Dicerna Bolsters Leadership Team to Support Continued Growth

Feb. 21, 2019 11:30 UTC

— Regina DeTore Paglia Joins Company as Senior Vice President of Human Resources —

— Rebecca Peterson Hired as Head of Corporate Communications —

— Hardean E. Achneck, M.D., Joins as Vice President, Head of Medical Development —

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: DRNA), a leading developer of investigational ribonucleic acid interference (RNAi) therapeutics, today announced the addition of three industry veterans to the Company’s management team:

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Rebecca Peterson, Head of Corporate Communications (Photo: Business Wire)

Rebecca Peterson, Head of Corporate Communications (Photo: Business Wire)

  • Regina DeTore Paglia as senior vice president of human resources,
  • Rebecca Peterson as head of corporate communications, and
  • Hardean E. Achneck, M.D., as vice president, head of medical development.

“We are pleased to welcome Regina Paglia, Rebecca Peterson, and Hardean Achneck to Dicerna. Their expert leadership in human resources, medical development, and corporate communications will be essential to our continued growth as we advance our GalXC™-based pipeline,” said Douglas M. Fambrough, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Dicerna. “With these seasoned executives on board, Dicerna is better positioned to capitalize on strategic opportunities to deliver high-impact therapies to patients and enhance shareholder value.”

Ms. Paglia has more than 25 years of experience in human resources management at numerous biopharmaceutical, biochemical, and managed care companies from early-stage start-up to full commercial operations. Most recently, she was senior vice president of human resources at Paratek Pharmaceuticals, reporting directly to the chief executive officer and chairman as a member of the executive leadership team. Prior to that, she was vice president (2010-12) and senior vice president (2012-15) of human resources at Myriant Corporation, a biochemical company that is a subsidiary of PTTGC Global Chemical Company. From 2008 to 2010, Ms. Paglia was vice president of human resources at Mascoma Corporation, a biofuels company. She has also held several executive positions in human resources at Sepracor Pharmaceuticals and Tufts Health Plans.

Ms. Paglia is the 2018 recipient of the Bob Gatti HR Leadership Excellence Award of Distinction from the Human Resources Leadership Forum. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and marketing from Sawyer Business School at Suffolk University in Beacon Hill, Mass., and a master’s degree in human resources management from Framingham (Mass.) State College.

Ms. Peterson has more than 20 years of corporate communications and investor relations experience in the biotechnology and healthcare industries. She joins Dicerna from Sanofi Genzyme, where she was head of partner relations and global business development. Previously, Ms. Peterson spent 15 years at Alkermes, where, as director (2000-05), vice president (2005-12) and senior vice president (2012-15) of corporate communications, she led all corporate communications functions including investor relations, public relations, product communications, patient advocacy, partner relations management, and internal communications. From 1997 to 2000, Ms. Peterson held various communications positions at Millennium Pharmaceuticals (now Takeda Pharmaceuticals), where she expanded the investor relations program for this high-profile biopharmaceutical company. Prior to Millennium, she worked in the public affairs office at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Ms. Peterson earned bachelor’s degrees in public health, journalism, and communications from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and master’s degrees in health communications from Tufts University School of Medicine and Emerson College.

Dr. Achneck is a physician-scientist with more than a decade of clinical development experience, focusing extensively on designing and executing global clinical trials. He joins Dicerna from Haemonetics Corporation, where, as director of medical affairs and clinical development, global hemostasis management, he led U.S. and international multicenter clinical trials in hematology and cardiology; he also built the company’s medical affairs infrastructure and created its early clinical development program, resulting in eight successful Phase 1 trials in support of regulatory submissions. Prior to Haemonetics, Dr. Achneck was chief medical officer and vice president of clinical research and operations at Hemostemix Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing a proprietary autologous peripheral blood-derived stem cell therapy to treat ischemic and rare diseases; in this capacity, he oversaw the Company’s global clinical development program, as well as all scientific/medical activities.

In addition to his industry experience, Dr. Achneck spent several years at Duke University School of Medicine, where he served as a research fellow in cardiovascular surgery and biomedical engineering, assistant professor of surgery and pathology, and assistant professor of cardiovascular and metabolic disorders. While at Duke, he built a high-performance translational research laboratory and directed multiple preclinical and clinical trials; he also conducted numerous experiments with short-interfering RNAs (siRNAs) to knock down genes. Additionally, Dr. Achneck provided clinical development and medical affairs consulting services to several biopharma and device companies including Allergan, Amgen, and Bristol-Myers Squibb/Sanofi.

Dr. Achneck received his initial medical training at Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf, Germany, where he was accepted into Germany’s honor society (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes) for the country’s most gifted university students. He later earned a bachelor’s degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University, and his medical degree from Yale University School of Medicine, where he completed a research fellowship funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Achneck holds four patents, has co-authored more than two dozen clinical publications, and has delivered more than 30 oral presentations, lectures, and abstracts at medical and scientific conferences. He is a member of several medical specialty societies including the European Society of Cardiology, the International Society of Thrombosis and Hemostasis, the American Heart Association, and the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy.

About Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative, subcutaneously delivered RNAi-based therapeutics for the treatment of diseases involving the liver, including rare diseases, chronic liver diseases, cardiovascular diseases, and viral infectious diseases. Dicerna is leveraging its proprietary GalXC™ RNAi technology platform to build a broad pipeline in these core therapeutic areas, focusing on target genes where connections between target gene and diseases are well understood and documented. Dicerna intends to discover, develop, and commercialize novel therapeutics either on its own or in collaboration with pharmaceutical partners. Dicerna has strategic collaborations with Eli Lilly and Company, Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH. For more information, please visit www.dicerna.com.

Cautionary Note on Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. Applicable risks and uncertainties include risks relating to Dicerna’s clinical and preclinical research and other risks identified under the heading "Risk Factors" included in the Company’s most recent Form 10-Q filing and in other future filings with the SEC. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release reflect Dicerna's current views with respect to future events, and Dicerna does not undertake and specifically disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.


Rebecca Peterson
Head of Corporate Communications
Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Ph: 617-612-6325


Source: Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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Rebecca Peterson, Head of Corporate Communications (Photo: Business Wire)

Hardean E. Achneck, M.D., Vice President, Head of Medical Development (Photo: Business Wire)

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