Dr. Clay Seigall’s Role In The Cancer Research Industry

It was in 1998 that Clay Seigall, Ph.D. co-founded Seattle Genetics. He serves as the companies Chief Executive Officer, President, and Chairman of the Board. His specialty is cancer drug research, specifically working with antibody-drug conjugates. Dr. Seigall is passionate about research, scientific innovation, and developing drugs that cure people of their cancer. It was under his leadership that Seattle Genetics drug ADCETRIS was approved for release by the FDA in 2011. This cancer drug has now been approved for use in over 65 countries around the world.

As head of the company, Dr. Seigall has led the effort to partner with other companies through strategic licensing arrangements. His partnerships with companies like Pfizer, AbbVie, GlaxoSmithKline, and Genentech has led to more than $350 million for Seattle Genetics. His company has over 20 cancer drugs in its pipeline and is researching ADCETRIS for the treatment of more forms of cancer than the lymphoma it is currently approved for.

Part of Dr. Seigall’s passion for cancer research comes from his father getting cancer when Clay was 19 years old and seeing his father pass away when he was 24. At the time, cancer research was primitive and oftentimes ineffective. He vowed to change his state of affairs and went on to attend George Washington University and earn his Doctorate and Ph.D. in Genetics.

One of the things that Dr.Clay Seigall likes to say is that when he was in his 20’s he thought he knew everything. When he was in his 30’s he allowed that that probably wasn’t the case. Now that he’s in his 40’s he definitely knows that he doesn’t actually know all that much.

After earning his doctorate, Dr. Seigall joined the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health in 1988. In 1991 he moved to Seattle and performed research and development at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute until 1997. While at this institute, he learned everything he could about running a business in anticipation of founding his own company eventually. Beyond his role at Seattle Genetics, he is also on the Board of Directors of both Ultragenyx and Mirna Thereapeutics Inc.