BOSTON and VIENNA, Aug. 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Arsanis, Inc., a development-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on monoclonal antibody therapeutics for severe infectious diseases, today announced the appointment of Rene Russo, PharmD, BCPS as Chief Development Officer. Dr. Russo, most recently Vice President, Global Medical Affairs at Cubist Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Merck in 2015), will be a member of the Arsanis executive team and will provide strategic planning and leadership for the clinical development of ASN100, Arsanis' lead program for the prevention and treatment of severe Staphylococcus aureus infections, and other pipeline product candidates.
Dr. Russo joins Arsanis following a distinguished career marked by more than 15 years' experience in the field of anti-bacterial drug development, including more than 10 years in senior clinical positions at Cubist. Throughout her career she has managed all phases of drug development, from the establishment of human proof-of-concept through product approval and commercialization, including late-stage research and life cycle management. Over the course of her career, Dr. Russo was directly involved in the development of over 10 anti-infective agents as well as global commercial product launches for 5 novel antibacterial agents.
"Rene's extensive background in all phases of clinical development will be critical in our ongoing efforts to define Arsanis as a leader in the development of novel anti-infectives," said Eszter Nagy, M.D., Ph.D., Co-Founder, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Arsanis. "Her recent experience with several globally approved anti-bacterials to treat serious and life threatening infections is distinguished by her unique ability to apply novel strategies in key markets around the world. Rene will build and lead a Boston-based global clinical development team and greatly strengthen the management team in further growing Arsanis."
"As drug-resistant bacteria continue to proliferate around the globe, novel strategies will be required to combat these serious and life-threatening infections," said Rene Russo. "Arsanis' approach to precision therapies finds ways to target specific pathogenic bacteria while preserving the host microbiome and limiting bacterial resistance. The company is on the cutting-edge of developing such novel approaches to combat this global threat, and I am pleased to join Eszter and her team at Arsanis."
New Board Members
Arsanis also today announced the appointments of Dan Burgess and Amy Schulman to its Board of Directors. Dan Burgess is currently a Venture Partner with SV Life Sciences and was previously the founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Rempex Pharmaceuticals, Inc., prior to its acquisition by the Medicines Company. Amy Schulman is currently a Venture Partner with Polaris Partners and CEO of Lyndra, Inc. and Arsia Therapeutics. She was previously responsible for leading Pfizer, Inc.'s $4 billion Consumer Healthcare business and held roles as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Pfizer, Inc., amongst others.
"We are excited to welcome Amy and Dan to the Arsanis Board as we move our lead program, ASN100 towards the clinic," said Tillman Gerngross, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Arsanis. "Their accomplishments and industry experience will bring valuable perspective to our Board as we build value in Arsanis."
Arsanis, Inc. is a development-stage company creating precision therapeutics for serious bacterial infections not effectively controlled by currently available treatments. The company applies its extensive knowledge of infectious disease biology to design optimal human monoclonal antibody therapeutics that precisely target pathogens directly and/or support host defenses against the infecting bacteria and their toxins. The company is building a broad product pipeline addressing the most important Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial pathogens threatening hospitalized and high-risk patients, with its lead therapeutic candidate, ASN100, aimed at the prevention and treatment of serious Staphylococcus aureus infections and expected to enter clinical development in the fall in 2015. Arsanis, Inc is a U.S. company headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, with European research and pre-clinical development operations headquartered in Vienna, Austria (Arsanis Biosciences GmbH). For more information, please visit the Arsanis website at http://www.arsanis.com.
SOURCE Arsanis, Inc.