SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Presage Biosciences, an oncology company pioneering a radical new drug development approach that incorporates human efficacy data much earlier in development and clinical trials, announced today the appointment of Tachi Yamada and Christoph Lengauer to its board of directors.
Dr. Yamada, who was recently the Chief Medical and Scientific Officer of Takeda Pharmaceuticals, is an extraordinarily accomplished scientist and pharmaceutical leader who brings together a unique combination of clinical, scientific and business expertise. Dr. Lengauer is currently the Chief Scientific Officer of Blueprint Medicines and has an impressive track record of successful scientific leadership in cancer drug development.
“We are excited to welcome Tachi and Christoph to our Board of Directors at this important juncture of Presage’s evolution to more directly apply our CIVO technology platform to the development of effective cancer drug combinations,” said Nathan Caffo, President of Presage. “Their deep and diverse experience across both large scale pharmaceutical company drug development and agile biotech companies will complement our current board capabilities well. We are thrilled that they are joining Presage in our efforts to build a world-class oncology company.”
“I have followed Presage with interest through its partnership with Takeda during my tenure there, and I have always been particularly impressed with Presage’s unique approach and its efficiency and effectiveness for discovering novel drug combinations,” said Tachi Yamada. “I look forward to contributing my perspective and experience as the company evolves its focus to directly guiding development of its own internal drug programs.”
“At oncology companies large and small, I have led a number of drug discovery programs that could best realize their clinical potential in combination, and these efforts were often thwarted by a limitation on translating preclinical work into patients,” said Christoph Lengauer. “It’s time for a new approach to empirically determining drug sensitivity, and Presage has developed just such a technology. The company’s platform has immense potential to guide clinical development of combinations.”
Presage has developed CIVO™, a predictive in vivo assessment technology for drug development that enables the first side-by-side comparison of multiple drugs and combinations within a single living tumor while still in a patient’s body, without exposing the patient to the toxicity of systemic dosing. Presage is actively in-licensing promising compounds and using CIVO™ to develop a portfolio of proprietary oncology therapies.
Tachi Yamada, MD recently led all of Takeda’s research and development activities as the Chief Medical and Scientific Officer. He is currently a venture partner with Frazier Healthcare in Seattle. Prior to Takeda he was the President of the Global Health Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He also served as the Chairman of Research and Development and was a member of the board of directors at GlaxoSmithKline. Earlier, Dr. Yamada was the Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and the Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. In addition to his current role at Frazier and Presage, Dr. Yamada serves as a member of the board of directors at the Clinton Health Access Initiative and a member of the Council of the National Academy of Medicine. He is also a Fellow of the Imperial College of Medicine, a Master of the American College of Physicians, a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, and a past-President of the American Gastroenterological Association and the Association of American Physicians.
Christoph Lengauer, PhD, MBA is the Chief Scientific Officer of Blueprint Medicines, a public personalized medicine company. Dr. Lengauer has a proven track record in cancer drug discovery, including contributing to 13 programs that reached first-in-human clinical trials and three registered drugs. He was previously at Sanofi, where he was Vice President and Global Head of Oncology Drug Discovery and Preclinical Development. Before joining Sanofi, he was Executive Director & Senior Unit Head, Oncology Discovery at the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research. Prior to Novartis, Dr. Lengauer served as associate professor of oncology at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Lengauer studied human genetics in Salzburg, Austria, and obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Heidelberg, Germany. He did his postdoctoral research at the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) in Vienna and then in the laboratory of Profs. Bert Vogelstein and Ken Kinzler at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He received his MBA from Johns Hopkins University Business School.
About Presage Biosciences
Presage Biosciences is an oncology company pioneering the incorporation of human efficacy data much earlier in the drug development and clinical trial processes with its patented CIVO™ arrayed microinjection platform. The CIVO platform allows for simultaneous assessment of multiple drugs or drug combinations directly in a single solid tumor while still in a patient’s body to assess efficacy, resistance and drug synergies in the tumor’s native microenvironment. Presage partners with oncology-focused pharmaceutical companies through strategic alliances to provide in vivo data to validate novel targets, promote drug candidates to the right indications and discover effective drug combinations. Presage also is using CIVO™ to develop a portfolio of promising oncology therapies to advance to the clinic. Presage is privately held and based in Seattle. For more information, visit www.presagebio.com.