Chutes & Ladders—Genzyme vet Sherblom joins ReForm amid subcutaneous delivery shift

(AscentXmedia)

                Chutes and Ladders
Welcome to this week's Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings, firings and retirings throughout the industry. Please send the good word—or the bad—from your shop to Fraiser Kansteiner, and we will feature it here at the end of each week.


ReForm taps ex-Genzyme exec to lead subcutaneous delivery strategy

ReForm Biologics
Jim Sherblom becomes chairman of the board of directors.

Former Genzyme executive Sherblom joins ReForm as the company shifts focus to the development of subcutaneous versions of intravenous products. Recently, ReForm has worked on proprietary excipients to improve biologic formulations, with a view to extend product life cycles, enable alternative dosing and improve manufacturing. It's now homing in on subQ, with plans to convert intravenous formulations given in hospitals to subcutaneous injections that can be administered in outpatient settings. Sherblom is on deck to lead that strategy shift as board chairman. Sherblom became the first chief financial officer at Genzyme back in 1984, before joining Transgenic Sciences as CEO. He helped that company go public and, eventually, Sherblom sold Transgenic to Genzyme and became a venture capitalist. Fierce Pharma


Duchenne-focused Solid Biosciences unveils dual management boost

Solid Biosciences
Erin Powers Brennan joins as chief legal officer, while Joel Schneider, Ph.D., moves up as COO.

Brennan signs on as chief legal officer at Solid Biosciences, focused on developing therapies for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Before joining the Solid team, Brennan was senior vice president, general counsel and secretary at Covetrus, where she served as the head legal executive for the company's animal health technology, pharmacy and services business. She took to her post at Solid on March 1. Meanwhile, the company promoted Joel Schneider, Ph.D., to chief operating officer. Schneider, who was also Solid's first employee, CEO Ilan Ganot pointed out in a release, most recently oversaw the GMP implementation strategy of Solid's next-generation manufacturing process. In his new role, which he assumed on March 2, Schneider will take charge of corporate and technical operations, quality, patient advocacy, communications, corporate strategy and human resources. Release


Biocon biosimilar unit names deputy CEO after chief executive's February exit

Biocon Biologics
Shreehas Tambe dons deputy CEO mantle as Susheel Umesh comes on board as chief commercial officer for emerging markets.

Tambe takes the reins as deputy CEO of Biocon's biologics unit after chief executive Christiane Hamacher's exit late last month. Biocon Biologics in January announced Hamacher would step down due to "professional differences with the chairperson on strategic priorities and vision for the company,” referring specifically to Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, The Hindu Business Line reported. Hamacher ceased to be a member of the company's board on January 20, with February 28 her last day as CEO. Tambe, whose post took effect on March 1, has been with Biocon since 1997. He most recently served as chief operating officer at Biocon Biologics, and was SVP and global head of Biocon's insulins business unit before that. Umesh, new to the Biocon team, joins as chief commercial officer for emerging markets, where he'll also be responsible for the company's branded formulations business. Most recently, he led domestic formulations as CEO of India's Panacea Biotec. Release


> Cue Biopharma continues to build out its scientific advisory board with the additions of Abul Abbas, M.D., and Michael Kalos, Ph.D. Immunology expert Abbas is a distinguished professor in pathology and former chair of the department of pathology at the University of California, San Francisco. He's had a hand in a number of leading medical journals, too, having served as one of the founding editors and associate editor of Immunity, associate editor and section editor for The Journal of Immunology, associate editor of Cell and more. Kalos is the managing director of Next Pillar Consulting and previously served as executive vice president and head of research and development at ArsenalBio. He joins with more than 25 years of experience in cell therapy, oncology vaccines and immuno-oncology. Release

> Nabriva Therapeutics, developing innovative anti-infective agents to treat serious infections, has pegged Daniel Dolan to replace Gary Sender as chief financial officer, effective after March 12. Sender, who's retiring from the company, will stick around through at least the end of the year to support Dolan's transition into the role, Nabriva said. Dolan comes over from Radius Health, where he was principal financial officer. He worked at Shire for twelve years before that, advancing to the role of vice president, finance-global product strategy. Release

> Roche's Genentech unit has named Lilli Petruzzelli, M.D., Ph.D., as senior vice president, early clinical development for Genentech's Research and Early Development organization (gRED). Petruzzelli assumed her post on March 1. She will guide gRED teams in the development of new clinical drug candidates and help bring trial-ready investigational medicines to late-stage development. Petruzzelli joins Genentech from Incyte, where she was group vice president, early clinical development. Prior to that, she was the global head of translational clinical oncology at the Novartis Institutes of Biomedical Research. 

> Singapore's ImmunoScape has brought on Geoff Nosrati, Ph.D., to lead the company's U.S. expansion as chief business officer. Meanwhile, ImmunoScape has established its U.S. headquarters in San Diego. Previously, Nosrati advised biotech clients at McKinsey, where he was focused on corporate strategy, finance, due diligence and M&A. He also led strategy and corporate development at Aduro Biotech, a company that develops therapies for oncology and renal disease. Release

> Clinical-stage gene therapy company Gyroscope Therapeutics named Jessica Stitt as chief financial officer from March 1. She most recently served as vice president of finance and operations at MyoKardia, which was snapped up by Bristol Myers Squibb in November. Prior to that, she was vice president of finance and investor relations at Theravance Biopharma, which she joined in June 2014 as part of the company's spinoff from Theravance, now Innoviva. Release

> ERS Genomics signed on Jon Kratochvil as vice president for business development and licensing in North America. Kratochvil joins the ERS team from MilliporeSigma, where he served as director of business development and licensing. In that role, he oversaw all global development opportunities for the company's gene editing and novel modalities technologies. Earlier in his career, Kratochvil was a licensing manager and the competitive intelligence analyst for Abbott Laboratories' diagnostics division. Release

> Impel NeuroPharma has tapped Leonard Paolillo as chief commercial officer and Gerald Penn as vice president, market access and trade. Paolillo and Penn come on board as Impel looks to set the commercial stage for a potential launch of its migraine med Trudhesa. Before joining Impel, Paolillo was executive vice president and chief commercial officer at the North American affiliate of Tokyo, Japan-based specialty pharmaceutical company Kyowa Kirin. Penn comes over from Esperion Therapeutics, where he was vice president of market access and trade. Release

California-based medication management solutions and adherence tools provider Omnicell has enlisted Christine Mellon as executive vice president, chief people officer. Mellon will be in charge of talent management, employee culture and engagement, diversity and inclusion, global rewards, business partnering, and real estate, Omnicell said. Previously, she was chief human resources officer with CSG. Before that, Mellon served as vice president, human capital management for Oracle. Release

Gene therapy company AavantiBio named Douglas Swirsky as chief financial officer and treasurer from February 1. Swirsky brings with him a background in investment banking, having held roles at Morgan Stanley, Stifel Nicolaus, UBS and other firms. Most recently, he was president and chief executive officer of Rexahn Pharmaceuticals, where he led the company's merger with Ocuphire Pharma. Release

Muscle disease company Dyne Therapeutics has brought on Wildon Farwell, M.D., MPH, as chief medical officer. Farwell comes on board with a background in clinical development and medical affairs in neuromuscular diseases and oligonucleotide therapies. He joins Dyne from Biogen, where he was vice president, global head of neuromuscular diseases, medical affairs. During his ten-year run at the company, Farwell led development and life cycle management for Biogen's spinal muscular atrophy therapy Spinraza. Release

eGenesis named Sapna Srivastava, Ph.D., as chief financial officer. Srivastava was most recently chief financial and strategy officer at Abide Therapeutics, which was bought by Lundbeck. She held a similar role at Intellia Therapeutics before that. Prior to her time at Intellia, Srivastava spent more than a decade on Wall Street as a senior biotechnology analyst for Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and ThinkEquity Partners. Release