Neuraltus Pharmaceuticals, a privately held biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing products that address critical unmet needs primarily in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, announced that Andrew Gengos ('91) has been named as President and Chief Executive Officer.
"Andrew's considerable biopharmaceutical industry experience in finance, strategy and business development will be a tremendous asset for Neuraltus and will enable the company to achieve its ambitious goals," said Ari Azhir, PhD, a Neuraltus founder and Chief Operating Officer. "We are delighted that he is joining our team."
Neuraltus expects to have three programs in Phase I or II of clinical development in 2010. Based on the scientific research of Dr. Michael McGrath, MD, PhD, a Neuraltus founder and Professor of Laboratory Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, Neuraltus is developing a treatment for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. In collaboration with the Parkinson's Institute of Sunnyvale, California, Neuraltus is developing a treatment for dyskinesias in patients with Parkinson's disease. The company is also partnering with physicians at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto on a program for lysosomal storage disorders that has the potential to treat these disorders systemically, including the CNS components.
"Neuraltus aspires to bring meaningful new treatments to patients with diseases who have few treatment options," said Mr. Gengos. "What Ari and Mike have built to date is truly impressive and it is my privilege to join them and the strong scientific and operational team at Neuraltus."
Mr. Gengos joins Neuraltus after more than seven years with Amgen where he was Vice President, Strategy and Corporate Development. He managed Amgen's in-and-outbound business development activities, including acquisitions, licensing, spin outs, divestitures, corporate venture capital, and alliance management. In addition, he led the execution of strategic projects and supported the long range planning process for the company. Before joining Amgen, Mr. Gengos was Vice President, CFO, and CBO of Dynavax Technologies of Berkeley, California, where he was responsible for the company's business functions including finance and accounting, fundraising, budgeting and planning, and business development. Mr. Gengos has been a Vice President of Strategy at the Chiron Corporation and a Senior Engagement Manager at McKinsey & Company. He was awarded his MBA from the Anderson School of Business at UCLA and received his SB degree in chemical engineering from MIT.
"As Neuraltus enters its next stage, advancing programs into Phase I and II clinical trials, Andrew's business acumen and organizational experience will be vital to the success of the company," said Dr. Jim Woody of Latterell Venture Partners. "With Andrew's appointment, Neuraltus fields a strong leadership team capable of bringing new and proprietary therapeutics to patients in a capital efficient way," echoed Annette Bianchi of VantagePoint Venture Partners.