PPI Leadership

PPI’s management team comprises a series of seasoned pharmaceutical industry professionals with a proven track record in early stage to exit companies.

The complimentary skill sets of the team and our strategy of out-sourcing and alliance building ensures rapid and cost-effective development of our candidates and nimble execution.

Dr Damon Smith


Founder and Acting CEO

Damon is a seasoned pharma R&D executive with 27 years of international experience in the EU, Australia and N. America. He has extensive ‘discovery to approval’ expertise and a proven track record in a series of start-up to exit biopharma and pharmaceutical companies. Damon is currently the CEO of Altus Formulation a profitable drug development and delivery company he founded in 2013. Since beginning operations Altus has signed development and licensing agreements for seven new products with three now under clinical development. Altus hopes to submit its first NDA with a partner in 2017. Prior to founding Altus Damon was SVP R&D at Labopharm where SmartCelle technology was developed and patented by himself and his team.

Mr. Leigh Berryman


Pre-Clinical Development Advisor

Leigh Berryman is a serial Chief Executive Officer who has provided leadership to companies in Europe, North America and Asia.  Trained as a toxicologist, he has been involved and directed drug development programs for over 35 years and has led or contributed to over 300 IND applications and first-in-man programs across Europe and North America.

From this scientific foundation, Leigh progressed into executive management in the mid-90’s, founding and ultimately taking public (Toronto Stock eXchange), his own company LAB Research Inc. (“LAB”).  Thereafter he provided turnaround leadership to Ricerca LLC (in Ohio), a 300+ person company, doubling revenues and enabling capital investment for growth and M&A activity over a 2 year period.  He stepped into another CEO role in Singapore (Maccine Pte. Ltd.) and, over a 6 year period, brought the company to profitability while enabling investor exit.  Since 2014, he has worked with early stage companies in advisory and consulting roles to design development programs with a focus on cost and timing to enable evaluation of risk and return on required investment capital.


Dr Jean-Marie Houle


Clinical Development Advisor

A pharmacist by training, Jean-Marie graduated from University de Montreal with a M.Sc. and a Ph.D in Pharmaceutical Sciences. He was formerly VP / Managing Director of the Quintiles Phase I Unit at Guy’s Hospital in London UK, transitioning assets through Phase I and Phase II POC. Jean-Marie oversaw 475 employees and 500 beds on three sites as VP of Clinical Operations at Anapharm, a PharmaNet Company. At QLT Inc, he was part of the core team who developed and won worldwide approvals for Visudyne®, the first treatment for wet age-related macular degeneration. He also contributed to transitioning pre-clinical concepts to human POC.

Ms. Celine Ducharme

Director of Finance

Ms. Ducharme has worked in the pharmaceutical industry for over 25 years and has held senior management positions in accounting, compensation and human resources for Church & Dwight Inc., Labopharm Inc. and Paladin Labs. Ms. Ducharme is a member of the Order of CPA, the Order of HR Advisors CHRP and the Canadian Payroll Association. She also holds finance and HR certificates from UQAM and Laval University.

Dr. Wilms Baille

Senior Director Research and Development

Wilms, who holds a PhD in polymer chemistry from the University of Montreal and an MBA from the University of Quebec, has 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and academia. He is currently Senior Director R&D at Altus Formulation. Prior to joining Altus, where he both leads research and development efforts and manages the research team on a day to day basis Wilms was responsible for the technology development and corporate strategy at Bioastra Technologies, focusing on polymer based technologies for the energy, textile, cleantech and animal health industries. Before joining Bioastra Wilms was a senior scientist at Labopharm where, working with Damon and Piotr below, he was responsible for all aspects of polymer design and synthesis for Labopharm’s SmartCelle programmes. Wilms has published 22 scientific papers in peer reviewed journals and is an inventor on a number of Labopharm and Altus patents.

Dr. Piotr Kujawa

Director Research and Development

Piotr is a research chemist and materials scientist with almost 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and academia. Piotr has held positions in a number of world renowned research centers including the Institute Charles Sadron, CNRS, Strasbourg, France and the National Institute of Materials Science, Tsukuba, Japan. He has authored a number of book chapters, published more than 30 scientific papers in peer-reviewed scientific journals, presented at over 40 international conferences and is a reviewer for scientific journals of the American Chemical Society.