Board of Directors & Principal Advisors
Genetic Signatures is governed by a Board of Directors who oversee the integrity of our business operations.
Members of our Board include:
Dr Nick Samaras, Ph.D. MBA, FAIM, FAICD. Non-Executive Chairman
Dr Samaras has had over 25 years business experience in the global Life Sciences industry and is a recognised and respected industry expert. He has held a number of senior executive level positions in management, marketing, sales, and research and development. His roles have included appointments as Managing Director of Applied Biosystems Pty Ltd (now part of Thermo Fisher), and senior roles with Perkin Elmer and AMRAD Corporation (now part of CSL).
Dr Samaras is an experienced executive, non-executive and Board Chairman, having served on the boards of several biotechnology companies including one that was ASX-listed. For the past 10 years Dr Samaras has focused his efforts on enabling a number of US biotechnology companies by facilitating their international market expansion and structured development of commercial revenue channels outside of their traditional onshore markets.
Nick holds a BSc with Honors in Pathology and Immunology from Monash University, and a Ph.D. in Medical Biology from the Department of Medicine at The University of Melbourne. He also holds postgraduate business qualifications which include an MBA from the School of Management at RMIT University, and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Institute of Management.
John Melki, Ph.D. Director and Chief Executive Officer
Dr Melki has led the commercialisation efforts of Genetic Signatures as Chief Executive Officer since 2011. Dr Melki originally joined Genetic Signatures in 2003 where he was responsible for leading the commercialisation of 2 research products (worldwide) and 5 diagnostic products (locally and Europe) in the role of Senior Principal Research Scientist. He has authored 20 peer-reviewed articles and is listed as an inventor on 8 patent applications. Dr Melki received his BSc from the University of New South Wales and his Ph.D. from the University of Sydney, where his thesis was awarded the Peter Bancroft Prize from the Medical School. His primary research focus for the last 20 years has been in the sodium bisulphite conversion of DNA which is at the core of Genetic Signatures’ technology.
Mike Aicher, BSc, MBA. Executive Director – U.S. Operations
Mr Aicher has over 30 years of industry experience, and was CEO and founder of National Genetics Institute (NGI) and acquired by Laboratory Corporation of America, Inc. (LabCorp) in 2000.
More recently, Mr. Aicher led LabCorp’s Western Division and was previously responsible for the Company’s Esoteric Business Units, which generated more than $1 billion in annual revenue. Prior to NGI, Mr. Aicher served in a number of executive leadership roles at Central Diagnostics Laboratory.
He currently serves as a director on boards of Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. and Omicia, Inc. He is certified by the University of California at Berkeley as a Global Biotechnology Executive and is a recipient of Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” award for emerging technologies. Mr Aicher received a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Redlands and an M.B.A. in Economics from Columbus University.
Phillip Isaacs, MSc, JP. Non-Executive Director
Mr Isaacs holds an MSc in Biochemistry from the University of Sydney. He has worked as a Clinical Biochemist with the Commonwealth Department of Health and in commercial diagnostics as Managing Director of the Australian subsidiary of Technicon Equipment (the manufacturer of the first AutoAnalyzer using continuous flow analysis for the estimation of biochemicals in the bloodstream). He commenced the operation of Beckman Instruments in Australia and worked as Managing Director and Area Director for the Asia-Pacific region, being responsible for both the Diagnostic and Life Science equipment markets. He was Vice President of the Asia Pacific Cytyc Corporation which developed and sells the ThinPrep Pap Test and was responsible for the development of the Company in Asia Pacific. He was also the Founding Chairman of the Australian Proteome Analysis Facility (APAF) in Sydney.
Tony Radford, Ph.D. AO. Non-Executive Director
Dr Radford has extensive experience in the biotechnology industry and has held executive roles in the management of commercial research and development in the medical field. Dr Radford gained a Ph.D. from La Trobe University and was a member of the CSIRO team that invented the QuantiFERON method for Cellular Immune-based diagnostics. He later joined AMRAD in pharmaceutical research and was Head of Development in 2000 when he left to co- found the diagnostic company Cellestis Limited, which listed on the ASX in 2001. Establishing offices and operations in the USA, Europe and Japan, Cellestis developed QuantiFERON –TB Gold, the worldwide benchmark for diagnosis of tuberculosis infection. Dr Radford was CEO of Cellestis from founding until its acquisition by QIAGEN NV in 2011 for approximately $400 million.
Our Principal Advisors lend their knowledge, experience and insight to our product development and business and include:
- Sir Gregory Winter, CB, FRS, Hon FRCP, Hon FTSE. Special Advisor
Sir Gregory Winter is a pioneer of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies. He invented techniques to both humanise and later to fully-humanise antibodies for therapeutic uses.
- Dr Jim Peacock, AC, FAA, FRS, FTSE, FAIAST. Special Advisor
Jim Peacock is the former Chief Scientist of Australia and a past President of the Australian Academy of Science. He was Chief of CSIRO Plant Industry 1978-2003.
- Prof. William Rawlinson, AM, MBBS, Ph.D., FRACP, FRCPA. Clinical Advisor
Professor William Rawlinson is Director of the Virology Division, SEALS Microbiology at Prince of Wales Hospital, Sydney.
- Christopher M Abbott, Ph.D. (Hon), AM, FCA. Founder and Chairman Emeritus
Christopher Abbott has had an extensive and successful career in investment and venture capital. From 1967 to 1976, he was an Executive Director with the Rothschild-affiliated Merchant Bank in Australia, and from 1976 to 1989 he was an external Director of a number of public companies. During this period he founded Maple-Brown Abbott Limited, an investment firm now managing $10 billion in securities. Mr Abbott also co-founded Peplin Limited (acquired by LEO Pharma A/S in 2009), a biotechnology business focused on inventing innovative dermatology products. Since 1985, he has been an early investor in many Australian biotechnology start-ups.