John Valliant, PhD


Dr. John Valliant is the founder of CPDC.  Dr. Valliant oversees the strategic directions of the scientific and commercial programs of the CPDC, to ensure the Centre’s long-term vision and sustainability.

John is currently Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, at McMaster University.  He is recognized internationally for his work in radiopharmaceutical chemistry.  His current research focuses on developing novel radiolabeling methods and compound discovery strategies, in order to create clinically relevant imaging and therapeutic drug candidates.  Thus far, John has published more than 100 peer review research papers and holds 16 patents in the area of radiochemistry and radiopharmaceuticals. He completed his PhD at McMaster University, followed by a post-doctoral fellowship under the joint supervision of professors Alun G. Jones (Harvard) and Alan Davison (MIT).

John was selected as one of ‘Canada’s Top 40 Under 40’ in 2009, a distinction that recognized his exceptional work to advance radiopharmaceutical technology and education, improve patient care, and generate economic growth, through his work at the CPDC and McMaster University.  More recently he was a co-recipient of the Brockhouse Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Engineering (2015).

Owen Roberts, CFA


Owen Roberts joined the Centre for Probe Development and Commercialization (CPDC) in October 2022 as Chief Executive Officer, bringing over 20 years of biotech executive experience to his role at CPDC.

A serial biotech entrepreneur, Owen was most recently the founder and CEO of Nobelex Biotech Inc., a Canadian biotech contract research organization focused on discovering and developing antibiotics to treat bacterial infections caused by drug-resistant bacteria. In addition to leading Nobelex since 2014, Owen also held part-time senior management roles with Meta Inc. (as CFO from 2015-2016) and M4K Pharma (as CEO from 2017 to 2020).

Prior to founding Nobelex in 2014, Owen was a co-founder of Affinium Pharmaceuticals, a privately held venture funded, clinical stage, antibiotic company. At Affinium, Owen held the position of CFO and led the company’s finance and business development until the successful sale of Affinium’s antibiotic programs to Debiopharm International, S.A. in February 2014. Prior to Affinium, in 1998, Owen helped create Borealis Biosciences, one of two companies which would merge to form Affinium in 2000. Prior to entering biotech, Owen was a financial executive at the Canadian subsidiaries of major US financial institutions.
Owen is a graduate of McGill University and is also a Chartered Financial Analyst.

Holly Bilton, PhD


Holly Bilton joined CPDC in 2019 as the Research Manager and transitioned into her current role of Associate Director, Research & Program Management in October 2022. In her current role, Dr. Bilton manages the research programs at CPDC, ranging from early stage discovery, development, and clinical programs.

Holly has over 8 years’ experience in radiopharmaceutical development. Prior to joining CPDC, Holly obtained her PhD from McMaster University under Dr. John Valliant, focusing on the discovery and development of radiopharmaceuticals and multimodal imaging probes.

Board of Directors

CPDC is governed by an independent Board of Directors. Board members represent all key sectors associated with the CPDC. The Board of Directors works with the CEO and CPDC executive team to shape the CPDC’s future direction and success.

CPDC executes its first commercial sublicensing agreement with Lawson Health Research Institute for PSMA-1007, expanding access to the prostate cancer diagnostic agent in Ontario

HAMILTON, ON, June 28, 2022 /CNW/ – The Centre for Probe Development and Commercialization (CPDC), a global leader in the development, production and commercialization of radiopharmaceuticals, has licensed [18F]PSMA-1007 from ABX- advanced biochemical compounds GmbH (Radeberg, Germany) and will hold the exclusive license to manufacture, commercialize and distribute the imaging agent in Canada. Concurrently, CPDC is also pleased to

CPDC’s Discovery Team is experienced in oncology, immuno-oncology, and neurology models.

CPDC and University Health Network have created a joint venture, CanProbe, to accelerate the clinical development of molecular imaging probes.

CPDC’s manufacturing facilities are approved by Health Canada for the production of positron emitting radiopharmaceuticals.

Global drug companies are using CPDC’s know-how and world-class facilities to develop and test new drugs and molecular probes.

During medical isotope shortages, CPDC can provide substitutes for use in bone scans and imaging kidney function.

CPDC can create PET and SPECT imaging companions for small molecules, peptides, antibodies and other biologics.

CPDC works with all therapeutic and diagnostic isotopes, and has extensive expertise with alpha and beta emitting nuclides.

Cyclotrons can be used to produce enough Tc-99m within 6 hours to enable over 500 nuclear imaging scans.

Molecular imaging probes can show a tumour’s biochemical response to treatment in just a few days, unlike conventional modes like MRI or CT, which may not show a change in tumour size for several weeks.

ARTMS Products Inc. has been created by Triumf, BCCA, LHRI and CPDC to commercialize jointly-developed technology for production of Tc-99m on standard medical cyclotrons.

Molecular PET imaging probes are used primarily to diagnose cancer, heart disease and neurological conditions.