Dr. Reardon to lead strategic development of Ribometrix platform for novel RNA drug discoveryAppointment of two vice presidents to boost expanded research and discovery operationsDurham, NC (April 10, 2019) — Ribometrix, a biotechnology company developing small molecule therapeutics that directly target RNA to treat human diseases, announced today the appointment of John Reardon, Ph.D., as its chief scientific officer, who brings over 30 years of drug discovery and development experience to the company. Ribometrix also recently appointed Don Hertzog, Ph.D., as vice president, drug discovery; and Bill Janzen as vice president, lead discovery and research operations. All three are highly experienced research leaders that will accelerate the expansion and maturation of Ribometrix’s unique platform, focused on discovering and developing small molecule therapeutics that target 3D RNA structures for a variety of diseases.
“I welcome the invaluable expertise of John to our leadership team during an exciting period of rapid expansion for Ribometrix as we continue to enhance our capabilities and progress our discovery programs,” said Michael Solomon, Ph.D., chief executive officer. “In addition, Bill and Don’s extensive experience in all aspects of drug discovery and operations are adding incredible value to the development of our core platform and preclinical pipeline.”
Dr. Reardon brings more than 30 years of biopharmaceutical industry experience to Ribometrix, with the last 12 focused on growing early-stage therapeutic developers. Most recently, he was head of research and development at HemoShear Therapeutics, a rare disease drug developer, and chief scientific officer at Revivo Therapeutics. Dr. Reardon was also previously chief scientific officer at Cardioxyl Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2015 for $2.2 billion. He also brings extensive pharma experience to Ribometrix including 19 years with Burroughs Wellcome, Glaxo Wellcome and GlaxoSmithKline, where in his final role he oversaw all early lead discovery activities as senior vice president of discovery research biology.
“Small molecule targeting of RNA is an area of incredible potential and structural expertise like Ribometrix’s will be key to unlocking a huge variety of compelling targets. This field is growing rapidly so I’m thrilled to join Ribometrix at this juncture, to help navigate this new frontier and consolidate the company’s leadership in RNA-targeting therapeutics,” said Dr. Reardon.
Dr. Don Hertzog brings more than 20 years of industry experience across both biotech and pharma to his role as Ribometrix’s vice president, drug discovery. He formerly served as head of chemistry at HemoShear and as vice president of early lead identification at Abide Therapeutics where he led a chemistry team focused on lead identification. Earlier in his career Dr. Hertzog served in multiple roles of increasing responsibility over 17 years at GlaxoSmithKline, most recently as the site head for the Molecular Discovery Research Department of Medicinal Chemistry and director of medicinal chemistry for metabolic disease.
Mr. Bill Janzen joins Ribometrix as vice president, lead discovery and research operations following 30 years of experience across over 500 drug discovery projects. His experience in strategic lead generation activities spans academia, start-up ventures and large pharmaceutical companies. He has held executive and operational positions including executive director of lead generation at Epizyme, director of assay development and compound profiling at the University of North Carolina, president and chief operating officer of Amphora Discovery and director of lead generation technologies at Eli Lilly and Company.
Ribometrix is a biotechnology company developing small molecule therapeutics that directly target RNA to treat human diseases. The Ribometrix team leverages its world-leading expertise in 3D structural analysis of RNA to drive its discovery platform, drawing on technologies invented in the laboratory of Ribometrix scientific founder Kevin Weeks, Ph.D. In November 2018, the Company announced a $30 million Series A funding round which was led by M Ventures, the strategic corporate venture capital arm of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. The round was supported by Amgen Ventures, Pappas Capital and Illumina Ventures as well as Ribometrix’s founding investor syndicate: SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, Hatteras Venture Partners, MP Healthcare Venture Management, the Dementia Discovery Fund and Alexandria Venture Investments. Ribometrix is headquartered in Durham, North Carolina.