2023-02-15 11:59Press release

Asgard Therapeutics appoints Alan Griffith as Chief Development Officer

Alan GriffithAlan Griffith

Lund, Sweden – Asgard Therapeutics AB (“Asgard”), a private biotech company pioneering in vivo direct reprogramming approaches for cancer immunotherapy, today announces the expansion of its leadership team with the recent appointment of Dr Alan Griffith as a Chief Development Officer. Alan brings more than a decade of experience in the biotechnology industry and will provide strategic and operational leadership on CMC and GMP manufacturing of Asgard’s lead program.
Asgard is a member of SmiLe Incubator.

Cristiana Pires, PhD, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Asgard Therapeutics, said: “I am pleased to welcome Alan to the team as our Chief Development Officer. Our lead program is based in a viral vector that delivers reprogramming factors to solid tumors, inducing professional antigen presentation inside the patient’s body. Alan brings a wealth of expertise in the gene therapy field, from research and development, to quality and manufacturing of several gene therapy programs. Alan’s skillset and knowhow will be critical to implement our vision of developing an off-the-shelf immunotherapy that kickstarts personalized anti-tumor immune responses”.

Alan Griffith, PhD, Chief Development Officer of Asgard Therapeutics said: “I join Asgard attracted by their ambitious reprogramming technology, which represents a game changer in the immunotherapy field. I look forward to working with the talented team in the next phase of translational development and enable delivery of the pioneering reprogramming-based gene therapy programs to cancer patients with an unmet need.”

Before joining Asgard Therapeutics, Alan held several senior positions in gene therapy companies. From senior CMC-related positions at Athena-Vision, a spin-out from University College London (UCL), Alan progressed to MeiraGTx. He started as manufacturing lead co-steering the design and establishment of an in-house GMP manufacturing and QC facility, which contributed to a successful IPO and strategic collaboration with Janssen. Alan then showcased his motivation and leadership skills, progressing through a series of roles with increasing responsibility up to Director of Preclinical Viral Vector Development, and following the journey of gene therapy programs from development into clinical trials.  More recently, Alan worked as Vice President of Research at Purespring Therapeutics and helped bring two gene therapy products from academic setting into candidate selection, building teams and resources to facilitate CMC readiness for translational development. Alan has also worked in academia, including at the National Institute of Cellular Biotechnology (NICB), UCL and lecturing at King’s College London. Alan holds a bachelor’s degree and PhD in Biotechnology at NICB, both from Dublin City University, as well as a Diploma in Business Management and Entrepreneurship.

For more information, please contact Asgard Therapeutics: 
Cristiana Pires, Co-founder and CEO, +46 (0) 731 566 072 , cristiana.pires@asgardthx.com

About Asgard Therapeutics:
Asgard Therapeutics is a preclinical stage company supported by Novo Holdings (DK), Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund (BIVF) (DE), and Industrifonden (SE). After the closing of EUR 6 million Seed financing round in 2021, the company provided extensive proof-of-concept for the in-vivo reprogramming approach to restore tumor immunogenicity using ex-vivo translational and in vivo models, as well as selected the lead program delivery platform. Being part of the SmiLe incubator, Medicon Village, the team has grown to 9 FTE with solid experience in cell reprogramming and pharmacology, now being complemented with Alan’s track record in gene therapy development. In 2023, Asgard aims to close a Series A funding round to complete IND-enabling studies, including safety and GLP-tox, CMC, and GMP manufacturing, as well as first in human (FIH) studies to provide safety and clinical POC. Alan Griffith, Chief Development Officer, is going to be an important asset in managing the planning and progression of the outsourced GMP manufacturing process to assure the successful development and the highest quality of Asgard Therapeutics' lead product. www.asgardthx.com

Language: English

About SmiLe Venture Hub – Pioneering Life Science Innovations

SmiLe Incubator is a life science business incubator based in Medicon Village in Lund, Sweden. SmiLe have helped 100+ entrepreneurs commercialize their ideas. There are currently 30 companies in SmiLe incubator which, together with alumni companies, have attracted more than EUR 717 million in venture capital to date since 2014. SmiLe offers excellent business coaching, a broad international network of contacts and a dynamic community, as well as well-equipped laboratories which is unique of its kind in Sweden. SmiLe is a non-profit organization and receives basic funding from Region Skåne, Lund Municipality, Lund University and Medicon Village. SmiLe´s sponsors are Agilent, Sparbanken Skåne, Awa, Høiberg, Prevas, Setterwalls, Zacco, Magle Chemoswed, NanoTemper Technologies, Phase Holographic Imaging and ChemoMetec. 21 of SmiLe´s companies have launched an IPO. The listed alumni companies have a market capitalization of more than EUR 500 million (Q4 2022). www.smileincubator.life