Gritstone Oncology is led by a team of industry veterans who have successful track records in drug development and deep expertise in immuno-oncology, genomics and bioinformatics.
Andrew Allen, M.D., Ph.D. President and Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Andrew Allen is a co-founder of Gritstone Oncology and serves as president, chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors. He was a co-founder of Clovis Oncology where he served as executive vice president of clinical and preclinical development and chief medical officer. Prior to that, he was chief medical officer at Pharmion Corporation, which was sold to Celgene Corporation for $2.9 billion following the development of Vidaza™ for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndromes and Thalomid™ for the front-line treatment of multiple myeloma. Previously, Dr. Allen served in clinical development leadership roles at Chiron Corporation and Abbott Laboratories, and worked at McKinsey & Company, where he advised life science companies on strategic issues. He currently serves on the board of directors of Epizyme and Cell Design Labs. Dr. Allen received a medical degree from Oxford University and a Ph.D. in immunology from Imperial College London.
Karin Jooss, Ph.D. Executive Vice President of Research and Chief. Scientific Officer
Dr. Karin Jooss serves as executive vice president of research and chief scientific officer. She joined Gritstone from Pfizer, where she was head of cancer immuno-therapeutics in the Vaccine Immuno-therapeutics Department. While at Pfizer, she built and led immuno-oncology teams, was a member of the vaccine immuno-therapeutics leadership team, and served as head of the immuno-pharmacology team. Her responsibilities included overseeing the assessment of all cancer vaccine in-licensing opportunities and developing and launching Pfizer’s first clinical cancer vaccine program, which deployed a variety of vaccine platforms and immune modulators to create a multi-component vaccine-based immunotherapy regimen. Prior to joining Pfizer, Dr. Jooss served as vice president of research at Cell Genesys, where she oversaw all research activities related to the company’s cancer vaccine and oncolytic virotherapy programs. She is on the editorial board of Molecular Therapy and the Journal of Gene Medicine and is a member of the Immunology and Educational Committee of the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy (ASGCT) and the Industry Task Force of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC). Dr. Jooss received a Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Marburg in Germany and performed postgraduate work in gene therapy and immunology at the University of Pennsylvania.
Roman Yelensky, Ph.D. Chief Technology Officer
Dr. Roman Yelensky serves as chief technology officer and is responsible for overseeing the Company’s genomics, proteomics and informatics programs. He joined Gritstone at its inception in October 2015 as executive vice president of sequencing and bioinformatics. Prior to that, he was vice president of biomarker and companion diagnostic development at Foundation Medicine, which he joined at its inception. While at Foundation Medicine, he co-led sequence data analysis for FoundationOne™ and led validation studies supporting clinical laboratory accreditation and testing of more than100,000 patients. Dr. Yelensky established Foundation Medicine’s FDA-regulated products program, leading to the FDA approval of FoundationFocus CDxBRCA, the first NGS-based companion diagnostic. He also contributed to key national initiatives on the clinical implementation of next-generation sequencing (NGS), leading to the diagnostic implementation of Lung-MAP, a first-of-its-kind NCI-sponsored trial matching lung cancer patients to investigational treatments using comprehensive genomic testing. Prior to Foundation Medicine, Dr. Yelensky was a senior scientist in biomarker development at Novartis. He has co-authored more than 75 manuscripts on bioinformatics, statistical genetics, NGS biomarker and assay development and cancer genomics. He earned an M.S. in computer science from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in bioinformatics and integrative genomics from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.