BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Kinaset Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing inhaled therapeutics to treat serious respiratory diseases, announced the appointment of Dr. Chris O’Brien as the Company’s Chief Medical Officer.
“We are thrilled to have Chris join the Kinaset executive team,” said Robert Clarke, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Kinaset. “Chris brings extensive experience as a clinician and drug developer in respiratory and immunologic diseases, with particular expertise in obstructive lung diseases such as asthma and COPD. He has been a leader and key member of clinical development teams for a number of novel respiratory therapeutics, which will facilitate the advancement of our KN-002 program for all patients with moderate to severe asthma. As we advance our lead program and look to the future expansion of our pipeline, Chris will play an instrumental role in the identification of new opportunities and leading the overall clinical development of our pipeline.”
Leveraging his experience as a translational scientist and clinician in the Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Division at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. O’Brien joined the pharmaceutical industry more than 20 years ago. In a twelve-year tenure at AstraZeneca, Dr. O’Brien was a leader and key contributor in the Symbicort® pMDI P3 asthma NDA, pediatric sNDA and Life Cycle programs, ultimately serving as Symbicort Brand Physician leading prelaunch, commercialization and Phase 3b/4 clinical activities. He also served as US and Global Head of Late Phase Respiratory and Inflammation Clinical Development, and Global Medical Science Director for P2 and P3 small and large molecule programs in asthma, COPD and rheumatoid arthritis. Dr. O’Brien subsequently was Vice President of Respiratory Clinical Development at Teva Pharmaceuticals where he oversaw branded, 505(b)2 and A/B generic monotherapy and combination inhaled therapeutics programs as well as led the ProAir RespiClik NDA and resilizumab (Cinqair) P3 asthma programs. Most recently, Chris was at Janssen Pharmaceuticals where he served as Head of Pulmonary Clinical Development, Head of GI Clinical Development and as a Compound Development Team Leader. In his over 7 years at Janssen, he oversaw and led small and large molecule programs in immune-mediated diseases including asthma, COPD, inflammatory bowel disease and dermatologic diseases such as atopic dermatitis. He was a key contributor and leader on the successful Stelara (ustekinumab) UC sBLA as well as on the Stelara CD and Simponi UC pediatric programs, oral JAK, anti-NKG2D, and anti-IL-1a programs.
Dr. O’Brien received a BA in Biology from the University of Pennsylvania and his MD from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine. He returned to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania to complete a residency in Internal Medicine, a fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine and a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology. As a Clinical Instructor and Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. O’Brien maintained an academic practice for 15 years, focusing on asthma and COPD. He is board certified in Pulmonary Medicine and is a Fellow in the College of Chest Physicians.
“Our Board and management team are excited to welcome Chris to Kinaset. His expertise in pulmonary drug development and his clinical medicine experiences will be invaluable as the Company continues the Phase 1b clinical evaluation of KN-002 in patients with asthma and COPD,” said Thomas King, Chair of the Kinaset Board of Directors. “We look forward to the read-out of our KN-002 data in the next few months while we prepare in parallel for our planned Phase 2 trial in patients with eosinophilic and non-eosinophilic mediated moderate to severe asthma.”
Dr. O’Brien stated, “Patients with poorly controlled moderate or severe asthma remain underserved by available therapeutics today. Once approved, I believe that KN-002 has the potential to significantly improve the quality of life for all patients diagnosed with this condition. My clinical background and experience in respiratory drug development is a natural fit for Kinaset as we work together to improve the lives of people living with significant pulmonary disease and prepare for the Phase 2 evaluation of KN-002 in our target population.”
About Kinaset Therapeutics, Inc.
Kinaset Therapeutics is focused on developing inhaled therapeutics to address significant unmet medical needs in respiratory diseases. The Company’s lead clinical candidate KN-002 is a novel, pan-JAK inhibitor formulated as a dry powder for delivery via the non-invasive oral inhaled route of administration. KN-002 is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1b clinical study involving patients with mild to severe asthma and those with COPD (NCT05006521). With founding investors 5AM Ventures, Atlas Venture and Gimv, the Company is pursuing a patient-focused approach to build a leading respiratory therapeutics company. See more information at the Company’s website.