BioSpace Movers & Shakers, Jan. 29

Executive Leaving Office

Xalud Therapeutics – Diem Nguyen was named chief executive officer of New York-based Xalud Therapeutics, a company developing a non-viral gene therapy platform to treat pathologic inflammation through immune modulation. Nguyen joins Xalud from PPD, Inc., where she served as executive vice president of Biopharma. Prior to PPD, Nguyen worked at Pfizer, where she was global president, Americas, Pfizer Essential Health and Global Sterile Injectables. Nguyen currently serves on the board of Verrica Pharmaceuticals, Vitara and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Faze Medicines – Philip Vickers was named CEO of Cambridge, Mass.-based Faze Medicines, which recently launched with an $81 million Series A financing round. Vickers previously served as president and CEO of Northern Biologics and has worked in a diverse array of senior leadership roles across biotech and leading pharma companies. Prior to Northern Biologics, Vickers served as global head of research and development at Shire Pharmaceuticals. He held leading roles at multiple global biotech and pharma companies, including Merck, Pfizer, Boehringer Ingelheim and Resolvyx Pharmaceuticals. Vickers currently serves on the board of Revance Therapeutics and AVROBIO.

Diversigen, Inc. – Eric Palmer, professor of Medicine, Section of Infectious Diseases and Global Health and director of the Duchossois Family Institute at the University of Chicago, joined the scientific advisory board of Diversigen, Inc., a subsidiary of OraSure Technologies Inc. Palmer joined the University of Chicago from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center where he served as head of the Division of Subspecialty Medicine from 2011 to 2018 and director of the Center for Microbes, Inflammation and Cancer from 2010 to 2019.

Umoja Biopharma – Rob Glassman was appointed to the board of directors of Seattle-based Umoja Biopharma. Glassman has served as a senior investment banker for 17 years at Merrill Lynch and has been a Vice Chairman at Credit Suisse since 2015. He has since returned to OrbiMed Advisors as the only venture partner in public equity, having served as a private equity partner from 2009 to 2010.

Cidara Therapeutics – Bonnie Bassler and Carin Canale-Theakston were appointed to the board of directors of Cidara Therapeutics. Bassler is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and the chair of the department of molecular biology and the Squibb professor in molecular biology at Princeton University. She currently serves as a board member of Regeneron, Kaleido Biosciences and Royalty Pharma.  Bassler previously served as a board member of Sanofi, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the National Science Foundation and the American Academy of Microbiology, where she also served as the president. Canale-Theakston is the CEO and founder of Canale Communications, a life science communications firm. Canale-Theakston serves as vice chair of the board of directors for Biocom California, and co-chairs both the Biocom Capital Development Committee and the board’s nominating and governance committee.

Kaléo – Virginia-based Kaléo announced five new appointments at the C-suite and management levels. Kevin Espinoza has been named chief compliance officer. He joins Kaléo from Boston Scientific, where he served as the senior vice president of corporate compliance and a privacy officer. Allison Bridges has been named vice president and general manager of allergy and pediatrics, responsible for directing channel strategy and execution. She previously served as the vice president of access and trade at Kaléo. Tom Assalley has been named vice president of market access. He previously served as a vice president at Eli Lilly, overseeing the National Accounts business unit. T.J. Childress has been named senior director of access and trade. He previously served as the director of finance at Kaléo. Meera Mehta has been named director of sales training. Mehta previously served as director of sales training at Novartis.

Taysha Gene Therapies – Timothy J. Douros was named chief legal officer and Tracy M. Porter was named chief people officer at Dallas-based Taysha. Prior to joining Taysha, Douros served as General Counsel at lubebird bio, Inc. Before that, he was Deputy General Counsel and Chief IP Counsel at Bluebird Bio. Before joining Bluebird, he spent nearly 13 years at Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc., holding positions of increasing responsibility. Porter most recently served as Head of Human Resources at Audentes Therapeutics. Prior to joining Audentes, she spent time at Medivation Inc., and Bayer Healthcare LLC.

Mainstay Medical Holdings – Ireland-based Mainstay made several key appointments to strengthen its leadership team. Elias Tu was named vice president of U.S. Sales; Derek Matteo was named vice president of Marketing; James Knibbs was appointed vice president of UK, Ireland, and Australia; Boris Deutschmann was named Country Manager for Germany; Chip Moebus was named vice president of Reimbursement and Market Access; Richard Herman was named vice president of Operations; and Celia Reyes was named vice president of Human Resources.

IVI – Rick Chapman was named chief scientific officer of the Innovation and Value Initiative (IVI). Chapman, who is currently Director of Health Economics at the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER), will start March 1. Prior to ICER, Chapman was a vice president of Health Economics and Outcomes Research (HEOR) at Avalere Health. Chapman was also a principal in HEOR and U.S. regional lead for the Retrospective Database Analysis Center of Excellence at IMS Health. Previously, he was at the Center for Risk Analysis at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Karuna Therapeutics – Ronald Marcus was named Senior Vice President of Medical for Karuna Therapeutics, Inc. Marcus will provide strategic and operational leadership of Karuna’s clinical stage pipeline of novel neuropsychiatric medicines, including KarXT. Marcus spent 23 years at Bristol-Meyers Squibb in senior clinical leadership roles within their Neuroscience division, including Executive Director, Neuroscience Global Clinical Research. Marcus also oversaw the Neuroscience Protocol Review Committee at BMS for more than 20 years.

Exact Therapeutics – Norway’s Exact Therapeutics announced Hilary McElwaine-Johnn was named chief medical officer. McElwaine-Johnn has held a variety of senior medical positions including Vice President, Clinical, PowderMed Ltd, CMO of Vantia Ltd, PsiOxus Therapeutics Ltd and most recently Karus Therapeutics.

NeonMind – Rob Tessarolo was named president and CEO of Canada’s NeonMind. Most recently he held the position of president and CEO of Mind Medicine Inc., a psychedelic drug discovery and drug development company.  Prior to that, Tessarolo was president and CEO of Cipher Pharmaceuticals Inc., a diversified specialty pharmaceutical company.

Talis Biomedical – Melissa L. Gilliam was appointed to the board of directors of Talis Biomedical Corporation. Gilliam is the Ellen H. Block Professor of Health Justice and Vice Provost of the University of Chicago. She is also Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Professor of Pediatrics. Gilliam is the founder and Director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Inquiry and Innovation in Sexual and Reproductive Health.

Flexion -- Flexion announced that Adam Muzikant has been promoted to chief business officer. Muzikant was instrumental in the transactions that led to the FX201 and FX301 programs and has been a driving force in the development of the company’s pipeline.

Marius Pharmaceuticals -- Himanshu H. Shah and Shalin Shah were appointed co-CEOs. Himanshu H. Shah has advised numerous public and private companies over the past decades to help them unlock substantial shareholder value and execute both innovative and pragmatic business strategies. Shalin Shah will also step into the role of co-CEO from CFO and executive vice president of strategy for Marius.

ViaCyte – San Diego-based ViaCyte made multiple appointments. Michael Yang was named president and CEO, Steve White was named CTO and Brittany Bradrick was named chief operating officer. Yang joins ViaCyte from Acadia Pharmaceuticals, where he was CCO. Prior to joining ViaCyte, White was vice president Global R&D at Baxter Healthcare. Bradrick was previously CFO for ViaCyte.

GENFIT -- Pascal Caisey, CCO and Philippe Motté, chief Regulatory and Quality Officer, have joined the executive team at GENFIT. Caisey joined GENFIT in September 2019 as executive vice president of Commercial Development. He held roles with GSK, BMS, Pfizer, Schering Plough and most recently Boehringer Ingelheim, where he oversaw, as the European Business Manager. Motté joined GENFIT in June 2020 as Senior Vice President of Global Regulatory Affairs. His previous commercial and regulatory roles include positions with Sanofi, GSK, Roche, Ipsen, and AbbVie.

Datacubed – Kirk McPoyle was named CCO of Datacubed. Prior to Datacubed Health, he spent four years at Clinical Ink as CCO and held previous leadership positions at Acurian, IQVIA and TAP Pharmaceuticals.

PlateletBio – Spark Therapeutics co-founder Steven M. Altschuler was named chairman of the PlateletBio Board of Directors. Altschuler co-founded Spark Therapeutics, taking it from launch to its $4B acquisition by Roche. He is also Chairman of the Board of AsclepiX Therapeutics.

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