Prilenia Names Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., as Chief Medical Officer

 

-- Expansion of leadership team aligned with planned first global regulatory submission for approval for pridopidine for Huntington’s disease and preparation for commercialization --

 

NAARDEN, Netherlands & WALTHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Prilenia Therapeutics B.V., a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the urgent mission to develop novel therapeutics to slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases and neurodevelopmental disorders, today announced the appointment of Dr. Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., as its first Chief Medical Officer (CMO). In this role, Jina will lead all clinical development and medical affairs activities at Prilenia.

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Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer at Prilenia (Photo: Business Wire)

Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer at Prilenia (Photo: Business Wire)

Jina has more than 30 years’ experience in both academic neurology practice and in global drug development at leading pharmaceutical companies and joins Prilenia from Exciva, a neurodegeneration-focused biotech, where she was Chief Medical Officer. Previously, Jina served as Therapeutic Area Head of Neuroscience in Global Clinical Drug Development at Merck and Co.

Renowned within both research and industry circles, Jina is active in several important neurology and neurodegeneration associations including the European Brain Council and the European Federation of Neurological Associations. She also was recently elected to the Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences for her expertise in neurodegenerative disorders and neuropsychiatric drug development.

“Jina joins Prilenia during an important phase of the Company’s growth. We recently announced plans to submit pridopidine for regulatory review in Europe for Huntington’s disease (HD) and to commence a pivotal, global Phase 3 study in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Jina, in our newly created CMO role, will be a key leader as we advance these important initiatives,” said Dr. Michael R. Hayden, CEO of Prilenia. “Jina’s deep expertise as a thought leader, clinician treating neurodegenerative diseases and leader in global drug development is perfectly matched to our goal of changing the therapeutic landscape in HD and ALS.”

“This is such an exciting time to be joining Prilenia and to help advance the Company’s mission to develop new therapeutic options for people living with neurodegenerative diseases like HD and ALS,” said Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer of Prilenia. “We have a remarkable opportunity, with pridopidine, to positively impact the lives of those living with these devastating diseases where progression has proven difficult to slow thus far. I believe that Prilenia is on the cusp of changing that paradigm.”

Jina completed her Doctorate at the University of Cambridge, where her thesis focused on the exploration of molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration in Huntington's disease and trinucleotide disorders.

About Pridopidine

Pridopidine (45 mg twice daily) is an oral, highly selective and potent investigational S1R agonist that has exhibited a safety and tolerability profile similar to placebo in clinical studies to date. The safety dataset includes approximately 1,700 patients who have been on pridopidine for up to seven years. The S1R protein is highly expressed in the brain and spinal cord, where it regulates several key processes that are commonly impaired in various neurodegenerative diseases. Activation of the S1R by pridopidine stimulates multiple cellular protective pathways including enhancing autophagy, axonal transport, mitochondrial energy production and respiration, and restores calcium homeostasis. These effects are essential to neuronal function and survival, and lead to neuroprotective effects.

Prilenia holds Orphan Drug designation for pridopidine in HD and ALS in the U.S. and EU. In addition, pridopidine has received Fast Track designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of HD.

About Prilenia

Prilenia is a clinical stage biotechnology company founded in 2018 focused on the urgent mission to develop novel therapeutics to slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases and neurodevelopmental disorders. The initial focus of the company has been on HD and ALS. Prilenia is backed by a group of well-respected investors including: Forbion, Morningside, Sands Capital, SV Health Investors, Sectoral Asset Management, Talisman, Amplitude Ventures and the ALS Investment Fund. The Company is based in the Netherlands, Israel and Massachusetts in the U.S.

For more information, visit www.prilenia.com and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

©2024 Prilenia Therapeutics B.V.

For a copy of this release, visit Prilenia’s website at www.prilenia.com.

Contacts

Prilenia Contact
Communications Team
info@prilenia.com

 
 

Source: Prilenia Therapeutics B.V.

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Jina Swartz, M.D. Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer at Prilenia (Photo: Business Wire)

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