Muna Therapeutics appoints Dr. Donald Nicholson as Independent Chair of Board of Directors

Written by: Editor
Published on: 15 Sep 2021

Muna TherapeuticsIndustry leader with expertise in building successful biotechnology companies

Copenhagen, Denmark and Boston, US 13th September 2021 – Muna Therapeutics (“Muna”), pioneering the development of first-in-class small molecule therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced the appointment of Dr. Donald Nicholson, as independent Chair of its Board of Directors.

Dr. Nicholson has deep experience across both biotech and large pharma. He was previously the CEO of Nimbus Therapeutics and was responsible for major transactions with Gilead, Celgene and Genentech. Prior to this, he spent 25 years at Merck, where he held various strategic, leadership and operational roles across diverse therapeutic areas including inflammation, immunology and neuroscience, amongst others. Dr. Nicholson began his career at Merck Frosst in Montreal as a senior research biologist and advanced through various positions of increasing responsibility, including vice president and site head of the Merck Neurosciences Research site in San Diego, vice president of immunology and infectious diseases and vice president and worldwide discovery head for the Bone, Respiratory, Immunology and Endocrine franchise based in New Jersey. He is Chair of the Board of Directors at NodThera, Disc Medicine and Jnana Therapeutics, and Board Director at Kymera Therapeutics (KYMR) and Generation Bio (GBIO).

Rita Balice-Gordon, Chief Executive Officer of Muna Therapeutics, said: “We are delighted to welcome Dr. Nicholson as independent Chair at Muna.  He brings to Muna a wealth of experience in biopharma and biotech, insights into building high-functioning companies and boards, and a commitment to advancing therapies for patients with neurodegenerative diseases.  We look forward to working with him and the Board as we move forward.”

Morten Graugaard Døssing, prior Chair of the Board of Directors of Muna Therapeutics said: “We are very pleased to welcome Dr. Nicholson to our Board of Directors as independent Chair. He brings to Muna his exceptional experience and leadership to support our mission to advance and strengthen our therapeutic pipeline.” 

Donald Nicholson, incoming independent Chair of the Board of Directors of Muna Therapeutics said: “I am delighted to be joining Muna as Chair of the Board.  Muna’s innovative approach to neurodegenerative disease therapeutics as well as its stellar leadership and scientific teams inspire great confidence in its future success.”

Dr. Nicholson has co-authored more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals and is internationally recognized for his contributions to the field of apoptotic cell death. He received his doctorate in biochemistry from the University of Western Ontario and trained as a Medical Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the University of Munich in Germany. He is the recipient of multiple academic and professional honors.

Muna Therapeutics previously raised US$ 73 million (EUR 60 million) in a Series A financing round co-led by Novo Holdings, Sofinnova Partners, Droia Ventures and LSP Dementia Fund, with Polaris Partners, Polaris Innovation Fund, Sanofi Ventures, V-Bio Ventures and VIB joining the round. The recent raise will help Muna progress its innovative small molecule candidates to the clinic, further develop its innovative drug discovery platform as well as expand its US presence.