COMMITTED TO DISCOVERING BEST-IN-CLASS ORAL THERAPIES TO CONQUER INFLAMMATORY DISEASES AND CANCER
RAPT Therapeutics is a clinical stage immunology-based biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing and commercializing oral small molecule therapies for patients with significant unmet needs in inflammatory diseases and cancer. Utilizing our proprietary drug discovery and development engine, we develop highly selective small molecules that are designed to modulate the critical immune responses underlying these diseases. Since our founding, we have discovered and advanced to clinical development two drug candidates, each targeting CCR4. In a randomized, placebo-controlled Phase 1b study in patients with atopic dermatitis, our lead inflammation drug candidate, RPT193, demonstrated clinically meaningful improvement in several exploratory endpoints. Our lead oncology drug candidate, FLX475, is in development for a range of tumors. We are also pursuing a range of other targets, including HPK1, that are in earlier stages of discovery and development.
Visionary Leadership Team
Brian Wong, M.D., Ph.D.
Chief Executive Officer
Brian is a physician/scientist that brings to RAPT Therapeutics over 20 years of experience leading organizations at the forefront of innovative drug development. Prior to RAPT, he served as Senior Vice President, Research, and Head of Immuno-Oncology at Five Prime Therapeutics. Prior to FivePrime, Brian served as Director in the Inflammation Disease Biology Area at Roche. There, he led the discovery and supported the development of Roche’s autoimmune disease portfolio, consisting of more than 20 biologics and small-molecule programs from discovery to late-stage clinical development and through approval. Prior to Roche, he held various leadership roles at Rigel Pharmaceuticals, where he identified and developed clinical candidates for allergic, autoimmune and respiratory disorders, including Tavalisse™.
Brian received his M.D. from the Weill Cornell Medical College and his Ph.D. in Immunology from Rockefeller University.
Dirk joined RAPT Therapeutics in January 2018, bringing over 20 years of experience through all stages of discovery, translational and clinical development, as well as a deep knowledge of immunology and the tumor microenvironment. He joined RAPT from Aduro Biotech, where he served as Executive Vice President of Research and Development. Prior to Aduro, Dirk held positions of increasing responsibility within the immunology department of Cerus Corporation, most recently serving as Director of Immunology. Prior to Cerus, he served as a scientist at Aventis in the immunotherapy and anti-angiogenesis group, developing novel therapies against cancer.
Dirk holds an M.S. in Microbiology from the University of Kiel, and he earned his Ph.D. from the University of Kiel (graduate work performed at Stanford University). He was a post-doctoral fellow at the Stanford School of Medicine in the Department of Pathology. He has co-authored over 50 scientific papers and is a named inventor on seven issued patents and several pending applications.
Bill joined RAPT Therapeutics as Chief Medical Officer in 2015, bringing with him extensive experience both in clinical immunotherapy and in the translational and clinical development of novel therapeutics to treat cancer. He joined RAPT Therapeutics after serving as the Vice President of Clinical Development at Igenica Biotherapeutics, where he led the clinical development of antibody-based therapeutics. Prior to Igenica, Bill served as a Senior Medical Director in the Exploratory Clinical Development (BioOncology) group at Genentech, where for seven years he led the development of multiple small molecule, antibody, and antibody-drug conjugate programs from IND filing to Phase III, including clinical development of Gazyva® (obinutuzumab), Venclexta™ (venetoclax) and Polivy™ (polatuzumab vedotin-piiq).
Bill received his A.B. in Molecular Biology from Princeton University and both his M.D. and his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the Stanford University School of Medicine, where he studied cellular immunology in the laboratory of Mark Davis, Ph.D. Bill completed his internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and received his training in Medical Oncology at the University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, where he studied adoptive immunotherapy methods to treat leukemia.
Rodney joined RAPT Therapeutics in December 2019. He brings more than 30 years of executive management and corporate finance experience. Most recently, he served as Chief Financial Officer of Cellerant Therapeutics, Inc., a private clinical-stage company developing cell and antibody-based immunotherapies for blood cancers and related disorders. At Cellerant, he was responsible for accounting and financial management, and played a key role in corporate strategy. Previously, he served as Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Finance and Administration of StemCells, Inc., a public biotechnology company developing stem cell therapeutics for central nervous system disorders, where he was responsible for raising over $200 million in financing. Earlier in his career, he was an investment banker at Lehman Brothers and SG Cowen, leading financing and merger and acquisition transactions focused in the healthcare, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical sectors. Mr. Young received his MBA and BA from the University of Chicago.
Gwen join RAPT in April 2022, bringing over 30 years of extensive experience building and leading high-quality human resource teams. Most recently, she served as chief people officer at Intersect ENT, a commercial stage medical technology company where she was responsible for setting strategic direction for the human resources function. Previously, Gwen was senior vice president of human resources and facilities at Cardiodx, a private cardiovascular genomic diagnostic company. Before Cardiodx, she was vice president of human resources at Facet Biotech, later acquired by Abbott Labs. Earlier in her career, she held various human resource roles at PDL Biopharma, Fujitsu Computer Systems and AMDAHL corporation. Gwen holds an M.A. in Organizational Communication and a B.A. in Behavioral Science from San Jose State University.
Paul joined RAPT Therapeutics in 2016, bringing more than 15 years of experience building and leading high-performance technical groups in various biopharmaceutical organizations. Most recently, Paul was Director of Research and Head of the Genome Analysis Unit at Amgen, Inc. During his eleven years at Amgen, he developed and implemented multiple high-throughput platforms for drug discovery and target identification across a broad spectrum of therapeutic areas. Prior to Amgen, Paul held scientific and leadership positions in several smaller companies, which enabled him to exercise his passion for creating novel technology platforms to enable drug discovery.
Paul received his B.S. in Genetics and Development from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana before performing graduate research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and earning his Ph.D. in Immunology from Harvard University. Paul completed postdoctoral work in Cellular Neuroscience at the University of California, San Diego.
Lisa joined RAPT Therapeutics in 2018, bringing more than 20 years of experience in business and scientific leadership. At RAPT she is responsible for lead asset partnering and out-licensing, having secured a significant partnership with Hanmi Pharmaceutical Co., LTD. Prior to joining RAPT, she served as Director of Alliance Management for Nurix, Inc. where she managed drug discovery and development strategic alliances with pharma partners in addition to management of strategic research collaborations. Previously, she served as Associate Director of Alliance Management for Novartis Diagnostics managing four commercial alliances as well as establishing cross-functional operating committees to govern product development and commercial activities. Prior to Novartis, she held positions of escalating responsibility at Codexis, Incyte and Exelixis. She received her Ph.D. in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her B.A. in Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.
David joined RAPT Therapeutics in 2016, bringing more than 20 years of experience in drug discovery. Most recently, David served as Vice President, Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences at Cleave Biosciences, where he led chemistry efforts directed towards the discovery and development of first-in-class drug products for solid and hematologic malignancies. Previously, he held several escalating positions at biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies including Vice President, Medicinal Chemistry and Executive Director of Scientific Assessment and Licensing at XenoPort, Executive Director of Chemistry at Neurogen, and Senior Director of Neuroscience Chemistry at Pfizer, where he led cross-functional teams to deliver preclinical development candidates for the treatment of pain, inflammation and psychiatric disorders.
David received his B.S. from Pennsylvania State University and holds a Ph.D. in Organic Synthesis from The University of Rochester. He is the author of over 40 peer-previewed publications and an inventor on over 30 U.S. patents.
Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Quality Assurance
Jennifer joined RAPT in September 2022, bringing over 20 years of biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry regulatory expertise, with significant experience across all stages of development in oncology including hematologic malignancies and solid tumors. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Regulatory Affairs at Kronos Bio. Prior to Kronos Bio, she was Head of Global Regulatory Science at Acerta Pharma, a member of the AstraZeneca Group. Jennifer was the Global Regulatory Lead for the Calquence® (acalabrutinib) US NDA, which was granted accelerated approval in 2017, as well as for subsequent global filings. Prior to joining Acerta, Jennifer was Senior Director of Regulatory Affairs at Bavarian Nordic, where she focused on immuno-oncology and vaccine products. Earlier in her career, Jennifer worked as the Global Regulatory Lead on various hematology and oncology products at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, Onyx Pharmaceuticals and Genentech. Jennifer holds a B.S. in Biochemistry and Cell Biology from the University of California, San Diego and an M.H.A. from the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Adnan joined RAPT in September 2022, bringing over 20 years of biopharmaceutical commercial and marketing expertise. Most recently, he served as Global Commercial Lead of Dermatology at Arena Pharmaceuticals, acquired by Pfizer., where he led global commercial strategy for its principal asset, Etrasimod, in atopic dermatitis and alopecia areata. Prior to Arena Pharmaceuticals, he was U.S. Commercial Director of XGEVA® (denosumab) at Amgen and held various senior marketing positions in oncology, bone health and inflammation business units. Earlier in his career, Adnan held various marketing positions at Pharmacia and Procter & Gamble. Adnan holds an M.B.A. from Rutgers University and an M.A and B.A. in Electrical Engineering from University of Cambridge.
Michael joined RAPT in 2023, bringing over 25 years of law firm and in-house experience, focused on helping biopharmaceutical companies manage the transition from late-stage clinical development to commercial entities. Most recently, he served as Vice President of Healthcare Law & Chief Compliance Officer at Adamas Pharmaceuticals, overseeing legal support for the commercial and medical functions, advising on critical transactions, and ensuring compliance with the complex system of laws and regulations governing the biopharmaceutical industry. Prior to Adamas, he served as Vice President of Healthcare Law at Principia Biopharma. Michael also worked for 16 years at Genentech, Inc., where he led a large team of attorneys providing legal and compliance support for the development, manufacture, distribution and sale of both large and small molecule therapies. Michael began his career at Covington & Burling LLP. Michael holds a J.D. and Masters of International Affairs from Columbia University, as well as a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Giordano joined our board in January 2018 as an independent board member, bringing more than 15 years of experience leading pharmaceutical research and development organizations. Most recently, he served as Senior Vice President and Head of Development, Oncology and Immuno-Oncology for Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he was responsible for the development strategy of the enterprise for this therapeutic area, as well as direction for eight teams working on innovative medicines to improve the standard of care for patients, including Opdivo®, Yervoy®, Empliciti™, and Sprycel®. Prior to this role, Dr. Giordano held positions of increasing responsibility within the research and development organization, leading the development of more than a dozen molecules in the United States, the European Union and Asia. Before joining BMS, he served as Assistant Professor of Medicine and Founding Director of the Cornell Clinical Trials Unit, a National Institutes of Health and Industry-supported AIDS clinical trials center at New York Hospital-Cornell University Medical Center. He earned his M.D. and completed his residency and fellowship training at The New York Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical and received his B.A. in Natural Sciences cum laude from The Johns Hopkins University.
Dr. Gray joined our board in December 2019. She is President of Gray Strategic Advisors, LLC, a biotechnology strategic planning and advisory firm. Previously, she served as Senior Analyst and Portfolio Manager of Federated Kaufmann Fund where she was responsible for over $1 billion in healthcare investments including biotechnology, specialty pharmaceutical, pharmaceutical and healthcare services companies. Prior to Federated, she served as a biotechnology equity research analyst at multiple firms. Earlier in her career, she worked as a senior scientist both at Schering Plough Research and NeoRx Corporation. She currently serves on the boards of Seneca Biopharma Inc. and Sarepta Therapeutics, Inc. and previously served on the board of many public and private biotech companies. Dr. Gray holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of South Carolina, a Ph.D. in pharmacology from the University of Vermont, and completed her post-doctoral work at Northwestern University Medical School and at the Yale University School of Medicine.
Ms. Kozick joined our board in December 2016 as an independent board member. She has more than 25 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, including 15 years of strategic commercial leadership in oncology with a focus in immuno-oncology.
Ms. Kozick retired from Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) where she most recently served as Vice President and Head of Immune-Oncology/Oncology Product & Portfolio Strategy, and Opdivo and Yervoy Life Cycle Management. Prior to that, she held several key positions including Vice President, Commercial Lead for Opdivo and Immuno-Oncology Platform Strategy, and was instrumental in establishing BMS’s International Immuno-Oncology Network (II-ON).
Ms. Kozick received her B.S. and M.S. from SUNY Upstate Medical University, and her M.B.A. from Chapman University.
Mr. Rieflin joined our board in April 2016 as an independent board member bringing more than 20 years of industry experience. He is currently Board Chairman at NGM Bio, where he previously served as the Chief Executive Officer. Prior to NGM Bio (NASDAQ: NGM), he was President of XenoPort, Inc. (NASDAQ: XNPT). Prior to that, he was Executive Vice President, Administration, Chief Financial Officer, General Counsel and Secretary for Tularik Inc. (NASDAQ: TLRK), which was acquired by Amgen Inc. in 2004. Previously, he was Vice President, Human Resources, General Counsel and Secretary for AMSCO International, Inc. (NYSE: ASZ). He was also an associate at Sidley & Austin in the corporate and securities department. He began his career as a sales representative for American Hospital Supply Corporation. In addition to RAPT Therapeutics and NGM Bio, he currently serves on the Board of Directors of Kallyope Inc. Mr. Rieflin earned his B.S. from Cornell University, his M.B.A. from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and his J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Dr. Robbins joined the RAPT board in October 2019 as an independent director. She is a biopharmaceutical entrepreneur with extensive operational and team building experience. She has made a career of building companies from the ground up. Dr. Robbins co-founded early biopharmaceutical companies NeurogesX, Inc. (sold to Acorda Therapeutics), Limerick BioPharma, Labrys Biologics (sold to TEVA 2014), and Blade Therapeutics. She has been a scientific and strategic advisor to many entrepreneurs, investors, nascent biotechs, and pharmaceutical companies. Her expertise includes small and large molecule development from discovery through translational research through the clinic.
Dr. Robbins has also served on the faculty at Stanford University School of Medicine in the Department of Anesthesia, Perioperative Care, and Pain Medicine since 2004. She completed her residency in Anesthesiology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, her internship in Internal Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and received her fellowship training in Pain Medicine from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Robbins received an M.D. from The Medical College of Pennsylvania and a B.S. in Business Administration from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Abdera Therapeutics
Ms. Lyons-Williams joined our board in 2021 as an independent director with more than 20 years of industry experience spanning pharmaceutical and emerging biotech companies. Currently, she serves as President and CEO of Abdera Therapeutics, a privately held biopharmaceutical company developing precision radiopharmaceuticals for cancer.
Prior to Abdera, she was President and Chief Operating Officer at Neumora Therapeutics. Previously, Ms. Lyons served as Chief Commercial officer at Dermira ( NASDAQ: DERM) until its acquisition by Eli Lilly in 2020. Prior to Dermira, Ms. Lyons was Vice President, Sales and Marketing at Allergan (NYSE:AGN) Ms. Lyons-Williams currently serves as an independent director on the board of Pipeline Therapeutics and previously served as an independent director for Five Prime Therapeutics (NASDAQ:FPRX) until its acquisition by Allergan in 2021. Ms. Lyons-Williams earned her B.A. from Virginia Tech and her M.B.A. from Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.
Brian joined RAPT Therapeutics in 2015, bringing more than 15 years of experience leading research and translational medicine organizations. Most recently, he served as Senior Vice President, Research, and Head of Immuno-Oncology at Five Prime Therapeutics, where he led the discovery of novel therapeutics in cancer and inflammation, one of which has progressed into mid-stage clinical trials in combination with Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.’s (BMS) Opdivo™. BMS has pledged more than $1 billion to exclusively license the program.
Prior to Five Prime, Brian served as Director of Research in the Inflammation Disease Biology Area at Roche Palo Alto from 2005 to 2009. He led the development of Roche’s rheumatology portfolio, consisting of more than 20 biologics and small-molecule programs from discovery to late-stage clinical development. From 2000 to 2005, he held various leadership roles at Rigel Pharmaceuticals, where he identified and developed clinical candidates for allergic, autoimmune and respiratory disorders, including Tavalisse™.
Brian received his M.D. from the Weill Cornell Medical College and his Ph.D. in Immunology from Rockefeller University under Dr. Yongwon Choi, Ph.D., a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, and in collaboration with Nobel Laureate Dr. Ralph Steinman, M.D.
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