Moro Salifu

MD, MBA, MPH
President and Chair (Founder)

Dr. Salifu serves as Chief of the Division of Nephrology and Director of the Kidney Transplant Program at SUNY Downstate. He is board certified in internal medicine, nephrology and certified in transplant nephrology and interventional nephrology.

Dr. Salifu served as the senior investigator on the role of specific peptide inhibitors of F11R in animal models of atherosclerosis, leading to the patent on their use to treat vascular disorders. He is also the senior investigator on the impact of these peptide inhibitors on intimal hyperplasia seen in atherosclerosis and dialysis vascular access stenosis.

Dr. Salifu has received many grants and extensive publications for his research. He serves as a journal reviewer for many nephrology and transplant societies and member of local and national professional committees. He is also a Master of the American College of Physicians, the highest honor conferred to its distinguished members and fellows.

Dr. Salifu completed medical school in Turkey and a residency in internal medicine at SUNY Downstate. Dr. Salifu merited fellowships in kidney diseases, kidney transplantation and interventional nephrology, and graduated as an exceptional scholar in all three subspecialties. He also holds master’s degrees in business administration and public health.

Clinical Experience: 17+ Years

Dr. Moro Salifu brings in depth clinical trial experience to Vasocure. He has participated in several successful clinical trials taking part in all phases from first in human studies all way to bringing the final products to market. He served as site Principal Investigator for three large multi-center phase 2 and 3 clinical trials that resulted in three new medications approved by the FDA for the treatment of patients with kidney disease on dialysis (references below). The three medications are 1) Pegylated erythropoietin beta (marketed as Mircera) for the treatment of anemia of end stage renal failure on dialysis sponsored by ROCHE, 2) Ferrumoxytol (marketed as Mircera Feraheme) for the treatment of iron deficiency in end stage renal disease on dialysis sponsored by AMAG Pharmaceuticals and 3) Cinacalcet (marketed as Sensipar) for the treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism in dialysis patients, sponsored by AMGEN. Dr. Salifu has a long standing track record working in commercial pharmaceutical development and has collaborated with several CRO’s including COVANCE and QUINTILES to conduct successful clinical trials and has acquired substantial understanding of the clinical trials infrastructure and requirements. Some of the key phase 2 and 3 studies conducted by Dr. Salifu include:

2002-2003                   Phase III study on the effect of cinacalcet on secondary hyperparathyroidism in hemodialysis patientsAMGEN Inc. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2002-2003                  Correction of hemoglobin and outcomes in renal failure (CHOIR) trialHoffman La-Roche ltd. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2002-2005                   Dose Conversions of Peggylated Erythropoietin in Hemodialysis PatientsHoffman La- Roche. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2004-2006                   Randomized Trial of Peggylated Erythropoietin vs. Erythropoietin in Hemodialysis Patients Hoffman La- Roche. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2004-2008                   A Phase III Study Of The Safety And Efficacy Of Ferumoxytol (Compared with Oral Iron) As An Iron Replacement Therapy In Hemodialysis Patients Who Are Receiving Supplemental Erythropoietin Therapy Advanced Magnetics Inc. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2005-2009                   Extension study of the safety and efficacy of continuous erythropoietin receptor agonist (CERA) in hemodialysis patientsHoffman La- Roche. Site Principal Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

2008-2010                   A phase III Outcome Trial Evaluating the Efficacy and Safety of Norditropinâin Adult Patients on Chronic Hemodialysis. A Randomized Double-blind Parallel group, Placebo controlled Multicentre Trial Novo Nordisk. Site Principle Investigator: Moro O. Salifu, MD.

Published References

1.     Jill S. Lindberg, …et al (For the Cinacalcet Study Group): Cinacalcet HCl, an Oral Calcimimetic Agent for the Treatment of Secondary Hyperparathyroidism in Hemodialysis and Peritoneal Dialysis: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Multicenter Study. J Am Soc Nephrol 16: 800–807, 2005.

2.     Besarab A, Salifu M, Lunde NM et al. Efficacy and tolerability of intravenous continuous erythropoietin receptor activator: a 19-week, phase II, multicenter, randomized, open-label, dose-finding study with a 12-month extension phase in patients with chronic renal disease. Clin Ther 2007; 29 (4):626-39.

3.     Provenzano R, Schiller B, Rao M, Coyne D, Brenner L, Pereira BJ. Ferumoxytol as an intravenous iron replacement therapy in hemodialysis patients. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2009 Feb;4(2):386-93. doi: 10.2215/CJN.02840608. Epub 2009 Jan 28.

Aditya Mattoo

MD, MBA
CEO

Dr. Aditya Mattoo is CEO of Vasocure, a Board-Certified Nephrologist and holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.  Dr. Mattoo is a humanist at heart and his collective experience demonstrates his passion to work with others to maximize their potential and well-being.  Whether it was caring for patients as a Director at NYU Langone Health’s Transplant Institute, teaching students as an Assistant Professor at the NYU School of Medicine, performing research in health technology as an Academic Investigator at the NYU Department of Population Health or working with entrepreneurs as General Partner at Bodhi Capital, Dr. Mattoo thrives on the opportunity to solve problems and nurture the growth and development of individuals and companies alike.

 

Early in his career as a practicing physician, Dr. Mattoo noted the lack of technology-based applications throughout the healthcare industry particularly in the arena of direct patient care.  This observed deficit led to his interest and involvement in academic research that investigated the use of mobile technology to modify patient behavior and clinical outcomes.  In this capacity, Dr. Mattoo collaborated with a myriad of health tech startups and customized their technology to meet the needs of clinicians and patients. This groundbreaking work has resulted in several NIH-funded mHealth research trials and numerous peer-reviewed abstracts and publications in the medical literature.

 

Dr. Mattoo’s use of disruptive technologies to a late-adopting health care industry inspired the formation of Bodhi Capital, of which he is the Founder and General Partner. Bodhi Capital is an early-stage venture capital firm that expands his interest of identifying the market potential of innovative ideas not just in healthcare, but across all sectors. Through the Bodhi Capital platform, Dr. Mattoo leverages his experiences and expertise in advising and investing in early-stage companies and satiates his passion for building teams and companies for the future.   Vasocure takes his expertise one step further by approaching the biotech startup model in a non-traditional way as he venture-builds a next-generation lean biotech company.

Eugene Dinescu

COO

Highly experienced in both science and business, Mr. Dinescu has founded and run several companies within the health sectors. He previously served as the Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Center for Healthcare Innovation, where he established partnerships with several Fortune 1000 healthcare companies and served as CHI’s keynote speaker.

While studying biochemistry at Columbia University, he invented and patented an innovative technology that increased the production efficiency and capacity for biologics, subsequently spinning out his first biotechnology company. He studied Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Columbia Business School, and has since specialized in running healthcare and biotechnology companies.

Mr. Dinescu routinely speaks at conferences regarding health and was invited to the World B-20 Summit and has also been a UNICEF participant.

Anna Babinska

Ph.D.
CSO
Founding Member, Director of Research Development

Dr. Babinska is a Research Associate Professor at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. For over two decades, she has led research on the mechanisms of F11R action including its involvement in smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration. Working closely with Drs. Ehrlich and Kornecki, Dr. Babinska played a pivotal role in the discovery, cloning and sequencing of the F11R. She also helped develop two synthetic peptides which were determined to be potent inhibitors of F11R action.

Dr. Babinska received her master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of Lodz, Poland. She has received numerous awards including being Fellow, Participating Laboratories Award, Young Investigator and Travel Award from the American Heart Association.

Elizabeth Kornecki

Ph.D.
Founding Member and Senior Scientist, Research and Development

Dr. Kornecki is Professor Emeritus in Cell Biology and Medicine at SUNY Downstate Medical Center.

Since F11R was discovered in Dr. Kornecki’s laboratory in 1986, she has spent over three decades researching the mechanisms of F11R action including its involvement in smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration. She championed the development of synthetic peptides that inhibit of F11R action, as well as the design and execution of in vivo studies.

Dr. Kornecki holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in biology and pharmacology from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her more than 60 scientific publications, primarily on F11R science, created the roadmap to a new class of therapeutic agents to treat human cardiovascular disorders.

Yigal Erlich

Ph.D.
Founding Member and Senior Scientist, Research and Development

Dr. Ehrlich is Professor Emeritus of Neuroscience at CUNY and the College of Staten Island. In collaboration with Dr. Kornecki’s laboratory, he discovered an ePKC on the surface of human platelets that targets the F11 receptor (F11R). He has spent over three decades investigating the mechanisms of F11R action, including its involvement in smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration, as well as F11R peptide-1 inhibitors.

Dr. Ehrlich has published over 100 scientific articles and presented his work at numerous national and international conferences. As principal editor, he published four books in the prestigious series of Plenum Press, Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology.