Who We Are
InnovHeart, with locations in Milan, Italy, and Boston, Massachusetts, develops transcatheter mitral valve replacement (TMVR) systems to treat patients suffering from mitral valve disease.
The company is currently in clinical trials testing its novel TMVR Saturn Prosthesis, designed to be consistent with the anatomy of the mitral valve. Saturn is a low-profile prosthetic designed for both Trans-apical and Trans-septal delivery.
InnovHeart was founded in 2015 by Giovanni Righini, CTO & Board Member, with the support of Genextra S.p.A.
Our company mission is to bring patients a novel therapeutic system suitable to replace incompetent Mitral Valves based on a safe, effective, and easy-to-use transcatheter technology. InnovHeart is committed to pursuing this goal with the highest level of quality.
Our company has adopted an Organizational, Management and Control Model in compliance with the Italian Legislative Decree n. 231/2001 and subsequent additions.
The Model includes:
Board of Directors
Keith D. DAWKINS – Chairman of the Board
Keith has more than 35 years of experience as both a practicing physician and an executive within the medical device industry. From 2012 to 2017 Keith served as Executive Vice President and Global Chief Medical Officer at Boston Scientific. His responsibilities included overseeing the clinical function for all six Divisions, as well as leading Medical Affairs in Europe and Latin America, Health Economics in Europe, and Pre-Clinical Sciences for the company. Before that, Keith served as Senior Vice President and CMO for the Boston Scientific Cardiology Rhythm and Vascular Group.
Prior to joining Boston Scientific, Keith was a practicing interventional cardiologist for over 20 years in the U.K. He was President of the British Cardiovascular Intervention Society (2000 – 2004), and member of the Interventional Procedure Advisory Committee (IPAC) with the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for a period of four years. Keith earned a First-Class Honours degree in Pathology at London University and Guy’s Hospital. He trained in cardiology at Oxford and at the Royal Brompton and St. George’s Hospital in London.
Barbara is Partner in Panakes SGR. Previously he was founder and CEO of Techwald SPA, a financial holding. She has a strong knowledge of cardiovascular sector acquired as former Director of Clinical Affairs, Certifications, Registrations and Quality Assurance at CID SpA (now Alvimedica) and as former Director of Business Development & Global Marketing Director for the Heart Valves Business Unit at Sorin (now Livanova). Barbara holds a Msc in Medicinal Chemistry and Technology from University of Perugia and an executive MBA from SDA Bocconi.
Federica is Managing Partner at XGEN Venture, co-founded in 2021. Previously, Federica was Investment Director in Genextra since 2006. Federica is board member and co-investor of a number of Genextra companies such as Kuste Biopharma and InnovHeart. Previous companies include Erydel and Congenia where she served as interim COO. Federica was also a post doctoral fellow at the MRC in Cambridge (UK) before a few international experiences in VC and technology transfer. She received a cum laude degree in Biology and a PhD in Biochemistry from La Sapienza University of Rome before completing her MBA at Columbia University.
Paolo is managing Partner at XGEN Venture, co-founded in 2021. Previously, Paolo was in Genextra since its inception, serving as CEO up to 2022. Paolo is also board member and co-investor of a number of Genextra companies such as Targimmune Therapeutics, Erydel and InnovHeart; he is board member and Chairman of Intercept Pharmaceutical (NADAQ: ICPT) since 2006. Prior to Genextra, he acquired several start-up experiences, such as e.Biscom/Fastweb (2000-2004), and investment banking in London. Paolo is co-founder of Italian Angels for Biotech (IAB). He holds a cum laude degree in B.A. & Finance from Bocconi University.
Azin is a highly accomplished medical device executive and serial entrepreneur. She has served as an advisor and board member to numerous emerging medtech companies as well as various academic boards. Currently Dr. Parhizgar is a senior Venture Partner at 415 Capital Management, a cardiovascular focused early-stage venture investment fund, Chairman of the board of CVPath Institute, Inc. and serves as a director at SoundBite Medical Inc., among other held positions. In her five-year tenure as the President and CEO of Claret Medical, an embolic protection company, Dr. Parhizgar led the venture-backed company to a successful global commercial launch with a subsequent acquisition in 2018 by Boston Scientific, Inc. Prior to Claret Medical, she was the COO of Conor Medsystems, a drug eluting Stent Company acquired by Johnson & Johnson, Inc. in 2007. Following Conor Medsystem’s acquisition, she remained with J&J for the following year to support the full integration of the company. Prior to Conor Medsystems Dr. Parhizgar was Senior Vice President at Arterial Vascular Engineering (AVE), which was acquired by Medtronic Inc. in 2000. She remained with Medtronic for the following two years as Executive Vice President of Emerging Ventures and New Technologies leading key investments in early stage companies for Medtronic Vascular division. Dr. Parhizgar earned both her Ph.D. in Cell, Gene and Tissue Engineering and her M.Sc. in Biomechanical Engineering and Artificial Organ Design from Brown University in Providence, RI, USA.
Giovanni RIGHINI – Founder
Giovanni has over 30 years of experience in bringing innovative implantable cardiac devices from feasibility to market, as well as an extensive track record in successful R&D project execution. Giovanni has more than 30 patent applications in Transcatheter Heart Valve replacement. Giovanni was formerly founder of HT-Consultant, VP R&D at Symetis SA, R&D Director at Sorin Group. He holds a M.S. in Electrical Engineering from University of Pisa, Italy.
David J. WILSON – Chief Executive Officer
David’s career spans over 30 years and includes broad, global leadership expertise in business strategy and operations, R&D, commercial readiness and product launches. He dedicated two decades in roles of increasing responsibility with various Johnson and Johnson (J&J) companies, including as the Worldwide President of Cordis. David held other leadership roles at J&J companies, namely President of Mentor, Vice President of Ethicon R&D and Vice President of Ethicon Biosurgicals. Most recently, David was the President of Global Plasma at Haemonetics Corporation where he led the global commercialization of a next generation plasma collection system. He is the holder of 10 medical device patents and has served as a Board member of several educational and healthcare institutions in the US. His education includes a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering from Auburn University, a Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a Master of Business Administration from Columbia University.