SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 12, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Excision BioTherapeutics Inc., a biotechnology company developing CRISPR-based therapies intended to cure viral infectious diseases, today announced the expansion of its management team with the appointments of Sara Turken, J.D., as General Counsel, Manish Anand, M.Sc., as Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, and Robert Gunning, CPA, CGMA, as VP, Controller.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome Sara, Manish and Robert – all highly talented, deeply experienced, and consummate company builders to Excision’s management team,” said Daniel Dornbusch, Chief Executive Officer of Excision. “Their complementary skill sets in legal, scientific, regulatory, and financial expertise will provide invaluable contributions as we develop Excision’s platform and pipeline. In particular, they join at a key moment as we advance Excision’s lead asset, EBT-101, a potentially curative treatment for HIV and initiate a Phase I/II trial later this year, following FDA’s recent clearance of the IND. It is my pleasure to welcome them to Excision and I look forward to working together as we embark on our next phase of growth as a company.”
Sara Turken has spent the last decade working in the healthcare and life sciences industry. She joins Excision from Rocket Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where she was Head of Legal, Compliance Officer & Corporate Secretary, and led all corporate legal affairs including licensing, financing, intellectual property, contracting, litigation, employment, and real estate. Ms. Turken was also responsible for compliance, disclosure, and corporate governance. Prior to joining Rocket, she was Deputy General Counsel and Assistant Corporate Secretary at AgNovos Healthcare, where she developed and implemented the Company’s compliance program to address U.S. and EU healthcare requirements, and was responsible for day-to-day legal operations including commercial contracting, intellectual property, employment, clinical research, and real estate. Previously, she was Legal Counsel, Corporate Law and Securities group, at Stryker Corporation, where she led diligence, negotiations, and execution of numerous acquisitions of companies, business units, and product lines, in addition to being the primary legal advisor to the business development and strategy group. Ms. Turken earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School and a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University.
Manish Anand is a biopharmaceutical executive with extensive experience managing the regulatory aspects of drug development programs for a wide range of therapeutic modalities including gene therapy, cell therapy, biomolecules, and small molecules. He has also overseen multiple Investigational New Drug Applications (INDs), Clinical Trial Applications (CTAs) and New Drug Applications (NDAs). Most recently, Mr. Anand served as Vice President, Regulatory Affairs at Asklepios Biopharmaceuticals, Inc., where he was responsible for multiple gene therapy programs in central nervous system, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Prior to his time at Asklepios, Mr. Anand was Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs at Cellectis S.A., where he was responsible for several pre-clinical and clinical allogeneic CAR T cell programs in oncology. Mr. Anand served in multiple regulatory roles earlier in his career including at Symic Bio, Inc., Portola Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Amplify Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Biomarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., MacuSight, Inc., Vanda Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and MedImmune, Inc. He earned his B.S. in Chemistry at Lafayette College and his M.S. in Biotechnology at Johns Hopkins University.
Robert Gunning is an experienced accounting and finance professional with more than twenty years of experience working with public and private companies. Prior to joining Excision, Mr. Gunning was the Chief Financial Officer and Head of Finance Transformation at Advanced Accelerator Applications USA, Inc. (a Novartis AG subsidary), where he executed financial strategies to support project launches and sales growth of LUTATHERA® and NETSPOT®. Previously, Mr. Gunning was the Director of Financial Reporting and Director of SEC Reporting for Amec Foster Wheeler plc, where he was responsible for the company’s financial filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Mr. Gunning also led the post-acquisition purchase price allocation for Amec plc’s acquisition of Foster Wheeler AG and was responsible for the post-acquisition financial reporting integration of the legacy Foster Wheeler entities, including conversion from U.S. GAAP to IFRS. Prior to joining Amec Foster Wheeler, Mr. Gunning was Vice President, Finance and Director of Financial Report, Planning and Analysis at Home Décor Products, Inc., where he managed a team of seventeen, overseeing general accounting, inventory, and accounts receivable and payable. He was previously a Finance Manager at Ethicon, Inc. (a Johnson & Johnson company), where he was responsible for monthly and quarterly international reporting requirements and financial statements. Mr. Gunning is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of New York and holds a BBA in Public Accounting from Pace University.
About Excision BioTherapeutics, Inc.
Excision BioTherapeutics, Inc., is a biotechnology company developing CRISPR-based therapies intended to cure viral infectious diseases. Excision is focused on improving the lives of chronically ill patients by excising viral genomes from infected individuals. By using CRISPR in unique ways, the Company has already demonstrated the first functional cure for HIV in animals. Excision is developing technologies and IP developed at Temple University and U.C. Berkeley. Excision is located in San Francisco, California and is supported by ARTIS Ventures, GreatPoint Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Adjuvant Capital, Cota Capital, Celesta Capital IndusAge Partners, Loreda Holdings, Olive Tree, Anzu Partners, SilverRidge Venture Partners, Oakhouse Ventures, and Gaingels. For more information, please visit www.excision.bio.