SANTA MONICA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Kite, a Gilead Company (Nasdaq: GILD), today announced that Frank Neumann, MD, PhD, has joined the company as Senior Vice President and Global Head of Clinical Development. Dr. Neumann will lead Kite’s Clinical Development organization across hematological malignancies and solid tumors. Ken Takeshita, MD, has decided to leave the company to pursue another opportunity at the end of February.
Dr. Neumann, who joins Kite from Verastem, Inc. (also known as Verastem Oncology), brings a record of proven leadership in cell therapy and oncology clinical development. Prior to Verastem, he served as Vice President, Head of Oncology Clinical Research at bluebird bio, where he led planning and execution of oncology research asset strategies from pre-clinical through submission across solid tumor and hematological indications. He also held various leadership roles of increasing prominence at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, including global clinical lead or medical team lead roles for two distinct cancer therapies. While at Takeda, he served as clinical development head for all of the company’s cell therapy approaches globally from proof-of-concept to Phase 1 evaluation. Dr. Neumann has also been a member of the oncology medical teams at AstraZeneca and Sanofi-Aventis.
“As we expand our portfolio of life-saving cell therapies for patients in need, we are thrilled to welcome Frank to our team,” said Christi Shaw, Chief Executive Officer of Kite. “I am confident that Frank’s expertise in cell therapy and impressive track record in oncology drug development position him to advance Kite’s clinical development programs.”
In addition to his extensive industry experience, Dr. Neumann is board certified in Hematology/Oncology, Internal Medicine and Palliative Care Medicine. He was a research scholar at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and is currently an assistant professor at the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf, Germany. Dr. Neumann received his medical degree from the Heinrich Heine University and his PhD from the Rheinische-Friedrich-Wilhelm University in Bonn, Germany.
“Since my early work in cell therapy, I have been fascinated by its potential for patients living with cancer,” said Dr. Neumann. “To watch Kite bring cell therapy from clinical development to commercial use has been more then inspiring, and I am tremendously excited to join the company as it seeks to expand into new indications, bring cell therapies into earlier lines of therapy, and drive innovative new therapies for the benefit of patients in need.”
“During his tenure at Kite, Ken Takeshita has overseen the development and advancement of several clinical program milestones, including the FDA approval of Kite’s second CAR T-cell therapy,” commented Ms. Shaw. “I would like to thank Ken for his commitment to Kite’s mission against cancer and to wish him the best in his next endeavor.”
Kite, a Gilead Company, is a biopharmaceutical company based in Santa Monica, California, with commercial manufacturing operations in North America and Europe. Kite is engaged in the development of innovative cancer immunotherapies. The company is focused on chimeric antigen receptor and T cell receptor engineered cell therapies. For more information on Kite, please visit www.kitepharma.com.
About Gilead Sciences
Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a research-based biopharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and commercializes innovative medicines in areas of unmet medical need. The company strives to transform and simplify care for people with life-threatening illnesses around the world. Gilead has operations in more than 35 countries worldwide, with headquarters in Foster City, California. For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company’s website at www.gilead.com.
For more information on Kite, please visit the company’s website at www.kitepharma.com or call Gilead Public Affairs at 1-800-GILEAD-5 or 1-650-574-3000. Follow Kite on social media on Twitter (@KitePharma) and LinkedIn.