Joe serves as CSO and Head of Discovery at Denali. In this role, he coordinates the discovery stage portfolio and activities ranging from new target discovery and validation to the identification of biomarkers to enable clinical trials. His group specializes in development of novel therapeutic strategies to address key aspects neurodegeneration biology including Lysosomal Function, Glial Biology, Axon/Synapse maintenance. As delivery to the brain represents a major challenge, Joe’s discovery team continues work on the Denali Transport Vehicle (TV) platform to shuttle candidate therapeutics across the Blood-Brain Barrier.
Prior to joining Denali in early 2016, Joe spent 9 years at Genentech, where he helped to build the neuroscience research team and portfolio. In his role as Director of the Department of Neuroscience, he was responsible for generating the disease area strategy and management of the neuroscience portfolio, which included both large and small molecule programs. During his time at Genentech, Joe also served as a project team leader where he led a small molecule program for neurodegenerative disease from target discovery to IND filing and led a discovery lab focused on identification of new therapeutic drug targets for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and Alzheimer’s Disease. He received his BS from University of California, San Diego, a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and did a Postdoctoral fellowship at the Salk Institute.