CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Neon Therapeutics, an immuno-oncology company developing neoantigen-based therapeutic vaccines and T cell therapies to treat cancer, today announced that Yasir Al-Wakeel will join the company as chief financial officer beginning July 5, 2017. Dr. Al-Wakeel replaces Daniella Beckman, who has served as part-time chief financial officer since shortly after the company’s launch in 2015.
Dr. Al-Wakeel joins Neon from Merrimack Pharmaceuticals where, as chief financial officer and head of corporate development, he led the finance function and helped to shape and execute the company’s refocused business strategy, which culminated in the recent $1.025 billion asset sale to Ipsen SA.
Before Merrimack, Dr. Al-Wakeel served for more than eight years at Credit Suisse, most recently as an investment banking director focused on biotechnology, and previously as an equity research analyst covering the biotechnology and specialty pharmaceuticals sectors. In his banking role, Dr. Al-Wakeel was involved in more than $30 billion in strategic and financial transactions for the firm. Dr. Al-Wakeel received his BM BCh (Doctor of Medicine) degree from Oxford University and also holds a Master's degree from Cambridge University.
"We are very thankful for the contributions Daniella has made to Neon Therapeutics, helping to shepherd the company from its foundation through a period of extraordinary growth and achievement,” said Hugh O’Dowd, chief executive officer at Neon Therapeutics. “As our first full-time chief financial officer, Yasir will play an important role in helping to guide our next phase of growth, and ensure support for the ongoing advancement of multiple clinical strategies to deliver on the promise of neoantigen-targeted therapies for patients.”
“Neon Therapeutics has rapidly established itself as the leader in neoantigen science with broad potential to improve the care of a wide range of cancer patients,” said Dr. Al-Wakeel. “I am energized by the opportunity to join the Neon leadership team, and look forward to strengthening external support for this important new line of attack on cancer.”
About Neon Therapeutics
Neon Therapeutics is an immuno-oncology company focused on developing novel therapeutics leveraging neoantigen biology to treat cancer. A neoantigen-based product engine allows Neon to develop multiple treatment modalities, including next-generation vaccines and T cell therapies targeting both personalized and shared neoantigens. Neon’s lead program is a personalized neoantigen vaccine that builds upon years of research and development at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and is in multiple clinical trials. For more information, please visit www.neontherapeutics.com.