CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Genstruct Inc., a systems biology company focused on identifying molecular mechanisms, networks and biomarkers to better develop novel therapeutics, molecular diagnostics and patient-specific therapies, today announced that it has appointed industry expert, David de Graaf, Ph.D., as its chief scientific officer (CSO).
"We are very pleased to have David join the Genstruct team," said Chris Varma, Ph.D., Genstruct's president and CEO. "He brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and ideas coupled with demonstrated leadership. In addition to leading the scientific side of our current business, David will play a key role in driving the future evolution of our company."
"I am looking forward to working with the Genstruct team and to be in a position to actualize the potential of systems biology to dramatically change the drug discovery process," said Dr. de Graaf. "I have been a customer of Genstruct and as such I find myself in the unique position of knowing what a big pharma partner would like from a company like Genstruct."
Dr. de Graaf joined Genstruct after spending two years at Boehringer-Ingelheim as vice president of biotherapeutics and integrative biology. In this role, Dr. de Graaf built a world-class biotherapeutics research organization, using computational and systems biology to develop a pipeline with new targets, as well as specify the desired properties of each drug to achieve efficacy and safety in human settings; this group became the template for extensive further growth in therapeutics research.
Prior to Boehringer-Ingelheim, Dr. de Graaf was the first director of systems biology at Pfizer. In this position, he provided a strategy to implement systems biology as a way to transform drug research for Pfizer, and led a team at the Pfizer Research and Technology Center (RTC), working on applying systems biology approaches to issues across the Pfizer pipeline.
Before joining Pfizer, Dr. de Graaf spent five years at AstraZeneca, where he built the first systems biology team, focused on modeling and simulation in both the UK and the US. Previously, his work with Prof. Doron Lancet at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, used computational and wet biology approaches to try to deconvolute odorant binding to olfactory receptors. At Prof. Eric Lander's suggestion, Dr. de Graaf relocated to the Center for Genome Research at the Whitehead/MIT, where he set up a group working on target validation, and worked in close collaboration with colleagues at Millennium, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Affymetrix.
Founded in 2002, Genstruct is a systems biology company focused on elucidating the complexity of biology for the development of safe and effective therapeutics and molecular diagnostics. By developing Causal Network™ models for complex biological systems, Genstruct develops a deep molecular understanding of diseases and drug action, and designs mechanistic biomarkers and molecular diagnostics to facilitate drug development and personalized medicine. Genstruct's Consulting Services division engages in short-, mid- and long-term partnerships with top tier pharmaceutical and life sciences companies, to develop new therapeutics and mechanistic biomarkers in the areas of oncology, metabolic disorders, cardiovascular diseases and inflammation. Genstruct was awarded the Bio-IT World 2008 Best Practices Award in the Drug Discovery & Development category for its joint collaboration with Sirtris Pharmaceuticals (a GSK company). Genstruct is a privately held company based in Cambridge, Mass. For more information, please visit www.genstruct.com.
Genstruct and the Genstruct logo are registered trademarks and Causal Network Model and Knowledge Assembly are trademarks of Genstruct, Inc. All other trademarks or registered trademarks are properties of their respective owners.
A & E Communications for Genstruct
SOURCE Genstruct Inc.