TechSandBox: MetroWest Innovation Hub 

Our Mission:   Connect Innovation-driven enterprises and their entrepreneurs to needed resources, accelerating success by bringing the ecosystem together, right here in MetroWest.

Life Sciences SIG
3rd Monday of the Month
, unless there's a holiday, which happens a lot this year! We start food, networking and registration at 5:30p with program proceedings 6- 6:15p.  $25 up until a week before the program/ $30 until 2pm day of program/ $35 at door; Includes food. Members of this SIG are admitted free. Our life sciences special interest group includes medical devices, cell biology, pharmaceutical development and medical records.

SIG SPONSORS:         Colliers supporters of TechSandBox Life Sciences SIG    

9/19, 5:30pm, The 300 Year War on Cancer: Is Science Finally Winning

(Immunotherapy in the battle with cancer)

With over 450 genetically characterized human cancers, we have found cures for almost none.  Why is this field so complex and what is the current state of the art in this important field? Which approaches, t-cells, antigens, B cells, MCH, and monoclonal antibodies, show the most promise? How does genetics both complicate the situation and offer opportunities for treatments in personalized medicine.

More soon.

Moderated by Howard Lin, PhD, with:

  • Tim Coleman, MBA, PhD, CEO of Nemucore
  • Estuardo Aguilar-Cordova, MD, PhD, CEO of Advantagene
  • Bruce Zetter, PhD, Professor of Cancer Biology, Harvard Medical School and Lab Director, Boston Children’s Hospital

To register:

Tim Coleman, Nemucore     Estuardo Aguilar Advantagene     Bruce Zetter, Professor, Harvard Medical School


Dr. Aguilar-Cordova is the co-founder of Advantagene, Inc. and has been the company’s chairman and CEO since 2002. He has more than 30 years of experience in the fields of biotherapeutics, cancer research and drug development, including serving as principal or co-investigator in more than 25 clinical trials ranging from Phase I to Phase III. 

Prior to moving into his role at Advantagene, Dr. Aguilar-Cordova held academic positions for nearly two decades. Most recently, he was deputy director of the Harvard Gene Therapy Initiative at Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA, and was a faculty member in Pediatrics, Hematology-Oncology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX. He has served on many national oversight committees, including roles as chairman and member of the NIH Recombinant Advisory Committee (RAC), as a consultant to the FDA Biological Response Modifiers Advisory Committee (BRMAC), and as a member of the Vaccine and Related Products Advisory Committee (VRPAC). He has also held other appointments including president of the Latin American Gene Therapy Society.

Dr. Aguilar-Cordova has published more than 80 peer-reviewed scientific publications and book chapters, is on the editorial board of various professional journals and is an inventor on several patent applications.

A native of Guatemala, he did his undergraduate studies in Biology at California State University, Bakersfield; Medicine, at Universidad Francisco Marroquín in Guatemala City; and Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics at the University of California at Davis.

Dr. Tim Coleman has lead Nemucore Medical Innovations (NMI) since its inception in 2008. NMI is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the development and commercialization of targeted nanomedicines for the treatment of patients afflicted with multidrug resistant cancers. During his tenure, NMI has grown to eleven employees and now occupies a 21,000 square foot research facility in Worcester, MA. 

Tim is principal investigator on NMI’s five funded grants from the National Cancer Institute and the Ben & Catherine Ivy Foundation.  With this funding, NMI’s two lead products were developed and are being prepared for Phase I clinical trials. In a shareholder value creation event in May of 2012, Tim oversaw the spinoff of Blue Ocean Biomanufacturing Inc. to NMI’s shareholders so NMI could focus on targeted therapeutic development and Blue Ocean could advance key opportunities in the translational biomanufacturing space.

Before co-founding NMI, Tim was the leader of the Biomedical Strategy Group in Pricewaterhouse Coopers Health Industries Practice. Prior to joining Pricewaterwaterhouse Coopers, Tim was president, CEO and co-founder of BioCache Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a Richmond, Virginia-based biopharmaceutical company primarily engaged in the research and development of cancer vaccines. There he was a National Cancer Institute funded principal investigator studying the interaction of cancer vaccines with Toll-Like Receptors (TLRs) to induce a clinically relevant immune response. Additionally, he successfully led the firm’s growth through early stage funding, and strategic expansion.

Tim has served as a technical adviser to venture capital firms, assessing the feasibility of life science technologies in biotechnology business plans. He is an elected member of the Massey Cancer Center, an internationally recognized center of excellence for cancer research and education.

A frequent guest lecturer and panelist, Tim has spoken on numerous academic and industry association conferences, including at Massachusetts Legislative Life Science Caucus, MassBio, MIT, BU, WPI, Virginia Biotechnology Association, Denver Entrepreneurship Council, and the Massachusetts Office for International Trade and Investment.  We add TechSandBox to his impressive list.

Tim earned his bachelor of science in biochemistry from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, a doctorate in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from the Medical College of Virginia and master’s in business administration with a focus in finance from Boston University. 

Dr. Bruce Zetter is the Charles Nowiszewski Professor in the Departments of Cell Biology and Surgery at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Zetter is highly regarded as an international leader in cancer research and as an advisor to the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry.

Prior to his work at Harvard, Dr. Zetter received a B.A. degree in Anthropology from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA, and a Ph.D. from the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, RI. He completed fellowships at MIT and at the Salk Institute in San Diego, CA. He conducts research at Children's Hospital, Boston where he has served as Vice President of Research and Chief Scientific Officer.

Dr. Zetter won numerous national and international awards for his work in the field of cancer research including a Faculty Research Award from the American Cancer Society, a Creativity Award from the Prostate Cancer Foundation and two MERIT awards from the US National Cancer Institute. He has published more than 150 research papers and has served on the editorial boards of 11 peer-reviewed journals. He has also received three teaching awards from the students at Harvard Medical School for excellence as a teacher and as a course director. A frequent lecturer, Bruce has given over 300 lectures to universities, conferences and businesses and has served as an expert witness for the United States Senate Cancer Coalition hearings in Washington.

Dr. Zetter is frequently sought as an advisor on science and business practice to industry executives and scientists. He has served as consultant or scientific advisory board member to more than 30 biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies and additionally serves as an advisor to venture firms and investment firms. In addition, he is often called on as an expert witness in court cases involving health and biotechnology. 

10/17/2016, 5:30PM: Now you see it; Now you see it better: Advances in
Imaging for Medical Applications

Imaging and vision systems are being used for discovery of cells, to new material development, to diagnostic procedures, therapies and surgery.

Tonight we cover them all and include advances in miniaturization, wavelengths of light, and robot guidance. See what can be detected, new applications and diagnostics that are enabled. MORE SOON.

Moderated by Lew Harrold, Innovative Medical Consultants:

  • Yuxiang (Shawn) Liu, Assistant Professor, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
  • Lionel Picard, VP Product Marketing, Mevion

Professor Liu, WPI    Lionel Bouchet, PhD, Mevion   Lew HarroldLew Harrold

To register:


Yuxiang (Shawn) Liu is an assistant professor in Mechanical Engineering who joined WPI in 2013. He received a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Maryland, College Park in 2011. Before joining WPI, Yuxiang Liu worked as a postdoctoral researcher in Purdue University in 2011. He worked at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as a NIST-ARRA fellow from 2011 to 2013. His research interests include fiber based optical trapping, silicon nanomechanics and nanophotonics, optofluidics, fiber optical sensors, bioinspired soft robotics, and cell mechanics. His research has been published on journals including Nature Nanotechnology, Physical Review Letters, Optics Letters, and Biomedical Optics Express.

Lew Harrold is an accomplished Medical Device Realization Professional with over 40 years’ experience of product lifecycle management of Medical Devices for a world-wide market. His experience encompasses multidisciplinary development team leadership, project management, engineering, clinical evaluation, manufacturing and medical device regulatory submissions for markets in US, Latin America, China and Japan. Lew has well developed business acumen and has a proven track record of bringing well designed and reliable products to market in a timely manner.

Throughout his career, Lew has managed and executed successful product development programs in radiology imaging, disposable whole blood optical devices, invasive and non-invasive cardiac output, patient vital signs monitoring and home health care remote monitoring. Additionally, he has assisted companies in the realization of new medical technologies, including clinical testing and medical research.

A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, a certified PMP, and a member of PMI, IEEE and PDMA, Lew is an expert in medical product design, biomedical engineering team development, program management, Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and clinical studies. Lew has deployed his expertise to realize profitable medical products for companies ranging in size from startups to Fortune 500. These commercialized products included 8 patents, 30+ successful 510(k)s, and 16 new medical products.

Lionel Bouchet, PhD, is VP of Product Management and Marketing at Mevion Medical Systems in Littleton. Prior to joining the startup team at Mevion (formerly Still River Systems), Lionel held similar roles at Varian Medical Systems and ZMed.

Lionel specializes in image-guided medical systems and was an Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Neurological Surgery at University of Florida.  Mevion Medical Systems is a leading provider of proton therapy systems for use in radiation treatment for cancer patients and uses imaging to locate the treatment site.

Dr. Bouchet has degrees in Physics - Nuclear Engineering from Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble, MS, Nuclear Engineering and Medicine from Texas A&M University, and PhD, Medical Physics from University of Florida.


Committee: Jerry Shapiro, Mark Hediger, Amy LaChapelle, Carmel Denis, Howard Lin

Co-Chairs, Jerry Shapiro and Barbara Finer
Contact our Chair with questions or if you want to volunteer in some capacity (Jerrold)

    Medical Devices, to Biotech, to Pharma and Cell Biology, to eMR, imaging, medical robotics, 510K, FDA   Jerrold Shapiro, PhD FemMedical  Carmel Denis, Medical Device project managemet  Amy LaChappelle, QBD  Mark Hediger, MEH  Howard Lin                 



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