VIENNA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Themis announced today that Iain Dukes, MA, DPhil, currently Venture Partner at OrbiMed Advisors LLC, has been appointed as an independent director to the Company’s Supervisory Board. In addition to his most recent experience in private equity, Dr. Dukes has amassed over 20 years in leadership roles at large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. His most recent position was as Senior Vice President, Business Development & Licensing at MSD (tradename of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA). As Themis transitions towards rapidly ramping up the development of a coronavirus vaccine candidate towards the clinic in response to the global pandemic and being prepared to supply the initial stockpiles of its vaccine, Dr. Dukes’ background will further enhance the range of experience on the Company’s Board.
“With the versatility of the measles vaccine vector, Themis has created a very powerful platform for developing successful immunomodulating therapeutics. I have watched the Company advance over the past years, and I believe their approach has tremendous potential, not just in the infectious disease space, where they have proven their ability to execute advanced clinical programs, but also in immuno-oncology applications. I am excited to be a part of the organization’s further growth,” commented Dr. Iain Dukes.
Dr. Erich Tauber, CEO of Themis added: “We welcome Iain’s perspective as an entrepreneur as well as his track record as a strategic leader for corporate development in the pharmaceutical industry. Iain’s understanding of immunology complements our focus, especially as we expand our measles virus vector-based technology platform into new indications.”
Dr. Iain Dukes joined OrbiMed as a Venture Partner in 2016. He is currently Chairman of Iovance Biotherapeutics (NASQ:IOVA) and serves on the Board of Directors of Ikena Oncology, KaNDy Therapeutics (formerly as Chairman), NeRRe Therapeutics, ReViral Limited and ENYO Therapeutics. He co-founded and is CEO of Theseus Pharmaceuticals and co-founded Kartos Therapeutics and Telios Pharma where he serves as President. Most recently, he has taken the role of Executive Chairman at Angiex. At MSD, Iain was responsible for all business development activity for MSD Research Laboratories. Before joining MSD, he served as Vice President of External Research and Development at Amgen and previously also held the position of Vice President, Scientific and Technology Licensing at GlaxoSmithKline in addition to executive leadership roles and Board positions at several biotechnology companies. Dr. Dukes received a DPhil degree from the University of Oxford where he also received an MA in Jurisprudence.
Themis is developing immunomodulation therapies for infectious diseases and cancer. Through advanced understanding of immune system mechanisms, the Company has built a sophisticated and versatile technology platform for the discovery, development and production of vaccines as well as other immune system activation approaches. Initially focused on preventing infectious diseases, Themis has demonstrated the potential of its versatile platform through the rapid and successful completion of Phase 2 and near-term entry into Phase 3 clinical development for a vaccine against Chikungunya, a debilitating disease with global outbreak potential. Funded to date by leading venture capital firms, Themis has also gained prestigious non-dilutive funding for emerging infectious disease indications. The Company will apply its platform and commercial manufacturing capabilities to diseases with high market potential both alone and for its partners. For more information, visit http://www.themisbio.com.