PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Xcovery Holdings, Inc., an oncology-focused biopharmaceutical company, today announced the appointment of Li Mao, M.D., as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Giovanni Selvaggi, M.D., as Chief Medical Officer (CMO). With more than 50 years of clinical experience in oncology between them, Dr. Mao and Dr. Selvaggi will oversee the clinical development of ensartinib and vorolanib, Xcovery’s two leading drug candidates currently in a global Phase 3 trial for ALK positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and in a Phase 1/2 trial in combination with immune-oncology (IO) agents for thoracic cancer, respectively.
“Following a thorough and rigorous process, the Board has unanimously elected Li as the CEO of Xcovery,” said Lieming Ding, M.D., Chairman of Xcovery’s Board of Directors. “He will bring deep expertise in oncology, unwavering commitment to patients, and strong track record of building high performing organizations to his new role. I am confident that under Li's leadership, Xcovery will continue to expand its impact in oncology.”
“I am humbled and privileged to be the CEO of Xcovery,” said Dr. Mao. “This is an extraordinary company of talented people with incomparable passion and dedication to helping patients. I look forward to working with our talented team to build on what we’ve accomplished, to deliver on the promise of our innovative programs and to make a real difference for our patients.”
Prior to joining Xcovery, Dr. Mao was Vice President and Head of the Johnson & Johnson China Lung Cancer Center. Before that, he acted as a Professor and Chair of Department of Oncology and Diagnostic Sciences, and Associate Dean for Research at University of Maryland, Baltimore. Dr. Mao has also served as Leader, Experimental Therapeutics Program in the Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center. Previously, he was a Professor in the Department of Thoracic and Head & Neck Medical Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, where he is currently an Adjunct Professor. Dr. Mao has played a critical role in a number of landmark multi-institution research programs, and has authored and co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed articles cited more than 24,000 times.
“We are also pleased to welcome Giovanni to the Xcovery team as he brings broad oncology drug development expertise and strong leadership skills,” Dr. Ding added. “His recent experience in spearheading the clinical development of ceritinib (Zykadia) at Novartis and leading the immunotherapy program at Bristol-Myers Squibb in thoracic malignancies will be invaluable to us as we work to not only bring ensartinib over the finish line, but also explore synergies in the ever-changing scenario of combination therapies for vorolanib.”
“It is a very exciting time to be joining Xcovery as Chief Medical Officer,” stated Dr. Selvaggi. “I am very encouraged by the clinical progress to date and look forward to building on this work in the ongoing and future clinical trials. Xcovery is uniquely positioned to make meaningful impact on oncology with ensartinib having the potential to be the best in class in first line therapy for ALK positive NSCLC patients, and vorolanib being tested in various combination trials with anti PD-1 agents. I look forward to working with my colleagues to advance our programs and to help cancer patients to live longer and better lives.”
Dr. Selvaggi held positions of increasing responsibility at various global pharmaceutical companies prior to joining Xcovery. He joined the pharmaceutical industry in 2010 as a medical director at GlaxoSmithKline in the MAGE-A3 cancer vaccine lung program. He then played an instrumental role in the successful development and registration of ceritinib (Zykadia) at Novartis in ALK translocated NSCLC. Most recently, Dr. Selvaggi was a part of the immunotherapy team at Bristol-Myers Squibb as Program Lead in different thoracic malignancies with a focus on SCLC. Dr. Selvaggi received his medical degree at the University of Torino Medical School in 1992 and served as staff physician of Thoracic Oncology at the University Hospital in Torino, Italy, participating in several clinical trials in lung cancer and mesothelioma over a span of 16 years.
Xcovery is a biopharmaceutical company working to improve the lives of patients with cancer by discovering medicines to fight advanced tumors. Xcovery is developing a pipeline of oncology therapies to target a wide range of advanced tumors. For more information, visit www.xcovery.com.
This press release contains forward‐looking statements that are based on company management’s current beliefs and expectations and are subject to currently unknown information, risks and circumstances and actual results may vary from what is being currently projected.