CAMBRIDGE, Mass., April 19, 2022
eGenesis, a biotechnology company developing human-compatible organs and cells for the treatment of organ failure, today announced the promotion of Michael Curtis, Ph.D., to Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Dr. Curtis succeeds Paul Sekhri who remains on the Board of Directors.
Dr. Curtis has served as President of Research & Development at eGenesis since joining the Company in 2020. He brings to eGenesis more than 25 years of scientific research and leadership experience in biopharmaceuticals across numerous companies and therapeutic areas. Dr. Curtis joined eGenesis from Cadent Therapeutics, where he served as President and Head of R&D. During his tenure at Cadent, the company developed a pipeline of novel therapies for the treatment of psychiatric and movement disorders leading to its acquisition by Novartis at the end of 2020.
“It has been a privilege to manage our research and development efforts under Paul’s leadership these past eighteen months,” Dr. Curtis said, “The team is focused on our mission of solving the organ shortage crisis. I am excited to continue advancing that mission and I am grateful for the confidence shown in me by the Board and my colleagues at eGenesis.”
Paul Sekhri former President and Chief Executive Officer and current Board member of eGenesis said, “I have seen Mike accelerate our engineering, production and preclinical development efforts during his tenure at eGenesis, and I am confident that he is the leader to advance our programs toward the clinic. I look forward to continue working with Mike as a member of the Board as we work toward the day when no one dies while waiting for a transplant.”
The timing of the transition coincides with the company’s efforts to advance multiple programs toward clinical development. The company recently appointed Dr. Eliezer Katz as Chief Medical Officer of eGenesis to lead medical operations and support preparation of programs for the clinic.
Outgoing CEO Paul Sekhri has led eGenesis since 2019, overseeing efforts that brought in $225 million for the company in support of the development of its platform, an acquisition in 2020 to vertically integrate donor production, and the expansion of the eGenesis team and operations.
“Paul has been critical in developing eGenesis into the company we are today,” said Steven Gillis, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board of Directors of eGenesis. “After more than 25 years as a biotechnology industry leader, Paul will focus on providing guidance to multiple life science companies. Mike has been successfully advancing our R&D programs since joining the Company in 2020. His elevation to the CEO role is a natural step for him and provides leadership continuity at eGenesis. The Board, management and the rest of the team are excited about his promotion and look forward to his leadership as we advance our programs toward clinical development.”
About Transplantation and Xenotransplantation
The demand for lifesaving organs far outnumbers available supply. In the U.S. alone, more than 100,000 people are on the national transplant list. Twenty people die every day due to lack of available organs for transplant and every 10 minutes, a new name is added to the national transplant waitlist.
The concept of xenotransplantation (the transplantation of organs and cells from one species to another) has been explored for decades. However, virology and immunology hurdles prevented the field from advancing beyond early preclinical research. With the advent of cutting-edge gene editing technologies, addressing these historical challenges is now within reach.
eGenesis’ goal is to transform the field of transplantation by offering safe and effective organs and cells to patients in need. The company harnesses gene editing technology including CRISPR to address the key issues that have impeded xenotransplantation to date. eGenesis’ development pipeline includes lead programs for kidney and islet cell transplant as well as earlier-stage programs focused on other solid organs. Learn more at eGenesisbio.com.
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