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Myelin Repair Foundation–Revolutionizing Medical Research

Written by on Wednesday, March 7th, 2007

The bioe2e event Myelin Repair Foundation–Revolutionizing Medical Research will be held on Wednesday, March 14th, 2007 from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich Rosati, 950 Page Mill Rd., Palo Alto, CA  94301.  The pre-reigstration discount is $25 for registration before midnight on Monday, March 12, 2007; registration at the door is $35.  The program will address:

  • How was MRF able to attract the top researchers from around the globe to collaborate? 
  • Why have they been so successful? 
  • How did MRF raise funding? 
  • What were the issues surrounding IP and interactions with University Technology Transfer groups?
  • Also, how could this model be applied to other diseases? 

The presenters will include the following:

  • Scott Johnson, President and Founder  Scott Johnson brings more than 20 years of experience in business, including President and CEO of three startups. Johnson led such companies as Thermatrix, a venture-capital-backed company that developed, patented and sold a highly-efficient thermal oxidation technology that destroyed hazardous air pollutants. He also served as President and CEO of Cinemation, an entertainment company headquartered in Hawaii. Johnson’s first startup was SeparaSystems LP, a joint venture between DuPont and FMC that utilized advanced membrane technology for food processing. Before these entrepreneurial roles, Johnson was an executive at FMC Corporation and in management consulting at the Boston Consulting Group. He holds an M.B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Davis. Johnson was diagnosed with MS in 1976.


  • Russell "Rusty" Bromley, Chief Operating Officer   Rusty Bromley brings a unique combination of business experience in both academic and commercial research environments. His expertise includes the creation and protection of innovative technologies, business development, and marketing strategies for high tech and life sciences firms. Formerly he was CEO of LabVelocity, Inc., an Internet information portal for the life science research community. Prior to that he was CEO of Berkshire Holding Corporation, a privately-held, multinational manufacturer of contamination control materials for microelectronics and pharmaceutical production. Bromley’s experience also includes 17 years with American Hospital Supply Corporation and Baxter Healthcare, in both the distribution and diagnostics businesses, culminating with seven years as President of the Burdick and Jackson Division. Bromley holds a degree in Biochemistry from Rice University.


  • Ben Barres, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Ben Barres is Professor of Neurobiology and Developmental Biology and Vice-Chair of the Department of Neurobiology at Stanford University School of Medicine.Dr. Barres’s laboratory brings expertise in the development and function of glial cells in the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). They have found evidence of several novel glial signals that induce the onset of myelination, the clustering of axonal sodium channels, the survival and growth of retinal ganglion cells, and the formation of synapses. Their work for MRF compliments Dr. Robert Miller’s work on characterizing the processes related to myelination and identifying relevant glial-derived signaling molecules. To understand the interactions between axons and glial cells Dr. Barres’s laboratory has developed methods to highly purify and culture neurons as well as oligodendrocytes and astrocytes (the glial cell types they interact with). The laboratory has developed a variety of novel methods to generate purified cell cultures that allow direct study of molecular interactions between the cell types and has considerable expertise in identifying and purifying these molecules.

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