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CytomX makes senior changes following Pfizer deal

Krishna Polu joins as chief medical officer and Debanjan Ray promoted to VP, business development

CytomX Therapeutics has boosted both its senior science and business teams following a major antibody deal with Pfizer.

Dr Krishna Polu leaves troubled US biotech Affymax to join CytomX as chief medical officer, while former senior director, head of business development, Debanjan Ray is promoted to VP, busienss development and alliance management.

Both positions will be crucial to supporting the San Francisco-based biotech's growth following CytomX's $635m deal agreed with Pfizer last month to develop a series of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for cancer. 

During his time at Affymax, Dr Polu headed several areas, including clinical sciences, clinical operations and drug safety/pharmacovigilance.

He was also one of the key figures behind the development and approval of Affymax' first drug Omontys (peginasetide), although this drug has since been pulled from market in the US after several people died as a result of severe hypersensitivity reactions.

Prior to this period at Affymax, Dr Polu was executive director, global development at Amgen, where he worked in the development of products in nephrology, diabetes and heart failure.

His new colleague Ray joined CytomX in 2011 and was instrumental in brokering the agreement with Pfizer.

His promotion to this newly-created role is a signal of intent from CytomX that it is keen on developing similar partnerships that utilise its probody technology.

“We are very pleased to promote Debanjan in parallel with adding Krishna to the CytomX team,” said Dr Sean McCarty, CEO of CytomX.

“This advancement highlights our continued focus on strategic business development and the formation of value-added alliances through which we can advance our pipeline of innovative probody therapeutics,” he added.

26th July 2013

From: Research, Sales



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