XTuit Pharmaceuticals Names New CEO

Deborah Dunsire, MD has been appointed the new President and Chief Executive Officer of XTuit Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a privately-held biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics targeting the disease-promoting microenvironment in fibrotic diseases and cancer. Dr. Dunsire has more than two decades of experience in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry, including eight years as President and CEO of Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which became Takeda Oncology.

“We welcome Deborah’s deep experience and strategic business acumen to help build our vision and future for XTuit,” Alan Crane, Partner at Polaris Partners and Chairman of the Board of XTuit, said in a statement. “Deborah’s exceptional track record of leadership and oncology expertise as well as a strong vision for building companies will serve XTuit exceptionally well as we embark on the next stage of transforming leading-edge science into important new medicines.”

Thomas J. Lynch, Jr., MD Appointed Chief Science Officer at BMS

Bristol-Myers Squibb appointed Thomas J. Lynch, Jr., MD, EVP and Chief Scientific Officer following the retirement of Dr. Francis Cuss. As part of the move, Dr. Lynch will step down from the Board of Directors of BMS in order to serve in his new role. Dr. Lynch brings with him more than 30 years of medical, management, and leadership experience, including more than 23 years at Massachusetts General Hospital.

“Tom is an internationally recognized oncologist known for his leadership in the treatment of lung cancer and has made significant contributions to the field of targeted therapies throughout his career,” Giovanni Caforio, MD, CEO and Chairman Designate of Bristol-Myers Squibb, said in a statement.

Acasti Pharma

Acasti Pharma Inc. appointed two leading cardiovascular disease experts to its newly established Scientific Advisory Board. Robert Hegele, MD is a distinguished university professor at Western University, and Director of London Regional Genomics Centre at Robarts Research Institute in London, Canada. Barry A. Franklin, PhD is Director of Preventive Cardiology and Cardiac Rehabilitation at William Beaumont Hospital, and he holds professorial appointments at Oakland University, William Beaumont School of Medicine, and Wayne State University, Department of Physiology, School of Medicine.

Advaxis, Inc.

Al Blunt, MD, has joined the cancer immunotherapies company as VP of Medical. Dr. Blunt joins Advaxis from Covance where he was Executive Medical Director for Oncology. In his new role, he will lead the company’s clinical development strategy and activities from pre-clinical to commercial phase trials.

Adverum Biotechnologies

The gene therapy company appointed Patrick Machado, JD to its Board of Directors. Machado, who will serve as the Chairman of the Audit Committee, has 20 years of experience with biopharma companies leading finance, business development, and legal functions.

Allegro Ophthalmics

The biotechnology company focused on the development of novel therapies to treat vitreoretinal diseases hired Melvin Sarayba, MD as VP of Clinical Affairs. Dr. Sarayba is an ophthalmic surgeon with an extensive clinical research background. He will be responsible for Allegro’s U.S. and international clinical program for Luminate.

Aqua Pharmaceuticals

Almirall’s Aqua Pharmaceuticals, a specialty dermatology company, hired Katrina Sergeev as Associate Director of Marketing. Sergeev will be responsible for supporting the marketing of Aqua’s product portfolio, including the development and implementation of brand planning and promotions, as well as field sales support. She previously handled the marketing efforts for Taro Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc.’s Branded Dermatology business unit.

CVS Health

The pharmacy innovation company promoted Jonathan C. Roberts to EVP and Chief Operating Officer. Roberts previously served as President of CVS Caremark, the company’s leading pharmacy benefit management business. As COO, he will be responsible for consolidating operational oversight across CVS Health’s unique suite of assets.

Eli Lilly and Company

Johna Norton was promoted to SVP of Global Quality following the retirement of Fionnuala Walsh. Previously, Norton was Lilly’s Vice President, Global Quality for API Manufacturing, Product Research and Development. She originally joined the company in 1990 as an Analytical Chemist.

KalVista Pharmaceuticals

Andreas Maetzel, MD, MSc, PhD, was named the Senior Vice President, Medical at KalVista Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a clinical-stage pharma company focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of small molecule protease inhibitors. Dr. Maetzel has more than 25 years of experience in the industry and was most recently VP, Global Medical Affairs at BioCryst Pharmaceuticals.

Molecular Assemblies, Inc.

Floyd E. Romesberg, PhD, a renowned scientist and Professor of Chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute, joined Molecular Assemblies’ Scientific Advisory Board. Dr. Romesberg has managed a research group studying different aspects of evolution at The Scripps Research Institute since 1998.


Poxel SA, a biopharma company focused on the development of innovative drugs to treat type 2 diabetes, has brought aboard Christophe Arbet-Engels, MD, PhD, MBA to serve as Chief Medical Officer and EVP, Late Development & Medical Affairs. Dr. Arbet-Engels will be based in Poxel’s Boston area office and will help as the company looks to advance its experimental drug Imeglimin into a registration program in Japan later this year.


Bob Quintana was hired as VP, Account Operations to further grow the agency’s client portfolio. He will enhance the account team using a new operational model focused on excellence in all areas of account management.

Sienna Biopharmaceuticals

David E.I. Pyott, MDhc, the former Chairman and CEO of Allergan, has joined Sienna Biopharmaceuticals as special advisor to Sienna’s CEO and Board of Directors. Under his leadership, Allergan was transformed from a small eye care business with approximately $1 billion in sales to a global specialty pharma and medical device company, with sales of more than $7 billion in 2014 and more than 10,000 employees.


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