Aileron Therapeutics is a clinical stage company discovering and developing novel medicines for the treatment of cancer and cancer-supportive care by targeting high-value and historically undruggable intracellular targets using a proprietary platform of stabilized cell-permeating peptides.
Our lead product candidate, ALRN-6924, is a first-in-class dual MDM2/MDMX inhibitor that has been tested in hematologic cancer and is currently being evaluated in a Phase 2 clinical trial in combination with Pfizer’s palbociclib (Ibrance®) for the treatment of MDM2-amplified advanced solid tumors, and in an upcoming Phase 1b/2 clinical trial to evaluate ALRN-6924 as a myelopreservative agent to protect against chemotherapy-induced toxicities.
Emerging ALRN-6924 clinical results and substantial preclinical data support its use across multiple cancer types as a monotherapy or as a combination therapy with targeted agents, chemotherapies, and immuno-oncology drugs. Aileron is exploring collaboration opportunities regarding ALRN-6924 and in other areas where Aileron’s proprietary platform of stabilized cell-permeating peptides can be applied such as targeted protein degradation, HIF1-α, and the Bcl-2 family of cancer targets.
Manuel Aivado has served as our President and CEO since September 2018. Prior to this, he was our SVP, CMO & CSO since September 2014. From March 2012 until September 2014, Dr. Aivado served as vice president of clinical development and pharmacovigilance at Taiho Oncology, Inc. From October 2006 until March 2012, Dr. Aivado served as senior medical director in the clinical development group at GlaxoSmithKline, Inc. In addition, Dr. Aivado was an instructor in medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School. Prior to his industry experience, Dr. Aivado practiced clinical medicine in Germany for ten years, during which time he was awarded the Dr. Mildred Scheel cancer research scholarship award in 2002. Dr. Aivado is a German board-certified physician for internal medicine, hematology and medical oncology, and he received an M.D. and Ph.D. from the Medical School of the University of Dusseldorf, in Germany.
Vojo Vukovic has served as our Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer since November 2018. Previously, from May 2017 to November 2018, Dr. Vukovic provided consulting and advisory services to biotechnology and pharmaceutical clients, including our company. From February 2016 to May 2017, Dr. Vukovic served as senior vice president and chief medical officer at Taiho Oncology, Inc. From January 2009 to November 2015, Dr. Vukovic served as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at Synta Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company focused on novel oncology medicines. Prior to Synta, Dr. Vukovic served as medical director at Pfizer. He also was a member of the leadership team for Pfizer’s Oncology Radiotherapy Initiative. Dr. Vukovic received a M.Sc. in tumor biology and a Ph.D. in radiation biology from the University of Toronto, and a M.D. from University of Sarajevo.
Allen Annis has served as our Senior Vice President, Research, since November 2018. Dr. Annis joined our company in November 2007 and served as our Senior Director, Biophysical and Analytical Technology, from November 2007 to September 2009, and as our Vice President of Research from September 2009 to November 2018. Previously, Dr. Annis served as Director of Technology Development at Schering-Plough Research Institute, and as Vice President of New Technologies at NeoGenesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. While at NeoGenesis, Dr. Annis co-developed the company’s core drug discovery platform, the affinity selection-mass spectrometry-based Automated Ligand Identification System, or ALIS. Dr. Annis authored the key patents and publications that describe the ALIS technology and invented novel ALIS-based techniques to study protein-drug interactions. Dr. Annis received a M.A. and Ph.D. in chemistry from Harvard University, and a B.S. in chemistry from Georgia Institute of Technology.
Kathryn Gregory has served as our Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer since February 2019. Previously, from March 2018 to February 2019, Ms. Gregory was President of KG BioPharma Consulting LLC, a strategic advisory company, where she assisted small and mid-size biopharma companies in a range of corporate strategy and business development activities, including our company. From September 2017 to February 2018, Ms. Gregory served as chief business officer for Avillion LLP, a biopharmaceutical firm. From April 2009 to December 2017, Ms. Gregory served as co-founder, chief executive officer and chief business officer for Seneb BioSciences, an early-stage, rare disease company. Previously, Ms. Gregory served in senior roles for several pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, including as executive director, licensing & business development at Purdue Pharma, and as head, transactions at Shire Pharmaceuticals for the Neuroscience and Ophthalmology business units. Ms. Gregory received an M.B.A. from Pepperdine University and a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley.
Rick Wanstall has served as our Vice President, Finance and Operations since July 2018. From July 2014 to July 2018, Mr. Wanstall served as Vice President, Finance at Moderna Therapeutics, Inc., a biotechnology company focused on drug discovery and drug development based on messenger RNA. Prior to Moderna, Mr. Wanstall served as Senior Vice President, Global Finance at Stream Global Services, Inc., a multinational business process outsourcing company, from May 2010 until July 2014. Previously, Mr. Wanstall served in management roles in finance, accounting and SEC reporting for several technology and financial services companies. Mr. Wanstall began his career at Coopers & Lybrand, LLC. Mr. Wanstall received a B.A. from Salem State College, and a M.B.A. from Babson College.
Dora Ferrari has served as our Vice President, Clinical Development and Program Management since June 2019. Upon joining Aileron in November 2017, Dora has managed program oversight for our ongoing Clinical Stage programs as well as Program Management across the organization. Prior to joining Aileron, Dora spent a decade at ArQule, Inc where she was involved in Clinical Operations and Program Management, successfully leading delivery of oncology targets from discovery candidates though pivotal clinical trials. Most recently, Dora was ArQule’s Director of Clinical Development and Program Management. Dora began her pharmaceutical career in 2003 as a Clinical Research Associate for EPIX Pharmaceuticals and was a key member of the Vasovist NDA team. She has a BS in Animal Science/Pre-Vet from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
Jeffrey A. Bailey has served as chair of our board of directors since March 2018. Since January 2018, Mr. Bailey has served as chief executive officer and director of IlluminOss Medical, Inc., a medical device company. From December 2015 until March 2017, Mr. Bailey served as chair and chief executive officer of Neurovance, Inc., a biotechnology firm acquired by Otsuka Pharmaceutical in 2017. Previously, from January 2013 through June 2015, Mr. Bailey served as president and chief executive officer and as a director of Lantheus Medical Imaging, Inc., a public medical diagnostic company. Prior to 2013, Mr. Bailey held various leadership positions with several public and private pharmaceutical and medical device companies, including operating unit president at Novartis Pharmaceuticals, a multinational pharmaceutical company, and a 22-year career with Johnson & Johnson, multinational medical devices, pharmaceutical and consumer packaged goods manufacturing company (including Janssen Pharmaceutica NV). Mr. Bailey has also served as a director of Madison Vaccines, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, since October 2017. Mr. Bailey received a B.S. from Rutgers University.
Manuel Aivado has served as our president and chief executive officer and as a member of our board of directors since September 2018. Previously, Dr. Aivado served as our senior vice president, chief medical officer since September 2014. From March 2012 to September 2014, Dr. Aivado served as vice president of clinical development and pharmacovigilance at Taiho Oncology, Inc., a pharmaceutical company. From October 2006 to March 2012, Dr. Aivado served as senior medical director in the clinical development group at GlaxoSmithKline, Inc., a global pharmaceutical company. Dr. Aivado has also served as an instructor in medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School. Prior to his industry experience, Dr. Aivado practiced clinical medicine in Germany for nearly ten years, during which time he was awarded the Dr. Mildred Scheel cancer research scholarship award in 2002. Dr. Aivado is a German board-certified physician for internal medicine, hematology and medical oncology, and he received an M.D. and Ph.D. from the Medical School of the University of Dusseldorf, in Germany.
Reinhard Ambros has served as a member of our board of directors since June 2013. Dr. Ambros retired from Novartis Venture Funds after serving as global head from August 2005 until September 2017. He previously served as head of group strategic planning for Novartis AG, a multinational pharmaceutical company, from 2001 until 2005, and as global head of business development and licensing for cardiovascular and metabolic diseases at Novartis Pharma AG. Dr. Ambros received an M.S. from the University of Regensburg, Germany, and a Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry and pharmacology from the University of Regensburg, Germany.
John McArthur has served as a member of our board of directors since April 2011. Since 1995, Dr. McArthur has served as the George F. Baker professor of business administration emeritus and dean emeritus at Harvard Business School. From 1980 until 1995, he served as dean of the faculty at Harvard Business School. Prior to that, Dr. McArthur was a member of the faculty at Harvard Business School since 1962. Since 1999, Dr. McArthur has served as a member of the board of directors of Koç Holding, A.S., a multinational industrial conglomerate. From 1995 to 2005, Dr. McArthur served as senior advisor to the president of The World Bank. Dr. McArthur formerly served as chair of Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He received a B.C. from the University of British Columbia and an M.B.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard Business School.
Mr. McKee joined Aileron’s board of directors in June 2019 and is a seasoned pharmaceutical industry executive and consultant. Currently, Mr. McKee serves as the Chief Executive Officer of MBJC Associates, LLC, a business consulting firm serving the pharmaceutical and biotech industry. Prior to joining MBJC Associates, Mr. McKee served as the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer for EKR Therapeutics, Inc. from July 2010 until June 2012, when EKR was sold to Cornerstone Therapeutics Inc. From December 2008 until March 2010, Mr. McKee served as the executive vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer of Barr Pharmaceuticals, LLC, a subsidiary of Teva Pharmaceutical and the successor entity to Barr Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which was acquired by Teva in December 2008. Mr. McKee was also executive vice president and chief financial officer of Barr prior to its acquisition by Teva, after having served in positions of increasing responsibility at Barr from 1995 until its acquisition. McKee serves as a member of the board of directors and chairman of the audit committee of Assertio Therapeutics, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company, and Agile Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company. Mr. McKee received a B.B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.
Jodie Morrison has served as a member of our board of directors since June 2017. Since February 2019, Ms. Morrison has served as chief executive officer of Cadent Therapeutics, Inc., a privately held biotechnology company. From April 2018 to December 2018, Ms. Morrison served as interim chief executive officer of Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company. From May 2017 to July 2018, Ms. Morrison provided independent consulting services to venture capital, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, including serving as acting chief operating officer of Syntimmune, Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology company, from January 2018 to July 2018, and also serving as president and chief executive officer of eGenesis, Inc., a private life sciences company, from September 2017 to November 2017. Previously, Ms. Morrison served as the president and chief executive officer of Tokai Pharmaceuticals, Inc, now Novus Therapeutics, Inc., or Novus, a biopharmaceutical company, from March 2013 until May 2017. From December 2006 until March 2013, Ms. Morrison held other senior positions with Tokai, including chief operating officer, head of clinical affairs and program operations and vice president of clinical affairs and program operations. Prior to joining Novus, Ms. Morrison served as director of clinical operations and medical affairs at Dyax Corporation, or Dyax. Prior to joining Dyax, Ms. Morrison held clinical management positions at both Curis, Inc. and at Diacrin, Inc. In addition to serving on the board of directors of Cadent, Ms. Morrison serves as a member of the board of directors of Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. Ms. Morrison previously served on the board of directors of Keryx Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., prior to its merger with Akebia, and on the board of directors of Novus Therapeutics. Ms. Morrison received a B.A. in neuroscience from Mount Holyoke College, her clinical research certification from the Boston University School of Medicine and her business training through the Greater Boston Executive Program at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Dr. Nolan Sigal has served as a member of our board of directors since April 2019. Dr. Sigal currently serves as a partner at Satter Management Co., L.P., a private investment firm, a position he has held since January 2018. From March 2008 to December 2017, Dr. Sigal was Founder and CEO at Tunitas Therapeutics, Inc. Prior to Tunitas, Dr. Sigal’s biotechnology experience included President of Trellis Bioscience, Inc., EVP of Research and Development and Chief Science Officer at Cytokinetics, Inc., and SVP, Research at Pharmacopeia, Inc., where he was one of Pharmacopeia’s founders. He served at Merck & Company Inc. as Executive Director of the Department of Immunology Research. Prior to Merck, he was an assistant professor at University of Toronto. Dr. Sigal graduated from Princeton University with an A.B. in Chemistry, and he completed an M.D./Ph.D. program at the University of Pennsylvania.
Mr. von Rickenbach joined Aileron’s board of directors in June 2019. He has built a long and successful career in the drug development industry. Last year, he retired after 35 years as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of PAREXEL, one of the world’s largest biopharmaceutical service providers with about 19,000 employees and operations in more than 50 countries. Mr. von Rickenbach co-founded PAREXEL in 1982, led the company through its IPO in late 1995 and more than 40 mergers and acquisitions. Pamplona Capital Management, a private equity firm, took PAREXEL private for approximately $5 billion in September 2017. Mr. von Rickenbach started his career at Schering-Plough, Inc., and held positions at 3M (East), a division of 3M Company, and ERCO (later ENSECO), Inc. Currently the Managing Director of stet vision LLC, Mr. von Rickenbach recently was co-Founder, President & CEO of Helio Vision, Inc., a Boston-based ophthalmic biopharma company developing a therapy for proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR), that merged into Aldeyra, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALDX) in early 2019. Mr. von Rickenbach serves on the Board of Trustees of McLean Hospital and on the Board of Directors of NEHI (Network for Excellence in Health Innovation). Mr. von Rickenbach received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.A. in Business Economics from Lucerne University in Switzerland.