MolecularMatch

Who We Are

MolecularMatch is a clinical informatics company with expertise in precision oncology, immunotherapy and bioinformatics, combined with clinical insights empowering your solution. Leveraging technology licensed from the world’s #1 cancer center, M.D. Anderson, MolecularMatch has created unique proprietary treatment algorithms from world-leading physicians and scientists.


Meet the Team

Kevin Coker

CEO

Kevin was most recently Vice President and Global Oncology Franchise Lead for Worldwide Clinical Trials, Inc., a global CRO working in over 50 countries. Additionally, he served as the Vice President of Research Services for the US Oncology Network, a subsidiary of McKesson. Kevin received a B.S. in Biology from the University of Central Arkansas, a M.S. in Pathology from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, and J.D. and M.P.H. degrees from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland Ohio.

Nick Tackes

Founder, CTO

Nick has been architecting and implementing enterprise applications for over 20 years. Grounded in collaborative development and user-centered design, Nick applies his experience in full-stack architecture. He co-developed GluJs, an open source UI framework for building enterprise-ready web and mobile applications. He holds a Bachelor's of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Bradley University.

James W. Welsh, M.D.

Founder, CMO

James W. Welsh, MD, specializes in the treatment of thoracic cancers at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. His oncology career began at Genentech Inc., working on the first targeted therapies. He later attended Dartmouth Medical School, where his laboratory work was developing AKT inhibitors to radiosensitize tumors. He completed a residency in radiation oncology at the University of Arizona, where he also ran a laboratory focused on radiosensitizers, which lead to a novel c-Met inhibitor MP470. He joined the clinical faculty at M.D. Anderson in 2008. His pursuits extend from the laboratory to the clinic, with a focus on translational research, developing novel personalized therapeutics and immunotherapies to combine with radiation.

Ryan Smith

Founder, Director of Engineering

Ryan Smith brings almost a decade of software engineering experience focusing on delivering high scale and user friendly applications. Ryan has a Bachelor's degree from the University of California, Irvine majoring in Information and Computer Science and specializing in Artificial Intelligence and Algorithm Analysis.

Xuan Shirley Li, PhD

Chief Scientific Officer

At MolecularMatch Xuan Shirley Li, PhD integrates her biological pathways knowledge with software applications development. Shirley's experience ranges from transcriptomic profiling and systems biology at MIT, a PhD thesis on ARID1 in epigenetics from New York University, postdoc at Oxford University on drug discovery, and gene editing in somatic mosaicism modeling for early hematopoietic differentiation.

Shane Neeley

Senior Software Engineer

Shane’s experience allows him to mediate the biology and technology experts at MolecularMatch. As a researcher for 3 years at Oregon Health and Science University, Shane worked with unfortunate monkeys, mice and rabbits, before becoming a programmer that evolved virus models insilco. Shane was previously at Nano3D Biosciences developing an iOS app for image analysis of 3 dimensionally cultured cancer cells. His work has been featured in the journals Nature, PLoS ONE and IEEE. He has a Bachelor's in Molecular Biology from the University of Colorado and a Master's of Bioengineering from Rice University.

Christen Hellman

Director of Operations & Marketing

Prior to joining MolecularMatch, Christen gained operational, implementation and product development experience at an innovative EHR company. As a certified Scrum Master in Agile Development she has a passion for IT team productivity and efficiency. She received her Bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Minnesota.

Ryan Duren, PhD

Knowledge Scientist

Ryan Duren, PhD is Knowledge Scientist at MolecularMatch. Prior to joining MolecularMatch, Ryan completed postdoctoral training in cancer epigenetics. Ryan received his PhD from Baylor College of Medicine in Cellular and Molecular Biology where he studied new therapeutic approaches for acute myeloid leukemia.

Brett Villagrand

Chief Commercial Officer

Brett brings over 20 years of global experience in the Health & Life Sciences industry, working for large Pharma, Biotech & technology companies in commercial and product development capacities.

Greg Guidroz

Chief Financial Officer

Greg Guidroz, CPA has been a CFO for companies in the biotechnology, high tech manufacturing, healthcare and software industries. He has over 18 years of experience as CFO/Controller in public and private companies, including a lead role in the $1 billion sale of Tanox, Inc. to Genentech, Inc.

Caleb Davis

Director of Bioinformatics

Caleb completed his postdoctoral training at the Human Genome Sequencing Center at Baylor College of Medicine where he directed the center’s participation in The Cancer Genome Atlas analysis of clear cell, chromophobe, and papillary kidney cancers. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Biochemistry from the University of Houston.

Ekene Oduah

Software Engineer
Ekene is the newest addition to the MolecularMatch development team. He brings with him, 6 years of software engineering experience and an entrepreneurship mindset. Ekene received his Masters in Computer Science from Texas Southern University.

Advisors

Jack Gill, PhD

Chairman

Jack M. Gill holds the position of Professor in the Practice of Entrepreneurship at Rice University and the Texas Medical Center. He was formerly a member of the Harvard Medical School faculty, a senior advisor to the Harvard-MIT CIMIT program, and a professor at HMS and MIT from 2000 to 2010.

Dr. Gill is a founder and Managing Member (retired) of Vanguard Ventures, a venture capital firm specializing in high technology start-ups, with offices in Palo Alto, California and Houston, Texas. Vanguard manages over $500 million capital and has been the lead investor in numerous highly successful companies such as Aldus, Digital Microwave, Pyramid Technology, EndoSonics, Mycogen, EndoTherapeutics, Macromedia, Network Appliance, Indigo Medical, CardioGenesis, Advanced Fibre Communications, Ciena, LightSpeed (CISCO), Tut Systems, Digital Island, ZipRealty and Hansen Medical.

Dr. Gill was named a 1999 winner of the Horatio Alger Award for Distinguished Americans. In May 2001, he received an honorary Doctorate of Science from Indiana University. In addition, he has received numerous Entrepreneur Awards and Teaching Awards throughout the USA.

Dr. Gill is a Trustee (retired) of Indiana University and a member (retired) of the Board of the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. He is a Director of the UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, The Horatio Alger Association, Project HOPE and the Presidents Circle of the National Academy of Science, the National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Medicine.

Nancy T. Chang, PhD

Advisor

Dr. Chang currently serves as the CEO/President of Apex Enterprises, Inc., an investment management company focused on investments in healthcare, education and socially responsible ventures. In addition to investing, Apex also participates in active operations of companies including STEAMtrax, LLC., where Dr. Chang is a member of the Board of Managers. Prior to that Dr. Nancy was the Co-Founder, President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Tanox (1986-2006). Tanox focused its effort on the development of therapeutics to address major unmet medical needs in the areas of asthma, allergy, inflammation, aged macular degeneration and other diseases affecting the human immune system. Dr. Chang’s pharmaceutical development experience stemmed from her tenure at the Roche Institute of Molecular Biology from 1979-1980. Dr. Chang graduated from National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan and received her Ph. D. from Harvard University, the Division of Medical Sciences at Harvard Medical School in 1979.

In her over 30 year tenure in the biotechnology industry, she has developed and commercialized a number of highly successful diagnostic and therapeutic products. Even today, there are breakthrough drugs are coming to the market due to Dr. Chang’s work. Dr. Chang has served on the boards of a number of companies, including Charles River Laboratory International, Inc., Eddingpharm (Cayman) Inc., Crown Bioscience Inc., Applied Optoelectronics Inc., SciClone Pharmaceuticals Inc. and STEAMtrax, LLC. and many other private companies. In addition, Dr. Chang was a member of the board of directors at BIO (the Biotech Industry Organization in the U.S.) and BioHouston (the biotech industry organization in Houston, Texas) and recently Dr. Chang was elected to be on the board of Asia Society in Texas. Dr. Chang was also a Director at the Federal Reserve Bank in Dallas, Houston Branch from 2005 to 2009 and a Director for Project Hope.

Scott Kopetz, MD, PhD

Advisor

Dr. Scott Kopetz graduated Summa Cum Laude from Vanderbilt University with a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering/Electrical and received his medical degree from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He obtained his residency training in Internal Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, followed by a medical oncology fellowship at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Kopetz joined M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in 2006 as an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Department of Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology. He subsequently completed a Ph.D. at M.D. Anderson in cancer biology with thesis focus on mechanisms of chemotherapy resistance in colorectal cancer.

Dr. Kopetz is board-certified in Internal Medicine and in Medical Oncology. He has authored over 100 peer-reviewed articles in respected scientific journals such as Journal of Clinical Oncology, Lancet, Cancer Research, Cancer, Clinical Cancer Research, and JAMA, and is a senior editor for Clinical Cancer Research, and editorial board member on Journal of Clinical Oncology and JNCI. He is vice-chair for colon cancer research in the NSABP/RTOG cooperative group, and member of the NIH Gastrointestinal Oncology Steering Committee. In addition, he was a recipient of peer-reviewed grants from American Society of Clinical Oncology and the National Institute of Health, among others. He is the principal investigator several phase I and II clinical trials, including of Assessment of Targeted Therapies Against Colorectal Cancer (ATTACC) study, a novel biomarker enrichment program for colorectal cancer. His research interests include the biology of the refractory colorectal cancer and the development of novel therapeutics for molecularly distinct subsets of colorectal cancer patients.

David S. Hong, MD

Advisor

Dr. David S. Hong is an Associate Professor and Deputy Chair in the Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics (Phase I Program) at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The approach of the department is unique with an emphasis on molecular characterization of each patient’s tumor and personalized therapy in the Phase I setting. Throughout his career, Dr. Hong has developed an interest in studying the efficacy of novel drug combinations in patients with solid tumors. As a faculty member in the Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics he has an extensive track record of leading successful studies that involve a strong correlative component and collaborating with other investigators both basic and clinical within MD Anderson and outside institutions. Currently, he is the Principal Investigator on twenty research protocols that involve a wide range of sponsors including the Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program (CTEP) at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Hong has been an author or co-author on over 150 publications. Recently his research endeavors have focused on developing personalized therapies for patients whose tumors bear specific genetic mutations/amplifications. At this time, all patients presented to the Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics at MD Anderson Cancer Center are being screened for mutational status through the MD Anderson Department of Pathology using CLIA certified testing. Dr. Hong has demonstrated the ability to successfully place patients on clinical trials, manage toxicities and oversee the correlative studies associated with various phase I research projects.

Ed Kim

Advisor

Dr. Kim is Chairman at the Levine Cancer Institute within the Carolinas HealthCare System. His previous experience includes tenure as an Associate Professor at MD Anderson Cancer Center. He specializes in Lung Cancer, Head and Neck Cancer, and Solid Tumor Oncology. Dr. Kim went to medical school at Northwestern University and completed his residency at Baylor College of Medicine and Fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Tony Mok

Advisor

Dr. Mok is a professor of Clinical Oncology at the University of Hong Kong, focusing on biomarker and molecular targeted therapy in lung cancer. He co-founded the Lung Cancer Research Group, and has led multi-national studies that help establish the global standard on personalized medicine for lung cancer. He was previously the President of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer. Dr. Mok was trained at the University of Alberta, Canada and he subsequently completed a fellowship in Medical Oncology at the Princess Margaret Hospital in Canada.


Publications

The MolecularMatch team is comprised of industry professionals including biologists, clinicians and engineers who believe it is their responsibility to be leaders in providing quality and compliant information. In an industry in which data standards are lacking, we strive to deliver content of the highest data integrity. We continually collaborate with and collect recommendations from industry experts so that these insights can be shared with you.


News