Roberto Iacone
Chief Executive Officer

Roberto Iacone joined Alentis in 2020, bringing over 15+ years of life science industry experience.
Roberto is a physician-scientist and a serial entrepreneur. He most recently served as Entrepreneur-in-residence for the Versant Ventures group where he co-founded Bright Peak Therapeutics and Ridgeline Therapeutics, Versant’s Basel-based Discovery Engine. In this role, he was responsible for sourcing and evaluating academic opportunities from European institutes, and for leading biology and translational activities for Ridgeline New Cos. He was part of the leadership team which built the precision oncology medicine company Black Diamond Therapeutics from inception through multiple financing rounds and a NASDAQ IPO in early 2020.

Previously, Roberto was at Roche for over 10 years, most recently as Global Head of Rare Diseases Research where he established numerous external collaborations with academic and biotech partners, which included large molecule, small molecule and gene therapy programs. During his time at Roche, Roberto also gained considerable experience in preclinical research and early development, managing discovery programs across a range of therapeutic areas including Neuroscience, Ophthalmology and Rare Diseases.

Roberto holds an M.D. from the University of Napoli, and a PhD from the Max Planck Research School for Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics.

Dr. Luigi Manenti
Chief Medical Officer

Luigi Manenti joined Alentis in 2023, bringing extensive international pharmaceutical experience designing and executing innovative clinical trials, particularly in translational clinical oncology as a physician and scientist.

Prior to Alentis, he served as CMO of HiFiBiO Therapeutics where he led the clinical development organization that delivered successful IND and CTA submissions and secured supply agreements for the investigational oncology drug tislelizumab.

Luigi previously served as Team Leader for Solid Tumors in Novartis’s Oncology Business Unit and at the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR), the innovation engine of Novartis, as Executive Global Clinical Program Leader, leading the development of multiple programs including the cancer drug capmatinib (Tabrecta). Prior roles include several positions at Roche in Switzerland and China.

Luigi is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), has published several articles, and is a co-inventor of several patent applications.

Luigi holds an M.D. in Medicine and Surgery from the University of Pavia in Italy.

Rizwan Velji
Chief Business Officer

Rizwan Velji joined Alentis in 2023, where he leads corporate strategy, business development, and finance. Rizwan brings more than 20 years of experience in biotech financial services supporting biotech and pharma companies in corporate fundraising planning and business strategy.

Rizwan most recently served as Managing Director at William Blair, advising small and mid-cap biopharma companies on private and public capital raising, strategic partnerships, and mergers and acquisitions. Prior to William Blair, he served as Managing Director in Citigroup’s Healthcare Investment Banking division, and at Lazard, focused on strategic and financial advisory to both emerging biotech and large cap pharma companies. Preceding investment banking, Rizwan spent six years in biotech venture capital in San Francisco and began his career as a bench scientist at Baylor College of Medicine at the Texas Medical Center in Houston.

Rizwan holds a Master of Science in Biotech and Business from Northwestern University and graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science in Human Physiology from McGill University.

Markus Meyer
Chief Operating Officer

Markus Meyer joined Alentis in 2019. Markus is a senior R&D Leader and Project Management Professional (PMP) with >20 years of drug development experience in multiple aspects of Pharma and Biotech R&D. A molecular biologist by training and drug developer with profound experience from discovery to Phase III with small molecules, antibodies and mRNAs.

Prior to Alentis, Markus was Director Project Management at CureVac managing collaboration projects with mRNA-based tumour vaccines in oncology. Previously he was Global Project Leader at Novartis/Sandoz being in charge of global biosimilar projects. Prior to this Markus was a Senior R&D Project Leader at Roche responsible for managing global drug development projects in several therapeutic areas.

Markus holds a PhD in Molecular Biology from the University of Munich and Max-Planck Institute for Biochemistry (Martinsried) and had a post-doctoral fellowship at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), Heidelberg, Germany.

Alberto Toso
Chief Scientific Officer

Alberto Toso joined Alentis as Head of Oncology in 2021. He has more than 10 years of drug development experience in small and large molecules for immune oncology (IO) and targeted therapies. Prior to Alentis, he was Department Head in the molecular targeted therapy group, oncology at Roche where he led small molecule projects for IO through various stages of development.

As a postdoc at the Institute of Oncology Research in Bellinzona, Switzerland, Alberto developed and characterized mouse models for prostate cancer. His work has been published in top scientific journals such as Nature, Nature Communications and Cell Reports.

Alberto holds a PhD in Biochemistry from ETH, in Zurich, Switzerland.

Valentina Aureggi
SVP BD & Strategic Partnerships

Valentina Aureggi joined Alentis in 2020, bringing over a decade of experience in business development, pharma partnering, and corporate strategy in the pharmaceutical sector.

Prior to joining Alentis, Valentina served at Roche as Global competitive intelligence manager for multiple franchises from preclinical to late clinical development within the Global Product Strategy organization and she also led scouting activities for in-licensing opportunities within Roche Partnering. In this latter role, she had broad responsibilities across Pharma Business Development including strategy, search and evaluation of in-licensing opportunities and cross-functional due diligence. She also worked for several years as a Senior Consultant in Life Sciences supporting multiple large pharma clients in key decision-making processes including business development, portfolio strategy, and competitive intelligence.

Valentina is a synthetic chemist by training and worked early in her career in process chemistry at Novartis, Basel.

Valentina earned a PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Neuchâtel, and she then completed two post-doctoral fellowships at University of Toronto and ETH in Zurich, Switzerland.

Geoffrey Teixeira
SVP Head Fibrosis

Geoffrey Teixeira joined Alentis as Head of Fibrosis in 2021, bringing nearly a decade of industrial drug development experience in inflammatory and fibrotic diseases. He was most recently the Translational Research Lead of Fibrosis at Galapagos, Mechelen, Belgium. In this role, he was responsible for leading translational activities for the company’s fibrosis pipeline, and for reverse translation activities and platform development, combining multi-omics and machine learning approaches for the identification of new targets and biomarkers.

Prior to Galapagos, Geoffrey was Project Leader and Therapeutic Area Lead of Fibrosis at Evotec, Göttingen, Germany, overseeing and bringing drug discovery programs (small molecules and biologics) as well as the R&D platforms of NASH and tissue fibrosis to decision milestones. These initiatives led to multiple alliances with biopharmaceutical companies and investors. He also worked as a scientist at Genkyotex, Geneva, Switzerland where he was responsible for setting-up animal models for tissue fibrosis.

Geoffrey holds a PhD in Physiology from the University of Lyon, France.

Thomas Baumert

Thomas Baumert is the founder of Alentis. Thomas is Professor of Medicine and Chair, Head of the Inserm Research Institute for Viral and Liver Diseases (IVH, Inserm U1110), Director of the Laboratory of Excellence HEPSYS at the University of Strasbourg and Hepatologist at the Center for Liver and Digestive Disease at the Strasbourg University Hospitals. Thomas brings 25+ years of internationally recognized unique R&D experience in liver disease and cancer.

Following his doctoral thesis at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg and his internship at the University of Munich, Thomas was a Fellow at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Liver Diseases Branch at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, USA. He subsequently joined the Department of Medicine at the University Hospital in Freiburg, Germany to become a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist, attending physician, Lab Head, Associate Professor and department Deputy Head. He then relocated to the University of Strasbourg in France as full Professor of Medicine and Chair to head a newly created Inserm research unit on virus-host interactions and liver disease and establish a highly recognized program in translational hepatology. He also spent a sabbatical as a research scholar at the BROAD Institute of MIT and Harvard, Cambridge, and the Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston.

The understanding of the molecular mechanisms of liver disease biology has allowed his laboratory to uncover novel strategies for the treatment of chronic liver disease and cancer. Thomas’ work has been recognized with several awards such as the Hans Popper Young Investigator Award, the Chair of Excellence Award of the French National Research Agency, and the Prix Galien and the Mémain-Pelletier Award of the French Academy of Science. He has received several European Research Council (ERC) awards for the discovery and development of novel approaches to treat chronic liver disease and cancer. He has published 400+ articles in peer-reviewed high-impact journals including Nature and N. Engl. J. Med.   and is an inventor of several patent applications. He is currently an Associate Editor of the Journal of Hepatology – the leading liver journal worldwide and serves as an editorial board member of several other high-impact journals. He is a member of the EASL, AASLD, American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) and American Association of Physicians (AAP).

Thomas holds an M.D. from the University of Heidelberg and is a board-certified and licensed internist and gastroenterologist.

Nathalie Graf
Head of CEO & Management Support

Nathalie Graf joined the Alentis team in 2020. She is Head of CEO & Management Support and Senior HR Manager. Prior to joining Alentis, Nathalie worked for close to a decade in the Finance and Controlling Department of Fossil Group Europe GmbH in several positions of increasing responsibility. Before her time at Fossil, she worked in the Private Banking division of Basler Kantonalbank.

She holds an Advanced Federal Diploma of Higher Education in Business Administration.