The GeneNews™ team draws on a combination of success and specialized knowledge in basic scientific research, clinical research and practice, business skills and management experience.
Heiner Dreismann, PhD, Lead Director and Interim CEO
Dr. Heiner Dreismann is Lead Director and Interim CEO for GeneNews and the former President and CEO of Roche Molecular Systems (RMS), a division of F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. and the company that pioneered molecular diagnostics in the clinical arena. Dr. Dreismann led the introduction of PCR-based tests in Europe as early as 1992 and witnessed first hand the industry growth over the last two decades. During his tenure as CEO, RMS annual sales doubled to US$ 1.0 billion and the portfolio of tests and hardware sales were greatly expanded. Prior to being appointed CEO, Dr. Dreismann held other senior positions within Roche Diagnostics in the areas of Global Business Development, Business Unit Manager for PCR and Microbiology, as well as R&D positions in microbiology and infectious diseases, and in manufacturing.
Dr. Dreismann earned a Master’s Degree in Biology and a PhD in Microbiology/Molecular Biology both from Westfaelische Wilhelms University in Muenster, Germany. Dr. Dreismann joined the GeneNews Board of Directors in 2006 and currently holds positions as Lead Director and Chair of the Company’s Strategy Committee in addition to the interim CEO position.
Gailina J. Liew, LLB MBA - President and Chief Operating Officer
Ms. Liew is the President and Chief Operating Officer for GeneNews and a member of the Company’s Strategy Committee and executive team. She joined the Company in 2000 and was responsible for establishing the initial intellectual property strategy and organizational infrastructure for GeneNews. More recently, she has lead the commercialization effort for ColonSentry™ and is responsible for the execution of the company’s strategic vision. Ms. Liew is currently responsible for the general management and operations of GeneNews. Prior to GeneNews, Ms. Liew was Corporate Counsel for the Ontario Lead Investment Fund, a joint public-private venture capital fund.
Ms. Liew earned a B.Sc. degree in Molecular Genetics and Molecular Biology from the University of Toronto, an LLB degree from the University of Western Ontario and a joint MBA degree from the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University and the Schulich School of Business, York University. She is a licensed member of the Law Society of Upper Canada.
Leslie Auld, MBA CA - Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer
Ms. Auld is the Chief Financial Officer and Treasure for GeneNews. She joined the company in 2010. Ms. Auld began her professional career in 1991 with PriceWaterhouseCoopers. She later joined Helix BioPharma Corp. where she progressed from Controller to Chief Financial Officer. In 2004, she joined Luminex Diagnostics (formerly TM BioScience Corp.) as Senior Director of Finance, where she focused on finance and operations during a period of growth and then held a pivotal role in the transaction that took TM BioScience private when it was acquired by Luminex. Ms. Auld joined Attwell Capital Inc. (formerly Fralex Therapeutics) as Chief Financial Officer in 2007. She left that position in June 2009 but continued to support Attwell and other issuers in a consulting capacity.
A Chartered Accountant, Ms. Auld graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Science, Pharmacology & Toxicology from the University of Western Ontario, and has a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Toronto.
Choong-Chin Liew, PhD- Chief Scientist and Co-Founder
Dr. C.C. Liew, Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto, is a Co-Founder and Chief Scientist of GeneNews. He is also a member of the Company’s Strategy Committee. Dr. Liew is a pioneer in the emerging field of molecular medicine and recognized internationally as a leader in disease-specific genomics research. He leads the discovery research program at GeneNews and is the inventor of the Company’s award winning platform technology, the Sentinel Principle™. To date, he has published more than 300 original scientific papers, abstracts, and monographs. His 1997 landmark publication in Circulation, a pre-eminent American peer reviewed journal, reported his work in the cardiovascular system. This report is widely acknowledged to represent the most comprehensive analysis of genes expressed in a single human organ.
Dr. Liew was Visiting Professor of Medicine and Founding Director of the Cardiovascular Genome Unit at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and he has received more than a dozen Honorary Professorships at leading academic and medical institutions in China. Dr. Liew was also recognized with one of Malaysia's top awards, a Datukship (DMPN) which was conferred on him by the Governor of Penang in 2007. Dr. Liew earned his B.Sc. in Biology from Nanyang University (1960), and his M.A. in Physiology (1964) and Ph.D. in Pathological Chemistry from the University of Toronto (1967).
Karl Wassmann, Executive Vice President, U.S. Corporate Development
Mr. Wassmann is the Executive Vice President, U.S. Corporate Development. He joined the Company in October 2011 and has responsibility for the Company’s suite of SentinelGx™ pharmacogenomic and companion diagnostic services, as well as the commercialization of the Company’s products in the United States. He brings more than three decades of senior financial, business development, operations and general management experience to GeneNews. Most recently, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Source MDx, a privately-held U.S. company focused on the development of whole blood and rare cell-based inflammation and oncology biomarkers for laboratory developed tests and companion diagnostics. Over the past six years, he led more than 30 biomarker and companion diagnostic prospective clinical development programs totaling over 7,000 patients in collaboration with leading pharmaceutical companies and major academic medical centers. He is a co-inventor on over 65 molecular diagnostic and companion diagnostic patents and pending patent applications for oncology and autoimmune diseases.A Chartered Financial Analyst, Mr. Wassmann holds an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and is a graduate of Bowdoin College.