DR. THOMAS B. OKARMA was appointed President and Chief Executive
Officer of Geron Corporation in July, 1999. Dr. Okarma served as
Geron's Vice President of Research and Development from May 1998.
From December 1997 until May 1998, Dr. Okarma was Vice President
of Cell Therapies at Geron. Prior to joining Geron Corporation in
1997, Dr. Okarma was a Senior Vice President at Rhone-Poulenc
Rorer. In 1995, Rhone-Poulenc Rorer acquired Applied Immune
Sciences, Inc., which was founded by Dr. Okarma in 1985. By the
time of its acquisition by Rhone-Poulenc Rorer, AIS was in
advanced cell therapy human clinical trials in cancer and bone
marrow transplantation and in early gene therapy human trials in
breast cancer. Dr. Okarma was Chairman and Chief Executive
Officer of AIS from 1991 until its acquisition. Prior to founding
AIS, Dr. Okarma was a member of the faculty of the Stanford
University School of Medicine where he also received both his PhD
and MD degrees. He is the author of over 50 peer-reviewed
publications on cell and gene therapy and is an inventor on
numerous patents in the field. Profile
TWST: Could we begin with a brief historical sketch of the company and a
picture of what you're doing at the present time?
Dr. Okarma: The name of the company implies that we focus on aging.