About Us

Management Team

John Osth, MBA, President and CEO:

John Osth is an experienced and well-rounded senior executive in the medical/scientific industry. At various points in his career he has served as CEO, President, CFO, head of R&D, VP of Business Development, head of sales and marketing, and manager of diagnostics manufacturing. Of particular note, he was President of the Immunotherapy Division of Baxter Healthcare and most recently was CEO of Celula, Inc., a VC backed genomics start-up pursuing the non-invasive prenatal diagnostic market.

Mr. Osth's career has been dedicated to bringing new medical products and services to market. His experience across a broad spectrum of scientific and medical products provides him with a deep understanding of the opportunities and obstacles inherent in introducing new technological advancements to the marketplace. As a leader of both large and small companies, he recognizes how to best leverage the talents of the workforce to maximally contribute to the commercialization of a medical product. For several years he has acted as a mentor and advisor to several start-up organizations.

Mr. Osth received his undergraduate degree from the US Naval Academy, a Master's in Engineering from the University of Illinois and an MBA from the University of Chicago's Executive Program.

Amin Khalifa, MBA, Chief Financial Officer:

Amin Khalifa is an accomplished management executive with experience in several industries, most recently in medical devices, diagnostics and home healthcare. Mr. Khalifa has extensive experience in financial operations, strategy, IT and leading large teams. He has also represented several large companies with investors and considers himself an effective communicator for the companies that he has represented.

Mr. Khalifa mostly held executive financial positions in the course of his career. His most recent role was Corporate Vice President and CFO for Iris International where he was instrumental in streamlining company operations and improving forecasts, leading to Danaher's acquisition of Iris in 2012, doubling the companies' market valuation.

Mr. Khalifa recently served eight years on the PetSmart board of directors. Previously, Mr. Khalifa was CFO and executive vice president at Apria Healthcare for three years, where he spearheaded the effort to gain a more detailed understanding of customer and product profitability. Before Apria, he served as Vice President – Finance and CFO of Beckman Coulter. Prior to Beckman Coulter, Amin was CFO of Monsanto's agricultural sector. Earlier in his career, Amin held the position of CFO of Aetna Health Plans and served in several financial and business development capacities during his fifteen-year tenure at PepsiCo.

Mr. Khalifa Amin holds a BS in industrial engineering and an MBA from Lehigh University.

Masato Mitsuhashi, MD, PhD, Chief Technology Officer:

Dr. Masato Mitsuhashi began his career as a pediatrician with a subspecialty in allergy/immunology. In 1985 he joined Dr. Goetzl's laboratory at the University of California, San Francisco as a post doc, developing an expertise in molecular technologies. He subsequently joined Hitachi Chemical Research Center, advancing to the position of CSO. During his tenure at Hitachi, Dr. Mitsuhashi served as president/CEO for two spin-off companies; Advanced Gene Computing Technologies, Inc. (1993) and RNAture, Inc. (2000). During this period, he also held the position of associate professor in the Department of Pathology, University of California, Irvine (UCI) (1992-2005). Dr. Mitsuhashi has been an early advisory board member for the Department of Biomedical Engineering at UCI School of Engineering and the Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine at the UCI School of Medicine.

Over the past several years, Dr. Mitsuhashi's work has been focused on developing various approaches, techniques and products for the isolation and characterization of nanosomes (nano-particles that include exosomes and ectosomes). As the Chief Technology Officer at NanoSomiX, he is using this expertise to translate innovative research advancements using exosomes in blood into clinically applicable laboratory developed tests.

Dr. Mitsuhashi received his M.D. and Ph.D. from Gunma University, Japan.

Vicki Clements, EdD, Vice President, Marketing:

Dr. Vicki Clements is an accomplished management executive in the biotechnology and medical device sectors. She has extensive experience in change leadership and general management, as well as marketing and strategic business planning for emerging technologies within the biomedical industry.

Dr. Clements has held a variety of leadership positions in the course of her career. Recent roles include Vice President of Sales and Vice President of Marketing for two early stage medical device companies where she was responsible for creating and executing the commercialization strategy. Previously, Vicki was founder and President of NanoSciences, Inc. a strategic marketing and consulting resource for companies focused on advancing micro- and nanotechnology for biomedical applications. Prior to NanoSciences, she was the Chief Operating Officer for Irvine Scientific, an in vitro diagnostics manufacturer. She is a contributing author to the book Marketing of High-Tech Products and Services and has provided articles to R&D Executive Magazine on early stage commercialization strategies.

Vicki has a BS in Biological Sciences from the University of California, Irvine, an MBA from the Peter F. Drucker Graduate School of Management at Claremont Graduate University and a doctorate in Organizational Leadership from Pepperdine University.

Dennis Van Epps, PhD, VP Scientific Affairs

Dr. Dennis Van Epps is an experienced Research and Development Executive with a career that spans both academia and industry. He began his career as a tenured Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Pathology and Microbiology at the University of New Mexico Medical School. He later joined Baxter Healthcare Corporation as a Director of Immunology and became Vice President of Research for the Immunotherapy Division. He subsequently joined Nexell Therapeutics as a Corporate Officer and Vice President of R&D where the focus was development of FDA approved and CE marked human stem cell collection and delivery devices. He later joined CancerVax Corporation, a startup company developing a melanoma vaccine and an anti-angiogenic therapeutic antibody as Vice President of R&D and Corporate Officer.

Prior to joining NanoSomiX, Dr. Van Epps was Vice President Research for the Medical Device Division of Allergan focused on implantable and injectable aesthetic devices and Vice President, New Device Technology Assessment exploring new portfolio product opportunities. He has published over 140 scientific articles in immunology, neuroimmunology, stem cell technology and inflammation and has been an inventor on over 20 patents.

Dennis obtained his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago.

Scientific Advisors

Edward Goetzl, MD, Principal Scientist:

Dr. Edward J. Goetzl is an academic clinical immunologist and rheumatologist. He received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital. After ten years on the faculty of Harvard Medical School, Dr. Goetzl came to U.C.S.F. as a Professor of Medicine and Immunology, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and the Director of Clinical Immunology and Allergy in the Department of Medicine. His research focused on immune mediators, including eicosanoids, neuropeptides and sphingolipids. Dr. Goetzl is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a member of the Association of American Physicians, and a Fellow of the American College of Physicians.

Dr. Goetzl's research interests changed in 2008, when he initiated studies to elucidate cellular characteristics and molecular mechanisms of aging of the human immune system. He also began to conduct investigations half-time at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore to facilitate collaborations there and access resources of several NIA-based longitudinal studies of aging. The results of this research led to his current work on diagnostic approaches to human neurodegenerative processes.

Dr. Goetzl currently is the Robert L. Kroc Professor of Medicine, U.C.S.F., Emeritus, and an Edward A. Dickson UC Professor.

Dale Bredesen, MD:

Dr. Bredesen is internationally recognized as an expert in the mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. He graduated from Caltech, then earned his MD from Duke University Medical Center in Durham, NC. He served as Chief Resident in Neurology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) before joining Nobel laureate Stanley Prusiner’s laboratory at UCSF as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow. He held faculty positions at UCSF, UCLA and the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Bredesen directed the Program on Aging at the Burnham Institute before coming to the Buck Institute in 1998 as its founding President and CEO.