New chairman of the board for Gamida Cell

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Julian Adams, Ph.D., was appointed chairman of the board of directors at Gamida Cell Ltd.

Dr. Adams has more than 30 years of experience in drug discovery and development with a strong focus on cancer. He currently serves as president of research and development at Infinity Pharmaceuticals, where he is responsible for the full spectrum of drug discovery, preclinical and clinical development, and regulatory affairs activities. Before joining Infinity in 2003, Dr. Adams was the senior VP of drug discovery and development at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, where he headed multiple global drug discovery and development programs, including the successful Velcade (bortezomib) program. Dr. Adams also held senior positions in research and development at LeukoSite (acquired by Millennium) and at ProScript, as well as in medicinal chemistry at Boehringer Ingelheim, where he is credited with discovering Viramune (nevirapine) for HIV.

Dr. Adams has won many awards, holds more than 40 patents, and has authored more than 100 papers and book chapters in peer-reviewed journals. He earned a B.S. from McGill University and a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also received a Doctor of Science, honoris causa, from McGill University in 2012.

Gamida Cell develops cellular and immune therapies for the treatment of cancer and orphan genetic diseases. The company’s pipeline of products is being developed to treat a wide range of conditions including cancer, genetic hematological diseases such as sickle cell disease and thalassemia, bone marrow failure syndromes such as aplastic anemia, genetic metabolic diseases and refractory autoimmune diseases. The lead product in development is NiCord, a novel graft modality for bone marrow transplantation in patients with high risk hematological malignancies (blood cancers) such as leukemia and lymphoma. The international, multi-center Phase III registration study of NiCord is planned to begin before the end of the year.

“I am delighted to accept the appointment of chairman,” Dr. Adams says. “Gamida Cell is on a clear path to bringing NiCord to market and filling an important unmet need in bone marrow transplantation. It is my honor to guide the success of the NiCord program as well as the other significant clinical and corporate initiatives of the company.”  medadnews