TEAM

Joana Correia, PhD

Co-Founder, CEO and CSO

Joana cofounded Exogenus Therapeutics in 2015, after a successful participation in COHiTEC program for technology commercialization. Having been awarded several honors, including three entrepreneurship prizes (Everis Foundation Award, Young Entrepreneur ANJE, and Prémio Empreendedor XXI BPI/CaixaBank), Joana has raised €3.5in funds for R&D, and is currently a leader in the field of EVbased therapeutics recognized internationally. With a PhD in Human Biology, she dedicated 20 years of her career to R&D in the area of human diseases and healthcare, is inventor of two patents, has several publications in high impact journals, and is invited researcher of the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology (CNC, Coimbra, Portugal). Joana is an enthusiastic entrepreneur and activist, with a creative mindset and a strong drive to solve healthcare challenges

Pedro Vilarinho, PhD

Board President

With over 18 years of experience bridging science and markets, Pedro Vilarinho supported several start-ups that attracted over €50M in investments, and joined six scientific start-ups, as a board member. As a founding member of COTED Portugal, Pedro was responsible for several entrepreneurship programs, including COHiTEC, that launched Exogenus Therapeutics. In 2006, he was awarded with the Price Foundation Innovative Entrepreneurship Educators Award, from the Stanford Technology Ventures Program. Pedro now acts as Director General of HiSeedTech and lectured for nearly 20 years at the University of Aveiro (Portugal).

Walter Palma, MBA

Board Member

Walter is currently a Director at Caixa Capital, the venture capital and private equity arm of Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Portugal’s largest financial group. Walter has over twenty years of professional experience, both in Portugal and internationally. Walter began his career with KMPG Canada, having transferred to the Portuguese office in 1991, where he specialized in the financial services sector and Corporate Finance. He later moved to Banco Finantia, a Portuguese investment bank, where he acted as Head of Equity Research and later as a Director in the Corporate Finance department. In 2001, Walter moved to the CGD Group to help found a corporate venturing operation specialised in investing in and developing internet and technology start-ups. Walter has an MBA in International Management from Universidade Católica Portuguesa and an Honours Commerce & Finance degree from the University of Toronto (Canada)

Mário Pinto

Owner, Change Partner-Venture Capital

Mario Pinto is the founder and leader of Change Partners, a Portuguese Venture Capital firm that is a shareholder in several innovative ventures, including in the healthcare sector and pharmaceutical industry. Mario’s expertise include business development within the life science sector, in which he helped several projects reach market, as a Board Member. He worked in credit, consulting, mergers & acquisitions and private equity, and was an Executive Board Member in one of the major financial institutions in Portugal, bank BPI (Banco Português de Investimento). Mario graduated in Economics from University of Porto and was a lecturer at the same university.

Luísa Marques, MBA

Co-Founder

Luísa has expertise in Marketing and Business Development, with over 18 years of professional experience. With a focus on Innovation Management, Proposition Design and Partnership Development, Luísa supported nationallyand internationallyrecognized projects, and raised over €2.7M in funds from investors and grants. She holds an MBA from Porto Business School and worked for major international firms, such as Barclays Bank and MasterCard.

Ricardo Neves, PhD

Co-founder

An expert in stem cells and nanomedicines, Ricardo is a Group Leader at the Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology (CNC, Coimbra, Portugal) and co‑founder of Exogenus Therapeutics. He holds a PhD from the University of Oxford (UK) and has conducted post‑doctoral work at the Molecular Hematology Unit of the Medical Research Council (Oxford, UK). Ricardo is an inventor in two patents and has publications in high impact journals, such as Nature Communications, ACS Nano and Biomaterials.

David Magboulé, BSc

Head of Business Development

David is a Marketing and Business Development expert, with over 15 years of experience in healthcare. He holds a BSc in Biology by the University of Nottingham (UK) and is a founder at the strategy and innovation consultancy firm LabToMarket. David has a broad international network and supported multidisciplinary projects in Europe and Africa.

Patricia Freire, PhD

R&D Associate

Patricia’s research focuses on the pathological pathways involved in skin autoimmune diseases. She holds a PhD from the Medical University of Vienna (Austria) and has pursued post-doctoral training at the University Medical Center of Luebeck (Germany). Patricia has publications in top dermatology journals and has received awards for her work in the field of autoimmune blistering diseases.

Carla Pereira, PhD

R&D Associate

Carla specializes in human genetics, and cell and molecular biology. She holds a PhD in Biomedicine from the University of Oporto (Portugal) and was a visiting scientist at the University of Uppsala (Sweden). Carla has several publications in top cancer journals and has been awarded for the best academic performance during her academic studies.

Sílvio Gaspar, BSc

Operations Manager

Sílvio’s expertise are in Sales, Communication and Marketing, including online Marketing. He holds a degree in Economy from the University of Coimbra and worked for major Portuguese Companies, such as Páginas Amarelas. Sílvio’s work experience is complemented by frequent participation in complementary courses in pedagogy, group dynamics and human relations.

ADVISORS

Graça Raposo, PhD

Scientific Advisor

Graça Raposo is an internationally recognized expert in the field of extracellular vesicles, with over 220 original publications (HFactor: 92) and 3 patents. Her achievements include the CNRS Silver Medal and the Descartes Huygens Price from the Royal Dutch Academy of Sciences (2012), a Portuguese recognition for being among the most ground-breaking Portuguese scientists (2016), the ISEV achievement award (2018) and the Miller Professorship award from Berkeley University (2019-2020). With over 30 years of experience and numerous international and industrial collaborations, Graça is also actively involved in science outreach. She is currently a Research Director at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS, France) and Head of the Structure and Membrane Compartments research team in the Department of Cell Biology and Cancer (UMR144-CNRS) at Institut Curie.

Antonio Chiesi, MD

Business Development Advisor

Founder of the oldest company worldwide dedicated to exosome research (HansaBioMed Life Sciences), Antionio Chiesi is recognized by his 12-year career leading highly innovative companies, including Exosomics. He served ten years as Head of Research at the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (Italian National Institute of Health) and is a former Director of the Agency for Research on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Italy). His scientific interests span several clinical research projects in the field of HIV-AIDS and Cancer, having been appointment as a Country Expert in several EU programs in the HIV/AIDS and Cancer fields. He now acts as CEO of HansaBioMed Life Sciences and Exosomics.

Tiago Alfaro, MD, PhD

Clinical and Scientific Advisor

With nearly 20 years of experience as a pulmonologist, Tiago Alfaro’s research interests include interstitial and inflammatory lung diseases, with 28 co-authorships in original publications or book chapters. Currently, he is a Pulmonologist and Laboratory Coordinator at the University Medical Center of Coimbra (Portugal), Assistant Professor at the Medical University of Coimbra (Portugal), Associate Editor of the Pulmonology Journal (formerly, Portuguese Pulmonology Journal), Board Member of the Portuguese Medical Association’s Pulmonology Section, and Vice-President of the Portuguese Pulmonology Society.