SAN MATEO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Afferent Pharmaceuticals, a leader in the development of small molecule compounds targeting P2X3 for respiratory, urologic and pain disorders, announced today that Kathleen Sereda Glaub has been named Chief Executive Officer. Ms. Glaub had been serving as an independent member of Afferent’s Board since 2013, and she will continue to serve on the Board. She is replacing Bruce G. McCarthy, M.D., who served as the company’s CEO since 2009.
“Kathy has a distinguished 30-year career in leadership positions with innovation-based companies and has a track record of success, particularly leading transformational partnerships and transactions. We are very pleased she will take the helm at Afferent,” stated Kevin Starr, Chairman of Afferent and Partner, Third Rock Ventures. “In her tenure on the Board, Kathy already has played an important role in the Company’s development, and we expect her expertise both in advancing clinical programs and forging successful and productive R&D partnerships will be critical in charting additional growth and progress for the Company in the near term.”
Ms. Glaub stated, “Since reporting Phase 2 proof-of-concept data in chronic cough last year, Afferent has completed additional clinical studies, further validating our lead drug candidate and the important role of P2X3 receptors in mediating the pathological sensitization of sensory neurons. With robust clinical data in chronic cough, osteoarthritis pain, asthma and interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome, our first-in-class molecule will advance to a Phase 2b clinical trial in chronic cough early next year. I am thrilled to join the highly accomplished R & D team at Afferent, and to lead the development of our pipeline to selectively target this fundamental sensory mechanism in order to bring relief to patients who suffer as a result of neuron hyper-sensitization in a broad range of disorders.”
Mr. Starr continued, “We are grateful for Bruce’s stewardship during the last four years, as Afferent built its leading position in P2X3 antagonism and generated positive clinical data in areas of substantial unmet needs in respiratory, urologic and pain disorders. We wish him great success as he explores new opportunities.”
Prior to joining Afferent, Ms. Glaub most recently co-led Plexxikon Inc. as President, a position she held for 12 years. During her tenure, Ms. Glaub was responsible for the business and financing strategy of the company leading its venture and partnership transactions, and ultimately led the sale of the company to Daiichi Sankyo for nearly $1 billion in 2011. She also played a pivotal role in the company’s product development programs, including the development of the company’s melanoma drug Zelboraf and its companion diagnostic. Additionally, she established the commercial infrastructure and sales force to support the co-promotion of Zelboraf for the product launch in 2011. Previously, she served in senior leadership positions and executed numerous strategic transactions, including as Chief Financial Officer at Cell Genesys, Treasurer at Genentech, and various treasury and finance roles at Intel Corporation where she started her career. Ms. Glaub received her BA from the University of California, Berkeley, and her MBA from Northwestern University.
About Afferent Pharmaceuticals
Afferent Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage biotechnology company and leader in the development of first-in-class, small molecule compounds that target P2X3 receptors for the treatment of respiratory and urologic disorders, as well as chronic pain. Afferent’s industry-leading position in the research and development of P2X3 antagonists enables the Company to widely explore this novel mechanism of action and evaluate its utility in a broad range of indications. These indications include chronic pain in the joints, hyperresponsive airways (chronic cough, acute cough, IPF, asthma), pelvic pain and hyperactivity (interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS), overactive bladder), resistant hypertension and various other chronic pain disorders, including migraine.
Afferent’s platform is built on more than a decade of research on P2X3 receptors and P2X3 antagonists. The Company’s lead candidate, AF-219, is expected to be evaluated in a Phase 2b study initiating in early 2015. A second and differentiated P2X3 antagonist is targeted for IND filing in 2015. Additionally, the Company’s pipeline of P2X3 antagonists represents diverse and further differentiated molecules that are being evaluated for multiple indications.
For more information on the Company, please visit Afferent’s website at www.afferentpharma.com.