Massachusetts Training Center (MTC) Our Team

Our Team

Speaker’s List

Massachusetts Training Center Group

Don Gibbs

Don is the Senior Lab Manager for Asahi Kasei Bioprocess at the Massachusetts Training Center and has over 30 years of biopharmaceutical industry and academic experience. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Gordon College. He serves as instructor in Biotechnology Engineering at the Worchester Polytechnic Institute.

Vincenzo Antignani, PhD

Enzo is the technical training lead at the Massachusetts Training Center. He is responsible for development and execution of Asahi Kasei Bioprocess America training events along with curricula generation and customer relations. He has a PhD from the University of Naples (IT). He serves as adjunct professor in Cell Culture at Northeastern University.

Parag Patel

Parag is the Vice President of Business Development at Asahi Kasei Bioprocess. In his role, Parag leads a cross-functional team to provide process solutions in the biopharma space, including Planova virus filters for pathogen safety and BioOptimal microfilters for perfusion and clarification applications. He received his MS from UCLA and a BS from Carnegie Mellon University.

Product Management Group

April Wheeler

April is the Product Manager for microfiltration technologies and she is based in in San Diego, CA. She has over 15 years of industry experience, including 10 years of downstream process development experience and 5 years in vendor roles ranging from technology management to product management. April holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Indiana University Bloomington.

Ray Lillie

Ray is the Planova product manager and experienced account manager in the Northeast territory. He has Bachelor of Science in Biochemical Engineering. Before coming to Asahi Kasei Bioprocess, he worked at Shire, in downstream process development and tech transfer.

Rick Liebold

Rick is the Northeast Account Manager, based in the Greater Boston area. In this role, Rick is responsible for assisting clients with their viral filtration processes. Rick has over 5 years of experience working in single-use bioprocessing, as a former employee at Bristol Myers Squibb and Ultragenyx. Rick earned his Bachelor of Science in Biology in 2018 from Kennesaw State University.

Research & Development Group

Daniel Strauss, PhD

Danny is Director of the Research and Development group at Asahi Kasei Bioprocess America in Glenview, Illinois. His work focuses on providing data to better understand the capabilities of Planova virus filters and on providing solutions to allow customers to efficiently provide safe biotherapeutic products to their patients. Danny received a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2005.

Brian Buesing

Brian is a scientist at Asahi Kasei Bioprocess America at our Glenview labs, involved with nanofiltration studies and customer support. He brings eleven years of collaborative research experience in virus removal and clearance studies. Brian is a graduate of Earlham College where he studied biochemistry.

Julie Kozaili, PhD

Julie is a senior scientist and manager in the Research and Development team at Asahi Kasei Bioprocess. Julie's work focuses on supporting Planova customers through the design and execution of studies aimed at better understanding the capabilities and limitations of the virus filters. Julie received a Ph.D. in Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Tomoki Igi

Tomoki is a Research Associate with the Asahi Kasei Planova Division and mainly supports large scale system Research and Development. He is currently working on the Inline Integrity Test system and loves to take on new challenges/solve problems. He holds Bachelor of Science in molecular, cellular and developmental biology from the University of Colorado Boulder.

Christine Stouffer

Christine is the Senior Research Associate for Asahi Kasei Bioprocess America (AKBA) and has over 8 years of microbiology experience. She performs viral clearance studies in AKBA’s Non-GLP Virus Lab to help customers understand their virus filters. She received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Rowan University.

Science & Technology Group

Katherine Powers

Katherine is a Senior Field Applications Specialist at Asahi Kasei Bioprocess America. Since joining the Field Application team in 2019, she has supported various technical projects, including examination of viral clearance under specific process conditions, and variable pressure effects on nanofiltration. Katherine holds a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from Loyola University Chicago and a Master of Science from Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA.