Aarhus, Denmark, and Copenhagen, Denmark, 16 April 2020, STipe Therapeutics (STipe), a company with a novel approach to leverage the stimulator of interferon genes (STING) Pathway, a major driver of innate immunity, by a unique sensitization mechanism, announced the appointment of seasoned industry experts, Dr Natalie Sacks as Independent Board Member and Dr Richard Bethell as Chief Development Officer.
“Both Natalie and Richard are highly experienced industry executives who bring a wealth of international drug development and approval expertise to STipe,” said Dr Claus Elsborg Olesen Chief Executive Officer of STipe. “We are developing novel cancer therapies and I look forward to drawing on their extensive experience as we prepare for the selection of a lead candidate for clinical development.”
“We continue our successful path to bring world-class professionals to our Company, who also bring expertise in disease areas and technologies that are highly relevant.” said Dr Christian Schetter, Executive Chairman of STipe.
Dr Sacks serves as the Chief Medical Officer at Harpoon Therapeutics, focused on the development of novel T cell therapeutics. She previously served as Chief Medical Officer at Aduro Biotech, a company working on the advancement of novel immuno-oncology technologies including STING agonisation. She has also held senior roles at Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Exelixis and Cell Genesys. Dr. Sacks was an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of California, San Francisco, and served as volunteer Attending Physician in Hematology-Oncology at San Francisco General Hospital for more than a decade. She also currently serves on the Board of Directors at Zymeworks Inc and Caribou Biosciences. She received her MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, her MS in Biostatistics from Harvard University School of Public Health, and her BA in Mathematics from Bryn Mawr College.
“STipe has assembled a group of world-renowned scientific co-founders, alongside experienced company leadership,” said Dr Natalie Sacks, Board Director of STipe. “I am delighted to join the Board of Directors and to play a role in helping the company realise the full potential of its technologies as it works towards bringing the next wave of novel cancer therapies to patients.”
Dr Bethell brings 30 years’ experience in drug discovery and development in the biopharmaceutical industry. Most recently he served as Chief Scientific Officer at Medivir AB, where he oversaw the renewal of the company’s R&D strategy, transforming the company from a broad-based early discovery organization into a clinical stage oncology company. Under his scientific leadership, Medivir built a portfolio of development stage cancer projects, including MIV-818, a novel agent for the treatment of liver cancers, and MIV-828, which has been designed for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia. Before joining Medivir, he held senior positions in in the R&D organizations of Boehringer Ingelheim, Shire, Pfizer and GSK. He holds a D. Phil. in Chemistry from the University of Oxford.
“I’m excited by STipe’s approach of harnessing the innate immune system to combat cancer,” said Dr Richard Bethell, Chief Development Officer of STipe. “The company has identified potential lead compounds that modulate the STING pathway in a novel way, thereby changing the tumour microenvironment and demonstrating antitumor activity preclinically and I look forward to working with my new colleagues as we progress our programs towards the clinic.”