James Sabry is Senior Vice President, Genentech Partnering, where he oversees both the gRED Business Development and Alliance Management groups. These groups have been considered to be some of the best in the industry at sourcing, negotiating, closing and managing business development relationships across discovery research, technology acquisition and clinical development.
Sabry grew up in Toronto, Canada and received an M.D. from Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada after completing two years of undergraduate work in physics and chemistry. After completing an internship in internal medicine at Toronto Western Hospital, he moved to Harvard Medical School where he completed a residency in Neurology, being named chief resident in Neurology in 1987.
He then moved to San Francisco and, in 1994, completed a Ph.D. in Neuroscience in the Biochemistry Department at UCSF while also holding an adjunct clinical appointment in the Department of Neurology.
After completing post-doctoral work in the Biochemistry Department at Stanford Medical School, he spent 6 months as an entrepreneur-in-residence at Mayfield Fund in Menlo Park, CA. It was here that, in 1998, he founded and launched his first company, Cytokinetics, Inc.
James was President and CEO of Cytokinetics until 2007. During that time, he grew the company from inception to over 200 employees and took the company public on NASDAQ in 2004 in what was the second largest IPO of that year in the biotechnology industry. In 2007, he became Chairman of the Board of Directors and a formal member of their Scientific Advisory Board. The company currently has five small molecule programs in clinical development, all new chemical entities with novel mechanisms of action for the treatment of cancer, cardiovascular disease and neuromuscular disorders. During his tenure, Cytokinetics executed two large collaborative alliances, one with Glaxo SmithKline and one with Amgen.
In 2008, he became President and CEO of Arete Therapeutics, a company focused on the discovery and development of therapeutics for diabetes. He was also a member of the World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers from 2002-2005.
In 2010, Sabry moved to Genentech to take his current position. He maintains membership on the Scientific Advisory Board of Cytokinetics. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of a nonprofit organization, HopeLab, that is working on advancing high tech solutions to certain diseases of youth and young adults. He is also on the external advisory board of QB3 at UCSF.