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Research in Your Backyard: Developing Cures & Creating Jobs in Oregon

May 20, 2022 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

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Developing Cures, Creating Jobs in Oregon

Oregon is proudly home to more than 500 active clinical trials with nearly 9,000 Oregonians participating, creating thousands of jobs and a more than $450 million economic impact for the state. Mark International Clinical Trials Day on May 20, by streaming an OBI/OTRADI panel titled, “Research in Your Backyard: Developing Cures, Creating Jobs in Oregon,” in partnership with the Oregon Alliance of Clinical Researchers. View recording here.

The biopharmaceutical industry brings profound value to patients through new treatments and cures for society’s most devastating and costly diseases and conditions, providing millions of patients with treatment options they would not otherwise have.

In our panel discussion, we’ll be bringing together the perspectives of an Oregon Bioscience Incubator researcher, clinical researcher, patient, and the biopharmaceutical industry to explain everything that goes into developing treatments and cures for local patients and the important work happening here in our state.

About the Panelists:
Emmanuel Akporiaye, Founder & CEO of Veana Therapeutics, an OBI resident company

Dr. Emmanuel Akporiaye is Founder and CEO of Veana Therapeutics Inc., a biotechnology company founded in 2012 as a spin-off from the Earle A. Chiles Research Institute of the Providence Cancer Center in Portland, Oregon. Until recently, he was Division Chief of Experimental Biology and Scientific Career Development at Sidra Medical and Research Center, Doha, Qatar. Prior to joining Sidra, Dr. Akporiaye was Chief of the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Therapeutics at the Earle A. Chiles Research Institute where he led the discovery, development and production of a novel anti-cancer agent that is in a first-in-human clinical trial at Providence Portland Medical Center.

Dr. Akporiaye is a Fulbright Senior Scholar and Professor Emeritus from the University of Arizona. He currently holds the position of Adjunct Full Member at the Earle A. Chiles Research Institute where he continues to oversee the management of the ongoing Phase I clinical trial.

Searcy Craighead, Oregon patient and member of Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus

Searcy is an Oregon patient with lupus, fibromyalgia and interstitial lung disease. On a daily basis she takes 11 medications to not only manage the difficult symptoms of these conditions, but to manage the challenging side effects that result from them. She has participated in clinical trials for chronic pain to not only find a treatment that worked for her but to also help other patients having similar issues. Searcy never gives up hope that progress can be made to improve her life and those of others. She embraces every single day as a gift and an opportunity.

Searcy is a fierce advocate for patients, helping Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus in their outreach and education.

Curt A. Heiting, B.B.A., President of Cyn3rgy Research and Development and member of the Oregon Alliance of Clinical Researchers

President, Co-founder, Partner and Managing Research Director of Cyn3rgy Research, Curt is responsible for the business operations, financial performance, marketing and compliance of the company along with setting strategic direction. Prior to Co-Founding Cyn3rgy Research, Curt spent 20+ years in the pharmaceutical sector, accumulated through his tenure with Pfizer, Merck and Bristol Myers Squibb. Curt strives to cultivate direct involvement in the clinical development of both therapeutic and medical devices that address medical needs not currently being met.

Curt’s primary role is to manage complex operational and regulatory aspects of Cyn3rgy Research’s diverse clinical trial portfolio, from assessment of site capacity to overall coordination of clinical data management. Curt’s broad variety of firsthand experience gives him an extraordinary perception of the entire clinical process as seen from the sides of the client, the funder, and the manufacturer. Curt is an active member of the Oregon Alliance of Clinical Researchers, which aims to provide clinical research education and support for the public so they better understand the instrumental role clinical trials play in healthcare and the economy.

Reid Porter, Senior Director of State Public Affairs at the Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)

Reid leads the State Public Affairs team—focusing on supporting biopharmaceutical companies across America and their commitment to combatting the coronavirus health crisis while advancing research and development to meet patients’ needs and ensuring that patients can access the medicines they need.

Before joining PhRMA, Reid served as a spokesperson and Sr. Communications Issues Manager for the American Petroleum Institute (API), where he focused on national and state-specific energy issues. His work at API included launching and working with The Environmental Partnership—a group dedicated to reducing methane emissions and committed to continuously improving the industry’s environmental performance.

A big THANK YOU to our Sponsor, PhRMA
We’re working to drive patient-centered progress in innovation, affordability and access to life saving prescription drugs. We believe there’s a better way to approach health care in the United States.

View recording here.



May 20, 2022
10:00 am - 11:00 am
Event Category:


OR United States