A Symposium on CoronaVirus Therapeutics, Present and Future


May 26 – 27, 2021   •    Virtual Symposium   •

A symposium featuring keynote and invited lectures from leaders and researchers at the front line of COVID-19 research.  Virtual Reality Poster Session with >40 presentations.

This meeting is hosted by the Virginia Drug Discovery Consortium and Virginia Bio

Symposium Program



Virtual Poster Session



Keynote speakers

Daniel Carey, MD

Secretary of Health and Human Resources, Commonwealth of Virginia

Daniel Carey, M.D. was appointed Secretary of Health and Human Resources by Governor Ralph Northam in January 2018. Prior to his appointment, Dr. Carey worked for over 20 years as a cardiologist in Lynchburg and served as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Centra, where his responsibilities included information technology services, patient quality and safety efforts, performance
improvement initiatives, and functions of the medical staff at Centra’s 3 acute care facilities.


Paul E. Marik, MD, FCCP, FCCM

Professor, Internal Medicine, Chief, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, VA

Paul Marik, MD received his medical degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. He was an ICU attending at Baragwanath Hospital, in Soweto, South Africa. During this time he obtained a Master of Medicine Degree, Bachelor of Science Degree in Pharmacology, Diploma in Anesthesia as well as a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Dr. Marik
did a Critical Care Fellowship in London, Ontario, Canada, during which time he was admitted as a Fellow to the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeon of Canada. Dr. Marik has worked in various teaching hospitals in the US since 1992. He is board certified in Internal Medicine, Critical Care Medicine, Neurocritical Care and Nutrition Science. Dr. Marik is currently Professor of Medicine
(with tenure) and Chief of the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia. Dr Marik has written over 500 peer reviewed journal articles, 80 book chapters and authored four critical care books. He has been cited over 44,000 times in peer-reviewed publications and has an H-index of 98. He has delivered over 350 lectures at international conferences and visiting professorships. He has received numerous teaching awards, including the National Teacher of the Year award by the American College of Physicians in 2017. Dr. Marik is the co-founder of the Front Line Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC).


Pamela Bjorkman, PhD

David Baltimore Professor of Biology and Biological Engineering, California Institute of Technology (CalTech)

Pamela Bjorkman is the David Baltimore Professor of Biology and Biological Engineering at Caltech. Her laboratory does basic and translational research to understand immune recognition of viral pathogens. They are interested in understanding antibody responses against viruses in order to develop improved therapeutics and potential vaccines. As part of their approach, they investigate the structural correlates of broad and/or potent antibody-mediated neutralization of HIV-1, SARS-CoV-2, Zika, and hepatitis C virus.


Richard J. Sciotti, PhD, PMP

Chief, Drug Development Section, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIH/NIAID)

Richard Sciotti earned a BS in Chemistry from Pennsylvania State University, a PhD in Synthetic Organic Chemistry from Indiana University, and worked as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame. He is an experienced medicinal chemist with 25 years of drug discovery experience, 14 years at Abbott Laboratories and Pfizer Inc. (Ann Arbor and Groton sites) and 10 years at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. He has led drug discovery efforts in malaria, cutaneous leishmaniasis, antibacterials, immunosuppression and cardiovascular therapeutic areas; has led tactical and strategic project operating plans requiring extensive knowledge of synthetic and medicinal chemistry, toxicology, pharmacology, pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics. This work has resulted in 5 clinical candidates, over 100 publications/presentations and 18 patents. He received the prestigious DoD Scientist of the Quarter award, presented by the Assistant Secretary of Defense, and was awarded the Department of the Army, Research & Development Achievement Award for Leadership Excellence. In 2018, joined NIAID as the Chief, Drug Development Section and since joining, NIH/NIAID has managed a portfolio of over 20 product development contracts and delivered 12 Phase 1 and 4 Phase 2 clinical trials.

Talk: “Pandemic Response: A Complicated Future”

Sumit K Chanda, PhD

Professor & Director, Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, Immunity and Pathogenesis Program

Sumit Chanda earned his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 2001, and received his post-doctoral training at the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation (GNF). He subsequently transitioned to a Group Leader position, and established his research group in the Division of Cellular Genomics at GNF. In 2007, he joined the Infectious and Inflammatory Disease Center at the Burnham Institute for Medical Research as an Associate Professor. Dr. Chanda was promoted to Professor in 2013. In 2015, he was appointed Director of the Immunity and Pathogenesis Program at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute.

Talk: “Discovery of SARS-CoV-2 Antivirals Through Large Scale Drug Repurposing”

Kris M. White, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Kris White received his PhD in Virology, Immunology at the University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY and his BSc in Biology Chemistry at Hofstra University, Uniondale NY. His postdoc was at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, NY where he is now an Assistant Professor in Microbiology. His lab focused on drug combination studies in the pursuit of synergistic antiviral interactions. Through a collaboration
with the laboratory of Gaetano Montelione at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, they have identified inhibitors of the viral PLpro enzyme that interact synergistically with remdesivir, the current standard of care antiviral for the treatment of COVID-19.

Talk: “Repurposing of Clinically-Approved Drugs with Potent Anti-Viral Activity and Synergistic Interactions for the Treatment of COVID-19″

Sally Allain, MBA

Regional Head of Johnson & Johnson (JLABS) @ Washington, DC

As Regional Head of JLABS @ Washington, DC, Sally sets the strategic direction and oversees all operational activities for JLABS in the greater Washington metro region, including Maryland and Virginia. In this role, Sally is responsible for the process of evaluating and selecting a strong portfolio of innovators for JLABS @ Washington, DC, and building strategic partnerships with corporate, academic, government and industry organizations that aim to strengthen the region’s life sciences innovation network. Sally joined JLABS after serving as Senior Director, Strategy & Operations on the Global External Innovation team at Johnson & Johnson, where she supported portfolio management and reporting and strategic business development efforts across the organization. Prior, Sally was with Janssen R&D, Immunology, where she managed a team in research operations and alliance management for the early discovery to early development portfolio. Sally understands well the needs of healthcare entrepreneurs, having launched her research career at a San-Diego based biotech startup and then working internationally for a UK-based governmental economic development agency creating early-stage biotech and academic collaborative programs aimed at accelerating the development of products to address the needs of patients and consumers. Sally received her MBA from the University of California Berkeley, Haas School of Business, where she was recognized by ‘Poets and Quants’ as one of the ‘Top 50’ EMBA students across US & International Programs in 2016; a Master of Science Degree in Microbiology / Immunology from Virginia Tech; and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from Virginia Tech.

Talk: “Driving Solutions to the Known and Unknown Threats of Tomorrow”

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