Partner, Principal Consultant
Edwin Spaans, partner of CURARE, has over 20 years of experience in industrial (and academic) R&D. Previously, Edwin held positions with increasing responsibility at former Organon (now MSD, the Netherlands), the Dutch Poisons Control Center, Actelion Pharmaceuticals in Switzerland and Kinesis-Pharma in the Netherlands providing over 20 years of leadership in delivering early clinical development projects. Under his accountability he advanced over 25 compounds successfully into the clinic and through Proof of Concept phase.
Recent positions include a.o. CMO/CDO for Khondrion BV combating rare inherited mitochondrial diseases, Program leader for Oncurious, focusing on pediatric solid brain tumours, and clinical leadership for AM-Pharma focusing on sepsis associated Acute Kidney Injury.
Edwin is also a specialist in pediatric drug development and pediatric clinical pharmacology and a visiting Clinical Pharmacologist to the Neonatology and the Pediatric ICU department of Erasmus MC Sophia Children’s Hospital with improvement of pediatric drug treatment high on his agenda.
Edwin holds a PharmD since ’97 (Utrecht University) and holds registrations as a Clinical Pharmacologist (2003) and as a specialist in Pharmaceutical Medicine (2011). He is an invited lecturer in Drug Development at Utrecht University and Erasmus University Rotterdam and several commercial drug development courses.
Partner, Principal Consultant
Tonke van Bragt, partner of CURARE, has over 25 years of experience in pharmaceutical industry as a.o. Clinical Pharmacology lead, Project Lead and Regulatory Affairs Lead. She has been involved in many drug development programs in early and late stage development in various therapeutic areas including orphan diseases. She developed biologics as well as small molecules from research to Proof of Concept and to Market Authorization. Recent positions include Clinical Pharmacology Lead in a Global Pharmaceutical company and Project Lead and Clinical Pharmacology Lead in a BioTech Company.
Prior to co-founding CURARE, she was a senior consultant Clinical Development and Regulatory affairs at Kinesis Pharma, consultant Drug Development and Program Manager at the non-clinical contract research organization NOTOX B.V. (now Charles River), Clinical Pharmacology Research Manager and Regulatory Affairs Scientist at Organon (now Merck Sharp and Dohme) and Literature Scientist at the Dutch Poison and Control Center of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).
She graduated in Medical Biology at the University of Utrecht, The Netherlands, in 1990 and holds a registration in Pharmaceutical Medicine (2011).
Partner, Principal Consultant
Jan Noukens has over 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, with a main focus on pharmacokinetics and clinical pharmacology. He started his career in 2004 at Janssen Pharmaceutica (Belgium) as PK/PD data analyst. In this position he performed PK/PD analyses for clinical studies in early and late development and was also involved in the development of in-vitro in-vivo correlations (IVIVC), process improvements and submission related activities. In 2008, he joined Kinesis Pharma (currently Venn Life Sciences, the Netherlands) where he acted as consultant clinical pharmacokinetics / clinical development and was outsourced as PK scientist and clinical pharmacologist to mid-size and big-pharma companies. He also managed the group of clinical PK data analysts, responsible for the supervision, coordination and reporting of the non-compartmental PK analyses performed. From November 2018 to joining CURARE one year later, Jan was the Head of Pharmacokinetics and Clinical Pharmacology at DGrPharma (the Netherlands).
Jan provided pharmacokinetic and clinical pharmacology input in numerous (exploratory) drug development programs and in scientific contributions to clinical trial design, protocols and reports in different indications. Furthermore, he authored many clinical trial related and regulatory documents (CTD), including expert reports and overviews for various types of applications and indications.
Jan is an industrial engineer, specialized in Biochemistry, by education and received his MSc. degree in 2004 (Leuven, Belgium).
Partner, Principal Consultant
Ellen Hulskotte, partner of CURARE, has 20+ years of international pharmaceutical industry experience and a deep insight in preclinical and clinical drug development. As a global clinical pharmacology lead for projects in early and late phases of development she has designed and executed focused and innovative clinical development plans and studies to milestones and budgets. She authored various clinical and regulatory documents and successfully interacted with regulatory authorities in Europe, US and Japan in writing and face-to-face.
Prior to joining CURARE, Ellen held positions as Senior Principal Scientist Clinical Pharmacology at Merck Sharp and Dohme, Early Clinical Research Expert at Schering-Plough, Clinical Pharmacology Research Manager at Organon, and Associate Director Global Strategy Immunology at Organon. Most recently, Ellen was the Clinical Lead at Treeway, a biotech company with a mission to develop therapies to cure ALS.
Ellen became a registered Clinical Pharmacologist at the Centre of Human Drug Research in Leiden and earned her PhD in Biomedical Science at the Erasmus University Rotterdam on HIV vaccine development.
Early Clinical Development Expert
Pierre Peeters is a registered clinical pharmacologist working more than 35 years in the pharmaceutical industry, merely in early clinical drug development. He is a subject matter expert in clinical pharmacology in the broadest sense and has been involved in and/or responsible for the study design and conduct of several hundred early clinical trials as well as more than fifty (early) clinical development plans in various indications. He is able to quickly analyse and advise on complex matters at a strategic level and has an impressive track record of projects in which he efficiently led scientific, operational and/or integration teams to excellent results within the deadlines set. He has a strong drive and collaborative leadership style with the conviction and ability to delegate to all levels, and at the same time act as an energetic team player. Pierre has a strategic view on innovative drug development with an in-depth knowledge of project- and lean drug development tools as well as a broad experience with operational and financial processes in early drug development.
Before joining CURARE, Pierre held senior scientific and/or leadership positions at the Centre for Human Drug Research (CHDR), Organon (currently MSD) and Pharma Bio-Research (now PRA), all located in the Netherlands.
Pierre graduated in Biochemistry/Pharmacology at the University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands, and holds a PhD degree from the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands, in Biopharmaceutics on drug targeting with immuno liposomes. Since 1998, he is a registered Clinical Pharmacologist.
Julien is a drug translational scientist with 15 years experience bridging academic and biotech environments. Driven by science and author of several peer-reviewed scientific publications and patents in different disease indications, he is keen to facilitate the translation of valuable therapeutic discoveries into clinical applications to answer true medical problems.
Julien enjoys multidisciplinary approaches in drug development and along his career he has become at ease spanning from early discovery, medicinal chemistry, IND-enabling studies, CMC to regulatory interaction. He has a strong focus on drug target and mode of action deconvolution together with (pre)clinical translating biomarkers identification in order to increase clinical trial success rate.
Prior to joining Curare Consulting, Julien held executive positions as COO and CSO at Khondrion – a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies targeting rare mitochondrial diseases -, leading cross-functional and multicultural teams to translate a drug candidate from the laboratory bench up to phase IIb clinical trials. As such Julien is very much acquainted with the specifics of developing a compound for orphan indications
Julien earned is PhD (2010) in Molecular and Cellular Biology and his MSc. (2006) in Pharmacology at the University of Strasbourg, France.
Hans Smit, partner of CURARE, is a seasoned scientific leader with over 20 years of experience in drug research and development. As a translational scientist, he has extensive experience both in early as well as in late clinical drug development. Throughout his tenure he worked on transitioning drugs from preclinical stage to first in human, through proof of concept and successful filing (USFDA, EMA and Canada).
Most recently Hans has served as Senior Clinical Pharmacology leader at UCB applying quantitative approaches for development of disease interventional treatments in the Parkinson’s Disease area. He also developed an extensive biopharmaceutical expertise through which he can fully partner to successfully develop new formulations during clinical development. Both physiology-based approaches as well as conventional in vitro-in vivo correlation methods have been in scope. Hans has working experience with various therapeutic areas (amongst others oncology, neurosciences and infectious diseases).
Before his transition to clinical research and development in Johnson & Johnson, Hans has built up wide experience in preclinical research and development at Roche (Basel, CH). In his function as labhead he developed transporter assays to further enable drug-drug-interaction risks early in the (pre)clinical development. Besides his work on small molecules, he also built-up experience in the field of gene delivery and therapy through his contribution to DNA vector development and pharmacological research in the preclinical area at ML Laboratories/Cobra Therapeutics (Keele, UK). This also broadened his scope of work in the field of development of treatments of unmet medical needs. During his postdoc research at the Netherlands Cancer Institute (Amsterdam, NL) he (co)developed murine systems that enable the preclinical testing of disposition mechanisms for small molecules.
Hans holds a PhD in the field of pharmacokinetics where he characterized the role and contribution of hepatic transporters (both uptake and ABC-type of transporters) in drug disposition (1997). He embarked on his PhD having developed his vocation for natural sciences during his Master’s degree in molecular and medical biology (1992, University of Groningen, NL). He (co)authored numerous papers on e.g., transporters and their role in drug pharmacokinetics.
Prof Dr Irwin Reiss obtained his MD degree in Germany, is specialized in Neonatology, and is professor at a large pediatric hospital in the Netherlands.
Peter Groenen, partner of CURARE, co-founder and managing director of CURARE Swiss Ltd. is an industry veteran with more than 22 years of experience in pharmaceutical R&D. Peter is passionate about the potential of new technologies and approaches in clinical development to bring better medicines to patients faster. He has been a thought leader for pharmacogenomics for many years and provided leadership in several companies to seamlessly integrate translational science and biomarker utility. Under his leadership a significant number of clinical trials benefited from essential biomarker implementations. In addition, Peter established a better integration of translational science and biomarker as an essential function in R&D organizations where he and his team discovered and developed biomarker assays for decisional elements in the early and late-stage clinical development.
Peter also has a long track record of applying bioinformatics and artificial intelligence in pharmaceutical R&D. He successfully integrated these functions in data driven approaches for indication and patient selection in oncology, auto-immune diseases and a variety of rare disorders.
Previously, Peter was Head of Translational Science at Idorsia Pharmaceuticals Ltd. His broad pharmaceutical industry experience was built in diverse companies such as, F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG, Basel Switzerland, Organon NV (part of Akzo Nobel), Schering-Plough and Merck Sharp & Dohme, Oss, the Netherlands and Actelion Pharmaceutical Ltd, Allschwil Switzerland.
Peter managed two large Dutch public private partnerships projects (BioASP and Top Institute Pharma). He is an editor of the Karger journal “Digital Biomarkers” and is also involved in several biomarker related international working groups focusing on improving standards and regulatory guidance. In the greater Basel region Peter has been active for many years as part of DayOne (BaselArea.Swiss) promoting collaborations and fostering the industrial-academic ecosystem.
Peter holds an MSc in Biochemistry and Physiology from the Radboud University, Nijmegen the Netherlands and a PhD in biomedical sciences from the Centre for Human Genetics at the Gasthuisberg Medical Hospital, University of Leuven, Belgium.