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Veteran Cancer Researcher, Dr. Jonathan Oliner, Becomes Elephas Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer

Oncology leader brings over two decades of R&D experience in pharma and biotech

June 7th, 2020

Madison, WI, June 7, 2020 -- Elephas Biosciences Corporation (Elephas), a live tumor imaging company developing novel cancer diagnostic solutions, announced today that veteran executive and cancer researcher, Jonathan Oliner, has joined the company as co-founder and chief scientific officer.

Dr. Oliner brings over 20 years of oncology R&D experience. He was a member of the Amgen Oncology senior leadership team, and both founded and led Amgen's MDM2 inhibitor and angiopoietin inhibitor programs. These efforts produced Trebananib (formerly AMG 386), an angiopoietin inhibitor evaluated in phase 3 clinical trials, and Navtemadlin (formerly AMG 232), an MDM2 inhibitor currently being tested in phase 1 and 2 clinical trials across multiple tumor types. Before beginning his 15-year tenure at Amgen, Dr. Oliner was a group leader at Affymetrix, where he spearheaded expression profiling efforts to dissect signal transduction pathways altered during tumorigenesis.

Dr. Oliner earned an MD/PhD from Johns Hopkins and did his graduate work in the lab of Dr. Bert Vogelstein, where he cloned the human MDM2 gene, discovered MDM2 amplification in human tumors, and demonstrated that MDM2 concealed the activation domain of p53. He performed his postdoctoral work with Dr. Robert Tjian at UC Berkeley, where he explored the molecular basis of transcriptional synergy using the SREBP and Sp1 proteins as model activators. 

“The difficult journey that patients endure when faced with a cancer diagnosis is at the heart of Elephas’ mission. The effort to improve patient outcomes must be grounded in oncology innovation and scientific experience,” stated Maneesh Arora, founder and CEO of Elephas. “Jon brings a wealth of deep oncology experience that will drive what we do. I am excited to build the company together.”

“Cancer therapies provide remarkable clinical benefits, but too few patients respond, and there are few diagnostic tools that predict response with high accuracy,” said Dr. Oliner. “As more drugs and combinations are approved, selecting the best regimen for each patient will become more complex. To facilitate this selection, we are developing an ex vivo live tumor fragment diagnostic platform that retains representation of a patient’s native tumor architecture, including immune cells, to predict drug response and thereby individualize therapy. I am thrilled to join Maneesh as we launch the company at such an exciting time, and I have no doubt the results will impact the lives of cancer patients around the globe.” 

Dr. Oliner has published over 40 peer-reviewed journal articles, has 18 issued US patents, and was named one of R&D Directions “Most Notable People in R&D”. 


About Elephas
Disruption in healthcare is being accelerated by the need for improved diagnostics, novel pharmaceutical therapies, and the shift to patient-centric solutions. With the mission to tackle the massive oncology dilemma, Elephas is leading the way to change how clinicians treat cancer patients. By harnessing the latest advances in cancer biology, multimodal microscopy, and artificial intelligence, the Elephas platform has the ability to empower clinical decision making and accelerate drug development. We plan to use the power of our platform to deliver a global solution that can revolutionize cancer treatment for every individual. To learn more, visit us at or follow us on LinkedIn.


Alison Guzzio
CGLife on Behalf of Elephas