Mike Grey has 40 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries and has served as Executive Chairman of the Spruce Board since 2017. He has founded several biotechnology companies and is currently chairman or executive chair of Mirum Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Plexium, Inc. and Reneo Pharmaceuticals, Inc. He also serves as venture partner at Pappas Capital. Previously, Mr. Grey founded and was President and Chief Executive Officer at Lumena Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company developing treatments for pediatric and adult orphan diseases, until its acquisition by Shire Plc. Mr. Grey has held senior positions at a number of companies, including President and Chief Executive Officer of Auspex Pharmaceuticals, Inc., President and Chief Executive Officer of SGX Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which was acquired by Eli Lilly in 2008, President and Chief Executive Officer of Trega Biosciences, Inc., which was acquired by Lion Bioscience in 2001, and President of BioChem Therapeutic Inc. For approximately 20 years, Mr. Grey served in various roles with Glaxo, Inc. and Glaxo Holdings plc, culminating in his position as Vice President, Corporate Development and Head of International Licensing. Mr. Grey serves on the board of directors of Horizon Therapeutics plc.
Dr. Javier Szwarcberg is an accomplished physician executive with over 18 years of leadership experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. He has an exceptionally rich skill set in clinical research and drug development, leading more than 22 clinical trials for a variety of drugs – including small molecules, peptides and biologics – with a proven track record of 4 successful drug approvals. Most recently, Dr. Szwarcberg served as the Group Vice President and Head of Program and Portfolio Development for BioMarin Pharmaceuticals. Previously, he held positions as Senior Vice President, Head of Program and Portfolio Management at Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical and Vice President of R&D and Business Development at Horizon Pharma. He is currently a scientific advisor to Abalone Bio. Dr. Szwarcberg received his MPH from the Harvard School of Public Health and his M.D. from Universidad de Buenos Aires School of Medicine.
Tiba has served as a director on the Spruce Biosciences board since 2016. Tiba was most recently a senior partner at Novo Ventures (US) Inc., joining the company in 2010. Tiba’s experience spans research, banking, and venture investing in life sciences across various therapeutic areas and technology platforms. Tiba serves on the boards of MAllievex, Avalyn Biosciences, Nkarta Therapeutics, Arcellx Inc, MDLive, and Aristea Therapeutics. Tiba previously served as a board member for Mirum Pharmaceuticals, AnaptysBio, iRhtyhm Technologies, and Cianna Medical. Prior to joining Novo A/S, Tiba was a Director with Burrill & Company, where she completed regional and cross-border M&A, licensing, and financing transactions for biotech and large pharmaceutical companies. Tiba is also a published author of scientific articles and book chapters in the area of rational drug design. Tiba received her Ph.D. in biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco where her research involved developing computational methods for drug discovery. Tiba has a B.S. in physics from the University of California, Irvine.
Mr. Barretto-Ko is a life sciences industry veteran with over 20 years of commercial expertise and biopharmaceutical experience across various therapeutic focuses. Most recently, he has served as President and Chief Executive Officer at Plexium, Inc. Prior to joining Plexium, Mr. Barretto-Ko served in numerous roles at Astellas Pharma Inc., including the Chief Business Officer and President of Astellas Pharma US, from 2005 to 2021. Prior to joining Astellas, Mr. Barretto-Ko served in increasingly senior roles at Roche UK and US from 2001 to 2005. Mr. Barretto-Ko earned his B.S. in Biological Sciences and Chemistry with Honors from Cornell University and an M.B.A. from Yale University. In addition, he served as a Sloan Fellow for Innovation and Global Leadership at the MIT Sloan School of Management, where he was awarded an M.S. degree in Management. Mr. Barretto-Ko is a board member of Alessa Therapeutics, Inc., a pharmaceutical company, and Americares, a health-focused relief and development organization that serves people affected by poverty or disaster with life-changing medicine and health programs.
Bali is a partner at Abingworth LLP. Bali has 15 years professional experience in healthcare across a range of functions including venture investing, R&D and clinical practice. Prior to joining Abingworth, Bali was a senior partner at MVM Partners LLP where he sat on a number of boards, public and private. In 2018, Bali was named among Financial News’ Rising Stars in Private Equity, which celebrated 25 men and women under the age of 40 standing out in the European private equity industry. Before MVM, Bali was a member of Bain Capital’s healthcare deal team. Bali obtained a degree in clinical medicine from the University of Oxford and practiced general surgery at the John Radcliffe and Addenbrooke’s Hospitals in Oxford and Cambridge, respectively. Bali has a Ph.D. in translational cancer research from the MRC Cancer Cell Unit, University of Cambridge, and has published over a dozen peer reviewed papers. Mr. Muralidhar was also a Bye-Fellow in Medical Sciences at Downing College, Cambridge where he taught pathology, surgery and medicine.
Niall has served as a Director of the Spruce Biosciences board since 2016. Niall is a partner at RiverVest Venture Partners, joining as a Kauffman Fellow in 2006. Niall is a board member of Mirum Pharmaceuticals, Amplyx Pharmaceuticals, Curzion Pharmaceuticals, and Avalyn Pharma, and a co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Reneo Pharmaceuticals. Niall was previously a board member and adviser to Lumena Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Shire), Excaliard Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer) and Ziarco Group Limited (acquired by Novartis). Prior to joining RiverVest, Niall was in drug development at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development. Niall earned his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Dundee, and an MA in natural sciences from Pembroke College, Oxford. Niall also earned an M.B.A. from the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego.
Camilla has served as a director of the Spruce Biosciences board since 2017. Camilla has 25+ years in the life sciences industry. Camilla has significant experience in global drug development and registration, due diligence and M&A plus leadership of globally based teams, talent and change management. Currently, Camilla is CEO of Zehna Therapeutics, Inc a seed stage startup and spin out of the Cleveland Clinic. Prior to this, Camilla founded Rare Strategic LLC where she provided strategic advice to early stage venture-backed companies. Previously, Camilla was Senior Vice President and Head of Product Portfolio Development at BioMarin, where she was responsible for Corporate and R&D Governance, Program Leadership, Project Management, Competitive Intelligence, Portfolio Strategy and Business Analytics. Prior to leading Product Portfolio Development, Camilla led BioMarin’s Global Regulatory Affairs group. Prior to BioMarin, Camilla spent 12 years at Shire Pharmaceuticals, where after multiple roles of increasing responsibility, held the position of Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Early Development and Business Development. Before Shire, Camilla spent seven years at Abbott Laboratories. Camilla holds a BS.c. from University College Galway, Ireland, BS.c Hons from Kingston University, U.K. and an MSc with distinction from the University of London.
Dan is an accomplished executive with extensive commercial, financial and strategic leadership experience during an extensive career in the pharmaceutical industry, with a specific focus on rare diseases. Dan previously served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of BioMarin. Prior to BioMarin, he served as a consultant to provide strategic financial management support to a portfolio of public and private life science companies. Prior to his consultancy, Dan served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of CV Therapeutics. Prior to CV Therapeutics, he served in various roles at Genentech, most recently as Treasurer. Dan currently serves on the boards of directors for Myriad Genetics, Recardia Therapeutics and Tizona Therapeutics. He received a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Kirk Ways, M.D., Ph.D. has served as a director of the Spruce Biosciences board since June 2021. Dr. Ways is an experienced endocrinologist who brings more than 30 years of extensive pharmaceutical drug discovery and development experience to Spruce’s board of directors. Until January 2021, Dr. Ways served as Chief Medical Officer of Nuvelution Pharma. Prior to joining Nuvelution, Dr. Ways headed several drug development units at Johnson & Johnson’s Pharmaceutical Research and Development group, with focus on metabolic disease, women’s health, cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disease and internal medicine. Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson, Dr. Ways served in leadership capacities at BioStratum Incorporated as Vice President and Chief Development Officer, Aventis as Senior Global Medical Leader and Project Team Leader and Lilly Research Laboratories as a Research Fellow with responsibilities for the preclinical and clinical development for agents treating the chronic complications of diabetes. Prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Ways served as Director of the Diabetes Center, Vice Chairman for the Department of Internal Medicine, Endocrinology Section Head and Professor of Medicine at East Carolina School of Medicine. An accomplished researcher, Dr. Ways has authored more than one hundred publications in the fields of diabetes and cancer.