View from the Top: Judy Chou, Bayer Pharmaceuticals

– Okay, good afternoon, everyone. (chattering) Why don’t we get started. Hello, I’m Tsu-Jae King Liu, and I’m the Dean of the
College of Engineering. It’s my pleasure to welcome you all here to hear Dr. Judy Chou,
Senior Vice President, and Global Head of Biotech,
for Bayer Pharmaceuticals. This presentation is
part of a series called: A View From the Top, where
we bring industry leaders to come share the experience and their words of wisdom with us. Today we’re delighted, also,
to welcome a special guest from the City of Berkeley
Office of Economic Development, as well as members of Judy
Chou’s team from Bayer, and I’m really happy to
know that many of them are actually Berkeley Alumni. So welcome back to campus,
and welcome to you all! (applause) So, Judy and her team
have been very generous. They actually brought some
gifts with them today. So, at the end of the talk, when you exit, you can pick up a gift. One of them is a pops pocket. So you put it on the
back of your cell phone, you know, it pops out so you can hold it. Another one, which you actually, the students might appreciate more, is a product, is over
the counter, Berocca. It helps to improve your mental sharpness, and physical energy. (audience hollers and applauds) Can they get both, or just one? You can actually get one of each! Alright. Thank you very much, Judy and your team. This is really amazing. Okay, so that sets the
context for the talk today, but I also, before proceeding, I wanted to acknowledge
co-sponsorship of today’s event by our student group,
Society for Women Engineers. Thank you very much for co-sponsoring. (applause) okay, so before proceeding, I also wanted to encourage
those of you who are here, to also come back here
on Tuesday, April 16th, for another exciting talk as
part of a different series, called the Kuh Lecture Series. It’s gonna be called From
Cory Hall to Silicon Valley: Building a Start-up That Thrives. So, for those of us who are not alumni, Cory Hall is a building here that houses the Division
of Electrical Engineering. So we actually will
have a couple of alumni from electrical engineering who are very distinguished come here. The names are John
George, and David Cutrer, who will be sharing their experience launching and running a series of successful, entrepreneur, tech start-ups. So now, let me tell you more about today’s speaker, Judy Chou. She comes to us with more
than 20 years of experience in the biomanufacturing and
drug development industry. As Global Head of Biotech Development for Bayer Pharmaceuticals,
she oversees the manufacturing and distribution of Bayer’s
three billion dollar biotech product portfolio, and she leads drug development activities for the biologics pipeline. She began her career
in the biotech industry as a senior scientist at Abbott, and she quickly moved on and up to places like Wyeth and Genentech, before joining Tanvex BioPharma in 2010 as Vice President of
R&D and manufacturing. She’s well recognized for her work in the development of the technologies that accelerate the characterization and development of new products. Throughout her career, she has achieved significant milestones in protein therapeutic development, and multiple filings of
biologics license applications, and investigational new drug applications for novel products. Her keen instincts in R&D, helped to guide the
project pipeline at Tanvex, and contributed to the
company’s successful IPO, in 2017, on the Taiwan Stock Exchange. Judy continued to garner
more leadership experience as Vice President of Pharmaceutical
and Technical Operations at Phizer, formerly Medovation, before she joined Bayer, in 2017. So, it shouldn’t be
surprising that last year, San Francisco Business Times
names Judy to its annual, Most Influential Women in Business list. Congratulations, Judy. (applause) So, it’s very interesting to
know her background, actually, before she was in industry,
Judy did some time in academia. Not to make it sound like it’s prison. (audience laughs) But she was a research faculty member at Harvard University Medical School. She’s a medical doctor by training. There, she focused on cell biology and neuroscience research. She obtained her PhD in biochemistry and in cell biology from Yale University, and completed her bio
post-doctoral training at the the Max Planck
Institute in Germany, and we’re really fortunate to have her be able to allocate some
time to serve on the advisory board for Industrial Engineering and Operations Research
Department here at UC Berkeley. But today we are extra
thrilled to welcome her to come up to the stage,
to share her insights that she’s gained from her
many years in industry. So please join me in welcoming Judy Chou to speak about being
a biotech entrepreneur in a 155 year old company. (applause) – Okay, good. It’s a good pleasure to be here. Like many of you in the room, and Tsu-Jae gave a little
bit of introduction about my background, actually back to my high school days I was in the actually engineering track, study for engineer or something related to physics or math. And I have to say, this is probably a little
bit hard for you to imagine, but back to my day in the
school system I was in, and we were, in order
to entering the college, we have to pass a very
competitive entrance exam, and the entrance exams for engineer track, or physics and math, we
don’t need to study biology, so we sort of study
biology, but not really. So in order to, and really, you may wonder about them, why I end up being the medical school. So, during my time in high school, I got this inspiration. People ask me about my passion. You probably got most of
people ask you this question about what’s your passion? What drive you? And the way I explain
about passion as then, what get you up, right? Nobody even need to tell
you you need to do it, and then you’ll do it. And then to me was very
obviously at the time was the science innovation. But the same time I found out something very different from the track I was in, is I was really like to help people. And I feel that people in need, when I can do something to them, and that to me, means a lot. And that’s why I got inspired about, and I study biology by myself, and tried to get a different kind of exam, and went to medical school. And then you may wonder
about, but we just heard you were at a pharmaceutical
company in biotech, and why didn’t you become a
physician helping the patients, and I’m going to try to
share this personal story, and I told my staff, this is the first time I do
this in front of so many people. So this was actually a
very, very personal story. So when I was, as you can imagine, with this big ambition about, I’m gonna combine the science
innovation to helping people, I was so anxious about, I need to get to the most hard to cure disease. At the time really is cancer. So that is where, then,
people would die from that, you lost your family. So I put myself into this department, at the time really, as hematology, oncology all together. And then I follow professor, working with him very closely, working with patients. And I came to realize what I was doing are three things for the cancer patients: one, try whatever the
limit option we can offer, namely, surgical,
radiation, or chemotherapy, and most of them don’t work. And then second thing we do, we learn how to show our compassion to help the patients as where their family or their loved one face the death. And that is very, very hard situation. The third thing we do, kind of innovatively thinking, is collecting, with the
patient’s consent of course, collecting the sample or blood samples, things like that, in order to figure out, maybe one day, we figure out something. This is back in the time when oncogene just got discovered, also. And I’m being doing that a lot, and I got even more and
more feel frustrated about not a lot of solution
I can really offer, when I’m thinking about I can help people. So it was one day, this
terminal cancer patient, she has acute myeloid leukemia,
check into a emergency room. So even the information came
to us is already knowing it’s just a matter of
hours she will pass away. So then I’m on this mission, went to the emergency room
trying to collect the sample, ’cause you know you collect
the live blood sample is much more valuable
information we want to get. I went there. She’s there. She’s already in coma, and
couldn’t really quite answer. Her son was next to her, probably about 10 year old, 11 year old. What he say I never forgot. He say, “Mom, mom, wake up. “The doctor’s here to help you.” And that was very, very
hard for me at that moment, listen to this little boy saying that, and he try very hard to wake her up. I did managing to get her sample, and I was walking with that test tube from the emergency room back to the lab. That is the longest walk in my life, and that long hallway get me keeping looking at that test tube. I even remember now,
today, her case number. And the number is purely just a number. It doesn’t really mean anything. And I could not do anything to change this person’s life, and I wasn’t being
really able to help her. So I was staring that test tube. That was the moment I make up my mind. I need to go study more. I need to find more solution. I don’t see the path I was in really fulfill my passion towards that. So I make a really surprising
decision at the end. Didn’t pursue to be a medical doctor. I end up actually apply
school, come to this country, and went to my graduate
school trying to study, understand science a little bit more. So that’s really what
drive me to where I am, and I thank Tsu-Jae to
kind of talk about a story, and actually I surprise
I can talk through that, ’cause it was very hard. But I never forgot about that moment. And throughout my career, basically, I did like you heare: big
company, small company, academia to start with,
then come to industry. What drive me really is my passions toward the science innovation, and I can help people in need. And then you may say, oh
that sound really nice, is now you have all your passion, so you probably somebody told you then, you have your passion, and
everything will be straight. Actually, most of the
time, this is how I feel. I’m just a (audience laughs) Little red fish and I have my eye open, smile every day with my huge passion, what I’m going to do, and I feel, even though other people may
think the other way around, I feel people around me,
they just close their eyes, they’re just swimming toward a, go toward different direction. The message I want to share
with you is then, also, you can see the path for this
red fish is not straight. You need to kind of be
able navigate around, and figure out your way, and
despite you have your passion, you really don’t need to
define your path that early, ’cause you can find out
different ways to do that. And then you say, why did
you choose, then, Biotech, and why biologics so fascinating to you? And I hope then you can see that naturally, that makes sense. For the tumor cell, and you
look at it on this graph on your left-hand side, and the y shape is the very typical, nowadays, the protein therapeutics biologics drug, and that is the antibody,
and that nice red little dot. And this actually, those type of drugs is defined very specific toward a class to target certain receptors
or certain protein. So with that design, it’s much
more specific to the target, rather than small molecule. We go through screening and
see which one really win, to be able to move forward. At that same time, because
it’s much more specific, it has less side effect, has
much better safety profile. At the same time, because
it’s so specific target, what it will actually trigger the whole mechanism of action,
it have the first onset and it’s much more applicable
to a lot of patient, and not to mention,
it’s much more curative. And looking at the whole history about what’s therapeutics and biologics really bring to the patient? And I pull some example here for you. So the rare inherited gen disease, in the past we have to
just deal with the disease, and most of the patients die early. And now, with the biologics approach, we can do the protein
replacement, or gen replacement, and to in the future, even really, gen auditing to address the disease need. Some tougher disease like
a immunological disease, like autoimmune and inflammatory disease, in the past, it’s just
pain killers, steroids, and sometimes, it’s really serious then, it needs to go through surgical work. But now, with anti TNF, I’m proud to say that was my first project in industry, it nowaday become, of course,
a pretty popular drug, and it be able to help the
rheumatoid arthritis patients and address a lot of
autoimmune disease issue from cancer, as I mentioned already. In the past it’s surgical, radiation, and chemotherapy, and
now with supporting drug, example, like anti VEGF,
and also some target particularly for HER2, and those are also, I mean, lucky for me, during my career I got to work on those, and become the medicine
available for patient. It really extended life. It’s very fascinating seeing the patient come to use to say, “When I have cancer “I thought that’s the end of the day. “Now I got to see my
son, and the grandson.” And the life totally
change for the patients. And also even macular degeneration, the eye disease, in the past, the patient would just
go through the blindness, and now we have the anti VEGF solution to do the injection, to allow people to be able to see the world. Thinking about from the blindness, to be able to open your
eye, see the world, and that’s a very, very
life-changing difference. And those, frankly speaking, couldn’t be achieved
without the biologics. But biology didn’t come just like that. So like I say, science innovation really changing the world. In the past history,
actually really start with the biologic extract
from the living animals. So back to 1920, it’s not like nowaday we all of a sudden
thinking about biologic. Back to old days, definitely
there are biologics extract from the animal, and
even for the hemophilia drug, we at Bayer, working on
it back to 1950 and 1960, it has extraction. And they’re becoming in technology, I think it’s probably
not new to you anymore, and that definitely back to the 1970, has introduced some
potential drug to the market. But not as popular as today. And the next generation really is this monoclonal antibody
designed very specific target, certain therapeutic target and disease, and this are back to the
1980 and ’97 at the time. Finally, they have the
fully humanized antibody, and I happen to be really
running on this wave of to introduce the first
fully humanized antibody to help, as I mentioned,
about rheumatoid arthritis. And nowadays, we moving even more further. It’s through the cell
therapy and gene therapy, and very recently they have
a very exciting approval in recent year was CRISPR-Cas9, which is the originator from UC Berkeley, and the 2017 also have the CAR-T cell, which you engineer the cell, in order to be able to cure the cancer. So a lot of excitement
really is through a lot of science and innovation to
help the biologics to grow. And something also unique
about biologics is, it’s not as exact as chemistry, so it need to go so very intensive and complicated bioprocess. And from, like I already
mentioned, we combining technology. And this, like I say, the
technology itself is not new, however, you probably appreciate then, we need to be consistent really, again and again, doing the
same thing, and precisely, there’s no exception, and be
able to pass the whole quality. That is the tricky part. And definitely the design,
you see the process and it’s much more complicated. It’s almost, you probably
cannot imagine that, but back to 25 years ago, it’s considered really as science fiction, and today it’s real. We have multiple different
protein therapeutics available, and even better, as I say, they are more increased in complexity, even though that is more challenging. It is also interesting opportunity. If I focus your attention
the middle of the slide, that is the antibody, and that’s kind of typical. You see how many molecule,
daltons are there, and this tiny little bit
in the center is compare, if you zoom out, you
see that’s compared to the size of aspirin. So this is classical molecule, and then we can definitely characterize much easier for aspirin, before antibody, we need to be able to characterize, from the whole overall,
three-dimension point-of-view, as was down to every single molecule, to show every time, when
we do the production, we need to be consistent. So then we can guarantee the safety, the efficacy, for our patients. But on your right-hand side, this is where, then, you look at a protein compared to one cell. The whole cell is so big. The protein is so small, and nowadays, as I say, we starting looking at cell therapy. Lubicant is solution
about millions of cell inject to the patient, and we need to guarantee,
as a pharmaceutical company, or biotech company,
this will be consistent, and have the efficacy, and also safety, the patient’s counting on. So definitely there’s a
lot of opportunities there. Talking about aspirin,
definitely I need to step back, talk a little bit about Bayer. So, Bayer is 155 year old company, and we very proud about aspirin is the first launch from Bayer, 1899. And you can see back to the old days, how aspirin was produced. We absolutely not producing
aspirin this way, anymore. (audience laughs) So I don’t want to give
you the wrong idea. But today we need to quickly move into the modern day of a
pharmaceutical company, in order to survive so many years, we need to look at a new
pipeline on your right-hand side, it’s showing, currently our pipeline, and we’re trying to
enrich a lot of biologics, because that, as I show you, so many advantage of having the biologics, and we are not a company having
a lot of those pipeline yet. So that is where the
challenging of my title, about coming to Bayer, and then trying to develop
something new, right? Not that new to the degree about to the outside world this
is a totally novel drug, but it’s kind of new for the company, have to figure out a way fast introduce. Bayer is not totally
new to the degree about not following the whole science. So innovation track for
our hematology product, from your left-hand side,
we start having the product from 1969, I have the
plasma-derived product, and then go into the recombinant, so two different generation. Last year we’re very proud to introduce our long-acting recombinant factor A, and this allow patient
to have less injection, longer efficacy, to be able to reduce a whole compassion about injection, much better factor A expression. But that’s not it. We need to look at a antibody for a different kind of target, which address a mechanism or pathway, and also we are doing the gene therapy in the clinical trial. So this is the idea
about innovation, really, need to come along,
and what other strategy we implement, in order to
catch up in a start-up setting, in the big pharma. The other strategy, we call that leaps. So, instead of following people along, we’re always behind. Why don’t we actually take the leaps, get not necessarily ahead, but jump onto what others already learn. So on your left-hand
side, the ambition we have is find out exactly
fundamental breakthrough. So don’t look at the small science. If something really is a breakthrough, that’s what we’re targeting. So then we are ambitious to say we don’t just want to treat the disease, we want to cure the disease, and to prevent the disease, and that’s our ambition going in. How are we going to do that? As I say now the biologics definitely provide a lot of advantages
on your right-hand side. These are five particularly
most promising technology, you can see everything
associated with biologics, the DNA editing, RNA activation, cell therapy, and microbiomes,
and also RNA inhibition. Those are target therapeutic,
and also the innovation side. So you can see I mention about innovation, I mention about science. Then you say well I cannot follow you. You will say your passion
is in science innovation, and you like to help people. What does that have something to do? So the way I look at it, really, we need to have some
sort of start-up spirit. Start-up tends to be the company introduce much more novel drug in biologics field. That’s the strength of the
star-up is nimble and swift, and also effective in decision making and much more novel
science can be introduced. And the mature global company, what we offer is then stable
and established system, and much more systematic approach, and the infrastructure to support that. So the way I look at it is, more or less like I
will consider start-ups like this small tugboat. So when you are getting
closer to off the shore, you need this tugboat to get this going. Then the big pharma is like
this container big ship, and you compare to the size
of the tugboat is there, but this is where then
have the established system to help to navigating
through the big ocean. So you look at it, if we see the journey as from the one side, getting
start-up to get idea going, you cannot get the container
too close to a shore, because it’ll get stuck. It will not be able to move. But the tugboat that’s
start-up idea and system, be able to move that quickly, get it to the container, and the container need to go through this big old journey for the drug development. There’s a high risk about a lot of things on the ocean can happen, but we’re getting closer
to the finish line, that means we already get
to the stable drug market, we need to be nimble again
to allow the resource go into where to establish the new idea. And from the finishing line, then we need to start
act like the small boat. So the idea really is to
complete the whole journey. We need to have the start-up agility like this little tugboat
on your left-hand side, and we also leverage what we have; a stable system to navigate
through all the risk, you know, the financial risks, and to be able to have that buffer, and then when we getting
closer to the finishing line, or maybe become, on the
market, much more stable we leverage a lot of partnerships, in order to enable the drugs to become much more agile and going through the, we call the life-cycle management. So we start, that is
kind of the idea about how to put everything together, the innovation side, and also
how we are going to set up our organization to help the patients. And you may, sitting
there, say that’s nice, but what is that to do with me? So I’d like to throw some idea, also. So one of the thing, we
combine everything together, the way we approaching, this is kind of reiterate a little bit
about my prior point. For the emerging technology, we try to be as nimble as possible, and for the must-win technology, want to hold it with us, and then for the mature technology is where we establish a partnership. I want to say as the no matter
which side of the column, or which boat or ship
you’re going to be on, it’s going to be a very,
very exciting journey, and for biotech, again, I
go back to that sentence about increasing the complexity, and increasing opportunity,
now still, as I mentioned, 25 years ago, we’re coming
in technology can become, can make drug is science fiction. And nowaday, the cell gen therapy, people are starting to believe
it’s not science fiction. But all of us need to make it happen, ’cause this is not there yet. A lot of exciting new therapy approach, as well as a very complex system, as I showed you, the
whole biologics production takes a lot of very careful design, and also, I think hopefully
that hit your heart, as also data science is
very, very important, in a sense, for biologics. There’s no way we can
do the whole bio process without very solid data science, and something I always think pretty much aligned with the whole synergy being an engineer, is
that it’s not just about being the first one get to the market. It’s really the one to get it right. So this, in my mind, I think
maybe in my engineering mind, always, is survive in this world, okay, it is them, we don’t get intimidated by, okay, other people already
have this anti TNF. They have all these therapeutic. We need to look at it then, how do we make it really
right to the patient? So there’s tons opportunity. I hope you’re thinking about it when you want to be jumping
on like me, hopefully, interest in science and innovation, and to make a difference
to peoples’ lives. Biotech definitely offer a lot
of new opportunities there. So, okay, back to my picture. So I wish I can tell you then
everything will go smoothly, and that’s, I already say, you may actually thinking about going through this, okay say, not so much about picking your path, but really about picking your passion, and at least, I hope I show
you one little example, my personal life is then,
I stick to my passion, even though my path looks a
lot different from most people, from you know, medical
school to study PhD, from academics, to industry
from big companies, to small company, and now
back to the big company. As long as you kinda stick
to your passion really, you will see, you’ll be
able to find your path and really doesn’t kind
of matter about how other people around you,
what’s the path they choose. And also want to say, positively, you may actually feel like this, a lot of fish is following you, like then when you are starting the idea, and people are really following you, at least at some point, I would say I enjoy my Bayer’s life. We have that. Sometimes I have to tell my staff, oh wow, they really believe me. So that’s actually good! (audience laughs) So that’s, I’m sure
you’ll experience that. And so with that I probably
want to close my talk, and thank you for your attention, and really, I hope you get excited about enjoying the biotech, and also, go bears. (audience applauds) – Thank you so much, Judy, for sharing with us your personal story, and for sharing with us your passion. We do have time now for questions, and we usually like to give
preference to the students. Please stand and say your name, your major, and your year,
when you ask your questions. – [Woman] We have one in the back. – Okay, one in the back. – [Megan] So hi, my name is Megan. I’m a third year studying bioengineering. My question was about
how you mentioned that you had like, you should have like start-up style agility to succeed. I was wondering if you
had any tips for like, how to maintain the level
that you’re working at, with such a big company. – So if I were, repeat the question. So the question is how to really make the start-up idea going? – [Megan] Yeah, so like
even at such a big company, to maintain like both sides
of having that agility. – Yeah, so I happen to run
this very unique organization. It’s just new to Bayer, also. So I have one side really is R and D, and the other side, we are this, so called P and L organization,
so profit and loss, so basically my performance is measured against how much money we make. That part I probably need to cut, but, in any case, to answer your question, so the way I say, really need
to have different mindset. So I tell my leadership team, for people here, value is not a option. You need to be right first time. It’s got to be a discipline. I hope you study engineering. You will probably agree with me. That’s where we want to be. But on this side, I don’t want
them to be right first time. They need to try, and failure
is absolutely a option. So I hope I answer your
question by saying, really, you need to have
different mentality, and different structure, and that’s why I share with you this boat, knowledge, and I think my staff
really struggle on that, so hopefully that come out okay. – [Padant] Hi, my name is Padant. I’m studying in a mass of
engineering and bioengineering, and I had a question because, I mean Bayer’s a global acting
company, and here we are in the San Francisco Bay
Area, with a lot of start-ups where probably, the people
are more open to the idea of implementing the start-up
idea in this very old company, but how is it like, for
example, with Bayer in Europe? Are they also trying to implement this start-up strategy in their company? – Okay, so the question is then, how Bayer has to introduce the whole start-up mindset in the company. And I hope I did show you, even though I make that very quick, about in that side of the 150 year old that we have multiple product. Definitely, there’s no
one company, I would say, in today’s world, can survive without some innovative ideas. So innovation is a must. So then, in a sense then,
I cannot say like then because we shake the world in Bayer. Bayer has been thinking about that is very, very important. So I answer your question, probably in two different perspective. The company definitely recognize, it’s a very important initiative to allow the start-up coming up, and my job and in my organization it’s more about how we really will be able to make that happen. ‘Cause then, as I show,
there’s some strengths, different kind of set up. So, if I would put the
whole container, big ship, all closer to the shore trying
to embrace other’s idea, it would get stuck there going nowhere. So we need to have a
different way to introduce. That really is combining
the scientific approach as with the whole system to enable that. We definitely feel like very fortunate to be in the Bay Area, so we
are just down by the bay, hopefully you know, ’cause
a lot of people don’t. We have a about a 55 acre
land, and you’re welcome, I mean sometime we have the job fair, you can come visit us, and
we want to leverage the space to invite more novel idea, and so a lot of idea and
contributions from you. – [Kate] Hi, I’m Kate. I’m a first year
bioengineering PhD student. I was wondering if you could talk about your transition from academia to industry; what inspired you to do that, and what were sort of
some of the negatives of that transition? – Okay, I get that question a lot. It was a little bit opportunity-driven. I was not even thinking about to join the biotech industry at all. I was on my track to, in the academic. And it was, I’ll probably
tell you the story first, then answer a little bit about
my thinking at that time. I was just being invited
to, at the time with BSF, and later on become
Abbott, to give a talk. At the end of it they
just give me an offer, and then I say oh, that’s kind of nice. I wasn’t thinking about it, and but they only give me like five days, ’cause you know how the industry works. So the budget need to close, and that was the end of
the year before Christmas, and so they have to spend it in. But anyway, and it wasn’t,
I share the story about from jumping out of medical school. That was a harder
decision, frankly speaking, no offense to all the faculty that. It wasn’t so hard for me at the time, because I think I was thinking about maybe is time I can close the loop, coming, getting a little more closer, offering some solutions
as I was seeking for. And I have to admit, I
did not really even know what they are doing, but I take that leap of faith to say well, lemme go in
and see how it looks like. So that was how this, and some people say in a year or two you may regret, right? And I told myself two things: one, I don’t want to look
back, if I made that decision, so in a sense, I don’t
want to be in industry, and pretend I’m doing academic. So I don’t like try to do
all the basic research, and trying to solve those issue, ’cause I think that’s really the strength of academic setting, sure. And I want to see what
is exactly company value. So then that’s company I join, and end up is really the
best selling drug now in the world, in the whole human history, and at the time, I was
just so devoted into that, so that’s probably the second perspective, I would say, I was just very devoted, and trying to learn that, and I must also share with you, ’cause I don’t want this, make a story sound so nice, have to tell you, the whole first year, despite my title of being a faculty then, I feel I’m the most stupid
idiot in the setting. Seriously. And everybody, the research associate, they know way more than I do
about what they are doing. It was very painful. But I kind of told myself, I make this decision,
and I got to stick to it. And I try to learn, you know, just go to the bench and ask
people the stupid question. I’m so sure they thought
about my IQ level, and then once through that
year, I really was great. I learn so much from people, so I probably, long
answer to your question, I think one, it was probably opportunity, and that’s why I couldn’t
say it was so much about I have little plan now, I go to academic, and
then I go to industry. I did not do that. I took the opportunity really push myself in the situation. So again, that fish
picture was not random, ’cause I think most the
time that’s how I feel. – [Woman] More questions. – [Chris] Hi I’m Chris, a
third year chemi PhD student. I was wondering, how often
do the start-up ideas come from outside start-ups
that you’ve acquired, and how often do they
come from internal R and D that Bayer’s doing, and
do you know if there is a preference, I guess, to those start-ups? Are you trying to, I guess,
emphasize one over the other? – The question is about start-up ideas, internal versus external. Bayer used to do a lot of internal, kind of with some mixture of external. We are changing the,
I guess, strategy now, and we are doing much more external. We still keep the internal, to be able to have the innovation going. Then evaluate about what we do best, as I kind of say, academic definitely have much more strengths in small stuff. It can move things very fast, and we think through collaboration, or maybe even in licensing
will be a better opportunity. So then currently, as of today, you ask me these questions, then we try to introduce more external. So then I hope you also appreciate, with the external start-up idea, we need to be even better, ’cause if it was your own
work, you know everything, but then you want to
be able to collaborate, keep up the speed. That means you need to be way more equip, way more knowledgeable than the, at doing the innovation all by itself. So I’m not quite sure how other pharmaceutical company does this, but I can speak for our biologics side. That’s our strategy. – [Brian] Hi, I’m Brian. I’m a first year undergraduate
bioengineering major. So, you said that in high school, you prepared to be an engineer. Given the transition from
academia into industry, how much of that engineering mindset, the tools that you were equipped with, how much do you use
that in your current job in product and loss? – That’s a good question. I’m glad somebody asked me that. So I feel a little bit
more related to you guys. So, the question is about how much engineering mindset really help me. And I must say, also, maybe
one good story to share is when I was interview at Bayer, maybe. So the R and D head, and he flicks through my resume, right, and say, “You’re a medical doctor. “How can you end up being doing
the bio manufacturing side?” So then we talked through a lot of things. Actually, his comment actually helped me to realize where I am, ’cause he say, “I really think you are back down the bone “you are an engineer.” I didn’t even tell him where
I went for high school. And then you got all the
other knowledge to help you, and you try to apply
this engineering mindset to all different discipline. So I do think I really appreciate that. I’m still very fascinated by the physics, and things like that, and it always get a comment from my staff, particularly from engineering background, say, “You are the most
engineer boss I ever have.” (audience laughs) ‘Cause I’m so fascinated by the whole formula, then all those things, and as I say, on this
of the business, I say, need to be failure is not a option, right for the first time, and I think am I straightforward, not I’m very, very stringent about that, and love design and guessing is better, and I don’t want to oversimplify about what engineer’s all about. So I guess I can try to
fight to be a engineer, maybe at some point, but I do think that’s very, very helpful. So, you are very blessed in the situation about today, as much a discipline area. Probably you will be a lot more surprised about why you were saying that is such a distinct background. Really, back to my days, nobody in medical school
even care about physics, so that’s how odd I was. So when I was in medical school, I was the only one, get this
straight grade about physics, and everybody like, oh
who cares about physics. (audience laughs) So then, and I was so obsessive about it, but you know, I think that
helped me for long term, and that’s why again, the fish picture, to show you about, you know, maybe a lot of people around you will have different background, and you need to find your path
and stick to your passion. – [Andoni] Hi, thanks for the great talk. My name is Andoni. I’m a third year PhD
student in bioengineering. I’m thinking about the Leap program. I think you mentioned it as a vehicle to kind of push Bayer to the forefront of all of these emerging technologies like gene therapy, DNA editing, et cetera. What do you look for in the people who are a part of that program, the Leap program, in order to be able to assess which one of those fields will do well, or what companies within those fields you should look into more? What do those people
within Leap look like? – Sure, so the question’s
about our Leap program. So definitely it is public information. You can definitely, if you Google, you do Bayer Leaps, you’ll find video, it has a lot of what exactly we do. The question is about what kind of talent we are looking for. So, how we do the Leap program is a little bit connect
to the earlier question about a start-up. So we leave those, we invest
towards those company, and namely, there are two. One focus on gene therapy, called Casebia, and the other more for cell
therapy called BlueRock, and we leave them alone. So they are not reporting
into Bayer or anything, and we offer money. We do have people sitting on the board, but we don’t dictate what they do, and they hire their own people, do their own things, and trying to explore all this idea. And we do review, make sure
things are hitting the R and D, the investigation new drugs application, so other than that, we don’t do anything. So then, I hope that indirectly
answer your question. So basically, it’s a start-up setting, and allow people really saw the idea, and really try to work there. I do work for start-up as Tsu-Jae, in her introduction mention. I sit both for Tamex, also
Medovation, and I must say, something very, very
different from start-up, just to share with you the experience, I always say, this is where multiple hats, things, then you will
feel like you do this, you also do that, I mean, every day you may be
even in the conversation, in 10 minutes, you switch different hat to talk about different things. And that’s very different
for a large company, and there’s the pros and cons, of course. When you wear multiple hats, you may not be dig down enough to understand that particular discipline, however, in big company,
definitely this is some advantage, you get really, get to the
area you’re working on. What we’re trying to do, is really, not so much mix everybody,
wear multiple hats, versus you know, have
the one hat to really, as I kind of shared with you, we set up different kind
of jobs, in a sense. But back to your question, definitely, for the Leaps program, those company, we let them run at, we want who they are, no actually, we let them, the CEO,
and it’s probably just less than 20 people
company for both of them, maybe one of them hit already, 70, 80. They operating, really,
inviting the scientists engineering join with a lot of novel idea. – [Woman] We have time for one
more, if there is one more. Okay, I think. – Alright, if not, let’s
thank Dr. Chou one more time for a very inspirational talk. (audience applauds) So, as a small token of our appreciation, our students would like
to give you a gift. It’s a Berkeley Engineering jacket. Yes, let’s take a photo. Keep you warm today. (audience applauds) So we hope that’ll keep you
warm on the inside and outside. (audience laughs) Okay, so just want to thank everybody. So the Society for Women Engineers, again, for co-sponsoring today’s event. Hope to see most of you
back here on April 16th for the Kuh lecture, and go bears! Thank you again. (audience applauds)

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