Industry R&D Veteran to Advance Pipeline of Novel Therapeutics Targeting mTORC1 Pathway for Cellular Nutrient Signaling
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., November 20, 2014 – Navitor Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing novel medicines by targeting cellular nutrient signaling, today announced that drug industry veteran, Eddine Saiah, PhD, has joined the company as its Vice President of Drug Discovery. Dr. Saiah will be responsible for directing Navitor’s research activities directed toward the discovery of multiple first-in-class selective modulators of mTORC1 to address a wide range of diseases including metabolic, neurodegenerative, autoimmune and musculoskeletal diseases, as well as several rare disorders.
“We are pleased to welcome an experienced biopharmaceutical executive like Eddine to Navitor’s leadership team,” said George P. Vlasuk, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of Navitor. “His deep expertise in leading-edge drug development will be critical to our success as we accelerate the development of our pipeline of novel drug candidates selectively targeting the mTORC1 pathway toward clinical development.”
Eddine Saiah has over 20 years of drug discovery, research and development experience in biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and he has led the efforts in the advancement of more than ten new molecular entities into clinical development over his career. His expertise spans a broad range of drug targets for multiple diseases including diabetes, obesity, oncology, inflammation, cardiovascular and pain. Most recently, he led the drug discovery and medicinal chemistry activities for several portfolio companies of Atlas Venture including Raze Therapeutics and Quartet Medicine. Previously, he served for a decade in senior R&D roles at Pfizer and Wyeth Research, which was acquired by Pfizer. Dr. Saiah was a Director of Medicinal Chemistry and Research Fellow at Pfizer, focused on R&D efforts in the inflammation, immunology and rare disease research units. At Wyeth, he served in R&D roles of increasing responsibility and ultimately as the Head of Medicinal Chemistry for the Cambridge, MA site managing cardiovascular and metabolic disease programs as well as inflammation programs on a range of drug discovery targets including kinases, G-protein-coupled receptors, proteases, nuclear hormone receptors and protein-protein interactions.
Dr. Saiah is the co-author and co-inventor of more than 90 publications, scientific presentations and patents. He was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Mayo Clinic’s Neuroscience Research Center. He received his Ph.D. in chemistry from Pierre & Marie Curie University in Paris, France, and the Cancer Research Institute in Villejuif, France.
“Navitor’s proprietary technology platform for selectively targeting mTORC1 offers the potential to create novel therapeutics that can harness newly-discovered nutrient signaling mechanisms to offer new treatments for a wide range of chronic diseases and rare disorders,” said Dr. Saiah. “I am delighted to be joining Navitor at this exciting juncture. The company has already made tremendous progress by identifying multiple novel, selective modulators of the mTORC1 pathway and I am very excited to have the opportunity to help advance a new class of innovative medicines that have the potential to significantly impact the lives of patients.”
About Navitor Pharmaceuticals
Navitor Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is a biopharmaceutical company developing novel medicines by targeting cellular nutrient signaling pathways. The company’s proprietary drug discovery platform targets mTORC1, which responds to and integrates the cell’s response to nutrient availability and plays a key role in protein synthesis and cellular growth. Navitor’s therapeutics are designed to selectively modulate the cellular signals that are aberrant in disease processes caused by the dysregulation of mTORC1 activity to address a wide range of diseases, including metabolic, neurodegenerative, autoimmune and musculoskeletal diseases, as well as several rare disorders. The company’s founding intellectual property is based on the groundbreaking discoveries related to the mTORC1 pathway and nutrient signaling mechanisms by Dr. David Sabatini at The Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research. The company is backed by leading financial and corporate investors, including Polaris Partners, Atlas Venture, Johnson & Johnson Deve lopment Corporation, SR One and The Longevity Fund. For more information, please visit www.navitorpharma.com.
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