Our Team


Executive Chairman · Co-Founder

  • PhD in Management & Economics
  • Former academic and Senior Advisor to UK government


  • Raised >$300m
  • Led P2i from startup to world leader
  • Former Eyoto CEO
  • Significant exit and M&A experience

Dr David Maggs


  • Former VP Medical at Becton Dickinson
  • Former CMedO at Fractyl and GI Dynamics
  • World leading medtech CMedO

CTO · Executive Director

  • Founder/CTO of multiple weight loss startups, incl. Gelesis (Plenity) which was acquired for $1.3bn in 2021

CSO · Co-Founder

  • Globally-recognized bariatric surgeon.
  • Former Professor with >1,000 publications

Team Members

Elina Orlova

Internal Counsel

Paolo Di Giovine

IP Consultant

Chris Shelley

IP Counsel

Will Axtell

Corporate Counsel

Rajeev Sharma

Finance Director

Reza Gulam Hussein


Tia Hinton

General Administrator

Elisabetta Papa

IP Consultant

Board of Directors

  • PhD in Management & Economics.
  • Former academic & Senior Advisor to UK government.

Carl D. Francis


  • Raised >$300m
  • Led P2i from startup to world leader
  • Former Eyoto CEO
  • Significant exit and M&A experience

Michael Holder

  • As CEO alone, raised $250m and achieved $300m in exits
  • Experienced senior executive
  • Founder/CTO of Gelesis (maker of Plenity) which underwent $1.3bn SPAC merger in 2021.
  • Financier with 20+ years in PE & VC deals in healthcare sector
  • NED at DiaSorin ($6.5bn Mkt Cap)
  • Founder of Teradek (acquired by Vitec for $35m)
  • Life sciences investor


Diabesity, Metabolic Surgery & Endoscopy

Dr David Maggs

Dr David Maggs is Chief Medical Officer at Keyron. He was the Vice President, Medical Affairs, BD Technologies and Innovation (BDTI) based in Research Triangle Park, NC. Dr Maggs joined BD in March 2019 and is responsible for providing medical, scientific, technical and customer-focused leadership for the BDTI R&D portfolio. He has also taken on interim leadership of Medical Affairs for the North America Region. Dr Maggs is a board-certified endocrinologist and most recently served as Chief Medical Officer of Fractyl Laboratories and, prior to this, at GI Dynamics. Previous to this time, he spent more than a decade at Amylin Pharmaceuticals, where he held positions of increasing responsibility, serving as Vice President Medical Research and Development. He was integral to the development and commercialization of the company’s peptide therapeutic portfolio and he led numerous innovative collaborations directly engaged with the global diabetes and endocrine community. Prior to his Amylin tenure, David served as Director, Diabetes and Metabolism, for Parke-Davis and then Pfizer. Dr Maggs is currently an Adjunct Faculty Member of the School of Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center and was previously an Assistant Clinical Professor at the Yale School of Medicine and completed fellowships at the University of Nottingham and at the Yale School of Medicine. He completed his original medical training and received his MBBS from Guys Hospital, University of London, and he is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London.

Paolo Di Giovine

IP Counsel

Paolo has a strong background in biochemistry and molecular biology reasearch, acquired in almost 10 years’ work in both public research centres and major pharmaceutical firms, also in cooperation with US research groups.

Since joining SIB in 2008, he has dealt mainly with the filing and prosecution of patents in the fields of chemistry, pharmaceutical chemistry and biotechnology.

Paolo is highly experienced in prosecuting patent applications before the European Patent Office and his practice extends to the defence of patents, including in post-grant opposition proceedings against third-party patents, as well as to overseeing the filing and prosecution of supplementary protection certificates (SPCs). He is also adept at preparing validity opinions and carrying out freedom to operate analyses (FTOs).

Paolo is enrolled with the Register of Court-Appointed Experts on Industrial Property of the Court of Rome.  He also acts as ex-parte expert in patent litigation.

Paolo has contributed articles on oncology and virology to major international scientific publications. He holds lectures on patent issues in Italy.

His activity is predominantly in Italian, European and other foreign patents in the fields of chemistry, pharmaceutical chemistry and biotechnology, and he is a court expert in patent litigation.

He is Member of the Ordine dei Consulenti in Proprietà Industriale (Italian Industrial Property Consultants Institute), of the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office and of UNI – Italian Organisation for Standardisation (member of the Technical Committee of Working Group 98 on ISO standards for “Innovation management – Tools and methods for the management of intellectual property”).

His qualifications include Italian and European Patent Attorney, Community Design Attorney; enrolled with the Register of Court-Appointed Experts on Industrial Property of the Court of Rome. Qualified to represent clients before the Unified Patent Court.

Chris Shelley

IP Counsel

Chris is a partner in the Oxford office who specialises in intellectual property and commercial law, and EU and UK competition laws. He trained at a multinational law firm, qualifying into the commercial department in 1986. He joined the firm in 1990 and became a partner in 1992. Chris is particularly known for his work in the life sciences, publishing and engineering sectors, and for universities, research councils and their spin-out companies.

One of only ten UK lawyers who are highly recommended for patent licensing in IAM 1000: The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners, Chris is described as ‘extremely strong’ and as having ‘an assured command of the life sciences, publishing and engineering sectors’. He is also a Chambers UK leading expert and is rated in band 1 for intellectual property by both Chambers UK and The Legal 500. Client quotes in Chambers UK 2017 describe Chris as having ‘a brilliant grasp of commercial IP matters’.

Chris chairs the life sciences stream of the new IP Transactions: Law and Practice course run by the UCL Institute of Brand & Innovation Law, for which he delivers the patent licensing seminar. This course was highly commended in the Law Society Excellence Awards 2013.


Will Axtell

Corporate Counsel

Will is a partner in the corporate team and specialises in M&A, fundraisings and equity capital markets (with an emphasis on AIM). He works out of both the Oxford and London offices and has particular expertise in the technology and life sciences sectors. He has a strong track record in complex and high value transactions, often with a cross-border element. Will has also acted on some of the largest Oxford University spin-outs to date.

His clients range from start-ups and high growth companies to FTSE 100 companies as well as high net worth individuals and successful entrepreneurs. Will is listed in the elite ‘leading lawyer’ category for corporate law by The Legal 500, which notes his ability to combine ‘undoubted legal expertise with emotional intelligence’. Chambers UK states that “he provides sound, authoritative advice – exactly the sort of person you want standing by your side during a complicated transaction’.

Will joined Penningtons Manches Cooper in 2014 from another leading UK law firm. Earlier in his career, he spent several years as an in-house corporate lawyer with Vodafone, working mainly on high profile M&A deals. He trained and qualified at a Magic Circle firm.

Elisabetta Papa

Head of IP

Practising since 1999, Elisabetta has drafted and prosecuted patent applications for, and provided advice to, major research organisations, universities and multinational companies as well as Italian and foreign medium-sized companies.

Her practice has focused in particular on biomechanic and biomedical patents. She is part of SIB’s Nano Bio Team, a multidisciplinary group of experts that deals with drafting, filing and prosecuting patent applications concerning new technologies, particularly in the nanotechnology platform.

Elisabetta is enrolled with the Register of Court-Appointed Experts on Industrial Property of the Court of Rome. She also acts as ex-parte expert in patent litigation.

Elisabetta teaches European Patent practice and strategies in courses leading up to European Patent Attorney qualification exams organised by the Centre d’Etudes Internationales de la Propriété Industrielle (R. Schuman University, Strasbourg). She is a former member of the EPO’s EC-III examination committee in charge of marking D papers during the qualifying examination for European Patent Attorneys (EQE).

Elisabetta is an experienced speaker and moderator at international intellectual property events. She is also:

Member of the Ordine dei Consulenti in Proprietà Industriale (Italian Industrial Property Consultants Institute), of the Collegio dei Consulenti in Proprietà Industriale (Italian section of FICPI), of the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office, of AIPPI, FICPI, AIPLA (co-chair Intellectual Property Practice in Europe Committee), EPLIT and of the Italian Professional Engineering Institute; enrolled with the Register of Court-Appointed Experts on Industrial Property of the Court of Rome, and Member of the European Patent Practice Committee (Mechanics Subcommittee) of the European Patent Institute.

Her qualifications include Italian and European Patent Attorney, Community Design Attorney, and Qualified to represent clients before the Unified Patent Court.

Michael Holder

A seasoned executive with more than 25 years of experience, Mr. Holder has served in senior financial, executive management, and board roles with leading private and public companies in the medtech, biotech, and pharma related industries. Most recently, he served as Chief Financial Officer with ImmuneCyte, Inc., a global clinical stage biopharmaceutical company with innovative cell and gene immune-oncology therapeutics. At ImmuneCyte, Inc., Mr. Holder led preparations for a major IPO or SPAC transaction and was responsible for the development of financial team and infrastructure capital raises, M&A, and external audits. Prior to ImmuneCyte, Inc., Mr. Holder was CEO and Portfolio Manager at Carolina Longevity Institute, LLC, a global investment company focused on investments in medtech, biotech and pharma companies that improve healthspan and longevity. At Carolina Longevity Institute, LLC, Mr. Holder managed all investment, financial, administrative, corporate development, and operational activities. Prior to Carolina Longevity Institute, LLC, Mr. Holder was initially CFO and later Chairman and CEO at Organ Transport Systems, Inc., a medical device company, where he built the company from early stage through multiple financing rounds as well as research, regulatory, and commercial launch activities. Prior to Organ Transport Systems, Inc., Mr. Holder was the CFO of three public or private medtech and pharma related companies. Mr. Holder holds a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina., and previously obtained his CPA.

Prof Dimitri Pournaras MD

Dimitri Pournaras graduated from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece and undertook all his postgraduate training in the UK. He was awarded a Royal College of Surgeons of England Research Fellowship to conduct research on obesity, diabetes and metabolic surgery.
He completed his PhD in the Department of Investigative Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College London investigating the mechanism of action of bariatric surgery and the role of the gut on appetite and glucose homeostasis. He then trained in oesophagogastric surgery in Cambridge and Norwich. Following a Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Fellowship approved by the Royal College of Surgeons of England in Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton, he was appointed as a Consultant Upper Gastrointestinal and Bariatric Surgeon in North Bristol NHS Trust where he currently works as part of the multidisciplinary team treating obesity as a disease.
Dimitri is the inaugural British Obesity and Metabolic Surgery Society/Royal College of Surgeons of England bariatric Surgical Specialty Lead and is committed to high quality, collaborative, patient centred research with the objective to improve obesity care.

Dr David Feigal

Dr. David Feigal, M.D., spent 12 years with the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) where he served as Director, Center for Devices & Radiological Health (CDRH), Director, Division of Anti-infective & Antiviral Drug Products, Center for Drug Evaluation & Research (CDER), and Deputy Director, Center for Biologics Evaluation & Research (CBER). 

He is former Vice President of Global Regulatory Strategy, Amgen, and former Senior Vice President, Head of Global Regulatory and Global Safety Surveillance at Elan Corporation. Dr. Feigal has more than 30 years of experience in drug development and regulation. 

Before joining the FDA, he worked for 10 years within the academic and hospital settings of the University of California in San Diego, San Francisco and Davis.

Prof Frank Greenway MD

Prof Frank Greenway MD is a Member of the Advisory Board for Obesity and Diabetes.

He serves as an Advisor at Ignite Capital. He focuses on advising the medical and wellness issues at the firm. He serves as Chief of Outpatient Clinic and a Noted Researcher in the Divisions of Obesity and Functional Foods at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. Dr. Greenway serves as Professor and Director of outpatient clinical research at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, LA, which is a research campus of Louisiana State University. He served as an Advisor of Neothetics, Inc. Dr. Greenway serves as the Medical Director at the Pennington Center outpatient research clinic. He served an endocrinology and metabolism fellowship at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, finally becoming Chief Resident in Endocrinology and Metabolism. He worked under George Bray in the General Clinical Research Center on a variety of obesity research projects. His research interest has continued to be the treatment of obesity. Dr. Greenway had a practice of internal medicine, endocrinology and metabolism in Marina del Rey, CA, for 20 years before coming to the Pennington Center, where he has directed the outpatient research clinic for 15 years. Dr. Greenway became a clinical professor of medicine at UCLA before moving to Louisiana. He has a particular interest in the creation of novel foods and nutriceuticals and has served as a consultant to General Nutrition Corporation. He served as Scientific Advisor and Technical Advisor of Origin BioMed Inc. Dr. Greenway serves as a Member of Medical Advisory Board at Jenny Craig, Inc. Dr. Greenway serves as a Member of Clinical Advisory Board of Zafgen, Inc. and MicroBiome Therapeutics, LLC (formerly NuMe Health LLC) and served as its Member of Scientific Advisory Board. He served as Member of Scientific Advisory Board of Catalyst Pharmaceutical Partners Inc. since May 2008. Dr. Greenway has been a fellow at The Obesity Society since its inception in 1982 and has served as head of the clinical committee in addition to regularly participating in the TOS annual scientific sessions. He has published more than 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and more than 30 book chapters. He participated in obesity surgical research during his fellowship, did the medical support for the Harbor-UCLA surgical obesity program while in practice, was part of the NIH consensus panel on obesity surgery, the Endocrine Society committee to develop guidelines for the medical treatment of the obesity surgical patient and is now participating in obesity surgical research in Louisiana. He has served as an advisor to Jenny Craig for over 20 years and through this association has developed an appreciation of commercial weight loss. Dr. Greenway has been involved in pharmaceutical clinical trials to develop new obesity medications, including acting in an advisory capacity for pharmaceutical companies, including Orexigen. He received the Steelman-Seim Award for Teaching from the American Society of Bariatric Physicians and has collaborated in publications with their membership. He did internship and residency in internal medicine at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. Dr. Greenway graduated from Stanford University and UCLA Medical School. He holds MD in Medicine from UCLA School of Medicine from 1966 to 1970.

He is an experienced entrepreneur who has published more than 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and more than 30 book chapters in the field of obesity and diabetes.

Prof. Guido Costamagna

Prof Guido Costamagna MD 

Prof Guido Costamagna MD is a Member of the Advisory Board for Endoscopy.

He is Professor of Surgery and Head of the Digestive Endoscopy Unit at the Gemelli Hospital of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (UCSC) in Rome, Italy. He is a world-renowned endoscopist with special expertise in therapeutic bilio-pancreatic endoscopy. He is the Scientific Director of the European Endoscopy Training Center at the UCSC (which he founded in 2002), Director of the Institute of Clinical Surgery, Past-President of the Italian Society of Digestive Endoscopy and Past President of the ESGE (European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy). He has performed approximately 20 surgical world premieres in Italy. From 2015-2018, he is chair of digestive endoscopy at USIAS and member of the Institute for Research into Cancers of the Digestive System (IRCAD).

Guido Costamagna has authored over 600 publications, including journal articles, book chapters and abstracts. He has held the functions of athlete, President of the Jury, Tournament Director, and doctor for Italy’s national fencing team in fourteen world championships and two preparatory Olympics phases (1984, 1988).

Prof. Ricardo Cohen

Dr. Cohen is the director for the Center for Obesity and Diabetes at the Oswaldo Cruz German Hospital located in São Paulo, Brazil. Dr. Cohen is also the former president of the Brazilian Society of Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery, and is the current president of the International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity and Metabolic Disorders (IFSO), Latin America Chapter.
Dr. Cohen has been the primary investigator (PI) for 15 studies, including two EndoBarrier studies. He has published more than 150 papers and is considered a leader in the field of surgery for patients with type 2 diabetes and non-severe obesity.

Prof. Trevor M. Jones​


Prof Trevor M Jones CBE is a non-Executive Director and Member of the Advisory Board for Management and Regulation.

Trevor M Jones, CBE PhD DSc (Hon) FRCP FMedSci FBPhS FRSM FRSC FLSW is a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, and a former Head of R&D, at Wellcome. He continues to have a distinguished career in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry as well as in academia.

Trevor M Jones, CBE PhD DSc (Hon) FRCP FMedSci FBPhS FRSM FRSC FLSW is a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, and a former Head of R&D, at Wellcome. He continues to have a distinguished career in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry as well as in academia.

He was main board director for Research & Development at The Wellcome Foundation Ltd (Wellcome plc).[1] During his tenure, the organisation was responsible for the development of a number of significant products. He was not only involved in the introduction of AZT at his time with the Wellcome Foundation but also its pricing in the USA/EU and liaison with the South African Government over patents.

Jones assisted the Government to attract inward investment into the UK, particularly from the Japanese pharmaceutical companies through the “Prescribe UK” initiative (with Virginia Bottomley and David Sainsbury). He also led negotiations with the UK Government on the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme (PPRS) when he was head of the ABPI. His latest role is with growing Life Sciences in Wales (WAG Fund administered by Arthurian Life Sciences Ltd) and advising the Wales Government on the future of the NHS as a member of The Bevan Commission. He is also a non-executive director of the new life science investment fund, Arix Bioscience Plc. 

Jones attended Wolverhampton grammar school from 1953 to 1955, followed by Sir George Monoux Grammar School, then King’s College London (University of London, Chelsea) where he obtained a PhD degree in 1967 in the Faculty of Medicine.

Jones was a postdoctoral researcher between 1967 and 1968. From 1972 until 1975, Jones was Head of Development at The Boots Co Ltd. During his time there he was responsible for the technical development of several new products, notably Prothiaden (antidepressant) and Froben (anti-inflammatory), a range of generic products and the technology transfer of Brufen/Nurofen (anti-inflammatory) to many overseas units, notably Upjohn, USA.

Jones worked for the Wellcome Foundation Ltd[1] from 1974 to 1994 and, as R&D Director oversaw over 2,500 staff covering all scientific, technical and medical specialities as well as Quality Assurance and Patents/Agreements.[1] As a member of the Board of Wellcome plc[1] from 1987 to 1994, he was intimately involved in the offering of shares by The Wellcome Trust. During his tenure the disposal of Wellcome’s interests in vaccines to Medeva (Evans) and the subsequent re-integration of all aspects of biotechnology into the mainstream business took place. This included working with the biotech joint-venture Wellgen in the USA on the buy-out of the partner (Genetics Institute) share.

During his time as R&D Director, the organisation was responsible for the successful development of Zovirax (anti-herpes); Lamictal (anti-epileptic); Retrovir: AZT (anti-HIVAIDS);[3] Acrivastine (anti-histamine); Atovaquone (PCP/Malaria); Exosurf (infant respiratory distress); Mivacron and Nuromax (neuromuscular blockade); Wellferon (Hepatitis B&C); Zolmitriptan (anti migraine); plus an extensive range of over-the-counter formulations; particularly products for coughs and colds (Sudafed), analgesia (Calpol) and skin care. He also led initiatives concerned with licensing-in of new product opportunities including Centocor (Panorex), Fujisawa USA (LNMMA), Laboratoires Pierre Fabre (Navelbine).

Prior to his appointment to the Board of Wellcome plc, Jones was Director of Development and established a new Pesticides R&D operation which was included in the sale of the Wellcome hygiene business to Rhône-Poulenc. From 1994 until August 2004, Jones was Director General of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI)[4] where he directed all the industry activities: government relations on behalf of the 100 national and international pharmaceutical companies. In that capacity, Jones was a member of the UK Government, on the Pharmaceutical Industry Ministerial Strategy Working Group on Pharmaceuticals, on the Board of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) and the (IFPMA). For 12 years Jones was a member of the UK Government Regulatory Agency, The Medicines Commission; an advisor to the Cabinet Office on the Human Genome Project in 2001; a member of the Prime Minister’s Task force on the Competitiveness of the Pharmaceutical Industry (PICTF) and Chair of the Government Advisory Group on Genetics Research.[5]

From 2004 until 2015, he was a Director of Allergan.[6] He was also a member of the board of directors of VeronaPharma plc from 2006 to 2014,[7] a spin-out company developing drugs for COPD, coughs and asthma. The International Clinical Research Organisation, Synexus Ltd from 2007 to 2014.[8] He is currently Chairman of the CRO Simbec-Orion Group Research[9] a Trustee of The UK Stem Cell Foundation,[10] Director of the drug discovery company, e-Therapeutics plc and the life science investment company Arix Bioscience Plc.

He has served on a number of other Boards as Director in the UK: NextPharma Ltd[11] (contract manufacturer), ReNeuron plc[12] from 1998 to 2012 (stem cell therapy), in the Netherlands: BAC BV[13] (bioaffinity company), in Italy from 2007 to 2013: Sigma-Tau Finanziaria S.p.A (Pharmaceuticals),[14] from 2010 to 2011 Tecnogen SpA in the USA: SciClone Inc (Biotech) and President of Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals Inc (Rare Diseases)[15] from 2012 to 2013.

From 2000 until 2008, he was Vice Chair of King’s College London Council.[16] He holds honorary degrees/fellowships/gold medals from seven universities, was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians and The British Pharmacological Society[17] and was elected to the French Academie Nationale de Pharmacie.[18] He is a member of the Industrial Advisory Board and the Vice Chancellor’s Advisory Committee at the University of Surrey; the Advisory Board to the School of Management at Swansea University; a member of the Advisory Board of the Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences (APS); and a Senator for the European Federation for Pharmaceutical Sciences (EUFEPS).

He has published more than 150 papers (see further reading below) in learned and professional journals and is on the editorial board of a number of learned journals. The latter are Drug Development Communications (Marcel Dekker) from 1973; the International Journal of Pharmaceutical Technology and Product Manufacture (Childwall University Press) from 1979; the International Journal of Pharmaceutics (Elsevier) from 1984; Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology (Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain) from 1985; Editions de Sante, Revue S.T. Pharma from 1986; “Advances in Pharmaceutical Sciences” Editor with Professor Ganderton, Academic Press from 1987;[19] Journal of Drug Development from 1988; Editorial Advisory Board, “Drugs and the Pharmaceutical Sciences” from 1993;[20] the Journal of Research in Pharmaceutical Economics from 1994. He is a frequent guest lecturer at international pharmaceutical conferences and seminars and has appeared regularly on radio and TV on pharmaceutical and medical issues.

During the period 2003–2005, Jones was a Commissioner at the World Health Organization (WHO) on the Commission for Intellectual Property, Innovation and Public Health (CIPIH).[21]

He was a founder member and a member of the Board of the Medicines for Malaria Venture MMV.[22] Jones advised the Government of the Netherlands on Life Science as a member of the TiPharma Advisory Board.[23] He was also a member of the EU Commission IMI Scientific Advisory Board. In 2005 he was the winner of the SCRIP Life Time Achievement award for his contribution to pharmaceutical sciences and the industry.[24]

Jones has a wealth of honours and distinctions. In 1987 he was awarded a fellowship of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. Other honours and distinctions, which have been awarded are:

  • 1987: Harrison Memorial Medal, Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain
  • 1992: Gold Medal, Comenius University
  • 1993: Honorary PhD, University of Athens
  • 1994: Honorary DSc, University of Strathclyde
  • 1994: Fellow of King’s College London (FKC)
  • 1995: Honorary Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine (FFPM)
  • 1996: Charter Gold Medal, Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain
  • 1998: Honorary Fellow of the UCL School of Pharmacy
  • 1998: Honorary DSc, University of Nottingham
  • 1999: PHARMA Outstanding Achievement Award
  • 2000: Honorary DSc, University of Bath
  • 2001: FIP lifetime award for outstanding contribution to Biotechnology
  • 2003: Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
  • 2003: Honorary DSc, University of Bradford
  • 2005: Honorary Fellow of the British Pharmacological Society (HonFBPharmacolS)
  • 2005: Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (Hon FRCP)
  • 2005: Winner, SCRIP Life Time Achievement Award
  • 2005: Elected to Foreign Fellowship of the Academie Nationale de Pharmacie FRANCE
  • 2006: Honorary Fellow of the College of Pharmacy Practice (FCPP)
  • 2007: Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine (FRSM)
  • 2015: Eminent Fellow of the Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • 2016: Fellow of The Academy of Medical Sciences
  • 2018: Fellow of The Learned Society of Wales

Dr Tareck Saleh

CSO, Co-Founder

  • Pioneering gastric endoscopist with >1,000 gastric procedures
  • Weight loss clinics in Dubai, & Paris

Dr Tarek Saleh is a is an Investor, Senior Consultant and Member of the Advisory Board for Endoscopy.

He is a world expert in intragastric balloon (chairman of training center for the Middle East from 2004) with more than 1,700 cases since 2000. He was the first in the Middle East to perform a Primary Obesity Surgery Endoluminal procedure and a world expert and pioneer in the field having done more than 160 since September 2012.

He is a world expert in intragastric balloons with more than 1,700 cases since 2000, was the first in the Middle East to successfully perform a Primary Obesity Surgery Endoluminal procedure.

Prof. F. Rubino

Metabolic Surgery

  • Globally-recognized bariatric surgeon.
  • Former Professor with >1,000 publications

Professor Francesco Rubino MD is Chief Officer for Obesity and Diabetes and Member of the Board of Directors.

He is a globally renowned bariatric surgeon and a leading researcher in obesity and diabetes.

Professor Rubino’s research showed that the anti-diabetes effect of certain bariatric procedures, particularly gastric bypass surgery, results from mechanisms beyond weight loss. This evidence provided a scientific rationale for surgical treatment of type 2 diabetes, including that of less obese patients. Professor Rubino’s research-finding and theories also point to a role of the gastrointestinal tract in the pathophysiology of diabetes and obesity. His clinical expertise includes laparoscopic, bariatric, metabolic and upper digestive surgery, including gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, gastric banding and novel procedures. He is internationally recognized as one of the world’s leaders in the research, teaching and practice of metabolic and weight-loss surgery.

Professor Rubino received his MD and completed his residency in general surgery at the Catholic University and Policlinico Gemelli in Rome, Italy. He completed fellowships in laparoscopic surgery at the European Institute of Telesurgery in Strasbourg, France; Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York; and Cleveland Clinic.

A member of many professional organizations, Professor Rubino is the recipient of numerous awards, has given hundreds of presentations throughout the world, and is the author of over 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals and book chapters. He was one of the co-organizers of the landmark Diabetes Surgery Summit in Rome in 2007, an influential scientific event where leading international authorities for the first time reached a consensus on the best candidates for the surgical treatment of diabetes. Professor Rubino also served as Congress Director and organized the 1st and 2nd World Congress on Interventional Therapies for Type 2 Diabetes in New York City, bringing together over 1,000 multidisciplinary diabetes experts from 62 countries.

For several consecutive years, Professor Rubino was selected by both US News & World Report and Castle Connolly as one of “America’s Top Doctors” and was selected by Crain’s NY Business as a notable “40 under 40”, which recognizes young rising stars in the healthcare, business, non-profit and entertainment industries.

His work has been featured in journals such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, 60 Minutes on CBS, the Guardian, and the New Scientists as well as on national TVs and newspapers in Japan, Italy, Qatar, Brazil, South Africa and other countries.

Prof. D. Cummings

Metabolic Surgery

David E. Cummings, MD, FASMBS is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Metabolism, Endocrinology and Nutrition at the University of Washington, based at the UW Medicine Diabetes Institute and the V.A. Puget Sound Health Care System, where he is Director of the Weight Management Clinic and Program. He studies the endocrine regulation of appetite, body weight, and glucose homeostasis. A major current focus of his research is to elucidate hormonal/metabolic mechanisms mediating the profound effects of bariatric/metabolic surgery on diabetes and body weight, as well as to determine the role of surgery in diabetes care through randomized clinical trials. He also seeks to clarify the physiologic functions of the orexigenic hormone ghrelin.

Dr. Cummings graduated summa cum laude from Dartmouth College, receiving Highest Distinction in his major of Biochemistry. He obtained his medical degree from Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers – the highest award conferred by the U.S. government to researchers in their early independent careers. It was given at the White House by the President and included seven years of additional research funding. Dr. Cummings has also received the 1996 Ethan Simms Young Investigator Award from The Obesity Society, the 2001 Philip J. Fialkow Scholar Award from the University of Washington, the 2006 Outstanding Investigator Award from the Western Society for Clinical Investigation, honorary membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation since 2006, the Endocrine Society’s 2009 Pfizer International Award, a 2010 honorary Pfizer Visiting Professorship, the 2016 Vivian Fonseca Scholar Award from the American Diabetes Association, the 2017 Honorary Lifetime Fellow appointment from the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery (the first non-surgeon ever to receive this), an honorary professorship awarded in 2017 from Sri Aurobindo Medical College & Postgraduate Institute in India, and the 2018 Spitzer Award from Louisiana State University.

Prof. P. Schauer

Metabolic Surgery

Dr. Philip R. Schauer M.D., FACS, is a Senior Consultant and Member of the Advisory Board for Obesity, Diabetes and Bariatrics.

A prominent surgeon, educator and researcher, Prof Schauer has been the principal investigator or co-investigator on numerous research grants and has published numerous papers, abstracts and book chapters related to gastrointestinal and laparoscopic surgery.

He serves as Chief of Minimally Invasive General Surgery and Director of the Cleveland Clinic Bariatric and Metabolic Institute Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Schauer serves as Professor of Surgery and Director of Advanced Laparoscopic & Bariatric Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. He serves as Director of Endoscopic Surgery, Director of the Surgical Weight Loss Center. His clinical areas of expertise include laparoscopic and gastrointestinal surgery. He served as President of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery from 2006 to 2007.

A prominent surgeon, educator and researcher, Dr. Schauer joined the Cleveland Clinic in December 2004. He left the University of Pittsburgh after a nine-year tenure to assume these positions. He also serves as the Associate Editor for the journal Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases and is an Editorial Board Member for three other surgical journals. He serves as Director at the Bariatric and Metabolic Institute. He served as a co-director of the DSS with Drs. Cummings, Kaplan and Rubino. He has also participated in developing surgical innovations that utilize minimally invasive, endoscopic and laparoscopic operative techniques. Dr. Schauer is board certified in surgery by the American Board of Surgery.

He has been the principal investigator or co-investigator on numerous research grants and has published numerous papers, abstracts and book chapters related to gastrointestinal and laparoscopic surgery. His memberships in professional and scientific societies include the American College of Surgeons, Association of Academic Surgery, Society of University Surgeons, Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons, American Society of Bariatric Surgery, Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), and Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract. Dr. Schauer is a Member of the Society of University Surgeons, Society of Surgery of the Alimentary Tract, Central Surgical Society and the Society of Laparonendoscopic Surgeons. Dr. Schauer has authored over two hundred scientific papers, editorials, textbook chapters, abstracts and video productions. Dr. Schauer is board certified in surgery by the American Board of Surgery. Dr. Schauer received his Medical Degree from the Baylor College of Medicine, completed his residency in surgery at The University of Texas at San Antonio and completed his fellowship in laparoscopic surgery at Duke University Medical Center.

Prof. G. Mingrone

Diabesity & Metabolic surgery

Prof Geltrude Mingrone M.D., FACS, is Keyron’s Chief Advisor.

She is Professor of Diabetes and Metabolic Disease at King’s College, and Director of the Centre for Obesity related pathologies at the Catholic University of Rome. She has pushed forward the boundaries of metabolic medicine for the last 20 years and is widely regarded as among the most recognised researchers in metabolic medicine of our time.

She has pushed forward the boundaries of metabolic medicine for the last 20 years and is widely regarded as among the most recognised researchers in metabolic medicine and diabetes research of our time.

She has published more than 300 scientific papers and written on the most prominent international journals, such as The Lancet, J Clin Invest, Diabetes, Diabetologia, Am J Physiol, etc. She regularly appears in the national and international press. She was a EU expert during the FP5and FP6. Her expertise is mainly centred on the 24h energy expenditure measurement using the Calorimetric Chamber at the Catholic University; insulin sensitivity and secretion particularly in obese/morbidly obese and diabetic subjects before and after bariatric surgery. She implemented new techniques for the clinical practice, such as BIA reconstruction of the lower limb skeletal muscle mass, referring to NMR She is actively contributing to the research aiming at elucidating the mechanisms of reversibility of diabetes after bariatric surgery.

She has been Executive Director of the European Chapter of the American College of Nutrition until 2010, Member of the Board of Directors of the American College of Nutrition, a Former Member of the Board of the European Group for the study of Insulin Resistance (EGIR), Expert in the Panel on Nutrition of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) until 2005, Member of the Board of the Group of Nutrition of the EASD.

Prof. B. Abu Dayyeh

Gastric endoscopy ​

Dr. Abu Dayyeh is a Professor of Medicine, Director of Advanced Endoscopy, Director of Bariatric and Metabolic Endoscopy, and Consultant in Gastroenterology and Advanced Therapeutic Endoscopy at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. His research focuses on development of minimally invasive interventions for the endoscopic management of obesity and metabolic disease. 

Dr.Abu Dayyeh has published more than 200 peer reviewed articles, reviews, and book
chapters in the field. His work has been highly cited with more than 2000 citations. He received multiple awards and grants in support of his research, and has been invited to give more than 200 national and international keynote lectures. He is the recipient of the Jordanian Start of Science award bestowed by King Abdullah II of Jordan during the 2017 World Science Forum in the Dead Sea, Jordan. 

He serves as a consultant and advisor to multiple leading US and International companies who are developing novel therapeutics for obesity, metabolic disease, and advanced endoscopy.

Prof. C. Thompson

Gastric endoscopy

Christopher C. Thompson, MD, MSc, FASGE, FACG, AGAF, FJGES is the Director of Endoscopy at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is also the Advanced Endoscopy Fellowship Program Director and is clinical faculty at Boston Children’s Hospital and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. 

Dr. Thompson’s clinical interests include endoscopic surgery as applied to foregut conditions, pancreatobiliary disease, postsurgical complications, and bariatric endoscopy. He spends the majority of his time performing these advanced endoscopic procedures and also cares for patients in the ambulatory setting and on the gastroenterology inpatient consult service. The remainder of his time is devoted to research activities in endoscopic surgery, with a focus on device development, endoscopic education, and clinical outcomes. He currently has active clinical, translational, bench, and large animal protocols. He has also led several multicenter clinical trials. His research has resulted in numerous patents, the development of new endoscopic procedures, and over 200 publications. Some of his important clinical innovations include the development of new endoscopic techniques for treating pancreatic necrosis, gastric outlet obstruction, sleeve gastrectomy stenosis, pancreatojejunal anastomotic strictures, and postsurgical complications. 

Additionally, he was awarded the Brigham and Women’s Physician Organization Clinical Innovation Award in 2007 for developing and performing the first endoscopic suturing procedure to treat obesity. He also invented anastomosis technology which has been shown to effectively treat type 2 diabetes in early clinical trials. He was responsible for much of the early work in Bariatric Endoscopy, helping to pioneer the field, and edited the first textbook on the subject. In addition to these clinical innovations, he developed an endoscopic part-task simulator that is used by many fellowship programs. He founded four medical device start-up companies including Beacon Endoscopic which was acquired by Covidien in 2013. He was a founding member of the original NOTES working group and founding chair for the Association of Bariatric Endoscopy (ABE). 

These accomplishments have led to a broad clinical referral base, and to national and international invitations for lectureships and live case demonstrations, including the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) Blackwell Lectureship, the American Gastroenterology Association (AGA) Presidential Plenary Lecture, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) J Edward Berk Presidential Plenary Lecture, the ACG Edgar Achkar Visiting Professorship, various post-graduate education courses for major US gastroenterology and surgical societies, and numerous respected courses throughout Europe, Asia, and South America. In 2019 he was awarded the ASGE Distinguished Endoscopic Research Mentoring Award, which recognizes outstanding career achievement by endoscopic research mentors who have devote substantial time and effort to develop and nurture the next generation of endoscopic investigators. He has mentored more than 20 fellows, many of whom have gone on to thrive in prestigious academic institutions, and established the first Fellowship in Bariatric Endoscopy.



  • Endoscopic Sleeve Gastroplasty (ESG)
  • Primary Obesity Surgery Endoluminal (POSE)
  • Distal POSE
  • Transoral Outlet Reduction (TORe)
  • Restorative Obesity Surgery Endoscopic (ROSE)
  • Aspiration Therapy
  • Intragastric Balloon placement and removal
  • Gastrojejunal Anastomosis Argon Plasma Coagulation (APC) for weight regain
  • Pneumatic Dilation of Sleeve Stenosis
  • Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF)
  • Peroral Endoscopic Myotomy (POEM) for treatment of achalasia and gastroparesis
  • Palliative gastroenteric anastomosis
  • Gastric Access for Temporary Endoscopy (GATE) – endoscopic ultrasound-guided deployment of a lumen-apposing metal stent (LAMS) to gain access into the remnant stomach to facilitate standard ERCP
  • Endoscopic Ultrasound-guided Gastroenterostomy (EUS-GE) for managing malignant gastric outlet obstruction (GOO)

Dr M. Galvao Neto

Gastric endoscopy

Dr. Manoel Galvao Neto, M.D. is a Senior Consultant and Member of the Advisory Board for Endoscopy.

He is a globally-renowned endoscopic surgeon with wide experience in medical devices for obesity and diabetes.

He graduated in Medicine at Bahiana School of Medicine and Public Health, Bahia, Brazil in 1989. After finishing the three years residency program at the 9 July Hospital in São Paulo (Digestive Surgery and Endoscopy), he returned to Bahia as invited Professor of Surgical Technique at Bahiana School from 1993-1998, becoming Coordinator of the Experimental Surgery Research Group and Assistant Professor from 1998 to 2000. At this period, he developed a training model in laparoscopic surgery with rats using conventional instruments, focused on medical students. With this model, he had trained four classes of 200 medical students. Also the model of training has been exported to others universities in Brazil, including Santa Casa of São Paulo, where it was adopted in the graduate and post-graduate program of Gynecology. On this matter, in 2003 he presented a Master degree thesis at São Paulo University about this training model which was published in peer-review journal.

 He is also a board certified specialist in Digestive Surgery by the CBCD (1992), Gastroenterology by FBG (1995) and Digestive Endoscopy by SOBED (2011). From 1993 to 2000, he was proctor and responsible for the implementation of the residency program in General Surgery at Cleriston Andrade Hospital in Feira de Santana – Bahia, Brazil. He was also the general Director of this hospital from 1996-1997.He is a former Staff Surgeon and Associate  Professor of Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic – Bariatric Metabolic Institute. He was born in Poland, now an US Citizen. He graduated from the Jagiellonian University School of Medicine in Krakow, Poland and was trained in weight loss and general surgery in the United States (Mount Sinai School of Medicine – New York, University of Pittsburgh, PA), Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Canada, United Kingdom and Japan. 

From 1999 to 2000, he worked as assistant surgeon at São Rafael Hospital (Salvador, Bahia), where he was a surgical proctor and responsible for the implementation and team training of the esophageal manometry service. In 2001 he returned to São Paulo, working as coordinator of the esophageal motility Service at the Diagnoses of America Laboratory and concurrently worked as a researcher and consultant for Alacer Biomedica company, developing hardware and software on esophageal manometry and pHmetry which are current leaders in the market. He also developed training modules with interactive bases, which have been used by more than seven hundred doctors in the country. Recently he developed with industry high-resolution manometry and pH-impedance devices at the Esophageal Motility Laboratory in Mario Covas Hospital which has been authorized by the regulatory agency (ANVISA) to be used clinically
In 2002, he founded with Dr. Almino Ramos and Dr. Manoela Galvao the Gastro Obesity Center, and was the scientific coordinator, chief endoscopist and played a key role in developing training models. This is probably the most successful bariatric surgery unit in Latin America with more than ten thousands bariatric procedures performed to date. In this area, he developed training models for laparoscopic bariatric surgery and multidisciplinary teams in partnership with Ethicon Endo-Surgery. To date more than 500 surgeons and 100 multidisciplinary team members from Latin America (including Brazil), Portugal, Spain, Japan and India have been trained on those models. He developed the endoscopic sub-specialty of “Bariatric Endoscopy” with Dr. Josemberg Campos from Federal University of Pernambuco – UFPE). Our experience has been published in more than 40 peer reviewed articles and 3 books written in Portuguese and Spanish.

Prof Carel le Roux MD


Professor Carel le Roux (MBChB, MSC, FRCP, FRCPath, PhD) is an Investor, Chief Medical Officer and Director of Keyron’s Pharmaceutical Division.

He is a leading Professor in metabolic science, has published numerous high-impact research papers in the field, and is a world-leading expert in obesity and diabetes.

He graduated from medical school in Pretoria South Africa, completed his Senior House Officer training at Barts and The London Hospital, his SpR training in metabolic medicine at the Hammersmith Hospitals and his PhD at Imperial College London. He was appointed as Senior Lecturer in 2006, promoted to Reader in 2009 at Imperial and accepted a Chair as Head of Pathology at University College Dublin in 2011. He received the President of Ireland Young Researcher Award from science Foundation Ireland, a Clinician Scientist Award from the National Institute Health Research in the UK and a Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Fellowship amongst others.

A popular lecturer at undergraduate level, national and international conferences he has also supervised several MSc, MD and PhD students, many of whom have gone on to successful academic careers.

After establishing a successful independent research group he published numerous high impact papers over the years that have influenced his field. In particular, his translational research on the understanding of the physiological role and pathological changes in appetite control has been widely acknowledged. He has also been able to take up a variety of editorial positions of peer reviewed journals.

Working within the Diabetes Complications Research Centre and the Section of Surgery and Surgical Specialities the focus of his research is primarily concerned with increased mortality and morbidity associated with obesity and diabetes. A better mechanistic understanding of how the “gut talks to the brain” will allow safer and more effective treatments to be used in future. To this end the role of gut hormones, bile acids and changes in food preference are areas of interest. 

Dr Eyal S. Ron


  • Founder/CTO of multiple weight loss startups, incl. Gelesis (Plenity) which underwent was acquired for $1.3bn in 2021

Dr. Eyal S. Ron is a visionary serial entrepreneur who led multiple start-ups from conception to exit. He creates tremendous value by effective mentoring while accelerating the timeline toward the value inflection points.

He is Co-Founder of many biotech companies including Gelesis, the maker of Plenity, a medical device for obesity/overweight. Gelesis underwent a merger in 2021 for $1.3bn.

Dr. Ron provides hand-on entrepreneurial out-of-the-box thought-process and deep science-based expertise. Dr. Ron serves on corporate boards of directors and gives back to the community by volunteering with several mentoring organizations.

Dr. Ron has over 30 years of experience in the development of drugs, biomaterials, medical devices, cosmeceuticals, nutraceuticals and drug delivery systems. He has a record of accomplishments for combining science with innovative business strategies, having developed and implemented the scientific, regulatory and clinical strategy for several companies. He has in-depth understanding of total development process.

Dr. Ron is the author of over 100 papers, book chapters and abstracts. He is also the inventor of over 50 patents principally in the area of drug formulations, drug delivery, tissue engineering, devices and biomaterials. Dr. Ron is a regular invited lecturer in the area of innovative approaches to create trusted partnership with service providers.

Dr. Ron facilitated the formation of over 12 companies and under his leadership over ten products were brought to market.

Mr Nicolaas Verheem

  • Founder of Teradek (acquired by Vitec for $35m)
  • Life sciences investor

Mr. Nicol Verheem  is Keyron’s Investor, Chief Investment Officer and Director of Keyron’s Diagnostics Division. He is a Member of the Board of Directors.

He is a leading electronic engineer with an extensive technology background and is an established life sciences investor.

He serves as Divisional Chief Executive Officer of Creative Solutions Division at The Vitec Group plc. Mr. Verheem has been Senior Vice President of Technology at Vitec Videocom Ltd. since August 2013. Mr. Verheem served as Senior Vice President of Creative Solutions, Broadcast Division at The Vitec Group plc. Mr. Verheem served as Chief Executive Officer of Teradek. Mr. Verheem has an extensive technology background, previously working for Impac Technologies and the GE Security Digital Video Center of Excellence where he was responsible for leading all engineering activities. In 2008, he founded Teradek and grew it from a small engineering services and licensing firm into an international supplier of digital video products. He holds a degree in Electronic Engineering from the University of Pretoria, South Africa and obtained black belt certifications in Six Sigma and Lean Manufacturing during his time with GE.

Dr Luca Melindo

  • Financier
  • Key role in DiaSorin (Mkt cap $6.5bn) acquisition and floating

Financial executive with over 20 years of investment and business development experience.

Origination, analysis and execution and portfolio management of large and mid-market private equity deals (development capital, buy out, replacement) in all industries – proven track record, more than 15 completed deals, with significant realized return on invested capital.

I am currently considering either positions in continuity with my career or temporary management assignments to support shareholders and management in business development or capital increase projects.

Strong partnership aptitude, focus on industrial development, open minded, pragmatic and proactive approach to problem solving.

Prof. Marco Castagneto

CSO, Co-Founder

  • Globally-recognized bariatric surgeon.
  • Former Professor with >1,000 publications

Professor Marco Castagneto is Chief Scientific Officer and Director of Keyron’s Medical Device Division.

He has 20 years’ experience in bariatric surgery research and practice, has over 1,000 scientific publications to his name and has performed more than 2,000 surgeries, including 500 bariatric surgeries.

He has been Professor of Surgery; Director of the Department of Surgery at the Catholic University, Rome. He has been Fellow of the American College of Surgeons for 40 years, as well as of the President Italian Society of Intensive Care; the Italian Society of Surgery; The Transplantation Society; and the European Society of Surgical Research. He has over 1,000 scientific publications and has performed more than 2,000 surgeries. He has over 20 years’ experience in bariatric surgery research and practice and has performed more than 500 bariatric surgeries. He has operated a number of high-profile individuals, including major surgeries on Pope John Paul II on two occasions.

Dr. Giorgio Castagneto Gissey

CEO, Chairman, Co-Founder

  • PhD in Management & Economics
  • Former academic and Senior
  • Adviser to UK government

Dr Giorgio Castagneto Gissey is the Chief Executive, Chairman, and Co-Founder of Keyron.

He is an economist by training and has been in the health sciences industry for many years. He obtained his M.Sc. in Economics from Warwick and a Ph.D. in Finance from Imperial College London. He has been in academia for 10 years, including as Senior Research Associate, Lecturer and Honorary Research Associate at University College London. He has received and managed several large and high-profile projects funded by ESRC, EPSRC, and InnovateUK and has been Principal Consultant to Ofgem and various private companies. He has published several influential papers in economic policy and has appeared in major news outlets around the world several times. He has been interviewed in relation to economic policy by the House of Commons Parliamentary Committee and other governmental institutions and participated in different roundtables organised by the UK Government, as well as chair at a Royal Economic Society conference.

He is an economist with extensive academic experience and  has been in the life sciences industry for many years.