Novel inhaled therapy

Corporate Overview

Founded in 2018, Respirion Pharmaceuticals is an early-stage biotechnology company focused on developing new treatments for respiratory disease. The Company is a spinout from the Telethon Kids Institute in Perth where the product development was incubated.

Respirion’s lead product, an inhaled therapy for the life-threatening disease Cystic Fibrosis, has shown promising results in an early clinical study carried out with the Western Australian Department of Health.

The Company has partnered with Australia’s largest life science investment fund, the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund, and the US Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to conduct further clinical trials in Australia and the US.

Executive Team

The Respirion team has decades of experience in drug development and respiratory medicine to advance a new therapy for patients with Cystic Fibrosis.

Matt Callahan

Executive Director

Matt Callahan is an experienced life sciences and health tech executive based in Philadelphia, USA. He has been the founding CEO or Executive Director of a number of pharmaceutical and health tech companies including iCeutica Inc, Churchill Pharma Inc. Dimerix Biosciences, Botanix Pharma, Emyria and Orthocell. He has led the development of four products that have received FDA approval and he has more than 25 years legal, IP and investment management experience. Mr Callahan has worked as an investment director for two venture capital firms investing in life sciences, technology and other sectors, and was general manager of Australian listed technology and licensing company ipernica (now Nearmap ASX:NEA), where he was responsible for the licensing programs that generated more than $120M in revenue.

Dr Barry Clements


A/Prof Barry Clements trained and researched in Respiratory medicine at the Royal Brompton Hospital, London before returning to Perth where for the last 35 years he has been Clinical Consultant in Respiratory Medicine and Cystic Fibrosis at Perth Children’s Hospital (formerly Princess Margaret Hospital). Frustrated by the limited capacity of clinical medicine to help CF children in their daily struggle with their disease re-kindled his interest in research. This research has been mainly translational, focusing on inhalation therapy with the aim of improving respiratory drug delivery and inhaled antibiotic efficiency.

Dr Brian Jones


Brian Jones has worked for over 15 years in the pharmaceutical/biotech industry in business development and project management. He also has led the review and scientific due diligence efforts for PIPV Capital, a private equity firm which invests in both development stage assets and marketed products. He has worked with a number of companies including Iroko Pharmaceuticals, iCeutica, Glycan Biosciences and ZaBeCor Pharmaceuticals. With these companies, he has helped the development of multiple products through preclinical development, including a respiratory product from a preclinical stage to a Phase 2 clinical trial. Brian received a B.S. from University of Richmond and a Ph.D. in Immunology from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Dr Jayne Hastedt


Dr. Jayne E. Hastedt has over 35 years of experience in the pharmaceutical product development field. . During her career, she has had the opportunity to work at Boehringer Ingelheim, Glaxo/GlaxoWellcome, Inhale Therapeutic Systems (currently part of the pulmonary drug delivery division of Novartis) and ALZA Corporation (a Johnson & Johnson company). In her last corporate role at ALZA Corporation, Dr. Hastedt was the Senior Director and Site Leader in the Chemical and Pharmaceutical Development organization in Mountain View, CA responsible for development and launch of controlled release dosage forms. . Her experience ranges from leading physicochemical characterization and early development activities for proteins, peptides, monoclonal antibodies, and small molecules through product development and launch of controlled release dosage forms. Dr. Hastedt served as the Chair of the AAPS Inhalation and Nasal Technology Focus Group (INTFG) and is now co-leading the development of a classification system for inhaled medicines within PQRI. In 2021, she received an Honorary Citation of Merit from the University of Wisconsin-Madison for her contributions to the field of Pharmacy

Dr Ron Wolff

Tox | Pre-clinical

Ron Wolff has extensive preclinical toxicology experience. Previously, he was an Executive Director of Preclinical Safety Assessment for Novartis, Senior Fellow at Nektar Therapeutics, as well as time spent at Eli Lilly and Lovelace Biomedical. Dr. Wolff has experience in toxicology in a wide range of areas, including oncology, endocrine, respiratory, infectious disease, and biologics with special expertise in inhalation toxicology with applications to pharmaceuticals and environmental and occupational health. He has been involved in the development of several inhaled drugs and has published more than 150 articles on topics including inhalation toxicology, pharmaceutical aerosols, leachables and extractables, and oncology. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology, a former member of the Board of Directors of the International Society of Aerosols in Medicine, and is a Past-President of the American Association for Aerosol Research.

Melissa Yeager

Regulatory Consultant

Ms. Melissa Yeager has served in executive management for over 25 years in biopharmaceutical and medical device companies with responsibility for international regulatory affairs and operation activities. Ms. Yeager has held senior positions in global corporations such as Gilead Sciences and Becton Dickinson and start-up entities including Breath Therapeutics, Corus Pharma and PathoGenesis. In 2010, she co-founded Cardeas Pharma, a venture backed effort to develop combination therapies for respiratory infectious disease. At Alder Biosciences Ms. Yeager had leadership responsibility for regulatory approvals of neurological products. Her areas of expertise have included early development efforts, life cycle management, and alternative dose delivery systems for biologic, drug, medical device and combination products. Ms. Yeager received her J.D. from Santa Clara University and B.A. in Human Biology from Stanford University. She currently heads the Regulatory Consulting Group, Seattle that focuses on complex regulatory and novel development strategies for biotechnology products. She is a member of multiple nonprofit and government entity boards.

Sofie De Wolf

CFO | Company Secretary

Sofie is a qualified accountant with international experience in investment fund accounting and fund reporting. Originally from Belgium, Sofie started her financial career in Dublin (Ireland) where she worked for Citco Fund Services and AIB/BNY Fund Management as a fund accountant and fund reporting supervisor, responsible for the accounting and reporting function of various types of funds. Sofie is the Financial Controller at Stone Ridge Ventures, responsible for the financial operations and reporting of the management company, the SRV Trusts and various portfolio companies. Sofie also assumes the role of Company Secretary for these entities. Sofie is a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). She received the silver medal for achieving the 2nd highest mark worldwide in her final accounting exams. In 2009 she was awarded the WA Dux prize for Applied Corporate Law by Chartered Secretaries Australia (CSA).

Scott White, M.D.


Dr. Scott White is an infectious diseases physician who has spent over 20 years working in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry. Most recently he served as Vice President Clinical Development for Avalo Therapeutics where he led the clinical development of their immuno-inflammation biologics programs. Before this he was the infectious diseases therapeutic area VP of Inovio Pharmaceuticals where he was responsible for the clinical development of immunotherapeutic and prophylactic DNA-based vaccines.  He first started in industry with GlaxoSmithKline, where he was a Physician Project Leader accountable for several development programs spanning pre-candidate selection through early-stage clinical development of assets in the therapeutic areas of infectious diseases, hematology, and dermatology. During this time at GlaxoSmithKline, in collaboration with AstraZeneca, the EU Innovative Medicines Initiative, and medical and scientific leaders throughout Europe, he led the establishment of COMBACTE; a European antibacterial clinical trial network supporting the development of antibiotics targeting resistant organisms.

Scientific and Clinical Advisory Board

Dutch VanDevanter PhD

Donald “Dutch” VanDevanter, Ph.D, is an independent consultant and an Adjunct Professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH. VanDevanter has authored over 30 peer-reviewed publications and holds a patent for pure biologically active colistin. His research and publications include CF treatment regimen changes, CF trial designs, and CF drug development and approval commentary. He has held several positions with PathoGenesis, including Program Director and Scientific Product Director, and from 2000 to early 2005, he was the Director of Medical Communications for Chiron Corporation. He graduated in 1981 from the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences with a Bachelor’s of Science Magna Cum Laude in chemistry and biology, in 1983 he received a Master’s of Science in toxicology, and in 1986 he received a PhD in medicinal chemistry from the University of Texas.

Patrick Flume MD

Patrick Flume is the associate vice president for Clinical Research at Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and the director of the MUSC Cystic Fibrosis Center. He is an internationally recognized expert in the field of cystic fibrosis and leads a robust clinical research program within the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Allergy and Sleep Medicine. His research is focused on patients with cystic fibrosis, bronchiectasis, and non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) lung infections.

Mark Bresnik MD

Mark Bresnik has nearly 40 years of experience as a highly skilled physician and scientist, having dedicated his career to the advancement of the understanding, treatment and control of infectious diseases in the United States and around the world. As a former senior director for Gilead, he led clinical studies for antibiotic aztreonam (cayston), daptomycin and other inhaled and antifungal medicines. His areas of clinical expertise include Direct Patient Care / ID Management, Infection Control and Prevention, Hospital Epidemiology, and Antibiotic Stewardship.

Dr Stephen Stick

Dr Stick is a career clinician and clinical researcher and holds a National Health and Medical Research (NHMRC) Practitioner Fellowship. Dr Stick is a member of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians Research and Education Subcommittee, the NHMRC Scholarships Committee and the NHMRC Grant Review Panel. He is also a member of the American Thoracic Society (ATS), Pediatric Program Committee, Joint ATS/European Respiratory Society (ERS) Task Force on Infant Lung Function and USCF Foundation Data Safety Monitoring Committee.