BioSpace Movers & Shakers, April 24
PGDx – Megan Bailey was named chief executive officer of Personal Genome Diagnostics, Inc. She most recently served as chief commercial officer. Bailey succeeds Douglas Ward, who has served as PGDx’s CEO since 2016. Before joining PGDx, Bailey spent more than 14 years at Roche. Most recently, Bailey served as senior director of Commercial Operations, responsible for leading sales teams across Roche’s Clinical Chemistry/Immunoassay, Molecular, Tissue, and Point of Care divisions in the Southeast United States. Prior to that she held marketing leadership roles for the Tissue Diagnostics division.
Regenacy Pharmaceuticals – David Michelson was named chief medical officer of Waltham, Mass.-based Regenacy. He has served as a CMO consultant since September 2019. Prior to joining the company, Michelson served as CMO for Proclara Biosciences where he oversaw multiple Phase 1 studies for a program targeting amyloidosis. Before Proclara, he worked at Merck for 11 years as the Neuroscience Therapeutic Area Head and Vice President for Clinical Development. Dr. Michelson began his career at Eli Lilly and Company, where he held positions of increasing responsibility for early and late stage drug development.
Rocket Pharmaceuticals– Elisabeth Bjӧrk was named to the board of directors at Rocket Pharmaceuticals. Bjӧrk is the head of Late-stage Development, Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolism and BioPharmaceuticals R&D at AstraZeneca. Bjӧrk is an endocrinologist by training and an associate professor of medicine at Uppsala University, Sweden.
Sangamo Therapeutics -- D. Mark McClung was named chief business officer. McClung will oversee commercial strategic planning, alliance management and corporate and business development. From 2015 through 2019, McClung was general manager of Global Oncology Commercial at Amgen, which he joined from Onyx Pharmaceuticals where he had served as chief commercial officer. Before that, McClung held roles of increasing responsibility at GlaxoSmithKline in marketing and sales, commercial operations, and general management. Additionally, Stephane Boissel, head of Corporate Strategy, will leave Sangamo at the end of July and eventually return to an entrepreneurial project. Boissel joined Sangamo in 2018 following the acquisition of TxCell, where he had served as CEO.
PTC Therapeutics – Matthew Klein was named chief development officer and Eric Pauwels was named CBO of PTC Therapeutics. Klein will be responsible for the development of our clinical stage programs. Pauwels will be responsible for customer facing activities with health care providers, patients and payers. Klein joined PTC last year as Global Head of Gene & Mitochondrial Therapies after serving as CEO and CMO of BioElectron Technology Corporation. Pauwels joined PTC in 2015 as general manager of the Americas, overseeing commercial strategy and market access.
Hoth Therapeutics– Hoth tapped two independent members for its board of directors, Graig Springer and Wayne Linsley. The company also announced the resignation of current board member Anthony Hayes.
Magenta Therapeutics -- John Davis Jr. was promoted to head of Research and Development and CMO at Magenta. Davis joined Magenta as CMO in 2018. Previously he served as Head of Early Clinical Development at Pfizer. Prior to that, Davis was Global Therapeutic Area Head of Immunology at Baxalta/Shire and was Head of the Inflammation and Cardiovascular/Metabolism Group in the Early Clinical Development Group at Genentech.
OliX Pharmaceuticals – South Korea-based OliX added Gordon Jiang, Aaron Hakim and Yury V. Popov to its Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). The SAB will work with OliX Pharmaceuticals executive team to refine the emerging pipeline as well as clinical strategy for the company’s assets. Popov is the founder of the Popov Laboratory and an assistant professor of medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School. Hakim is a resident physician in internal medicine at BIDMC and a clinical fellow at Harvard Medical School. Jiang is a transplant hepatologist and physician-scientist at BIDMC.
Rockwell Medical – Russell H. Ellison was named CEO of Michigan-based Rockwell. He replaces Stuart Paul who resigned from his position. Ellison previously served as CEO of Promedior, Inc. and Bond Biosciences. Ellison previously served on the Board of Directors for several private and public companies, including Cougar Biotechnology Inc., ProSanos Corporation, Cormedix Inc. and Mt. Cook.
OncoSec Medical – Herbert Kim Lyerly was named to the board of directors of OncoSec. He is the George Barth Geller Professor, Professor of Immunology, Surgery and Pathology at Duke University School of Medicine. In addition, OncoSec's co-founder, Avtar Dhillon, has stepped down as chair of the board and current board member, Margaret R. Dalesandro, has assumed the role of chair.
Zogenix, Inc. -- Shawnte M. Mitchell was named General Counsel and Secretary of Zogenix. Mitchell will lead the company’s legal team, manage certain corporate affairs. Mitchell joins Zogenix from Aptevo Therapeutics, where she was most recently General Counsel and head of Corporate Affairs. Prior to Aptevo, Mitchell was Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary at the specialty biopharmaceutical company Emergent BioSolutions.
Covis Pharma -- Rajiv De Silva was named chairman of the board of directors at Covis Pharma. In addition to his role as Chairman of Covis, De Silva is the Managing Partner of Asiri Advisors. He was president, CEO and director of Endo International Plc from 2013 to 2016. Prior to Endo, De Silva served as president of Valeant Pharmaceuticals from 2010 to 2013, and as COO of its Specialty Pharmaceuticals business from 2009 to 2013.
Adverum Biotechnologies -- Scott Whitcup, the founder and CEO of Akrivista and Whitecap Biosciences, was named to the board of directors of Adverum. Previously, Whitcup was the head of research and development and chief scientific officer at Allergan, where he led the discovery, clinical development, and medical affairs organizations focused on therapeutic areas including ophthalmology, CNS, urology, dermatology, and medical aesthetics. Whitcup serves on the board of directors of Scilex Pharmaceuticals and Anivive Lifesciences.
GeNeuro– Switzerland-based GeNeuro named David Leppert as its new CMO effective May 1. Leppert has worked for over 20 years in clinical development, successfully leading the development of prominent drugs such as ocrelizumab to treat multiple sclerosis while at Roche, and then leading the development of all neurology clinical trials at Novartis. Leppert replaces François Curtin, who is leaving GeNeuro after more than 10 years.
Arkuda Therapeutics -- Serena Hung was named head of Clinical Development and Raymond Hurst was named head of Pharmacology. Together, they will work to advance the company’s small molecule compounds toward clinical development to treat progranulin-related frontotemporal dementia (FTD-GRN). Hung joins Arkuda from WAVE Life Sciences, where she was the clinical development lead for all CNS programs. She previously led clinical development in movement disorders for Biogen. Hurst joins Arkuda from Concert Pharmaceuticals, where he served as director of Biology and Pharmacology. Hurst has held positions at Pharmacia, Pfizer, Amgen, Forum Pharmaceuticals and Quartet Medicine.
Aktana – San Francisco Aktana named Pini Ben-Or as its new CSO. Pini joins the company from NICE Actimize, where he served as Global Head of Analytics.
Iridex Corp. – Doris Engibous was named to the company’s board of directors.
BioMarin Pharmaceutical – BioMarin named Bristol Myers Squibb veteran C. Greg Guyer to the role of chief technical officer and head of Global Manufacturing and Technical Operations. Effective May 4, Guyer will succeed Robert Baffi, current president of Global Manufacturing and Technical Operations, who will remain at BioMarin full-time as a Special Advisor to the Chairman and CEO for the remainder of the year as he moves toward retirement. In 2021, Baffi will continue at BioMarin in a part-time capacity. The culmination of this multi-year succession plan ensures continuity during the transition. Most recently, Guyer was the head of Operations at BMS. Prior to that, Guyer worked at Merck for 21 years.
Appili Therapeutics – Yoav Golan was named the first CMO of Appili. He most recently served as an attending physician in the Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases at Tufts Medical Center, and as an associate professor at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. In addition to his work at Tufts, he served as CSO of Profility Inc. and as CEO of ExArca Pharmaceuticals.
Imago Biosciences– Cirius Therapeutics CEO Bob Baltera was named to the board of directors of Imago BioSciences.
MorphoSys –Roland Wandeler was named chief commercial officer of MorphoSys. In this newly created role, Wandeler will lead all global commercial operations. Prior to MorphoSys, Wandeler held positions of increasing responsibility at Amgen, Inc.
Silverback Therapeutics– Laura Shawver was named CEO of Silverback. Most recently, Shawver was CEO and director of Synthorx, Inc. from 2017 until its acquisition by Sanofi in January for $2.5 billion. Previously, she has held positions as CEO and director of Cleave Biosciences; entrepreneur-in-residence for 5AM Ventures; CEO and director of Phenomix Corporation; and president of SUGEN Inc.
Outlook Therapeutics – Gerd Auffarth and Julian Gangoli were named to the board of directors of Outlook Therapeutics. Auffarth currently serves as the Medical Director of Heidelberg University Eye Clinic. Gangoli served as president of the North American Pharmaceutical division of Allergan, Inc. for 11 years.
Repertoire Immune Medicines – Startup Repertoire added three members to its executive team. Andrea DiFabio was named chief legal and corporate administration officer. Tim Harris was named head of Corporate Development and Lucia Celona was named Chief Human Resources Officer. All three members join the company’s leadership team.
Chiasma, Inc. – Anand Varadan was named CCO of Chiasma. Varadan previously served as Chiasma’s CCO until June 2016. He reengaged with the company as a strategic advisor in early 2018. Previously, Varadan served CCO of Karyopharm Therapeutics. Earlier in his career, Varadan held several commercial and general management leadership positions at Amgen Inc.