Seres promotes CFO Eric Shaff to succeed Pomerantz as CEO; Exelixis’ Cabometyx bags US approval for liver cancer

→ Months after poaching AstraZeneca vet Kevin Horgan to serve as CMO at microbiome drug developer Seres, the Cambridge, MA-based company has elevated CFO Eric Shaff to the position of CEO, to succeed Roger Pomerantz, who will remain board chairman. Shaff, who will continue to serve as Seres’ principal financial officer on an interim basis, joined the company in 2014 as CFO and was given the additional position of COO in early last year.

→ Exelixis’ $EXEL cancer drug cabozantinib, sold under the brand name Cabometyx, brought in nearly $163 million in the third quarter of 2018. The drug, already approved for renal cell cancer by the FDA, secured the US nod for an aggressive form of liver cancer – hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) – in patients who had received prior treatment. The EC had granted the HCC approval back in November. “Double digit growth in Cabo sales in recent quarters (12% q/q in 3Q:18) could be further compounded with this label expansion. Longer term we believe I/O combinations will support future growth,” Needham’s Chad Messer wrote in a note.

→ Having pulled off a $400 million IPO on the HKEX and cultivated a relationship with Swiss drugmaker Roche, China’s Ascletis is tying up with fellow biotech Alphamab in an agreement that grants it the exclusive license to develop an anti-PD-L1 drug – KN035 – for hepatitis B in Greater China. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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Research Scientist - Immunology
Recursion Pharmaceuticals Salt Lake City, UT
Director of Operations
Atlas Venture Cambridge, MA

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