aVaxziPen management team is made up of industry professionals with several decades of wide-ranging experience in the vaccine industry.
Chief Business Officer
Robin has over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry with a strong commercial and business development focus. Robin has worked in both commercial and Business Development roles at Janssen Cilag (Johnson & Johnson) as well as executive level positions in the biotech space. Prior to joining aVaxziPen, Robin worked as Chief Business Officer at Emergex Vaccines. As Chief Business Officer, Robin leads all aspects of commercial development and partnering for the organisation.
Dr Carolyn Mercer
Carolyn joined aVaxziPen in August 2023. Carolyn was originally a research scientist, gaining her PhD in Molecular Virology in 2007 from Oxford Brookes University, before qualifying as a chartered accountant with CIMA in 2013.
Prior to joining aVaxziPen, Carolyn was Senior Business Partner at Williams Racing. Her role included collaborating with senior leadership and the engineering teams to maximise car performance in the cost cap era of Formula One.
Prior to this Carolyn held roles in Commercial and Corporate Finance across various companies including Baxter Healthcare, Vodafone Business and Macmillan Publishers.
Dr Keith Howard
Chief Scientific Officer
Keith brings more than 35 years of experience in vaccine development spent in industry and academia and has led the development of viral vectors and vaccines across multiple formats (recombinant, viral vector, live attenuated virus) at several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies.
Prior to joining aVaxziPen, Keith was Chief Development Officer at Oxford-based Vaccitech, where he was the head of R&D, process development and manufacturing for its novel viral vector vaccine programmes. Before that, he was Senior Director and Head of Manufacturing Science & Technology for FluMist (live attenuated influenza vaccine) at Medimmune.
Before this, Keith was a Director of Vaccines Analytical Development at Pfizer Biotech, and he also spent ten years at Baxter AG in various positions including that of Director of Vaccines R&D. Further roles included Head of Vector Development at Oxxon Therapeutics and Director of Neuronal Gene Therapy at Cantab Pharmaceuticals.
Keith spent 13 years in academia studying infectious diseases, virology and immunology at University College London and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He received a BSc in Biological Sciences from the University of Leicester and a PhD in Molecular Parasitology from the University of London.
Director of Quality, Regulatory and Compliance
Karen has extensive experience in the pharmaceutical industry gained in the development, manufacture and regulatory assurance of vaccines, biologics, active pharmaceutical ingredients and medicinal drug products.
She has worked in Europe and USA as well as UK and has led projects to prepare companies for their first global new drug registration and associated inspections from the regulatory authorities, including MHRA, EMA, FDA and ANVISA.
Prior to furthering her career in Regulatory and Quality, Karen worked in R & D and Operations. She has supported the conduct of safety and clinical efficacy studies around the world and has championed the introduction of new and improved quality systems to support Good Clinical, Manufacturing, Laboratory and Distribution Practices. As a member of the core team, she has been involved in new build, construction and remediation of pharmaceutical facilities for active ingredients, sterile and high risk medicinal products and has led the associated qualification and validation effort.
Karen’s experience has been gained in GSK, MSD, Chiroscience, Celltech, NextPharma Technologies, GW Pharmaceuticals, Sandoz and Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre. She is the Chair of Research Ethics at Cranfield University and is a Public Partner for National institute for Health and Care Research in conjunction with Imperial College, London.
Head of Research & Development
Chris has worked in novel pharmaceutical delivery technology development for more than 12 years and has a strong background in process development and pharmaceutical engineering.
Prior to his appointment as Head of Research and Development at aVaxziPen Chris worked as a Manufacturing Engineer and subsequently Head of Manufacturing. He has led the development of manufacturing processes from laboratory bench to GMP-scale operation. In 2016 he oversaw a successful phase I clinical trial.
In his current role Chris manages the R&D team within aVaxziPen and supports technical, Business Development and strategic activities within the company.
Chris holds a BA and MEng in Engineering from the University of Cambridge (UK).
Executive Assistant and Company Secretary
Carol has over 20 years’ Biotech and Life Sciences experience working alongside C-Suite Executives and more than 10 years in a Company Secretary role.
Prior to joining aVaxziPen, Carol supported senior leadership at Oxford Diffraction, to sell Diffraction systems to Universities and Commercial Clients. She was an integral part of the Team that implemented a successful sale of the Company, in 2008, to Varian Inc and later Agilent Technologies.
Carol worked as the Harwell Centre Business Manager at Synexus, a phase II-IV clinical trials patient recruitment company spun out of AEA Technology and the Edgebright Partnership. She was responsible for building relationships with General Practitioners, Pharmaceutical Companies, Clinical Research Organisation, Hospital Consultants and Ethics Committees to successfully identify patients for clinical trials in women’s healthcare, osteoporosis, arthritis, IBS and migraine. She also led a team of Medical Practitioners, Nurses, Radiographers and Administrators who implemented the clinical studies.
Carol holds a Professional Certificate in Management from the Open University, UK.
Scientific Advisory Board
aVaxziPen Scientific Advisory Board comprises of highly experienced and distinguished experts in vaccination and preventative health from leading academic, research and international health organisations across the US and Europe.