Nabsys names chief scientific officer, focuses on oncology

PROVIDENCE – Nabsys Inc. has named Tony Shuber vice president and chief scientific officer in its latest move toward bringing its genome-mapping products to market.
The Providence-based biotechnology company specializes in creating semiconductor-based DNA sequencing tools and is aiming to start commercializing its product with a focus on oncology. Shuber’s hiring comes on the heels of Steve Lombardi’s September appointment as Nabsys’ new CEO.
“Nabsys has developed to the point where the technology is mature enough to really start thinking about applications in human cancer,” said Shuber, a 56-year-old Massachusetts native. “My role is specifically as CSO to look at the applications in the area in the landscape of oncology as to where our technology can really benefit the patient. Not just benefit the patients from a therapeutic perspective, but also from a diagnostic perspective.”
Tools currently being developed at Nabsys will provide a much-needed link for oncologists and oncology researchers, Shuber said.
“It fills a gap between older technologies, which are standard methods of looking at pathology, and the new techniques of whole-genome sequencing, which can be very time-consuming and costly,” he said. “I think the time has come for a company like Nabsys to fill that gap.”
Shuber, who has co-founded and run two companies in his 24 years of commercial diagnostics and research experience, said one of his most important roles will be to create collaborative relationships with clinical organizations.
“Once one understands the clinical need, then it is much easier to align the benefits and the opportunities that exist in technology being developed to meet the needs of the customer, to meet the needs of the physician, in this case,” Shuber said. “I emphasize the term ‘collaborator’ because it really necessitates a relationship that has to be built between the company and the physician.”
Shuber officially started work Oct. 27. His last position at California-based biotechnology company Ignyta Inc. lasted only six months. Shuber left the firm in mid-October, citing the cross-country commute as a reason. Previously, he co-founded and helped lead Predictive Biosciences Inc., where he worked from 2006 to 2013, and Exact Sciences, where he worked from 1996 to 2006. He also won the Colorectal Cancer Network’s 2003 90 in 9 Science Award for his work on colorectal cancer detection technology.

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