19 Nov, 2021 Alnylam R&D Day 2021
On November 19, 2021, we hosted a virtual R&D Day event showcasing Alnylam’s late stage clinical efforts, next wave programs, and platform advances. The event included presentations from Alnylam senior leaders as well as guest speakers.
To view the webcast, click here.
To view the R&D Day presentation, click here.
Speakers – Alnylam Management:
John Maraganore, Ph.D. – Chief Executive Officer
Since 2002, Dr. John Maraganore has served as the CEO and a Director of Alnylam.
Prior to Alnylam, Dr. Maraganore served as an officer and a member of the management team for Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. As Senior Vice President, Strategic Product Development for Millennium, he was responsible for the company’s product franchises in oncology, and cardiovascular, inflammatory, and metabolic diseases. He was previously Vice President, Strategic Planning and M&A and, prior to that, he was General Manager of Millennium BioTherapeutics, Inc., a former subsidiary of Millennium. Before Millennium he served as Director of Molecular Biology and Director of Market and Business Development at Biogen, Inc. At Biogen, Dr. Maraganore invented and led the discovery and development of ANGIOMAX® (bivalirudin) for injection, formerly HIRULOGTM and currently marketed by The Medicines Company. Prior to Biogen, Dr. Maraganore was a scientist at ZymoGenetics, Inc., and the Upjohn Company.
Dr. Maraganore received his Master of Science and Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of Chicago. He is a member of the Board for Agios Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Board and is a member of the BIO Executive Committee.
Akshay Vaishnaw, M.D., Ph.D. – President, Research & Development
Dr. Vaishnaw joined Alnylam Pharmaceuticals in 2006 as VP Clinical Research and has then subsequently served in various R&D roles with increasing responsibility. Akshay is currently the President of R&D. Prior to 2006, he was at Biogen as Senior Director, Translational Medicine.
Akshay received his M.D. from the University of Wales College of Medicine, U.K., and Ph.D. from the University of London, U.K., in Molecular Immunology. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, U.K. Akshay is a member of the Board of Directors for Editas Medicine Inc. and Scholar Rock Inc. From 2014-2018, he served as a Board member of Visterra, Inc.
John Vest, M.D. – Vice President, Clinical Research
Dr. John Vest joined Alnylam in 2015 and is currently Vice President of Clinical Research. He serves as the Global Clinical Lead for the ATTR Amyloidosis Franchise. In this role Dr. Vest oversees both the clinical development strategy and clinical trial execution for Alnylam’s innovative RNAi therapeutics targeting transthyretin. He has played an instrumental role in multiple pivotal Phase 3 studies of ONPATTRO and vutrisiran.
Before joining Alnylam, he worked in the Cardiovascular Translational Medicine group at Novartis where he played a key clinical role in developing the company’s early stage pipeline of compounds in the cardiovascular space. Prior to his career in industry, Dr. Vest spent over 16 years in the study and practice of medicine.
Dr. Vest received his MD from Columbia University where he went on to complete a residency in Internal Medicine and fellowship in Cardiovascular Disease. He subsequently completed sub-specialty training in Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital before returning to Columbia where he joined the faculty of the Cardiology Division.
Weinong Guo, M.D., Ph.D. – Senior Vice President, Clinical Research
Dr. Weinong Guo joined Alnylam in May 2021 and is currently Senior Vice President of Clinical Research. In this role, he leads the Clinical Research team and oversees the clinical development programs in CardioMetabolic and Prevalent Disease areas, including zilebesiran (formerly known as ALN-AGT), lumasiran, ALN-HSD, and ALN-XDH, etc. Before joining Alnylam, he worked in the CardioRenalMetabolic Development Unit in Novartis for about 14 years where he played a key role in a number of high-priority clinical development programs including successful registration and life-cycle management of Entresto (sacubitril/valsartan) for chronic heart failure, hypertension and myocardial infarction. Dr. Guo spent 20 years in the industry including Solvay and Schering-Plough during his early career.
Dr. Guo received his MD degree from Soochow University in China and his Ph.D. from Nagoya University in Japan. He completed his cardiology training at 2nd Affiliated Hospital at Soochow University, and an AHA postdoctoral fellowship in cardiac electrophysiology and pharmacology at Washington University in St. Louis before joining the industry. He has been a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology since 2005.
Kevin Fitzgerald, Ph.D. – Senior Vice President & Chief Scientific Officer
Kevin Fitzgerald is Chief Scientific Officer, SVP, Head of Research at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals in Cambridge, MA. He has over 20 years of drug discovery experience. He joined Alnylam in 2005 as an Associate Director of research after spending 7 years at Bristol-Myers Squibb. He has served in roles of increasing responsibility and leadership since that time. His achievements at Alnylam include leadership of the company’s RNAi delivery efforts, resulting in two clinically validated modes of siRNA delivery, and the development of Alnylam’s RNAi therapeutic novel class of medicines. He is an inventor on over 50 patents including the majority of Alnylam’s marketed and pipeline programs, as well as an author of over 50 papers including many in prestigious journals such as Nature, Cell, and NEJM. He has led multiple programs — including Alnylam’s inclisiran program — from discovery through pre-clinical development, regulatory submissions, and early clinical development.
Kevin received his Bachelor of Science in genetics from Cornell University and his doctorate in molecular biology from Princeton University. He completed his post-doctoral fellowship in oncology at Harvard Medical School in oncology.
Pushkal Garg, M.D. – Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Pushkal Garg joined Alnylam in 2014 with 15 years of experience in clinical drug development. He oversees all clinical development activities at Alnylam.
Prior to joining Alnylam, Dr. Garg served as Vice President, Global Clinical Research, Immunoscience at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS). He was the strategic leader of the Immunoscience franchise and oversaw the development of multiple clinical assets across the areas of rheumatology, gastroenterology, nephrology, and transplantation. While at BMS, he was instrumental to the late-stage development and approval of Nulojix® (belatacept) for kidney transplant recipients, and for supplementary biologics license applications (BLAs) for Orencia® (abatacept). Preceding this, Dr. Garg held various roles at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, overseeing the clinical development of multiple small molecule and biologic therapeutics for the treatment of inflammatory disorders.
Dr. Garg received a Bachelor of Arts with high honors in Biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, and his M.D. from the University of California, San Francisco. He completed residency training in Internal Medicine at UCSF, was a fellow in the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at Johns Hopkins University, and served on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and the Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston prior to joining the industry. Dr. Garg is a member of the Board of Directors of SQZ Biotechnologies (SQZ).
Yvonne Greenstreet, MBChB, MBA – President & Chief Operating Officer
Dr. Yvonne Greenstreet joined Alnylam in 2016 as Chief Operating Officer and was promoted to President and COO in 2020 and appointed as a Director in October 2021. Yvonne has more than 25 years of experience in the Biopharmaceutical industry, driving strategy and innovation, bringing transformative medicines to patients, and building successful businesses in the U.S., Europe and globally. Between 2011 and 2013, Yvonne was Senior Vice President and Head of Medicines Development at Pfizer, serving on the executive team leading a rapidly growing $16bn division. Prior to Pfizer, she was at GlaxoSmithKline plc for 18 years, where she was Senior Vice President and Chief of Strategy for Research and Development. Yvonne had previously been in various positions of increasing responsibility at GSK, including Senior Vice President for Medicines Development and Chief Medical Officer for Europe. Yvonne trained as a physician and earned her medical degree (MBChB) from The University of Leeds in the UK. She also holds an MBA from INSEAD Business School in France. Dr. Greenstreet also serves on the board of directors of Pacira BioSciences, Inc., argenx SE and The American Funds. Additionally, she is in the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and is a member of the Discovery Council of Harvard Medical School.
Speakers – Key Opinion Leaders:
Sharon Cohen, M.D., FRCPC – Medical Director, Toronto Memory Program
Dr. Sharon Cohen is a behavioural neurologist and the medical director of Toronto Memory Program, a community-based medical facility which she established in 1996 for the purpose of enhancing diagnosis and treatment for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders. Her memory clinic and dementia research site are among the most active in Canada.
Dr. Cohen has over 28 years of experience in clinical research and has been a site PI for over 150 pharmacological trials. She represents Canada on international advisory boards and steering committees and is a consultant to a wide range of stakeholders including government organizations and patient advocacy groups. She is a frequent lecturer and contributes to media events including those on medical ethics. She is known for her advocacy of individuals with neurodegenerative diseases.
Despite holding academic and hospital appointments, Dr. Cohen chooses to practice in the community, in keeping with her belief that dementia care and clinical research are best offered in the real-world setting.
SriniVas Sadda, M.D. – Professor of Ophthalmology, Doheny Eye Institute, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA
SriniVas R. Sadda, M.D., is the Director, Artificial Intelligence & Imaging Research, Doheny Eye Institute and Professor of Ophthalmology at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. He received his medical degree from The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. After an internship at the William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, he returned to Johns Hopkins University and the Wilmer Eye Institute in Baltimore for an ophthalmology residency as well as neuro-ophthalmology and medical retina fellowships. Dr. Sadda’s major research interests include automated retinal image analysis, retinal substructure assessment, advanced retinal imaging technologies, and vision restoration approaches. His research has been consistently funded by the National Institutes of Health and multiple private organizations. Dr. Sadda has served as Principal Investigator for over 30 major clinical trials and has led several international collaborative research programs. He has authored more than 550 publications in peer-reviewed journals, over 300 published abstracts, and over 20 book chapters. Dr. Sadda also serves as an editorial board member of several peer-reviewed medical journals related to ophthalmology and retinal diseases. He has received numerous awards and honors in the field of ophthalmology and has been named to the Best Doctors of America list for several consecutive years.