Daniel Vasella joins Topadur


Three Lifesciences start-ups have welcomed high-calibre members on their board of directors. While Daniel Vasella, the former CEO of Novartis joined Topadur and Martin Haase, the former CEO of Bruker-AXS Eldico, Joanna Horobin, an industry veteran with over 35 years of experience, became a non-executive Chair of iOnctura’sboard.



High ranking and experienced leaders continue to mingle in the start-up scene. Daniel Vasella, the former CEO and President of Novartis, is one of such industry veterans that has taken this step, again. After Numab and ImmunOS Therapeutics, Daniel Vasella is now a member on Topadur Board of Directors (BOD). He led Novartis for 17 years as CEO until 2010 before becoming the Chairman of its Board. Before the Novartis merger, Vasella was CEO of Sandoz Pharma Ltd. and a member of the Sandoz Group Executive Committee.

Topadur with its lead candidate TOP-N53 for diabetic foot ulcer brings Vasella at the “right time” when the company begins the clinical development of its lead drug candidate, as expressed by Reto Naef, CEO at TOPADUR.

Eldico brings former CEO of Bruker-AXS on board
Just one year following its incorporation, deep-tech start-up ELDICO Scientific has won Martin Haase as a member of its board. Haase holds a doctorate in chemistry and has many years of experience in the field of X-ray analysis. From 1994 to 2004 he was Managing Director of SIEMENS Röntgenanalytik and Bruker AXS, the world’s leading supplier of X-ray diffractometers. He later held other management positions in industry, including CEO of Heraeus Kulzer, the dental division of the precious metals and technology group Heraeus, and Managing Director of Leica Microsystems CMS. Today he is active as an investor and interim manager in the technology and health care sectors with several investments.

Haase will support the start-up on the next stages, which include the preparation for the market launch in 2021. ELDICO is developing innovative electron diffractometers that allow for nanocrystalline solid-state analysis.

A female industry veteran joins iOnctura
iOnctura SA is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a pipeline of next-generation molecules targeting cancer and fibrosis. The start-up appointed Joanna Horobin as the non-executive Chair to the iOnctura Board. Joanna is an accomplished drug developer and biotech leader with over 35 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech sector in Europe and the US.

She joined the pharma industry, first at Beecham Pharmaceuticals (now GSK), in 1982 and her first clinical development roles resulted in the development and launch of 8 products in the anti-infective, cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory categories. While at Rhone Poulenc Rorer (now Sanofi), in France and USA, she shifted to cancer drug development which has been her primary career focus. Joanna held multiple C-suite roles in biotech companies in the USA, most recently as the Chief Medical Officer at Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc. and was also the CEO of Syndax Pharmaceuticals.

(Press release/RAN)
Photo L-R: Daniel Vasella, Martin Haase and Joanna Horobin