eFFECTOR Announces Appointment of John W. Smither to its Board of Directors

SAN DIEGO, March 23, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — eFFECTOR Therapeutics, Inc., a leader in the development of selective translation regulators (STRs) for the treatment of cancer, today announced the appointment of John W. Smither to the company’s board of directors.

Mr. Smither has more than 20 years of experience as a finance executive in the biopharmaceutical industry, including serving as chief financial officer in his most recent operational roles at Unity Biotechnology, Sienna Biopharmaceuticals, which he will rejoin as its chief financial officer on April 16, 2018, and Kythera Biopharmaceuticals. He currently serves on the board of directors of Achaogen, Inc., as chair of the audit committee and as a member of the compensation committee.

“John brings a wealth of financial experience to eFFECTOR, as well as a track record of success in the biopharmaceutical industry,” said Steve Worland, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of eFFECTOR. “We look forward to drawing upon his strong financial and strategic expertise as we continue to advance as a company and progress our development programs.”

From 2016 to 2017, Mr. Smither was chief financial officer at Unity Biotechnology, Inc., where he was responsible for all financial aspects at the preclinical company. During this same period, he was chief financial officer at Sienna Biopharmaceuticals, a clinical stage development company, where he led the company’s successful private financings and prepared the company for an initial public offering. From November 2007 to October 2015, he was chief financial officer at Kythera Biopharmaceuticals until it was acquired by Allergan for $2.1 billion.  As CFO of Kythera, Mr. Smither oversaw multiple private and public financings including Kythera’s initial public offering and subsequent follow-on offerings. Between 1998 and 2007 he held a number of positions of increasing responsibility at Amgen including vice president of finance and administration for Amgen’s European operations in 28 countries. Mr. Smither began his career at Ernst & Young where he was audit partner and held certification as a Certified Public Accountant.

Mr. Smither earned a B.S. with honors in accounting from California State University at Los Angeles.

About eFFECTOR Therapeutics

eFFECTOR Therapeutics is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on pioneering the discovery and development of selective translation regulators as a new class of oncology drugs. The company’s investigational compounds are designed to restore the translational control of processes which tumors have hijacked for their benefit, while preserving normal cell function. eFFECTOR’s most advanced program focuses on the development of eFT508, a MNK1/2 inhibitor in development for the treatment of patients with solid tumors and lymphoma. The company has additional selective translation regulator programs currently in discovery and development and maintains global rights to all of its development programs. For more information visit www.effector.com.


Robert H. Uhl
Westwicke Partners

Heidi Chokeir, Ph.D.