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Henry Hsu, MD


Henry founded Allysta and serves as its CEO and board member. He has extensive experience leading teams in all stages of drug development, from lead identification through NDA submissions, and has experience across a range of therapeutic indications. He was a co-founder, CEO, and board member of Altheos, Inc., a private biopharmaceutical company in ophthalmic drug development. He has served as Chief Medical Officer at a number of companies, including Plexxikon, Inc. (part of Daiichi Sankyo), and was an early executive at CoMentis, and Molecular Therapeutics, where he had a key role in securing more than $250 million in partnerships and financings and lead the introduction of a number of new compounds in multiple INDs and across multiple indications. Previously, Henry lead drug development teams at CoTherix, InterMune, and Chiron. He received his MD from the University of California, San Francisco, and completed fellowship training at Stanford Medical Center in liver disease, where he was a Howard Hughes Physician Research Fellow. 

Ken Sall, MD
Medical Head

Ken is leading the clinical development of ALY688 Ophthalmic Solution. He is a Board-Certified Ophthalmologist and was formerly the Medical Director of the Sall Research Medical Center in Southern California. In that capacity, he has been a Principal Investigator for over 200 clinical trials specializing in all eye indications, including many studies in dry eye disease. Ken graduated from University of Southern California School of Medicine, and completed ophthalmology residency at University of California, San Diego. He has also completed a fellowship in cornea and external eye disease.

Kathryn Crawford PhD

VP, Head Preclinical Development

Dr. Crawford has over 25 years of experience in early stage biotech and pharmaceutical development, holding senior positions in both academia and industry.  Dr. Crawford has managed numerous preclinical development programs, with expertise in animal studies and disease models. As principal investigator, she has been awarded multiple NIH Small Business Innovation Research grants, and has been selected numerous times to serve on NIH SBIR review committees as an expert panelist reviewer. Dr. Crawford has authored over 30 publications in high impact peer-reviewed journals, and has been invited to present her research at numerous national and international conferences.  Dr. Crawford holds a Bachelor's Degree in Zoology and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology, both from the University of Wisconsin, Madison

Melissa Black

Head, Program Management

Melissa Black is the head of Program Management and is responsible for the successful execution of Allysta's development programs.  Melissa brings a wealth of experience in Program Management, Strategic Planning and Partner Management. Most recently Melissa has led several early stage development programs at companies including Unity Biotechnology, Plexxikon, InterMune (now part of Roche), Altheos, and CoMentis. Earlier in her career she worked in Project Management at ALZA/Johnson and Johnson, where she managed multiple key projects and was a key part of the team responsible for the integration and streamlining of the ALZA project management function within Johnson and Johnson. Melissa received a Bachelor's degree in Physical Anthropology with minors in Molecular Genetics and French from The Ohio State University.

Jeanette Stewart, RN

Head, Clinical Operations

Jeanette is a seasoned clinical trial manager with more than three decades of experience managing clinical trials at all stages of development. She is the co-founder and COO of PRN Pharmaceutical Research Network, LLC, an ophthalmic-focused clinical research organization. Prior to founding PRN, Jeanette focused on coordinating clinical trials in glaucoma, and then in developing and directing two separate clinical site management companies (SMOs), Charleston Research Company, LLC and Atlanta Research Company, LLC. At PRN, she has managed more than 70 research projects in the US, Australia, Canada, and throughout Europe. From her deep ophthalmic experience she has trained Project Managers, CRAs, clinical trial coordinators and site managers. Ms. Stewart has published more than 100 scientific articles related to ophthalmic treatments and research processes. She has also presented at scientific meetings and as an invited lecturer.

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