Board of Directors


Iain Ross


Iain Ross was appointed to the Board as Non-Executive Chairman in July 2021. He temporarily assumed Executive responsibility in February 2022 until the appointment of Catherine Isted as Chief Executive Officer in September 2022.

Iain Ross is a highly experienced board director with a career in the international life sciences and technology sectors that spans 40 years. He held senior commercial roles at Sandoz, Fisons and Hoffman La Roche before moving into the biotechnology sector where he has been Chairman, CEO and Director of several international biotechnology companies including Celltech Group plc, Quadrant Healthcare plc and Redx Pharma plc.

Currently he is Non-Executive Chairman at Silence Therapeutics PLC (NASDAQ) and Kazia Therapeutics Limited (ASX/NASDAQ) and BiVitrix Therapeutics plc. Mr Ross is a qualified Chartered Director, Fellow of the Institute of Directors and Honorary Fellow of Royal Holloway, London University.


Catherine Isted ACMA

Chief Executive Officer

Catherine Isted was appointed to the Board in October 2021. Catherine took on the role of Chief Executive Officer from September 2022, having previously been the Groups Chief Financial Officer.

Catherine joined ReNeuron from Oxford Biomedica plc, a global leading cell and gene therapy company, where she was part of the finance leadership team heading up the Corporate Development and IR, helping the business grow over 800%, enter the FTSE250 and pass through £1bn market capitalisation.

Prior to that she spent 19 years in the City at Morgan Stanley, ABN AMRO, Nomura and Peel Hunt in Healthcare equity research and equity sales roles, 12 years of which at Partner level during which time she undertook multiple IPO’s and fundraisings for companies in the Healthcare sector.

The early part of Catherine career was at Merck, Sharp and Dohme, the UK subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., initially as a bench scientist in their medicinal chemistry laboratories, before a career change and move into their finance team where she trained to be an accountant.

Catherine graduated with a 1st class chemistry degree and is a Chartered Management Accountant.


Barbara Staehelin

Senior Independent Non-Executive Director

Barbara Staehelin was appointed to the Board as Senior Non-Executive Director in July 2021.

Barbara is Non-Executive Chair for Resistell AG. She is a board member at Assura Group, a Swiss medical insurance company where she is President of he Audit and Risk Committee. She is also co-founder and Chair  at Axicos AG.

Barbara Staehelin began her professional career in management consultancy, focussing on healthcare at McKinsey and Co., Inc. She has also served as a member of the Global Executive Committee at F. Hoffman-LaRoche Diagnostics. Her wide experience both in senior leadership roles and in founding companies has given her extensive high-level exposure to commercial, regulatory and governance matters in the biotech sector.

Ms. Staehelin holds a Directors Certificate from Harvard University, USA , an MBA from INSEAD Fontainebleau, France and an MSc in biochemistry from ETH Zurich..


Dr Mike Owen Ph.D

Non-Executive Director

Dr Mike Owen was appointed to the Board in December 2015.

He currently serves as a director of Zealand Pharma, Sareum Holdings plc and Ossianix Inc. He is also a member of the scientific advisory board at Avacta Group plc.

Mike’s career in biotech, the pharmaceutical industry and academia spans more than 40 years.  He was formerly senior vice president for biopharmaceuticals research at GlaxoSmithKline and was also a founder and chief scientific officer of Kymab Ltd, an antibody based biotech company. He has previously served as a director for BliNK Biomedical SAS. For many years held a research position at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund (now CR-UK) and he has previously served on the scientific advisory board of the CRT Pioneer Fund LP.

He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.


Martin Walton

Non-Executive Director

Martin was appointed to the Board in March 2022.

Martin spent 25 years in global investment banking and asset management, culminating as Vice Chair in charge of Wholesale and Commercial Banking for Europe and Asia-Pacific at Toronto Dominion Bank.

Since 2010, Martin has been an active VC / PE investor, portfolio manager, and advisor in life sciences involving a number of Executive and non-Executive positions, completing over 25 transactions (spinouts, financings, M&A, IPOs, divestitures) and has raised over £1bn in investment and co-investment capital.

Martin is co-founder of LSE-listed Arix Bioscience plc (LSE: ARIX) and currently serves as Chairman and CEO of Bradshaw Consulting Ltd. He is CEO of virtual biotech Excalibur Medicines Ltd, Board Director of Interrad Medical and a Board Member of the Liverpool Life Sciences Accelerator Partnership.

In addition to a wealth of experience in the life sciences sector, he also has extensive Governance, Oversight, Audit Committee and Risk Committee experience as well as specific experience in start-up, growth (organic and acquisition), turnaround and consolidation strategies.


John Hawkins

Chief Financial Officer

John was appointed Chief Financial Officer in September 2022. John joined ReNeuron in October 2014 as Financial Controller and was appointed Company Secretary in June 2021.

John is an experienced finance professional with a breadth of experience gained within a variety of businesses, from large PLCs to family-owned SMEs. He joined ReNeuron, after leaving his role as Finance Director of an insurance business, having previously worked for a number of years in the financial services sector where he specialised in business partnering, helping to drive growth and profitability. During this time, he played a lead role in a number of acquisitions and played a key role in the $1bn sale of a division of Standard Chartered Bank to The Lloyds Banking Group.
John graduated from university with a 1st class honours degree in industrial chemistry and started his career with KPMG, where he qualified as a Chartered Accountant.