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About Us

Board of Directors

We have three classes of directors serving staggered three-year terms. Our Board is presently composed of seven directors. Class I and Class III currently consist of two directors and Class II currently consists of three directors. The terms of the Class I, Class II and Class III directors expire at our 2020, 2018 and 2019 Annual Meetings of Stockholders, respectively.


Class I

Vijay B. Samant, President and Chief Executive Officer

Vijay B. Samant joined us as President and Chief Executive Officer in November 2000. Mr. Samant has 23 years of diverse U.S. and international sales, marketing, operations, and business development experience with Merck. From 1998 to mid-2000, he was Chief Operating Officer of the Merck Vaccine Division. From 1990 to 1998, he served in the Merck Manufacturing Division as Vice President of Vaccine Operations, Vice President of Business Affairs, and Executive Director of Materials Management. Mr. Samant earned a master's degree in management studies from the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1983. He received a master's degree in chemical engineering from Columbia University in 1977 and a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the University of Bombay, University Department of Chemical Technology, in 1975. Mr. Samant presently serves as a member of the board of directors of AmpliPhi Biosciences Corporation. Mr. Samant was a member of the Board of Directors for Raptor Pharmaceutical from 2011 to 2014, and was a member of the Board of Directors for BioMarin Pharmaceutical from 2002 to 2004. Mr. Samant was a Director of the Aeras Global TB Vaccine Foundation (Rockville, MD) from 2001 to 2010; a member of the Board of Trustees for the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID, Bethesda, MD) from 2003 to 2012; and a member of the Board of Trustees for the International Vaccine Institute (IVI, Seoul, Korea) from 2008 to 2012.

Robert C. Merton, Ph.D.

Robert C. Merton, Ph.D., is currently the School of Management Distinguished Professor of Finance at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He is also University Professor Emeritus at Harvard University and the Resident Scientist at Dimensional Holdings, Inc. Dr. Merton was the George Fisher Baker Professor of Business Administration from 1988 to 1998 and John and Natty McArthur University Professor from 1998 to 2010 at the Harvard Business School. He previously served on the finance faculty of the MIT Sloan School of Management from 1970 until 1988. Dr. Merton received the Alfred Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1997 for a new method to determine the value of derivatives. He is past President of the American Finance Association, a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Merton served as a member of the board of directors of Dimensional Funds from 2003 until 2009. Until September 2008, Dr. Merton was also a director and the Chief Science Officer of Trinsum, created in 2007 by a merger of Marakon Associates and Integrated Finance Limited, a specialized investment bank he co-founded in 2002. Dr. Merton served as a director of Community First Financial Group and Peninsula Banking Group from 2003 to 2010. He serves on advisory boards of several companies and institutions. Some of Dr. Merton’s other financial and accounting experience includes serving as a Senior Advisor to and Managing Director of JP Morgan Chase & Co. from 1999 to 2001, and a cofounder and principal of Long-Term Capital Management, L.P. He has received numerous academic awards and has lectured widely. Dr. Merton holds a B.S. degree in engineering mathematics from Columbia University, an M.S. degree in applied mathematics from the California Institute of Technology, and a Ph.D. degree in economics from MIT. In addition, Dr. Merton holds numerous honorary degrees.

Class II

R. Gordon Douglas, M.D., Chairman

R. Gordon Douglas, M.D. , currently serves as chairman of the board of directors for NovaDigm Therapeutics Inc. Dr. Douglas served on the boards of directors of Aeras from 2000 to 2014, Middlebrook Pharmaceuticals Inc. from 2000 to 2010, Protein Sciences Corporation from 2001 to 2017 and IOMAI Corporation from 2002 to 2008. Dr. Douglas consulted for the Dale and Betty Bumpers Vaccine Research Center at the National Institutes of Health from 1999 to 2011. He is currently Professor Emeritus of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. Dr. Douglas retired in April 1999 from Merck, where he had been President of the Merck Vaccine Division since 1991 and a member of the Merck Management Committee. Prior to joining Merck, Dr. Douglas was Chairman of the Department of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief at the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, and he held earlier teaching, research and administrative posts at the University of Rochester Medical Center and Baylor College of Medicine. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University and an M.D. degree from Weill Cornell Medical College. Dr. Douglas received his medical staff training at The New York Hospital and Johns Hopkins Hospital and is Board Certified in Internal Medicine. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, the Association of American Physicians, the Infectious Diseases Society of America and numerous other organizations.

Richard M. Beleson

Richard M. Beleson retired as a Senior Vice President with the Capital Group Companies in 2010, where from 1984 until his retirement, he served as an equity investment analyst and institutional investor focused on the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Mr. Beleson also served as a Vice President of the Growth Fund of America, and during his career had investment responsibilities in the Investment Company of America, Washington Mutual Investors Fund, the Income Fund of America, Fundamental Investors, the AMCAP Fund, the New Perspective Fund, and the Smallcap World Fund. Mr. Beleson received his B.S. degree in biological sciences from Stanford University and his M.B.A. degree in finance and accounting from the UCLA Graduate School of Management. He currently serves as a director of Spineview, Inc., and is on the advisory board of the UCLA Anderson School of Management Center for Global Management.

George J. Morrow

George J. Morrow served as Executive Vice President, Global Commercial Operations at Amgen Inc., a global biotechnology company, from 2003 until his retirement in 2011. Mr. Morrow also served as Amgen’s Executive Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Marketing from 2001 to 2003. From 1992 to 2001, Mr. Morrow held multiple leadership positions at GlaxoSmithKline Inc. and its subsidiaries, last serving as President and Chief Executive Officer of Glaxo Wellcome Inc. Mr. Morrow currently serves on the board of directors of Align Technology, Inc., Otonomy, Inc. and Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. Mr. Morrow has served previously on boards for Glaxo Wellcome, Inc., Human Genome Sciences, Inc., Safeway, Inc., National Commerce Bank, the John Hopkins School of Public Health, and the Duke University Fuqua School of Business. Mr. Morrow holds a B.S. in chemistry from Southampton College, Long Island University, an M.S. in biochemistry from Bryn Mawr College and an M.B.A. from Duke University.

Class III

Gary A. Lyons

Gary A. Lyons held various positions with Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, for 16 years through January 2008, including President and Chief Executive Officer. From 1983 to 1993, Mr. Lyons held various executive positions at Genentech, Inc., a biotechnology company, including Vice President of Business Development, Vice President of Sales, and Director of Sales and Marketing. Mr. Lyons presently serves as a member of the board of directors of Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc., Cytori Therapeutics, Inc., and Novus Therapeutics, and is chairman of the board of directors of Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Retrophin, Inc., all of which are publicly held biotechnology companies. In addition, Mr Lyons previously served on the boards of directors of PDL BioPharma, Facet Biotech Corporation, KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, and NeurogesX, Inc. Mr. Lyons holds a bachelor’s degree in marine biology from the University of New Hampshire and an M.B.A. degree from Northwestern University, JL Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

Thomas E. Shenk, Ph.D

Thomas E. Shenk, currently the James A. Elkins Professor in the Life Sciences at Princeton University, is a pre-eminent virologist and leading expert on human cytomegalovirus.His laboratory’s current areas of focus include the use of genetic and proteomic approaches for the dissection of cytomegalovirus gene functions and the cellular response to infection, as well as the development and analysis of models for study of viral latency. Dr. Shenk is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is also a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine and the American Philosophical Society. He is a past president of the American Society for Virology and the American Society for Microbiology, and he served on the board of directors of Merck & Company for 11 years. He currently serves on several boards, including the Forge Life Science, Kadmon Holdings and MeiraGTx.
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