Peer review

All of the news, delivered with full-text to your inbox. For professionals discovering, developing, and marketing biopharmaceutical drugs.

SUBSCRIBE NOW
Subscribe to Endpoints News

Maze in­ter­im chief Charles Hom­cy pass­es ba­ton to Ja­son Colo­ma; William Col­lier tapped as CEO of Ar­bu­tus

→ Four months into Maze Therapeutics’ launch, Charles Homcy is passing the startup’s reins to another Third Rock colleague. Jason Coloma, the current COO, is leaving his role at the VC firm to become full-time CEO on a mission to translate genetic insights into new medicines. Equipped with a whopping $191 million with support from Arch, Maze’s big idea is to find and target genetic modifiers that play a role in Mendelian diseases caused by another gene. Coloma, a Roche/Genentech vet seasoned in business development, was CBO at Corvus Pharmaceuticals before joining Third Rock in 2017.

Tariq Kas­sum jumps from Ob­sid­i­an to Cel­sius helm; Quell Ther­a­peu­tics taps Iain McGill as new CEO

→ Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Celsius Therapeutics — which was launched in 2018 and backed by Third Rock Ventures and GV — has tapped Tariq Kassum to the helm. Kassum succeeded Alexis Borisy, who has been interim CEO and who stay as chairman of the board of directors.

Borisy recently made an unexpected exit from Third Rock, before their record $770 million fund for its next wave of investments in the life science field.

Lab­Corp se­lects its new CEO; Pfiz­er names ex-Genen­tech vet as new head of on­col­o­gy R&D

→ Longtime Merck executive Adam Schechter will be taking over as CEO and president of LabCorp with the retirement of David King on October 31— when he will become executive chairman of the board of directors. The company says that “the board expects to choose one of its members to be lead independent director at a later date.”

Schechter has been on LabCorp’s board since April 1, 2013, serving as the lead independent director since January of this year. During his long-time stint at Merck, Schechter helped lead the integration of Merck and Schering-Plough and held executive roles in the company, including president of global human health and president of Merck’s global pharmaceutical business.

Up­dat­ed: Al­ny­lam pro­motes long­time ex­ec Kevin FitzGer­ald to CSO; In­tel­lia Ther­a­peu­tics brings on Lau­ra Sepp-Loren­zi­no

→ Kevin FitzGerald has been with Alnylam since 2005, and with his experience of “leading successful teams on delivery technologies, target selection, and programs in clinic,” he’s been promoted to CSO of the company.

“Our technology is at such an exciting stage and there are so many applications for patients in need, prioritizing what we do first (and at times, what we do not do) will be a very important challenge,” said FitzGerald via email.

Akre­via scoops ex-Ar­sa­nis chief René Rus­so as CEO; Scott Got­tlieb jumps back in­to in­dus­try; Seat­tle Ge­net­ics raids As­traZeneca for CCO

→ Months after resigning from Arsanis — now relegated to biotech history books after a reverse merger with X4 Pharma — René Russo has landed her next CEO gig at Akrevia Therapeutics. The new role will shift her attention from anti-infectives to immuno-oncology, but she will lean on her experience scaling up biotech operations from an early stage. Backed by F-Prime Capital and Atlas Venture, Akrevia employs platform tech that packages a CTLA4 inhibitor in a way that the antibody would be inactive until it reaches the tumor microenvironment.

Bio­gen ex­ec Paul McKen­zie heads to CSL as COO; Pul­ma­trix CEO re­signs

→ After Biogen’s recent catastrophe with aducanumab, Paul McKenzie, the company’s EVP for pharmaceutical operations and technology (and member of its executive committee), jumped ship. He’s now heading to the Australia-based giant CSL as its COO. His new job entails managing CSL’s global supply chain. McKenzie’s last day is May 29.

→ French biopharmaceutical firm DBV Technologies announced on Tuesday the departure of its deputy CEO and principal financial officer, David Schilansky. Schilansky will remain with the company through August 2019. While a search is underway for a new CFO the role of deputy CEO will not be filled after Schilansky’s departure. Shilansky has been with the allergy specialist since 2011, at one point serving as COO.

Bi­cy­cle signs on new clin­i­cal ex­ecs in pipeline dri­ve; Howard Stern signs on as Fog­Phar­ma CSO

→ On Thursday, Bicycle Therapeutics announced the appointments of Lisa Mahnke as senior vice president and head of clinical and Terrence West as vice president and head of program management to help expand and advance its clinical pipeline.

“As Bicycle expands its pipeline and our programs mature, it is critical that we deliver an effective clinical strategy, and these two new clinical team members are an integral part of our strategy,” said Kevin Lee, CEO of Bicycle Therapeutics. “Lisa and Terry have exceptional track records as senior leaders navigating programs through the clinic. I am very pleased to welcome them both to the Bicycle team.”

Peer Re­view: Anil Sing­hal as­sumes lead­er­ship of Adicet Bio; Adap­tive Biotech woos Genen­tech vet as CMO

→ More than a year after Aya Jakobovits abruptly vacated the CEO office, Adicet Bio has found her permanent successor just ahead of its first IND. Anil Singhal takes over from Donald Santel, the executive chairman who’s been filling the role. An AbbVie vet, Singhal joins the immunotherapy company with some fresh biotech experience as executive-in-residence at Canaan Partners and CSO of OncoResponse.

Peer Re­view: Don Hay­den com­mits to CEO role at Wind­MIL; X4 nabs new CMO Lynne Kel­ley from His­to­gen­ics ex­ile

→ Since leaving a 25-year career and the president of global pharmaceuticals title at Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2005, Don Hayden has kept himself busy as a consultant and adviser to biopharma companies, sometimes juggling seven or eight board appointments. But after a few months as interim CEO of WindMIL Therapeutics, he’s ready to “substantially pull back” on all those commitments as he transitions to a full-time role.

Peer Re­view: KSQ woos Beni Wolf from Blue­print with CRISPR plat­form; As­traZeneca ex­ec jumps to CNS biotech spun out of Take­da

→ After four years at Blueprint Medicines, Beni Wolf is hopping over to Cambridge, Massachusetts-based KSQ Therapeutics as chief medical officer, as it prepares to take its lead experimental drug into the clinic in 2020. “KSQ’s CRISPRomics approach holds tremendous potential for developing high-impact cancer medicines,” Wolf said in a statement.

→ An embattled Merrimack $MACK — having been forced to abandon its clinical experimental drugs after a series of setbacks and job cuts — last week lost its chief medical officer. In a filing, the company said CMO Sergio Santillana had tendered his resignation.