Management Team

Hal Gunn, MD

Dr. Hal Gunn, founder and CEO of Qu Biologics, is a physician-entrepreneur who has had a lifelong interest in the body’s ability to heal and has dedicated his professional life to understanding how to optimally support the body’s immune response to chronic disease. Dr. Gunn is recognized both nationally and internationally as a leader in the field of supportive cancer care, and in 2009 was awarded the $250,000 Dr. Roger’s Prize for vision, leadership and integrity in the field of Integrative Medicine.

Dr. Gunn obtained his Doctorate of Medicine from the University of British Columbia (UBC) and remains a Clinical Assistant Professor at UBC’s School of Medicine.  In 1997, Dr. Gunn co-founded InspireHealth, Canada’s foremost supportive cancer care centre, which supports the health, healing and immune system function of people undergoing cancer treatment and their families. Under Dr. Gunn’s leadership, InspireHealth grew to become a world leader in supportive cancer care, with three centres (Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna), treating 2,500 new patients per year. Dr. Gunn founded Qu Biologics in 2007.


Simon Sutcliffe, MD, FRCP, FRCPC, FRCR
Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Sutcliffe is a distinguished clinician, scientist and leading visionary in cancer control in Canada and internationally. A graduate of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, London, England, Dr. Sutcliffe’s training encompassed internal medicine, scientific research, medical and radiation oncology in the UK, South Africa, US and Canada. He has published extensively in the areas of radiation and medical oncology as applied to the treatment of lymphoma, leukemia and cellular immuno-deficiency and immuno-modulation in cancer.

Dr. Sutcliffe has been President and CEO of the Ontario Cancer Institute and Princess Margaret Hospital (1994-96) and the BC Cancer Agency (2000-09). Dr. Sutcliffe was the inaugural Chair of the Governing Council of the Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control, a past member of the NCIC Board of Directors, and past chair of the Canadian Partnership against Cancer, the Canadian Cancer Society/National Cancer Institute of Canada Joint Advisory Committee on Cancer Control and the National Medical Advisory Committee. He has also served on the boards of the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research and Genome BC.

Dr. Sutcliffe is currently the President of the International Cancer Control Congress Association, President of Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration (the Canadian Branch of the International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research), and Board Chair, Institute for Health Systems Sustainability. He is also a senior advisor to the Terry Fox Research Institute. Dr. Sutcliffe was awarded the Queen Elizabeth 50th Jubilee Gold Medal in 2003 and the Terry Fox Award (of the B.C. Medical Association) in 2009 for his lifetime services to cancer control.

Jim Pankovich Qu web

Jim Pankovich, MSc, MBA
Vice President, Clinical Operations & Drug Development

Mr. Pankovich has more than 20 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry with extensive strategy development, clinical study management and operational experience. During his career, he has guided the development of novel compounds and biologics for the treatment of various cancers and infectious disease in all phases of clinical development from concept to NDA filing. Most recently he served as the Chief Scientific Officer of the CIHR Canadian HIV Trials Network. He was formerly the Senior Director, Clinical Research for MIGENIX Inc, Associate Director, Clinical Research at Inex Pharmaceuticals, and Vice President, Operations & Clinical Research at CV Technologies. Mr. Pankovich holds a M.Sc. (Experimental Medicine) from the University of Alberta and an MBA from Queen’s University.


Gillian Vandermeirsch, PhD
Vice President, Operations

Dr. Vandermeirsch obtained a Ph.D. in Virology from the Pasteur Institute (Paris, France), and completed post-doctoral studies at the University of British Columbia (UBC) prior to joining the Vancouver-based biotech start-up, Augurex Life Sciences Corp., as the Research Manager. In parallel Dr. Vandermeirsch held an adjunct faculty appointment in the Faculty of Medicine at UBC, where she was a member of the undergraduate education program, teaching first and second year medical students. Since joining Qu Biologics in February 2011, Dr. Vandermeirsch has combined her project management skills with her science background and her strong interest in healthcare to oversee the day-to-day operations of the company.

kevin-2Kevin Harper, BSc, MSc, M.Bio, C.Bio
Acting Director, Manufacturing

Mr. Harper is Acting Director, Manufacturing at Qu Biologics.  He is also the founder and President of HH Consultancy, a firm focused on biopharmaceutical process design, development and validation.  Mr. Harper has been a key contributor to the design, development, commercialization and launch of a series of significant cancer therapeutics and new vaccines. He has extensive global experience in the process development, manufacture, and testing of clinical and commercial biopharmaceuticals and vaccines. Mr. Harper has held senior positions in process development, formulation, fill and package manufacturing, and in quality control in-process and final release testing for major companies including Sanofi-Pasteur and Novartis. He has directed process development and stability teams in the successful scale-up of numerous parenteral formulations, over 30 of which are, or have been, under clinical investigation. Mr. Harper has authored and co-authored a variety of papers and publications and is an inventor on a series of pharmaceutical patents.

Shirin Kalyan, PhD
Director, Scientific Innovation

Dr. Shirin Kalyan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology at the University of British Columbia. She earned her PhD from the University of British Columbia in Experimental Medicine investigating the pivotal mediators of inflammation in the context of toxic shock syndrome. Dr. Kalyan’s primary interest is in conducting translational research for applied therapeutics, and her expertise includes dissecting the pathophysiology of disease rooted in immune dysfunction and metabolic disturbances. After obtaining her doctorate, Dr. Kalyan furthered her inter- and cross-disciplinary background in immunology and endocrinology by leading innovative research probing the interaction between steroidal hormones and inflammation, oxidative stress, and bone remodelling. In 2010, Dr. Kalyan was awarded a prestigious fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation to conduct research in Germany to investigate the pathophysiology of adverse immune effects of bisphophonate therapy for osteoporosis and cancer-associated bone disease and to probe the healing potential of the innate immune system for cancer immunotherapy.

Nicole Clendinning, BA (Hons.), CPA, CGA
Director, Finance

Ms. Clendinning is a career finance and management leader with 20 years experience spanning the private, public, and government sectors. Ms. Clendinning’s professional practice is augmented by specializations in internal audit, business process improvement, stakeholder engagement and public consultation.
After graduating from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.), Ms. Clendinning was awarded her financial designation from the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada in 2003. She is a standing member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of British Columbia.

Past events:

Past events: