Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, is the owner and executive chairman of the Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, Los Angeles Times en Español and other publications under the California Times.
Dr. Soon-Shiong, a physician, surgeon, scientist, inventor, technologist and philanthropist, has devoted his career to understanding the fundamental biology driving life-threatening diseases and translating these insights into medical innovations with global impact.
He serves as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NantWorks, LLC, a holding company devoted to the transformation of healthcare and utilizing artificial intelligence to win the war against cancer and Alzheimer’s disease – two of the most serious diseases affecting the aging population.
Over the course of Dr. Soon-Shiong’s career, he has pioneered novel therapies for both diabetes and cancer, including the revolutionary drug Abraxane, which has received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer, lung cancer and advanced pancreatic cancer in both the U.S. and E.U., published more than 100 scientific papers, and has been granted more than 230 patents worldwide for groundbreaking advancements spanning myriad fields of technology and medicine.
As a surgeon, Dr. Soon-Shiong performed the world’s first encapsulated human islet transplant, the first engineered islet cell transplant and the first pig-to-man islet cell transplant in patients with diabetes.
Dr. Soon-Shiong’s path to cancer research began while doing research for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) that involved harnessing stem cells to make insulin. In 1991, he founded a biotechnology company to develop a novel nanoparticle anti-cancer drug with the concept of using “the tumor’s biology against itself.”
From 1996 to 2010, Dr. Soon-Shiong served as Founder, Chairman and CEO of two global pharmaceutical companies: American Pharmaceutical Partners and Abraxis BioScience. It was during Dr. Soon-Shiong’s tenure at Abraxis that the company manufactured the world’s first protein nanoparticle drug for breast, lung and pancreatic cancer – Abraxane. In 2008, Dr. Soon-Shiong sold American Pharmaceutical Partners to Fresenius for approximately $4.6 billion and in 2010, sold Abraxis BioScience to Celgene for approximately $3.8 billion.
Following the sale of these two companies, Dr. Soon-Shiong established NantWorks, LLC, an ecosystem of companies with deep understandings in a wide variety of complex industries, from science to data, communication and mobility. Under the NantWorks umbrella, Soon-Shiong currently serves as Chairman and CEO of NantKwest, a Nasdaq-listed immunotherapy company focusing on natural killer cells, and Chairman and CEO of NantHealth, a Nasdaq listed transformational healthcare company converging biomolecular medicine and bioinformatics with technology services to empower physicians, patients, payers, pharma and researchers to transcend the traditional barriers of today’s healthcare system. When NantKwest went public in 2015, it was the largest biotech IPO by market valuation in history.
In January 2016, Dr. Soon-Shiong announced the formation of Cancer Breakthroughs 2020, a comprehensive collaboration of researchers, insurers, academic institutions and pharmaceutical companies to accelerate the potential of combination immunotherapy in the treatment of cancer.
The Cancer Breakthroughs 2020 initiative has a goal of originating Phase 2 and 3 trials of the Nant Cancer Vaccine in 20,000 cancer patients within the next two years. In addition, the collaboration hopes to launch a revolutionary molecular diagnostic test – known as GPS Cancer – that uses a patient’s cancer tissue and blood to identify the therapies which will be effective in treating the specific biology.
Dr. Soon-Shiong is Chairman of the Chan Soon-Shiong Family Foundation and of the Chan Soon-Shiong Institute of Molecular Medicine, a nonprofit medical research organization. In May 2017, he was appointed by House Speaker Paul Ryan to the Health Information Technology Advisory Committee, a committee established by the 21st Century Cures Act that will advise the President and his administration on health IT policy and will tackle issues with healthcare interoperability and privacy and security, while working with key stakeholders to create standards in these areas.
He also is an Adjunct Professor of Surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), a visiting Professor at the Imperial College of London, the Executive Director of the UCLA Wireless Health Institute and a Professor of Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics and Professor of Bioengineering at the California NanoSystems Institute of UCLA. Dr. Soon-Shiong currently sits on the Board of Councilors at the University of Southern California (USC) Viterbi School of Engineering.
In April 2016, Dr. Soon-Shiong received the Franklin Institute Award for his visionary leadership and commitment to advancing medical and scientific research and bringing new treatment options to people with cancer. Dr. Soon-Shiong was also honored at the Vatican with the Pontifical Key Visionary Award in April 2016, which recognizes “medical innovators who change the course of history and reduce suffering on a global scale by blending visionary thinking with real action.” The Friends of the National Library of Medicine has also honored him with their Distinguished Medical Science Award.
In June 2017, the Smithsonian Institute honored his work by placing Abraxane in the permanent exhibit at Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.
In June 2018, Dr. Soon-Shiong completed the purchase the Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, Los Angeles Times en Español (previously Hoy Los Angeles) and publications under the California Times. Dr. Soon-Shiong previously owned 26 percent share of the Los Angeles Times.
Born and raised during apartheid in South Africa, Dr. Soon-Shiong resides in Los Angeles and is a citizen of the United States.