Aduro Biotech Announces Andrea Van Elsas, Ph.D., To Be Named Chief Scientific Officer Effective September 1, 2017
BERKELEY, Calif., July 27, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aduro Biotech, Inc. (Nasdaq:ADRO), a biopharmaceutical company with three distinct immunotherapy technologies, today announced that Andrea van Elsas, Ph.D., chief scientific officer of the company’s subsidiary Aduro Biotech Europe, will be appointed chief scientific officer of Aduro Biotech effective September 1, 2017. Thomas Dubensky, Jr., Ph.D., has resigned from this post effective August 31, 2017 to pursue his interest in running his own discovery and research company. Dr. Dubensky will provide counsel to the company through a consulting agreement until the end of the year and plans to subsequently join the company’s scientific advisory board.
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“We are pleased to appoint Andrea, a seasoned research and drug discovery executive who has been leading the Aduro Biotech Europe research team, to the position of chief scientific officer of Aduro,” said Stephen T. Isaacs, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Aduro. “Andrea is a preeminent thought leader in the field of tumor immunology and his distinguished career spearheading research and development at highly-regarded organizations, such as Organon, Schering-Plough and Merck, formed the basis for the commercialization of transformative therapies, including a commercially available anti-PD-1. Andrea’s expanded leadership at Aduro will ensure that we continue world-class research activities across the two facilities and strategically leverage our three platform technologies and robust immuno-oncology pipeline.”
Steve continued, “Tom’s scientific leadership and prowess led to the discovery and pursuit of the company’s foundational technologies that position the company for success as we advance multiple innovative product candidates into, and through, clinical development. On behalf of the entire company and the Board of Directors, we thank him for his significant contributions to our programs and to the scientific community, and we look forward to his continued involvement as a future member of Aduro’s scientific advisory board.”
Andrea van Elsas, Ph.D.
Andrea van Elsas joined Aduro in November 2015 as the Chief Scientific Officer of Aduro Biotech Europe, a subsidiary of Aduro Biotech. Prior to its acquisition by Aduro in 2015, Dr. van Elsas co-founded BioNovion and served as Chief Scientific Officer focusing on the development of innovative therapeutic antibodies in the field of immune oncology. From 1999 to 2011, he held numerous positions at Organon in Oss, The Netherlands, and Cambridge, Massachusetts (acquired by Schering-Plough Corporation in 2007 and later by Merck & Co.), and as the Director of Tumor Immunology he ran the immune oncology portfolio including the program that later became known as pembrolizumab. As a postdoctoral researcher from 1997-1999, Andrea worked at the University of California, Berkeley, studying antibodies blocking CTLA-4 for the treatment of cancer and is a co-inventor on the original patents that formed the basis for the development of Yervoy® (ipilimumab), the first checkpoint inhibitor approved in 2011 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of melanoma.
Aduro Biotech, Inc. is an immunotherapy company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of therapies that transform the treatment of challenging diseases. Aduro's technology platforms, which are designed to harness the body's natural immune system, are being investigated in cancer indications and have the potential to expand into autoimmune and infectious diseases. Aduro's LADD technology platform is based on proprietary attenuated strains of Listeria that have been engineered to express tumor-associated antigens to induce specific and targeted immune responses. This platform is being developed as a treatment for multiple indications, including mesothelioma, gastric/esophageal, ovarian, lung and prostate cancers. Additionally, a personalized form of LADD, or pLADD, is being developed utilizing tumor neoantigens that are specific to an individual patient’s tumor. Aduro's STING Pathway Activator platform is designed to activate the STING receptor in immune cells, resulting in a potent tumor-specific immune response. ADU-S100 is the first STING Pathway Activator compound to enter the clinic and is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1 study in patients with cutaneously accessible metastatic solid tumors or lymphomas. Aduro’s B-select monoclonal antibody platform includes a number of immune modulating assets in research and preclinical development. Aduro is collaborating with leading global pharmaceutical companies to expand its products and technology platforms. For more information, please visit www.aduro.com.
Cautionary Note on Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding our intentions or current expectations concerning, among other things, Dr. van Elsas’ leadership in research activities across our two facilities, Dr. Dubensky’s continuing role with the company, our technology platforms, plans, research activities and the potential for eventual regulatory approval of our product candidates. In some cases, you can identify these statements by forward-looking words such as “may,” “will,” “continue,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “could,” “project,” “seek”, “expect”, “position” or the negative or plural of these words or similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those anticipated, including, but not limited to, our history of net operating losses and uncertainty regarding our ability to achieve profitability, our ability to develop and commercialize our product candidates, our ability to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates, our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approval of our product candidates, our ability to operate in a competitive industry and compete successfully against competitors that have greater resources than we do, our reliance on third parties, and our ability to obtain and adequately protect intellectual property rights for our product candidates. We discuss many of these risks in greater detail under the heading “Risk Factors” contained in our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2017, which is on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statements that we make in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release. We assume no obligation to update our forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date of this press release.
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