PureTech Health News
2018-09-05

Former Global Head of Immunology at Janssen brings extensive drug development experience in immunology and infectious disease

PureTech Health plc (LSE: PRTC) (“PureTech Health”), an advanced biopharmaceutical company developing novel medicines for dysfunctions of the Brain-Immune-Gut (BIG) Axis, is pleased to note that Vedanta Biosciences today announced the appointment of Susan Dillon, PhD, as an independent member to its Board of Directors. Dr Dillon is a recognised leader in the field of immunology and brings extensive  drug development experience to the Vedanta Biosciences’ Board of Directors.

Dr Dillon previously served as Global Therapeutic Area Head for Immunology at Janssen Research & Development, LLC, one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. During her 16-year tenure, Dr Dillon led biologics discovery and global Immunology R&D teams that were responsible for achieving numerous regulatory approvals for innovative antibody products for autoimmune diseases that delivered combined sales in excess of $10 billion, including REMICADE®, SIMPONI®, STELARA®, and most recently TREMFYA®, the first anti-IL-23 monoclonal antibody to be approved. Dr Dillon is currently Co-founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aro Biotherapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on next generation protein medicines.  She serves on the Board of Directors of the Wistar Institute and is an advisor to the DMAX Foundation which is focused on mental health.

Bharatt Chowrira, JD, PhD, President and Chief of Business and Strategy at PureTech Health, said: “As a highly respected leader in the field of immunology, Dr Dillon is a terrific addition to the Vedanta Biosciences Board. We look forward to working with her and drawing upon her wealth of experience in drug development as Vedanta Biosciences advances their clinical pipeline of product candidates.”

The full text of the announcement from Vedanta Biosciences is as follows:

Vedanta Biosciences Appoints Susan Dillon, PhD, to Board of Directors

Former Global Head of Immunology at Janssen led development of multiple innovative therapies

Cambridge, Massachusetts, September 5, 2018Vedanta Biosciences, a clinical stage company developing a new category of therapies for immune-mediated and infectious diseases based on rationally defined consortia of human microbiome-derived bacteria, today announced the appointment of industry leader Susan Dillon, PhD, as an independent member of its Board of Directors.  Dr Dillon brings a wealth of drug development experience in immunology and infectious disease, having led the approvals and expansions of several blockbuster products. 

Chris Viehbacher, Chairman of Vedanta Biosciences’ Board of Directors and Managing Partner of Gurnet Point Capital said, “Dr Dillon is a recognised leader in the field of immunology who brings an impressive track record from her tenure at Janssen Research & Development. We are delighted to welcome her to the Vedanta Biosciences Board and look forward to her insights as we continue to pioneer the microbiome field.”

Dr Dillon said, “I have followed the microbiome field closely and believe Vedanta Biosciences is building the industry’s leading platform with compelling science, impressive R&D, and manufacturing capabilities. I am excited to be joining the Board of Directors and I look forward to working with this exceptional team.”

Dr Dillon is Co-founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aro Biotherapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on next generation protein medicines.  Prior to Aro Biotherapeutics, Dr Dillon served as Global Therapeutic Area Head for Immunology at Janssen Research & Development, LLC, one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. During her 16-year tenure, Dr Dillon led biologics discovery and global Immunology R&D teams that were responsible for achieving numerous regulatory approvals for innovative antibody products for autoimmune diseases that delivered combined sales in excess of $10 billion, including REMICADE®, SIMPONI®, STELARA®, and most recently TREMFYA®, the first anti-IL-23 monoclonal antibody to be approved.

Dr Dillon currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Wistar Institute and is an advisor to the DMAX Foundation which is focused on mental health. In 2013, she was named one of the “Top Women in Biotech” by FierceBiotech. Dr Dillon earned her PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from Thomas Jefferson University, and she holds a BS and an MS in Medical Technology from State University of New York at Buffalo and Temple University School of Medicine, respectively.

“We are very pleased to have Sue join our Board of Directors,” said Bernat Olle, PhD, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Vedanta Biosciences. “Sue’s experience leading the development of important immunology-focused medicines from discovery-phase to commercialization will be invaluable as we advance our pipeline. Sue was one of the earliest microbiome champions in the pharmaceutical industry and understands the potential of this field to change medicine.”

About Vedanta Biosciences

Vedanta Biosciences is a clinical-stage company developing a new category of therapies for immune-mediated and infectious diseases based on rationally defined consortia of human microbiome-derived bacteria. Vedanta Biosciences is a leader in the microbiome field with capabilities and deep expertise to discover, develop, and manufacture live bacteria drugs. These include what is believed to be the largest collection of human microbiome-associated bacterial strains, a suite of proprietary assays to select pharmacologically potent strains, vast proprietary datasets from human interventional studies, and facilities for cGMP-compliant manufacturing of rationally-defined bacterial consortia in powder form. Vedanta Biosciences’ pioneering work, in collaboration with its scientific co-founders, has led to the identification of human commensal bacteria that induce a range of immune responses – including induction of regulatory T cells, CD8+ T cells, and Th17 cells, among others. These advances have been published in leading peer-reviewed journals, including Science (multiple), Nature (multiple), Cell, and Nature Immunology. Vedanta Biosciences has harnessed these biological insights and its capabilities to generate a pipeline of programmes in infectious disease, autoimmune disease, allergy, and immune-oncology.

Vedanta Biosciences was founded by PureTech Health (PRTC.L). Its scientific co-founders are world-renowned experts in immunology and microbiology who have pioneered the fields of innate immunity, Th17, and regulatory T cell biology, and include Dr Ruslan Medzhitov (Yale and Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)), Dr Brett Finlay (University of British Columbia and HHMI), Dr Kenya Honda (inventor of Vedanta Biosciences’ lead product candidate; Keio University and RIKEN), Dr Dan Littman (New York University and HHMI), Dr Alexander Rudensky (Sloan Kettering and HHMI), and Dr Jeremiah Faith (Mount Sinai School of Medicine).

About PureTech Health

PureTech Health (LSE: PRTC) is an advanced biopharmaceutical company developing novel medicines for dysfunctions of the Brain-Immune-Gut (BIG) Axis. The Company has developed deep insight into the connection between the individual components of these systems and the resulting role in many chronic diseases, which represent the majority of healthcare spend and have proven resistant to established therapeutic approaches. By harnessing this emerging field of human biology, PureTech Health is developing new categories of medicines with the potential to have great impact on people with serious diseases.

PureTech Health is advancing a rich pipeline of innovative therapies across two divisions: the Affiliates division and the Internal division. Its Affiliates division includes two product candidates that are preparing for potential regulatory approval in the United States and Europe as well as other novel clinical and pre-clinical programmes. These affiliates are developing ground-breaking platforms and therapeutic candidates in collaboration with some of the world’s leading experts.

PureTech’s Internal division is advancing a pipeline fuelled by recent discoveries in lymphatics and immune cell trafficking to modulate disease in a tissue-specific manner. These programmes leverage the transport and biodistribution of various immune system components for the targeted treatment of diseases with major unmet needs, including cancers, autoimmune diseases, and neuroimmune disorders.

For more information, visit www.puretechhealth.com or connect with us on Twitter @puretechh.

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