About Inhalon 

Inhalon Biopharma is a startup immunotherapy company developing an inhaled antibody platform for treating a variety of acute respiratory infections. Our intellectual property includes multiple approved U.S. and EU patents broadly covering the composition and use of aerosolized antibodies, licensed from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Johns Hopkins University.

We are backed by leading life science angel investors, Life Science Angels, Band of Angels, Sand Hill Angels, Breakout Labs and individual investors. The U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command has awarded Inhalon a contract to conduct a Phase 1/2a clinical study for the treatment of COVID-19 in outpatients. The muco-trapping technology is funded by more than $18 million in grants from the National Institutes of Health.  

 

Leadership

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John Whelan

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President, Chief Executive Officer and Director

John has over 20 years of experience leading venture-backed and public biotech companies. He has worked in early and late-stage companies taking products from discovery through NDA submission. He has contributed to the growth of these companies by building skilled, effective management teams and raising over $240M in funding through financings and collaborations.

 

Most recently John held the role of President and COO at Neuraltus Pharmaceuticals, a private company developing a treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Prior to Neuraltus, Mr. Whelan held executive leadership positions with several life science companies, including President, CEO and Board Director at Heron Therapeutics where he led the company’s turnaround. Earlier, he was COO and CFO at Raven biotechnologies, where he led the sale of the company to MacroGenics.

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Sam Lai, PhD

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Founder, Chief Scientific Officer and Director

Sam is the founder, chief scientific officer and director of Inhalon Biopharma, with a research background in pioneering the nanoparticle-based delivery of bioactive molecules to mucosal tissues. His prior inventions formed the basis of multiple startup companies, and multiple FDA-approved drugs.

 

As professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Sam has established a rigorous research program at the interface of engineering, immunology, biophysics and biomaterials. His lab pioneered Inhalon’s platform technology and has also spun off other companies.

 

He graduated with a B.S. and Ph.D. in chemical and biomolecular engineering from Cornell and Johns Hopkins University. He is the recipient of a Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering, and an NSF CAREER Award for his pioneering work on muco-trapping antibodies.

Jeff Hutchins, PhD

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Chief Development Officer

Dr. Hutchins was most recently Chief Science and Chief Operating Officer at Heat Biologics (Nasdaq: HTBX) where he guided a focus on cancer and infectious disease directed therapies that activate the human immune system. Prior to joining Heat, Dr. Hutchins served as Vice President of Preclinical Research at Peregrine Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing therapeutics to fight cancer and infectious diseases. Dr. Hutchins also served as Vice President, Preclinical Development at Inhibitex, Inc., which was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb.  Earlier, Dr. Hutchins held several senior scientist positions in discovery research at Burroughs Wellcome and Glaxo Wellcome, with a visiting professor appointment at Rush Medical College.

Dr. Hutchins earned a B.S. in Biology from Oral Roberts University, a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Texas, Health Science Center at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and conducted postdoctoral training at the University of Southern California’s Department of Microbiology at the Norris Cancer Center. Dr. Hutchins’ publications and patents span the fields of oncology, infectious disease, osteoarthritis and immunology.

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Thomas Moench, MD

Vice President, Clinical

Thomas is an infectious disease physician/scientist and served on the faculty of JHU School of Medicine for over 10 years. As Chief Medical Officer at Mapp, he oversaw the clinical development of ZMapp, a cocktail of 3 mAbs for treatment of Ebola, as well as the preclinical development and clinical study of MB66, a vaginal film loaded with two anti-viral mAbs.  He was the Principle Investigator (PI) of over $144M in BARDA funding for development of ZMapp and co-PI of a $13.3M NIAID-sponsored multicenter microbicide program that funded the MB66 work.  As such, he has experience in both clinical development and the industrialization of biologics as well as drug-device combinations for infectious disease.

 
 

Board of Directors

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John Whelan

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President, Chief Executive Officer and Director

John has over 20 years of experience leading venture-backed and public biotech companies. He has worked in early and late-stage companies taking products from discovery through NDA submission. He has contributed to the growth of these companies by building skilled, effective management teams and raising over $240M in funding through financings and collaborations.

 

Most recently John held the role of President and COO at Neuraltus Pharmaceuticals, a private company developing a treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Prior to Neuraltus, Mr. Whelan held executive leadership positions with several life science companies, including President, CEO and Board Director at Heron Therapeutics where he led the company’s turnaround. Earlier, he was COO and CFO at Raven biotechnologies, where he led the sale of the company to MacroGenics.

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Sam Lai, PhD

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Founder, Chief Scientific Officer and Director

Sam is the founder, chief scientific officer and director of Inhalon Biopharma, with a research background in pioneering the nanoparticle-based delivery of bioactive molecules to mucosal tissues. His prior inventions formed the basis of multiple startup companies, and multiple FDA-approved drugs.

 

As professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Sam has established a rigorous research program at the interface of engineering, immunology, biophysics and biomaterials. His lab pioneered Inhalon’s platform technology and has also spun off other companies.

 

He graduated with a B.S. and Ph.D. in chemical and biomolecular engineering from Cornell and Johns Hopkins University. He is the recipient of a Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering, and an NSF CAREER Award for his pioneering work on muco-trapping antibodies.

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Winnie H Wan, PhD

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Serial Entrepreneur

Winnie has extensive experience launching and building life science companies and has successfully commercialized disruptive technologies that resulted in successful exits. These technologies include the analytical systems for drug development at ForteBio, Inc. (acquired by Pall Corp.); the anatomical pathology systems for cancer diagnosis at Becton Dickinson, the cell analysis systems at Guava Technologies, Inc. (acquired by Millipore); and the HIV drug testing model at SyStemix, Inc. (acquired by Novartis).

 

Investors

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Partners

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