NEWARK, N.J., Dec. 19, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Rafael Holdings, Inc., (NYSE: RFL), has launched an initiative to identify and develop or in-license promising pre-clinical compounds targeting the unique cellular metabolism of cancers with high levels of unmet needs.
The Rafael Holdings' initiative is named the Barer Institute for Dr. Sol J. Barer, Chairman of the Board of Teva Pharmaceuticals, Chairman of Centrexion Therapeutics, Lead Director of Contrafect Corp, Chairman of Neximmune, and Board member of 3DBioteherapeutics and Aevi Genomic Therapeutics, Founding Chair of the Hackensack Meridian Center for Discovery and Innovation and advisor to the Israel Biotech Fund. Dr. Barer is a co-founder of Celgene Corporation and served as Celgene's Executive Chairman, President, CEO, and COO. Previously, he was the founder of the biotechnology group at Celanese Corporation, which was subsequently spun off as Celgene.
In addition to a distinguished Board of Directors and management, the Barer Institute has assembled a renowned scientific leadership team including:
Chief Scientific Advisor: Chi Van Dang, M.D., Ph.D., Scientific Director of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Professor of the Molecular & Cellular Oncogenesis Program at Wistar, and Editor-in Chief of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)'s flagship journal, Cancer Research.
Board of Directors and Scientific Advisory Board Member: Richard Axel, M.D., recipient of the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) professor, and professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics, neuroscience, and pathology at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Scientific Advisory Board Member: Josh Rabinowitz, M.D., Ph.D.: Professor of Chemistry at the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics at Princeton University and leader in 1-carbon metabolism research.
Scientific Advisory Board Member: Joseph M. Salvino, Ph.D.: Medicinal chemist and Professor at the Molecular & Cellular Oncogenesis Program at the Wistar Institute and Scientific Director of the Wistar's Molecular Screening & Protein Expression Facility. The Salvino Laboratory at Wistar focuses on early drug discovery and small molecule tool compounds for in vivo target validation.
Dr. Dang said, "The Barer Institute, motivated by clinical responses of Rafael Pharma's CPI-613® (devimistat), will drive pre-clinical development of new chemical modifiers of cancer immunometabolism. Our work to develop a new class of broadly applicable cancer therapies will be informed by our distinguished Scientific Advisory Board including Professors Richard Axel at Columbia, Josh Rabinowitz at Princeton and Joseph Salvino at the Wistar Institute."
Howard Jonas, Chairman and CEO of Rafael Holdings, will serve as Chairman of the Barer Institute.
The Barer Institute also will be led by its Director, Ari Landon, Ph.D., previously Director of Innovation at Rafael Holdings. Ari Landon earned his doctorate from the University of Maryland identifying translational strategies in lymphoma and was a post-doctoral fellow at the Yale School of Medicine developing methods to study mitochondria in lymphoma.
"We are excited to launch the Barer Institute," Dr. Landon said. "We have assembled top-flight scientific advisory and hands-on operational teams to develop novel strategies targeting cancer utilizing intellectual property developed internally or obtained through in-licensing agreements with academic institutions. Our streamlined and innovative approach enables scientists to focus entirely on collaborative development."
About Rafael Holdings, Inc.:
Rafael Holdings holds commercial real estate assets and interests in clinical stage pharmaceutical companies. The real estate holdings consist of properties in Newark and Piscataway, New Jersey and Jerusalem, Israel. The pharmaceutical holdings include interests in two companies focused on the development and commercialization of oncology drugs: Rafael Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and LipoMedix Pharmaceuticals Ltd. In addition, Rafael Holdings through its wholly owned subsidiary, the Barer Institute, is developing a pipeline of therapeutic compounds including compounds to regulate cancer metabolism. For more information, visit www.rafaelholdings.com.
SOURCE Rafael Holdings, Inc.