London, 6 May 2015 – Autolus Limited ("Autolus"), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialisation of next-generation engineered T-cell therapies for haematological and solid tumours, today announced the appointment of industry experts, Mr John Berriman and Dr Kapil Dhingra, to the Company's Board of Directors.
Dr Christian Itin, Chairman of Autolus, said:
"It's an exciting time in the Company's development with Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) immunotherapy products having the potential to transform cancer therapy. We are delighted to welcome John Berriman and Kapil Dhingra to our Board of Directors; two industry professionals who bring with them a wealth of experience in the sector. John has founded, financed and grown a number of biotechnology companies in both Europe and the USA and Kapil, an oncology expert, has been involved with multiple oncology products being taken through development to regulatory approval during his career as an academic and at Hoffmann-La Roche."
John Berriman has significant experience in the biotech industry at board and operational level and as a strategic consultant. He is currently Chairman of ReNeuron Group plc and Autifony Therapeutics Ltd; and a non-executive director of Cytos AG. He is a past Chairman of Heptares Therapeutics Ltd (sold to Sosei in February 2015) and Algeta ASA (sold to Bayer AG in 2014) and was a director of Micromet Inc. until its sale to Amgen in 2012. Previously he was a director of Abingworth Management, an international healthcare venture capital firm, where he was involved in founding, financing and serving as a director of several biotechnology companies in Europe and the USA, many of which obtained listings on public stock exchanges. Prior to that, John spent 14 years with Celltech Group plc and was a member of its Board when it listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1994. He has a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cambridge and an MBA from the London Business School.
Dr Kapil Dhingra is a Managing Member of KAPital Consulting, a healthcare consulting firm he founded in 2008, which provides oncology-related strategic consulting services to biopharmaceutical companies. From 1999-2008, he served in positions of increasing responsibility at Hoffmann-La Roche Inc., including Vice President, Oncology Clinical Development, and Head, Oncology Disease Biology Leadership Team. Before joining Roche, he worked at Eli Lilly & Co, and on the faculty of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. During his tenures at both Eli Lilly and Hoffmann-La Roche, Kapil maintained an active academic career first as a clinical associate professor at Indiana University School of Medicine and most recently as a Clinical Affiliate at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He also serves on several emerging life science company boards, including Exosome Diagnostics Inc., Advanced Accelerator Applications SA, and, Epitherapeutics ApS. He previously served on the boards of several successful companies,
including Biovex, Micromet, Algeta and YM Biosciences, that were acquired by major pharmaceutical companies. He holds an M.B., B.S. degree from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.
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Notes for Editors:
Autolus is a private biopharmaceutical company, focused on the development and commercialisation of engineered T-cell immunotherapy products with extreme efficacy in treatment of life-threatening cancers. Using its proprietary platform, Autolus is developing next-generation engineered CAR T-cell products, and is positioned to be a leader in the use of human cells to treat disease. It is expected that this platform will provide a source of sustainable competitive advantage in both haematological and solid cancers, most of which are not addressable using the current CAR technology. Autolus' shareholders include Syncona LLP and UCL Business PLC. For further information please visit the Company's website at: www.autolus.com
About Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) Immunotherapy
CAR immunotherapy involves re-programming a patient's immune system to kill tumour cells. T-cells are extracted from a patient's blood, manipulated outside the body to incorporate the CAR gene, and then returned to the patient by infusion. The CAR gene introduces a targeting mechanism to the T-cells, enabling them to recognise, engage and destroy tumour cells in a highly-specific manner. Initial clinical trials of CAR T-cells in B-cell malignancies, including acute lymphoblastic leukaemia ("ALL"), suggest that this approach may transform treatment of cancer patients, many of whom have no other therapeutic options.