management picture

Dean Petkanas

Chairman & CEO

Dean Petkanas is a corporate finance and executive management professional with over 25 years of investment banking and capital markets experience.

In 2010 Mr. Petkanas co-founded Kannalife Sciences, Inc. and for the past 10 years was principally responsible for the creation and execution of the Company’s business model, including the licensing of U.S. Patent #6630507, “Cannabinoids as Antioxidants and Neuroprotectants” from the National Institutes of Health for disease indications Hepatic Encephalopathy (HE) and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). In 2013, he was responsible for securing Series A financing for Kannalife.

Mr. Petkanas is a co-inventor of two US Patents, first in U.S. Patent #9611213 titled “Functionalized 1,3 Benzene-diols and their Method of Use for the Treatment of Hepatic Encephalopathy.” This patent is part of a divisional patent application by the Company to the USPTO whereby the Company sought separate claims for composition of matter, covered in Pat. #9611213 and separate claims for method of treatment in U.S. Patent #10004722 titled “Method for Treating Hepatic Encephalopathy or a Disease Associated with Free Radical Mediate Stress and Oxidative Stress with Novel Functionalized 1,3 Benzene-diols.”

Mr. Petkanas is also co-author of the following peer-reviewed and published articles: ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters (2016, 7, 424-428) “Discovery of KLS-13019, a Cannabidiol-Derived Neuroprotective Agent, with Improved Potency, Safety, and Permeability” and Journal of Molecular Neuroscience (14 August 2018) “Pharmacological Comparisons Between Cannabidiol and KLS-13019.”

Mr. Petkanas’ background in pharmaceutical extends to his work as investment banker and subsequently V.P. of Business Development for Xechem International, Inc. where he was principally responsible for Xechem’s IPO and EXIM Bank rounds of financing. Mr. Petkanas was involved with Xechem from 1992 to 2007. While at Xechem, he was involved in the financing of Xechem’s lead target drug candidate (generic paclitaxel) and later on from 2003 to 2007, was the the lead petitioner for Xechem International in steering their federal anti-trust lawsuit against Bristol-Myers-Squibb for their illegal monopoly of the drug market for the anti-cancer drug, Taxol®. Mr. Petkanas also was an integral part of the development team that named, trademarked and commercialized Hemoxin (Nicosan), a phyto-pharmaceutical compound for the treatment of Sickle Cell disease.