FLX Bio Hires Senior Leaders in Immuno-Oncology Drug Discovery

February 08, 2016

Paul Kassner, Ph.D., Joins as Vice President, Quantitative Biology and David Wustrow, Ph.D., Joins as Vice President, Drug Discovery

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Feb. 08, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- FLX Bio, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of novel cancer immunotherapies, announced today that it has appointed Paul Kassner, Ph.D., as Vice President, Quantitative Biology and David Wustrow, Ph.D., as Vice President, Drug Discovery.  They join an experienced management team including Jordan Fridman, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer; William Ho, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer; and Brian Wong, M.D., Ph.D., President and CEO.

"We are delighted to welcome Paul and Dave to the management team at FLX Bio as the company advances its growing immuno-oncology and targeted oncology pipeline. The organization will benefit greatly from the experience of these accomplished executives and scientific leaders," said Dr. Wong.

Dr. Kassner joined FLX Bio after 18 years of building and leading high performance technical groups in various biopharmaceutical organizations. Most recently, he 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, he held scientific and leadership positions in several smaller companies, which enabled him to pursue his passion for creating novel technology platforms to enable drug discovery.  Dr. Kassner received his B.S. degree 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. He completed postdoctoral work in Cellular Neuroscience at the University of California, San Diego.  

Dr. Wustrow has more than 25 years of experience in pharmaceutical research and development, including medicinal chemistry, drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics, preclinical development, and drug product manufacturing.  His efforts have led to the discovery of numerous small molecule drug candidates across a diverse array of target classes and therapeutic areas, including cancer and inflammation.  Prior to FLX Bio, Dr. Wustrow held the position of 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.  Prior to this, he was 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. Dr. Wustrow holds a Ph.D. in Organic Synthesis from The University of Rochester in Rochester, New York.

About FLX Bio

Founded in 2015 following the acquisition of its predecessor company, Flexus Biosciences, Inc., by Bristol-Myers Squibb, FLX Bio, Inc. is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel immuno-oncology agents.  The company leverages its unique insights into tumor pathways to develop novel oral medicines that activate the immune response to eliminate cancer cells.

Located in South San Francisco, Calif., and funded by leading investors, including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), The Column Group (TCG), and Celgene, FLX Bio has assembled a management and leadership team with a proven track record of success and with substantial knowledge and expertise in the tumor microenvironment, drug discovery and translational areas essential to execute on this approach.  For more information, please visit www.flxbio.com


Stephanie Ashe

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