- Drs. Sheila Gujrathi (Executive Chair), Jörn Drappa (Chief Medical Officer) and Luisa Salter-Cid (Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board) bring decades of development experience in autoimmune diseases
- William White (Independent Director) strengthens financial and business acumen of Ventyx board
- Proceeds will further accelerate development of clinical programs
ENCINITAS, Calif., Sept. 20, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ventyx Biosciences, Inc. (“Ventyx” or the “Company”), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on advancing new therapies for millions of patients living with inflammatory diseases and autoimmune disorders, today announced the appointment of Sheila Gujrathi, M.D. to the Board of Directors as Executive Chair and Jörn Drappa, M.D., Ph.D. as Chief Medical Officer, as well as the closing of a $51.0 million Series B convertible preferred stock financing round.
“We are honored to welcome Sheila as Executive Chair of the Board of Directors and Jörn as our Chief Medical Officer at this exciting point in Ventyx’s history,” said Raju Mohan, Chief Executive Officer of Ventyx. “Sheila’s and Jörn’s depth of experience in developing immunology drugs and expertise in building and leading biotech companies will be invaluable as we advance our portfolio of clinical programs and continue to grow the company. I look forward to working with them as we seek to deliver on our mission to develop a pipeline of small molecule product candidates to address a range of inflammatory diseases.”
“Ventyx is developing an exciting pipeline of innovative product candidates,” added Dr. Gujrathi. “I look forward to helping the Ventyx team further enhance its drug discovery and development expertise and accelerate the development of its pipeline to meet the needs of patients suffering from autoimmune disorders.”
“Ventyx’s clinical programs address important inflammatory diseases with significant unmet medical need,” said Dr. Drappa. “I am excited to join a talented and dedicated team who share a common mission to develop groundbreaking new therapies for patients underserved by currently available treatment options.”
Series B Convertible Preferred Stock Financing
On September 9, 2021, the Company closed a $51.0 million Series B convertible preferred stock financing round led by Surveyor Capital (a Citadel company) with participation from existing investors, venBio Partners, Third Point, RTW Investments, LP, Janus Henderson Investors, Wellington Management, OrbiMed, Farallon Capital, Vivo Capital, Logos Capital, Qiming Venture Partners USA and Cormorant Asset Management.
“The continued support from our world-class syndicate of investors reflects the potential of our pipeline to bring new treatments to patients suffering from autoimmune disorders,” said Raju Mohan, Chief Executive Officer of Ventyx. “This additional capital strengthens our cash position and will enable us to further accelerate the development of our product candidates.”
Sheila Gujrathi, M.D., Executive Chair
Dr. Gujrathi is the co-founder and former Chief Executive Officer of Gossamer Bio. Prior to Gossamer, Dr. Gujrathi served as Chief Medical Officer of Receptos (acquired by Celgene) where she was responsible for the development of Zeposia®, which is approved in multiple sclerosis and is the first S1P1R modulator to be approved for ulcerative colitis. Prior to Receptos, Dr. Gujrathi served as Vice President of the Global Clinical Development Group in Immunology at Bristol-Myers Squibb where she led clinical development for Orencia® and Nulojix® and had strategic oversight over the immunology pipeline. Prior to Bristol-Myers Squibb, Dr. Gujrathi held roles in the immunology, tissue growth and repair clinical development groups at Genentech where she worked on Ocrevus®, Rituxan®, Xolair®, and other programs across all stages of development and also served as the Avastin® franchise team leader.
Jörn Drappa, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer
Prior to joining Ventyx, Dr. Drappa served as Executive Vice President, R&D at Horizon Therapeutics. Prior to Horizon’s acquisition of Viela Bio in March 2021, he served as Head of R&D and Chief Medical Officer at Viela Bio. Prior to Viela Bio, he served as Vice President, Clinical Development at MedImmune/AstraZeneca. Prior to MedImmune/AstraZeneca, he served as Senior Medical Director for inflammation and autoimmune diseases at Genentech. Earlier in his career, he served as a Medical Director for Amgen.
New Independent Board Member and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board
The Company also expanded the Board of Directors with the appointment of William White as an independent director and Chair of the Audit Committee. Mr. White is a well-known finance executive with deep Wall Street relationships. The Company also announced the appointment of Luisa Salter-Cid as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board. Dr. Salter-Cid has over two decades of experience in the immunology space and has helped advance more than twenty compounds into the clinic.
William White, Independent Board Director and Chair of the Audit Committee: Mr. White currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer and Head of Corporate Development at Akero Therapeutics, a publicly traded biotechnology company. Prior to joining Akero, he spent 18 years as a life-science-focused investment banker, most recently as Head of U.S. Life Sciences Investment Banking at Deutsche Bank, with previous roles at Goldman Sachs and Citigroup.
Luisa Salter-Cid, Ph.D., Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board: Dr. Salter-Cid currently serves as Chief Scientific Officer of Pioneering Medicines. Prior to joining Pioneering Medicines, Dr. Salter-Cid was Chief Scientific Officer at Gossamer Bio. Previously, she spent 13 years at Bristol-Myers Squibb most recently as Vice President and Head of Immunology, Small Molecule Immuno-Oncology, and Genomics Discovery. Prior to joining Bristol-Myers Squibb, she was a Senior Project Leader at La Jolla Pharmaceuticals and held positions at Genset Corp and Johnson & Johnson.
About Ventyx Biosciences, Inc.
Ventyx Biosciences, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on advancing new therapies for millions of patients living with inflammatory diseases and autoimmune disorders. Ventyx’s clinical stage pipeline includes VTX958, a Phase 1 allosteric TYK2 inhibitor for the treatment of a broad range of autoimmune diseases, VTX002, a Phase 2-ready S1P1 receptor modulator for the treatment of ulcerative colitis, and VTX2735, a Phase 1-ready peripheral inhibitor of the NLRP3 inflammasome, which is a mediator of multiple inflammatory conditions.
Ventyx is headquartered in Encinitas, California. For more information about Ventyx, please visit www.ventyxbio.com.
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