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Michael Chen, PhD
Head of Business Development at Akeso Biopharma


Dr. Chen Chen (Michael) has joined Akeso as Vice President in July, 2020 and leads Akeso business development.

Before joining Akeso, Dr. Chen Chen (Michael) worked as Head of External Innovation APAC for Merck KGaA.  With alignment of Merck global R&D focus, Dr. Chen led collaborations with local pharmaceutical/biotech companies, investor groups and academic institutions in China and APAC areas. He encompassed scouting and evaluation of external opportunities including therapeutic assets (from discovery to clinical PoC stages), new drug targets/biomarkers, and novel discovery technologies.  He was also responsible for Merck global BD activities to leverage companies in China/APAC regions for Merck’s internalization and externalization opportunities at different R&D stages.  This particularly involved opportunity finding and leading discussions through various approaches, including open innovation, licensing, co-development, investment, and other collaboration models.  Dr. Chen was also a leader team member of Merck Asia and China R&D hubs, from which he worked along with R&D team for Merck’s own pipeline in regional development, and alliance management of external collaborations. He was also a core team member for expanding Merck’s oncology business and innovation collaboration in China.

Michael received his bachelor’s degree in cell and molecular biology from University of Essex, a master’s degree in cancer immunotherapy from University of Nottingham and a PhD in Biochemistry from Imperial College London.  Before joining Merck, he has been working as a post-doc research at University College London, and then leading research projects in UK at Spirogen Ltd, later MedImmune (a company of AZ) after Spirogen acquisition.  He then returned back to China and led business development and investment activities at WuXi Biologics and ChemPartner.

Agenda Sessions

  • A refresher on life sciences joint ventures


Speakers at this event