Frank Ahmann, President & C.E.O.
With 30 years of experience in the biotech and medical device industries, Mr. Ahmann has held executive management positions ranging from operations management to new product development and sales and marketing. He was instrumental in the foundation and development of start-ups such as Chimeric Therapies, Inc., Nephrogenex, Inc., Allvivo, Inc., and CardioPolymers, Inc. The latter was acquired in 2010 by LoneStar Heart to develop the Company’s lead implantable hydrogel technology. He has also been a strategy consultant to start-ups and venture capital firms in the cardiovascular, oncology, and stem cell therapy sectors. Previously, Mr. Ahmann held management positions in Europe and North America at Baxter International’s Biotech Group and Cardiovascular Group (now Edwards LifeSciences). Among many technologies, he launched the first comprehensive system for the collection, processing, storage, and administration of hematopoietic stem cells. A German citizen who grew up in Mexico, Mr. Ahmann is a native Spanish, German, and English speaker with strong ties to the European medical market. Mr. Ahmann holds a BBA with Honors from the University of Texas at Austin and an MBA from Columbia University Graduate School of Business in New York City.
Manoj Raghuraman, Director, Algisyl® Program
Mr. Raghuraman joined LoneStar Heart, Inc. in Sep 2011. He brings over 12 years of experience in positions that span across operations, program management, product management, regulatory, and quality assurance. Prior to LoneStar Heart, he led the regulatory and quality efforts at Life Measurement, Inc. (acquired by COSMED USA, Inc.) that resulted in > 10 market approvals, several successful audits and a streamlined product development process. He also led the clinical development efforts for the PEA POD®, a novel infant body composition assessment system. Earlier, he managed the regulatory/quality assurance activities at Branan Medical Corporation (acquired by Alere, Inc.) and was instrumental in implementing a hazardous waste management system. Mr. Raghuraman holds a Master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Southern California and an MBA from the University of California, Irvine.
Norman Tarazona, DVM, Director, Pre-Clinical Affairs
Dr. Tarazona has more than 26 years experience in the biotech and medical device industry with a focus on cardiovascular disease research. Dr. Tarazona joined CardioPolymers, a wholly owned subsidiary of LoneStar Heart, Inc. in 2005 and has been responsible for leading the preclinical program that allowed the company to proceed to the human clinical studies. In addition, Dr. Tarazona has been in charge of the training program for the different worldwide clinical sites and CV surgeons that have participated in the clinical studies. Prior to joining CardioPolymers, Dr. Tarazona headed up the preclinical programs for Conormed Medsystems, a drug-eluting coronary stent company as well as for GMP Companies, a biotech start-up incubator. Previously, Dr. Tarazona spent 10 years in academia, working in the Cardiology Department of Emory University and Deborah Heart and Lung Center as well as having faculty appointments at Temple University Medical School and Cornell Medical School. A native English and Spanish speaker, Dr. Tarazona obtained his DVM at La Salle University in Bogota, Colombia.
Tom Gramlich, Director of Quality Systems
Mr. Gramlich is a seasoned Quality Assurance Professional with multi level experience in medical device product development, production support, field actions and regulatory body interaction. He has developed and managed quality systems, solved manufacturing issues using risk analysis and Quality techniques, and collaborated closely with engineering and production groups in a wide range of technologies including implants, cardiac and neuro catheters, electro mechanical, solely electrical, and optical products. Mr. Gramlich has held positions from Quality Engineer to Director of Product Assurance in medical device companies including Baxter Edwards, Allergan, Medtronic and Advanced Medical Optics. He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology and achieved ASQ Certificates in Quality Engineering, Six Sigma Black Belt and Quality Auditing.