Dr. DiStefano has over 28 years of experience in pharma and biotech,
holding several positions in drug discovery and development. Most recently he was Sr. Vice President of R&D at Second Genome, a microbiome company. From 2001-2012 he was Chief Scientific Officer and Sr. VP of R&D at Elixir Pharmaceuticals, focused on metabolic disease and neurology. Prior to that he was Sr. Director of Neurobiology at Millennium Pharmaceuticals (1997-2001) heading up psychiatric disease and pain programs. From 1991-1997 he was Sr. Staff Scientist at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and was instrumental in the discovery and development of neurotrophic factors. Dr. DiStefano started his career at Abbott Laboratories (1986-1991) in the Neuroscience Department, focusing on peripheral neurodegeneration. In 2010 he founded Acylin Therapeutics, Inc., in Seattle, WA, emphasizing epigenetic mechanisms in cancer. Dr. DiStefano received his undergraduate degree in Biology from Kenyon College and his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse. He did his post-doctoral training in Pharmacology at Washington University in St. Louis. He has co-authored over 100 manuscripts, reviews and book chapters and is a co-inventor on 12 issued patents.