Management Team

Team Spotlight

Lijun Sun, PhD

Co-founder & Chair of the SAB

Associate Professor & Director of Center for Drug Discovery and Translational Research Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center, Harvard Teaching Hospital
Dr. Sun is a co-founder and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board at Silicon Therapeutics. He is an associate professor at Harvard Medical School and the Director of Center for Drug Discovery and Translational Research at the Department of Surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Previously, Dr. Sun held executive positions in a number of emerging biotech companies where he led anticancer and antiinflammation drug discovery and development programs. His most recent positions include Vice President of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Science at Theracrine, Inc., a Flagship Venture startup that focused on the discovery of antimetastatic anticancer therapeutics. Prior to this, he was the Vice President of Chemistry at Synta Pharmaceuticals, where he was instrumental in building the Company’s entire program portfolio including the first-in-class anticancer NCEs elesclomol (Phase-3), ganetespib (Phase-3), and apilomod (Phase-2), as well as the immune modulator Ro-2959 (pre-IND). He also played leadership roles in scientific due diligence that led to $1+ billion deals with GSK and Roche, respectively.
Dr. Sun is a co-inventor of >100 issued or pending US patents covering novel chemical entities, manufacturing processes, formulations, and physical forms. He has authored >30 peer-reviewed publications in virtual screening, structure-based drug designs, and chemical biology. He received his Ph.D. degree in organic chemistry from Emory University and trained as a postdoctoral research fellow in biomedical research at Emory Medical School

Dr. Finith Jernigan, III, PhD

Co-founder

Dr. Jernigan is a co-founder of Silicon Therapeutics and was instrumental in developing the underlying technology INSITE. Prior to founding Silicon Therapeutics, Dr. Jernigan was at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, where his focused on identification of tool compounds using novel in silico screening approaches for targets identified by BIDMC investigators. This work, performed in the labs of Drs. Sun and Chaikof, led to the creation Silicon Therapeutics’ proprietary drug discovery platform, INSITE. Prior to that, Dr. Jernigan earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the lab of Dr. David S. Lawrence. His work at the University of North Carolina focused on the synthesis and development of fluorescent sensors of kinases and the proteasome. This work led to multiple publications in top chemistry journals, including Journal of the American Chemical Society and Angewandte Chemie International Edition. Dr. Jernigan holds a B.S. in Biochemistry from Salisbury University, a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and was a postdoctoral fellow at BIDMC/Harvard Medical School.

Lanny Sun

Co-founder & CEO

Venture Partner, Chengwei Capital
Lanny co-founded Silicon Therapeutics and handles the firms day to day operations as well as partnership and financing initiatives. He has spent his entire career in the healthcare sector working across a number of industries including drug discovery, CRO, investment banking, consulting, venture capital, private equity and non-profits. He started his career on Wall Street with Deutsche Bank Securities where he focused on Healthcare M&A and financings, completing over USD3.0bn worth of M&A and financing transactions. He then went on to assist multiple US teaching hospitals and private equity firms in their China market entry strategy as relating to healthcare, advising on over USD300mm in cross border transactions and developments including an USD250 million aged care community in Shanghai and a USD50 million cross border medical technologies fund. He joined Chengwei in 2015 to help the firm drive its healthcare portfolio strategy, including computational drug discovery and biotechnologies. He received his Bachelors of Science in Economics from Trinity College in Hartford, CT.

Woody Sherman, PhD


Dr. Sherman joins Silicon from Schrödinger, a leader in computational chemistry software development, where he was vice president and global head of the Applications Science team, helping pharmaceutical companies apply computational chemistry tools to challenging targets. He was also part of the senior management team and was involved in modeling services, methods development, and product management. Dr. Sherman is a leader in molecular simulations and computer-aided drug design, with over 70 publications covering novel methods and applications. He completed his Ph.D. at MIT with Professor Bruce Tidor, PhD, where he examined the role of electrostatics and dynamics in protein-ligand binding, and developed a novel method for optimizing ligand binding specificity across a panel of (desirable and undesirable) targets. Dr. Sherman has published on a broad range of topics, including free energy simulations, molecular dynamics, induced-fit docking, virtual screening, lead optimization, selectivity design, cheminformatics, and protein design.He is on the Editorial Board of Chemical Biology & Drug Design and the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling.

Dr. Jingsong Wang, MD, PhD

Director of the Board

CEO, Harbour BioMed
Dr. Jingsong Wang is the CEO of Harbour BioMed (HBM). Before founding HBM, he was the Head of China Research and Development and of Translational Medicine, Asia Pacific, for Sanofi. Dr. Wang joined Sanofi from Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he served in multiple roles with increasing responsibilities, including Director of Discovery Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology and Global Program Lead for multiple pre-clinical and clinical assets. Dr. Wang completed his Clinical Rheumatology Fellowship and subsequently was an Attending Rheumatologist and faculty member at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Wang received his PhD in Molecular Pharmacology from China Pharmaceutical University and has also completed a Molecular Immunology Research Fellowship at Dr. Laurie Glimcher’s laboratory at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Wang is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. He has served on the Research Grant Review Committee, National Natural Science Foundation of China, and as a scientific grant reviewer for the Medical Research Council, National Institute for Health Research, National Health Service of the United Kingdom.

Diane Morris

Board Advisor
Chairman, Morris Capital Management

Diane Morris is the chairman of Morris Capital Management, an investment management company, a member of the Stanford Distinguished Careers Institute and an active philanthropist. She has honed her broad leadership skills as a passionate fundraiser for the arts, education, and conservation. Her Board affiliations, to name a few, have included the Aspen Institute, United Nations Association, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Opera, All Kinds of Minds, the Pacific Presbyterian Hospital Foundation, the Graduate School of Education at the University of California-Berkeley, San Francisco University High School, Marin Country Day School, the San Francisco Day School, and the Advisory Board of the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy. Diane is a native of San Francisco and has two children. She holds a BS degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

DONALD JOHNSON, PHD

Dr. Donald Johnson is a Senior Investigator at Silicon Therapeutics. He has expertise in quantum mechanical calculations of materials and small molecules. Don most recently worked at the Army Research Laboratory where he studied energetic materials, mechanochemistry, and properties of nanodiamonds as a senior scientist. His work largely centered on using large-scale quantum molecular dynamics simulations to estimate strain energy storage within dense-core nanoparticles. Previously he was a postdoc at Pacific Northwest National Lab where he researched the thermodynamics and geochemistry of actinides. Dr. Johnson co-founded and chaired the first Postdoc Association within the DoD labs and he over 10 first-author publications in peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Johnson studied computational materials science at Princeton University, earning a Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2009 under the advisory of Dean Emily Carter.

JAMIE RICE, PHD

Dr. James Rice is a Senior Investigator at Silicon Therapeutics with expertise in adaptive immunology/ immuno-oncology and multiplexed immunoassay development During his postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Rice developed multiple FRET assays in an effort evaluate the Antizyme/Antizyme Inhibitor PPI as a potential prostate cancer therapeutic target. Additionally, he developed peptide and mRNA based cancer vaccines through a collaboration with Department of Nanomedicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. His previous work at Ciencia, Inc. included the development of a novel SPCE multiplexed immunoassay platform for the detection of autoreactive T cells in Type I diabetes. Dr. Rice serves on the editorial board two peer-reviewed immunology journals and has authored numerous publications in the fields of basic and applied immunology. Dr. Rice studied at the University of Connecticut where he earned a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cell Biology for his work on CD4+ T cell signaling and effector development.

VIPIN SACHDEVA

Vipin Sachdeva is a Principal Investigator in Silicon Therapeutics. Vipin was most recently with IBM in their T. J. Watson Research Center as a Senior Engineer working with several key IBM HPC clients including US and UK national laboratories on performance and programmability aspects of IBM's OpenPOWER initiative. Vipin’s previous work has applied high-performance computing to a wide variety of workloads including computational biology, seismic and other domains on several generations of IBM's hardware including Power, BlueGene and Cell processors. Vipin has over 10 years of experience of parallel programming and optimizing applications for CPUs, GPUs and other specialized hardware. Vipin is main author of a book chapter on multicore programming, over 30 refereed publications and has given multiple invited talks and has reviewed for multiple conferences and journals. He is a recipient of IBM's Outstanding Technical Achievement Award.

Bryce Allen, PHD

Bryce is a Senior Investigator with STX and directs STX informatics infrastructure, which coordinates data storage, access, and analysis across the company. Allen’s doctoral research focused on large-scale computational screening and machine learning approaches to drug discovery, where he designed, tested and validated a large-scale high-throughput computational screening pipeline to discover novel multitarget inhibitors in kinase and epigenetic signaling space. This pipeline integrated ligand and structure-based models to prioritize chemical scaffolds using a combination of Bayesian statistics, docking, and molecular dynamics simulations. Additionally, he was a member of the Data Coordination and Integration Center for the Library of Integrated Network-based Cellular Signatures (LINCS), where he helped standardize and process chemical entities used in LINCS assays. Since joining the team at Silicon Therapeutics, Bryce has focused on data-driven approaches to improving molecular modeling methodology through the integration of chemical, genomic, and proteomic datasets to learn actionable therapeutic insights from orthogonal sources using machine learning and statistics. He received his PhD from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine under the supervision of Dr. Stephan Schürer and Dr. Nagi Ayad.

Brian Chamberlain, PHD

Dr. Brian Chamberlain is a Senior Investigator at Silicon Therapeutics specializing in drug discovery, medicinal chemistry and organic synthesis. Dr. Chamberlain has directed hit-to-lead multi-parameter optimization campaigns in diverse disease indications. He joins us from Yuma Therapeutics where he lead the medicinal chemistry work on Yuma’s lead compound for the treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease which is currently in IND-enabling studies. His previous role in biotech also led to the successful outlicensing of a therapeutic to a major pharmaceutical company. Dr. Chamberlain’s academic training includes a Ph.D. from USC and a post-doctoral appointment at UCLA in Professor Michael Jung’s lab studying medicinal chemistry and complex molecule synthesis. Dr. Chamberlain is a co-author of 12 peer-reviewed manuscripts and two patents.

Shuai Liu, PHD

Shuai is an Investigator at Silicon Therapeutics working on developing and using computational tools to aid the drug design. Shuai got his PhD in Dr. David Mobley’s lab at UC Irvine where he focused on projects using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to predict binding free energies. He helped design a tool (LOMAP) to plan the relative binding free energy calculations and used MD to calculate how the solvents modulate solubility etc. Prior to joining Silicon, Shuai was a postdoctoral associate at UCSD supervised by Dr. Mike Gilson and Dr. Rommie Amaro where he analyzed the results of D3R Grand Challenges (blind challenges to predict binding poses and affinities). He also helped design a Python-based cross-docking workflow for Continuous Evaluation of Ligand Pose Prediction (CELPP).