Professor Stephen Locarnini, BSc(Hons), PhD, MBBS, FRC(Path) is from the Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory (VIDRL, originally Fairfield Hospital Laboratory) where he has worked since 1989. He was Director of Laboratory Services from 1990-1998 and then assumed the position of Head, Research & Molecular Development of VIDRL. He is also Director of World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Reference Laboratory for Hepatitis B. His current major research interests include viral hepatitis, hepatitis vaccines, and antiviral chemotherapy with an emphasis on the basic virology of the various agents of hepatitis, the molecular pathogenesis of hepatitis, as well as prevention and public health control measures. The treatment of hepatitis B and C infections with antiviral agents represents a major focus. He is also interested in intellectual property issues when applied to clinical virology.
Professor Locarnini is the recipient of numerous awards including the Malaysian Liver Foundation Medal for work on Viral Hepatitis, the Bristol Myers Squibb Freedom to Discover Award, the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) award for Scientific Recognition and in 2013 he was awarded the Gastroenterological Society of Australia (GESA) Distinguished Research Prize. He is author of over 230 peer-reviewed articles, 18 invited editorials and over 85 book chapters and reviews and every year for the past 5 years, has delivered a number of invited and plenary lectures at major international conferences.
Professor Locarnini has his academic appointment at Melbourne University. He is on a number of Scientific Advisory Boards of a number of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. He is the Hepatitis Virus Editor for Antiviral Therapy and on the Editorial Board of Antiviral Research, Antimicrobial Agents & Chemotherapy, Hepatology International, Journal of Hepatology, and Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hepatology. His has recently co-founded the NGO, Coalition to Eradicate Viral Hepatitis in Asia-Pacific (CEVHAP).
Michael Richey, BS has more than 35 years of experience in the healthcare field specializing in diagnostics and personalized medicine. His areas of focus include medical and government affairs, product development, operations, market development, marketing, sales and executive management. Mr. Richey’s primary emphasis over the past 25 years has been in the development and execution of business strategies that fostered the successful creation of a new, high value segment of diagnostics (therametrics). This movement was driven by conclusive scientific analysis, resulting in the clinical evidence needed to substantiate the role that new metrics play in directing therapeutic intervention. After working as a clinical microbiologist at Children’s Hospital in Oklahoma City, he joined Abbott Laboratories in 1978, initially working in research and development for the Diagnostics Division and then served in project management, and sales and marketing management roles. Joining Chiron in 1990, Mr. Richey served as Vice President of Marketing in the Diagnostics Division with responsibility for worldwide sales, marketing and market development for the company’s novel HCV and HIV viral load tests. He was Co-founder and President of Tethys Bioscience, where he was responsible for medical and regulatory affairs, product development, and laboratory and commercial operations. As a consultant, Mr. Richey focuses on research and development, licensing, business and marketing strategies for biotechnology, genomics and diagnostic companies. He received his BS in Laboratory Technology from the University of Oklahoma in Norman.
Robert Bischof is a Senior Research Fellow based at the Hudson Institute of Medical Research. He obtained his PhD at the University of Melbourne in 1994, and as a research scientist has developed a strong background in tissue inflammation and cytokine research in the biomedical and veterinary fields, encompassing studies on the role of immune cells in inflammation, health and disease, and development and application of animal models for biomedical research. He has held research, teaching and leadership positions at the University of Melbourne, the Centre for Inflammation Research at The Royal Melbourne Hospital, and at Monash University, and received broad funding for the attainment of academic and commercial research targets. Associated roles have included the review of competitive grant applications for national and international funding agencies (including NHMRC, Wellcome Trust, USDA), manuscripts for publication, and guest editorial roles. Rob is also a founding member and CSO of Allergenix Pty Ltd, a spin-off CRO established in 2003 with a focus on modelling of pulmonary disease and associated drug delivery.