CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--ImmusanT, Inc., a clinical stage company that is leveraging its Epitope-Specific Immuno-Therapy (ESIT) platform to translate and deliver first-in-class peptide-based immune therapies to patients living with autoimmune diseases, today announced the appointment of three senior leaders to the ImmusanT management team:
- Kristin M. Neff will serve as Vice President, Clinical Operations and Project Management,
- Joyce A. Pinkham will hold the position of Vice President, Program Management, and
- Jonathan Yeadon joins ImmusanT as Director, Finance.
“The additions of Kristin, Joyce and Jon broaden our in-house expertise and capabilities to reflect ImmusanT’s clinical expansion as we prepare to enter Phase 2 development of Nexvax2, our novel vaccine for the treatment of celiac disease,” said Leslie Williams, Chief Executive Officer of ImmusanT. “The collective talent, leadership and industry experience of our new team members will greatly enhance our ability to achieve our clinical and corporate goals and address the needs of people living with celiac disease. On behalf of all of us at ImmusanT, I welcome Kristin, Joyce and Jon to our team.”
ImmusanT expects to initiate a Phase 2 study in celiac disease in the third quarter of 2018, and is actively expanding its platform through studies of other autoimmune diseases including type 1 diabetes. The hires announced today will support the company's expanded clinical program as well as provide corporate support as ImmusanT continues to leverage the Epitope-Specific Immuno-Therapy (ESIT) platform to develop new treatments for autoimmune diseases.
Kristin Neff joins ImmusanT from InVivo Therapeutics where she was Vice President, Clinical Operations and Project Management. In this role, she led clinical operations activities to support research and development of a novel medical device to treat acute spinal cord injury. Prior to joining InVivo, Kristin was Senior Director, Clinical Operations at TARIS Biomedical where she was responsible for integrated product development of novel drug/device combination products to treat bladder pain with focus on clinical development.
Joyce Pinkham will join ImmusanT on June 11 and will bring over 15 years of program management experience to the role of VP, Program Management. Most recently, Joyce was Vice President of Program and Alliance Management at Juniper Pharmaceuticals. Previously, Joyce held leadership positions at Cubist Pharmaceuticals, where she was Senior Director, Program and Portfolio Management and at Genzyme, a Sanofi Company, where she was Senior Director, Program and Portfolio Management Late Development.
Jonathan Yeadon brings over twelve years of experience overseeing finance operations in the life sciences sector. Prior to starting with ImmusanT, Jon served as Director of Finance at Wolfe Laboratories. Earlier in his career he served as Controller for a variety of companies and was a Certified Public Accountant at Coopers & Lybrand.
To learn more about these additions and the ImmusanT management team, please visit http://www.immusant.com/team/management.php.
About Celiac Disease
Celiac disease is an acquired, T cell-mediated autoimmune gastrointestinal disease triggered by the ingestion of gluten from wheat, rye and barley. About 90% of individuals affected by celiac disease carry the human leukocyte antigen-DQ2.5 (HLA-DQ2.5) immune recognition gene, which facilitates the immune response to peptide fragments of gluten. A gluten-free diet is the only current management for this disease. The global prevalence of celiac disease is approximately 1%. General awareness of celiac disease is increasing as serological testing becomes more widespread in medical practice, but presently over 80% of cases go unrecognized in the United States. When a person with celiac disease consumes gluten, the individual’s immune system responds by triggering T cells to fight the offending proteins, damaging the small intestine and inhibiting the absorption of important nutrients into the body. Undiagnosed, celiac disease can contribute to poor educational performance and failure to thrive in children. Untreated disease in adults is associated with osteoporosis and increased risk of fractures, anemia, reduced fertility, problems during pregnancy and birth, short stature, dental enamel hypoplasia, dermatitis, recurrent stomatitis and cancer. With no available drug therapy, the only option is a strict and lifelong elimination of gluten from the diet. Compliance is challenging and the majority of people live in fear of gluten contamination and continue to have residual damage to their small intestine in spite of adherence to a gluten-free diet.
Nexvax2® is the most advanced therapeutic approach for celiac disease in clinical development today that targets the fundamental cause of the disease; the loss of immune tolerance to gluten. Nexvax2 is a therapeutic vaccine that reprograms the T-cells responsible for the symptoms of celiac disease to stop triggering a pro-inflammatory response. Nexvax2 intends to protect patients with celiac disease against inadvertent exposure to gluten.
About ImmusanT, Inc.
ImmusanT is a privately held biotechnology company focused on protecting patients with celiac disease against the effects of gluten. By harnessing new discoveries in immunology, ImmusanT aims to improve diagnosis and medical management of celiac disease by protecting against the effects of gluten exposure while patients maintain a gluten-free diet. The company is developing Nexvax2®, a therapeutic vaccine for celiac disease, and diagnostic and monitoring tools to improve celiac disease management. ImmusanT’s targeted immunotherapy discovery platform can be applied to a variety of autoimmune diseases. To learn more about ImmusanT, visit www.ImmusanT.com, or follow ImmusanT on Twitter.