Montai Therapeutics Appoints Renowned Chemical Innovator Larry Hamann to Company’s Board of Directors, Convenes Multidisciplinary Scientific Advisory Board to Inform Strategic Momentum

Expansion of Board and establishment of Scientific Advisory Board equips Montai with critical expertise in biology, chemistry and AI engineering to shape small molecule discovery and development strategy

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--()--Montai Therapeutics, a company pioneering at the intersection of AI, diverse human chemistry and validated biology to discover breakthrough small molecules for chronic disease, is expanding its network of renowned scientific and technical advisors with the appointment of Larry Hamann to its Board of Directors and the launch of the company’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).

“Larry brings a distinguished legacy of drug discovery and chemistry innovation to Montai to help us unlock the full potential of our richly diverse Anthromolecule™ chemistry and deliver breakthrough small molecules for pathways in chronic disease that have been viewed as ‘undruggable’ by the rest of the drug industry,” said Margo Georgiadis, Co-founder and CEO of Montai and CEO-Partner, Flagship Pioneering. “Within our Boards, we’ve assembled thought leaders in AI, chemistry, biology, drug development and bio platform innovation to address the urgent need for more accessible, safer medicines to treat chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. We are deeply grateful for their commitment to our mission.”

Dr. Hamann is currently Co-founder and CEO of Interdict Bio. Previously, he was Global Head, Drug Discovery Sciences at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and prior to that, Corporate Vice President and Global Head, Small Molecule Drug Discovery at Celgene. Prior to Celgene, Larry held positions of increasing responsibility at Novartis, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Ligand Pharmaceuticals. In more than 30 years of drug discovery, he has led teams responsible for more than 22 clinical stage compounds, including several first-in-class therapeutics, and two launched drugs. Further, he is co-inventor on more than 70 patents and co-author of more than 90 scientific publications. Dr. Hamann was awarded the American Chemical Society (ACS) Division of Medicinal Chemistry Award in 2022. He earned a PhD in Organic Chemistry from the University of Michigan.

“The opportunity to explore diverse, untapped human chemistry is what attracted me to Montai because this work breaks away from the typical chemical space that has been targeted for drug development. What’s particularly exciting is the use of AI to systematically aggregate and generate insights from this library, which will make it possible to find transformational solutions for even the most complex biological pathways,” said Dr. Hamann. “The depth of this rich chemical equity, with a wide range of available vectors for further elaboration to better engage target binding pockets with precision and selectivity, is essential to address challenging targets like transcription factors, or to introduce solutions that could replace complex biologics.”

Montai’s newly formalized SAB brings together recognized industry and academic leaders to inform and accelerate the company’s strategy to define a new paradigm for predictable small molecule drug discovery to address important unmet patient needs across chronic disease. Integrating untapped diverse chemistry and AI into the discovery equation provides insight generation and optionality far beyond conventional processes to solve challenges that have, until now, eluded small molecule drug developers. The SAB integrates world-class experts from immunology, chemistry, systems biology and AI to fine-tune this strategy and increase the probability of success.

“At this intersection of chemistry, biology and AI, I see an exciting opportunity for Montai to introduce a radically different approach to drug discovery that could solve for some of the most challenging targets in immunological diseases,” said Keith James, Ph.D., SAB member and former President, Ferring Research Institute, and Senior Vice-President and Head of Drug Discovery at Insitro and Pfizer. “Leading-edge AI is uniquely equipped to systematically assess diverse chemistry to interrogate under-explored regions of drug-like chemical space and identify candidates that can best target these validated pathways. Furthermore, Montai’s ability to generate multiple, diverse candidates, each with high potential for success, offers drug discoverers an extremely attractive set of design options – a huge enabler for the drug discovery model.”

Montai formally welcomes the following distinguished thought leaders to its SAB:

  • Connor Coley, Ph.D.: Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering & Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; recognized innovator at the interface of chemistry, data science, machine learning, and robotics with an emphasis on how AI, data and automation can streamline discovery and chemical synthesis
  • Jim Collins, Ph.D.: Termeer Professor of Medical Engineering & Science, MIT; Core Founding Faculty Member, Wyss Institute, Harvard; Institute Member, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard; a pioneer of the field of synthetic biology, focused on using synthetic biology to create next-generation diagnostics and therapeutics with a focus on AI for antibiotics
  • Keith James, Ph.D.: Former President, Ferring Research Institute, and Senior Vice-President and Head of Drug Discovery at Insitro and Pfizer; extensive industry experience applying machine learning to the discovery of new medicines
  • Luke O’Neill, Ph.D.: Professor and Chair of Biochemistry and Immunology, Trinity College; renowned immunologist focused on inflammation and innate immunity, molecular analysis of inflammatory diseases and immunometabolism
  • Iain McInnes, Ph.D., M.B.Ch.B: Vice Principal and Head of College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, Muirhead Chair of Medicine, Versus Arthritis Professor of Rheumatology, University of Glasgow; built an internationally recognized research program on the cellular and molecular pathways driving inflammatory joint disease which enabled key therapeutic innovations
  • Paul Ridker, M.D.: Eugene Braunwald Professor of Medicine, Harvard University and Brigham and Women's Hospital; Director of the Center for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention; renowned expert in inflammation and cardiovascular disease; pioneered clinical research proving inflammation hypothesis in atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, and more
  • Peter Sorger, Ph.D.: Otto Krayer Professor of Systems Pharmacology, Head of the Harvard Program in Therapeutic Sciences (HiTS), Harvard Medical School; Cofounder, Merrimack Pharmaceuticals; renowned expertise in systems biology, AI, and network knowledge aggregation

About Montai Therapeutics

Montai is pioneering with AI to predictably discover breakthrough small molecule medicines, precision-matching untapped human chemistry to validated biological pathways to address unmet needs in chronic disease. Montai’s CONECTA platform leverages AI to build deep network understanding of the connections between human biology and highly diverse Anthromolecule™ chemistry – curated bioactive molecules with a long history of human consumption in foods, supplements, and herbal medicines. From this precision-matched human co-evolved chemistry, Montai’s generative AI systems unlock access to and rapid optimization of the widest range of high-potential drug candidates, providing unprecedented optionality and predictability in drug development. With an initial focus on inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, Montai is developing a pipeline of accessible, pill-based solutions as biologic replacements and for hard-to-drug targets such as transcription factors. Montai was founded in Flagship Labs in 2019. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.


Lindy Devereux
Flagship Pioneering

Release Summary

Montai announces the appointment of Larry Hamann to its Board of Directors and the launch of the company’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).


Lindy Devereux
Flagship Pioneering