SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Amphivena Therapeutics, Inc., a private clinical stage immuno-oncology company developing T cell engager therapeutics for cancer, said today that Curtis L. Ruegg, Ph.D. will join the company as its new President and Chief Executive Officer and will also sit on the company’s Board of Directors. The company’s Founder and current President and Chief Executive Officer, Jeanmarie Guenot, Ph.D., will transition into an Advisory role.
Dr. Ruegg joins Amphivena from Parvus Therapeutics, where he was President and Chief Executive Officer. With more than 25 years of biopharmaceutical experience, he brings strong drug development expertise to Amphivena. Prior to Parvus, Dr. Ruegg filled various leadership roles at Revance, CoTherix, Intermune, AP Cells and Dendreon.
“I am excited to join Amphivena at this critical inflection point,” said Dr. Ruegg. “Its lead investigational candidate, AMV564, has advanced in clinical development in both hematologic cancers and in solid tumors, with initial clinical trial data reading out as early as 2020. The momentum created by the team to date is significant and I look forward to helping to build Amphivena into a leading immuno-oncology company.”
Executive Chairman Peter Van Vlasselaer, Ph.D., said, “Since the company’s inception, Jeanmarie has guided its leadership team to establish a preeminent position in the T cell engagement space, most recently by expanding the application of AMV564 beyond hematologic cancers to solid tumors. We thank her for her dedication to the company and look forward to her continued involvement with the company in her Advisory role. We welcome Curtis and look forward to his contributions as the company matures. I am enthusiastic about our prospects as we further cement Amphivena’s leadership in the T cell engager and immuno-oncology arenas.”
AMV564 is a bivalent, bispecific (2:2) T cell engager that binds CD33 and CD3. The company announced in October initiation of a Phase 1 trial to evaluate the effect of AMV564 on these immune suppressive cells and the potential therapeutic benefit of relieving this important source of T cell suppression in patients with solid tumors. To date, over 50 patients have received AMV564 in two Phase 1 clinical trials for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). It is also currently being evaluated in a First-in-Human Phase 1 trial in patients with relapsed/refractory AML at Washington University School of Medicine, MD Anderson Cancer Center, New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and Weill Cornell Medicine, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and The Johns Hopkins Hospital.
The safety, efficacy and selectivity of AMV564 was highlighted most recently at both the 24th European Hematology Association (EHA) meeting in Amsterdam (Abstract S877) and at the 60th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology in San Diego, CA last December. Amphivena believes that AMV564 has demonstrated novel clinical activity by rapidly and selectively eliminating leukemic blasts and rare immature, granulocytic and monocytic MDSCs while sparing normal CD33-expressing cells, including neutrophils and monocytes.
Amphivena Therapeutics, Inc. is an immuno-oncology company based in South San Francisco, CA that is developing best-in-class T cell engagers for cancer. The company’s lead therapeutic candidate, AMV564, is a bivalent, bispecific CD33/CD3 T cell engager that potently and selectively eliminates leukemic blasts and myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSC), sparing normal myeloid cells (e.g., neutrophils and monocytes). AMV564 has an excellent safety profile that enables competitive approaches, including combination therapy, and provides a unique opportunity to explore the role of MDSC in solid tumors.
Amphivena has raised $88.5 M to date in Series A, B and C venture financings led by NanoDimension, Qiming Venture Partners USA, MPM Capital and funds managed by Tekla Capital Management LLC. For more information, please visit www.amphivena.com.