector. Learn from medical and financial experts from Canada and the United States as they discuss their own insights and learnings from their years of experience in this space. 

The current global climate has highlighted the need for growth and development in the health sciences industry like never before. While we’re still balancing a certain amount of personal and economic uncertainty, health will always be at the core of our global needs. Making an international impact is woven into the foundations of what we do, so learn more about how you can be a part of a sector that has the potential to change peoples’ lives all over the world.


Wednesday October 6, 2021 

9:00 – 10:00 am MDT via Zoom

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About the speakers: 

Dr. Lawrence Korngut— Lawrence is a neurologist with extensive experience in the design of clinical development programs, and the design and conduct of clinical trials of new therapies for different muscle and nerve diseases. Lawrence has published over 60 publications in peer-reviewed journals and has advised a multitude of pharmaceutical companies in the clinical development process from pre-clinical through to regulatory and health technology assessment. He is the Director of the Calgary Neuromuscular Program and the Calgary ALS and Motor Neuron Disease Clinic. He also serves as Director, Innovation and Commercialization at the Hotchkiss Brain Institute at the University of Calgary, and as Scientist at Creative Destruction Labs – Rockies. 


Jeffrey Miller— Jeff is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) at Catalytic Life Sciences, a boutique firm that specializes in fundraising and M&A for private biotechnology companies. With over 25 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, he brings a unique combination of strategic, operational, and financial expertise. After earning his MBA from the Boston University Questrom School of Business, he embarked on a career that has spanned large, mid-size, and small companies such as Eli Lilly, Boehringer Ingelheim, Merck Serono, Alexion, and Alnylam. He has also worked in over 20 countries, and lived abroad for 25% of his career. He has held leadership positions in general management, marketing & sales, and international corporate strategy across therapeutic areas spanning rare diseases, oncology, primary care, and specialty care. Jeff is a co-founder of TSP Therapeutics, leads the advisory board at Nami Therapeutics, is a member of the advisory board at Modelis, and is a former member of the board of directors at BIOTECanada. 


Dr. David Shin— David joined Catalytic Life Sciences as Chief Investment Officer in May of 2021. Formerly, he was Chief Operating Officer of Limelight Bio, a gene therapy company developing multiple platform technologies to address the limitations of viral vectors. He also helped launch Alpine Biosciences to develop a nanotechnology platform for large molecule delivery, which was sold to Oncothyreon, a publicly-traded oncology company. Prior to Alpine, he was a founding investment professional at Ayer Capital, a healthcare-specific hedge fund, where he managed investments in all sub-sectors of healthcare. He began his business career as a technology leader in several scientific software and services companies serving the biopharmaceutical industry, one of which was sold to Thermo Fisher Scientific, where he remained as Director of Technology. Dr. Shin earned a BS in Electrical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and an MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. 


Dr. Marko Kozul— Marko is the founder and CEO of Catalytic Life Sciences as Chief Investment since it was formed in April 2018. Formerly, he was a member of the senior management team and Head of Strategy at Alnylam (ALNY), one of the top ten global biotech companies RNAi developing therapeutics to serve multiple platform technologies from orphan to global diseases. Before Alnylam, Marko spent over 10 years as a biotechnology sell-side equity research analyst at leading global investment banks including Jefferies and Co and Leerink (now SVBLerrink). Dr. Kozul earned a BS in Molecular Biology from the University of Michigan and an MD from the IUHS School of Medicine. 


Mark Starratt (moderator)— Mark brings over 25 years of experience in the financial industry, having spent time at two successful national wealth management firms. Mark has deep philanthropic and community service roots, having recently completed a 4-year term as a Director of the Paralympic Foundation of Canada and currently sits on both the Calgary Rotary Clubs Foundation and the Dean’s Advisory Board at the Cumming School of Medicine. In April 2013, Mark and his wife Jennifer formed The Starratt Family Foundation to advance neuromuscular disease education and research and to help improve accessibility for those with disabilities. Mark serves on several private company boards and leads a Single Family Office based in Alberta. 


Michael Smith (MC)— Mike has spent 20 years in the capital markets and financial services industry, where he has both domestic and international experience working for both public and privately held investment banks. His primary focus area has been working with entrepreneurially-minded, high net worth private clients with a mutual emphasis on premium quality public and private equity investments. Michael currently works with a select group of early-stage companies in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and sports technology. 


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