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Press Release

Turnstone Biologics Appoints Dr. Mike Burgess as President of Research and Development

Turnstone Biologics
Posted on: 15 Nov 17

Turnstone Biologics, a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company, today announced the appointment of Mike Burgess, MBChB, Ph.D., as president of research and development. Dr. Burgess joins from Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he was senior vice president of development across multiple therapeutic areas. At Turnstone Biologics, he will lead all functions in the R&D organization, including research and discovery, as well as preclinical and clinical development.

“Mike is one of the most respected research and development leaders in the pharmaceutical industry, and has successfully led the global development and registration of several anti-cancer medicines,” said Sammy Farah, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Turnstone Biologics. “Mike’s oncology expertise will be instrumental in advancing the development of our next-generation viral immunotherapies and powerful immuno-oncology R&D capabilities.”

“Turnstone Biologics is uniquely positioned to deliver breakthrough viral-based immunotherapies for patients with cancer. Its unprecedented two-in-one therapeutic approach, which combines an oncolytic virus with an antigen-specific cancer vaccine, is a powerful platform for addressing the challenges of treating different solid tumors,” said Dr. Burgess. “I look forward to working closely with Turnstone’s experienced team and founders, who are driven by science and innovation, to bring these breakthrough medicines to patients.”

Dr. Burgess brings 20 years of drug development experience to his new role at Turnstone Biologics. At Bristol-Myers Squibb, he led strategy and execution of translational medicine, early-stage clinical trials and clinical pharmacology across all therapeutic areas, including oncology. At Roche, he held several different senior leadership positions, including acting global head of Roche Pharma Research and Early Development (pRED) and senior vice president and global head of oncology research and early development. Prior to working in the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Burgess spent 10 years as a practicing physician in pediatrics and pediatric oncology. He received his medical degree (MBChB) and a Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Bristol, UK.

About Turnstone Biologics

Turnstone Biologics is a clinical-stage, immuno-oncology company focused on the development of next-generation oncolytic viral immunotherapies for patients with a broad range of solid tumors. The company's first-of-its-kind investigational oncolytic viral immunotherapies combine the potent tumor-killing effects of an oncolytic virus with a tumor-targeted T-cell vaccine to harness an individual's own immune system to attack the tumor, with the goal of preventing recurrence and delivering a cure. Turnstone Biologics' robust pipeline of early-stage investigational therapies, based on its Maraba (MG1) oncolytic virus platform, are in development for solid tumors. In addition to the MAGEA3 therapy currently in the clinic, Turnstone Biologics expects to enter the clinic in early 2018 with a therapy for HPV+ cancers, and is also developing medicines for multiple other cancers. These immunotherapies are being evaluated as monotherapies and in combination with other cancer therapies, including checkpoint inhibitors. Turnstone Biologics has been financed by Versant Ventures, OrbiMed, F-Prime Capital Partners and FACIT. For more information, please visit

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Last updated on: 15/11/2017

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