From a small Lab to a an International Brand, the Story of Clay Siegall and Seattle Genetics

The one thing that makes a person feel powerless is seeing a loved one suffering, and not being able to address the cause of the problem. Clay Siegall had to watch his father deal with cancer when he was a teenager, and his father succumbed to the menace after a six year long battle. What saddened him the most about the death was the fact that his father did not die from the cancer itself, but from the chemotherapy. Clay Siegall vowed that he would get a treatment alternative that would be better than Chemo in the treatment of cancer.

In 1998, after studying Zoology and specializing in genetics, and working in various labs around the state, Clay Siegall founded Seattle Genetics together with a friend. He founded the company because he wanted to perform clinical tests on drugs that were based on ADC therapy, and eliminate the need for chemotherapy to treat cancer. His journey has not been easy. One of the biggest successes that he got was when his first ADC drug, ADCETRIS, was approved by the FDA in 2015. Since its approval, the drug has become very popular, and it is currently being used in more than 66 countries. It has also done a lot to change the economic fortune for Seattle Genetics. The sales on the first year alone surpassed the quarter million dollar mark and have been rising steadily since then.

Seattle Genetics has a great strategy for the future. In the past, Clay Siegall has used tactics such as getting into partnerships with companies such as Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline to try and raise funds for their projects. Clay states that even though the option is tempting, Seattle Genetics will not end up merging with the big pharmaceuticals. He states that the future plans he has for the company include getting another 11 drugs through the needed tests so that they can get approval by the FDA. To achieve this, he is trying to expand their labs and manpower. Seattle Genetics is headed towards becoming the best thing in cancer treatment. The sky is the limit for Clay and Seattle Genetics.

Clay Siegall and Cancer Treatment

In his most recent blog, Clay Siegall wrote about the proposal by the American government to reduce funding for the various state agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency. This may affect the agency’s capacity to enforce the various federal water standards.

In another blog, Siegall talks about an interesting finding by researchers about dreams. Researchers have found a pattern of brain activity that can be used to tell when and what one is dreaming about. One of the researchers says there is a part of the brain that seems to be very active.

To carry out the research, people were woken open in the middle of the night and asked if they had dreamed and what the dream was. The researchers then used high-density electroencephalography to analyze the brain activity patterns.

As the CEO of Seattle Genetics, what is Clay Siegall’s main responsibility?


Clay B. Siegall, Ph.D. is a scientist by training, and in 1998, he co-founded Seattle Genetics. He was the company’s Executive Vice President between 1998 and 2000. He was also the Chief Scientific Officer until 2002. He has been the company’s CEO and President since November 2002 and June 2000 respectively.

He started Seattle Genetics to not only enhance scientific research, intensive research, and drug development but also to assist patients. As the CEO, he has helped the company become a leader in the development of Antibody-Drug Conjugates (ADCs). He has helped in the approval of ADCETRIS® (brentuximab vedotin) by FDA in 2011.

In his leadership, the company has entered into various licenses with companies like Genentech (Roche) and GlaxoSmithKline among others for their ADC technology. This has seen the company generate a lot of revenue.


The Role of Clay Siegall in the Cancer Research Community

Since starting his profession in biomedical studies, Dr. Siegall has been concerned with helping cancer patients improve their lives. The effort by Seattle Genetics has seen their stock price triple in about five years.

After earning his Ph.D. in Genetics, he began his career in research at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute where he served as a Senior Research Investigator. He was later promoted and was able to assist in the launching of Seattle Genetics.

At Seattle Genetics, he has helped in the development of the first ADCs. ADCETRIS® is now available to many cancer patients around the world.