Christina Grek, PhD

Christina Grek, PhD

Senior Director of Research and Development

Dr. Grek is an accomplished biomedical scientist and industry R&D leader who has successfully led multiple therapeutics from the early product concept through to clinical proof of concept and clinical development in preparation for commercial product launch. With foundations in both industry and academia, her previous expertise includes drug discovery research at Scios Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing novel drugs for the potential treatment of cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases, acquired by Johnson and Johnson, as well as working on the drug discovery team at SUGEN, a pioneering drug discovery company focused on the development of small-molecule protein kinase inhibitors as cancer therapeutics that was acquired by Pfizer. She is also an adjunct professor at the Medical University of South Carolina in the Department of Cell and Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

Dr. Grek has a PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, and completed her undergraduate studies in biology and chemistry at the Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Grek joined FirstString in 2013 to lead the development of FirstString’s translational portfolio where she engineered and directed a series of key studies. These studies led to several breakthroughs revealing the therapeutic potential in targeting connexin signaling in a number of therapeutic indications with unmet medical needs including ophthalmic disorders, thermal burns, cancers, radiation injury, lung disease, and organ preservation. She currently leads FirstString’s Research and Development team, where she also plays a key role in guiding the design and implementation of the early and late-stage clinical programs in FirstString’s pipeline. She has published book chapters, review articles, and first authored publications in peer reviewed journals as well as holds several patents.