Medikine Appoints Roland Buelow, Ph.D., to Board of Directors
Founding CEO of Ancora Biotech LLC and Teneobio, Inc., Dr. Buelow Adds Expertise in Driving Value Creation Through Innovative Technology and Business Transactions
MENLO PARK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Medikine, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing transformative therapeutics for cancer, autoimmune disorders, and infectious diseases using its novel PEPTIKINE™ technology, today announced the appointment of Roland Buelow, Ph.D., to the company’s board of directors. Dr. Buelow is an industry veteran and entrepreneur with over 30 years of experience in biotechnology, including management, research and development, and business development.
“Roland’s visionary leadership in drug discovery technology platforms, combined with extensive business transaction experience from his long career in entrepreneurial ventures, are a valuable addition to Medikine,” said Ronald W. Barrett, Ph.D., chief executive officer (CEO) and chairman of the board of Medikine. “The board and management look forward to working closely with him as Medikine enters its next phase of growth as a clinical-stage company.”
Dr. Buelow is the former founder and CEO of Teneobio, a biotechnology company that developed a new class of biologics called Human Heavy-Chain Antibodies. Teneobio entered into several partnerships – including AbbVie Inc., AstraZeneca plc, Kite, a Gilead Company, and Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson – before it was acquired by Amgen Inc. in October 2021. He later founded Ancora Biotech, where he currently serves as the chairman of the board. Dr. Buelow was previously founder and CEO of Open Monoclonal Technology, Inc. (OMT) – which developed OmniRat, OmniFlic, Omnimouse, and UniRat – and was acquired by Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated in 2015. During his stewardship, OMT entered into license agreements with leading biotechnology partners such as Amgen, Celgene Corporation, Genmab A/S, Janssen, Merck KGaA, Pfizer Inc., and Seagen Inc. (formerly Seattle Genetics). Dr. Buelow was also a founder of THP, Inc., a biotechnology company that engineered rabbits to produce human antibodies, and was acquired by F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG in March 2007.
During his scientific career at the Eberhard-Karls-University Tuebingen, the University of Texas at Austin, the Max-Planck-Institute, Stanford University, and in biotech, Dr. Buelow has published more than 100 manuscripts and is an inventor listed on more than 30 U.S. patents.
“Medikine has pioneered a truly unique platform technology capable of producing cytokine mimetics called PEPTIKINES™ that have distinct advantages over cytokine modification approaches,” said Dr. Buelow. “I am energized by the opportunities created with this platform, which could help change the course of serious diseases, and I look forward to partnering with Medikine’s high-caliber board and leadership team as it advances its pipeline of potentially transformative clinical and pre-clinical programs.”
Medikine’s proprietary discovery platform has the capability to discover and optimize, through directed evolution, a multitude of small peptide ligands that bind to cytokine receptors. These are then strategically assembled and engineered to create potential PEPTIKINES™ that activate the targeted cytokine receptor while being engineered for optimal potency and intrinsic activity (full or partial agonist) as well as low immunogenicity. Further engineering of PEPTIKINES results in cytokine mimetics that address specific issues such as half-life and narrow therapeutic window that can limit the utility of cytokine proteins with proven or hypothesized therapeutic utility.
At last month’s Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer’s 37th Annual Meeting (SITC 2022), Medikine presented encouraging preliminary safety, tolerability, and pharmacokinetic/ pharmacodynamic data from its Phase 1 clinical trial in healthy subjects for its lead program, MDK-703. Medikine also shared detailed preclinical results for MDK-1654, Medikine’s dual-acting agonist that incorporates both IL-7 and non-alpha IL-2/15 PEPTIKINES. This was the first demonstration of a synthetic peptide with agonist activity for two clinically relevant cytokine receptors.
Medikine is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company with a mission to transform the discovery of oncology, autoimmune disorder, and infectious disease therapeutics by employing a versatile drug discovery platform that generates modular “PEPTIKINES”- peptide mimetics of cytokines that are smaller in molecular size than, and structurally unrelated to, the natural cytokines they emulate. These PEPTIKINES are engineered for low immunogenicity and are readily amenable to the incorporation of targeting and other pharmacological features.
Medikine’s lead candidate, MDK-703, currently in a Phase 1 clinical trial in healthy volunteers, is an IL-7 PEPTIKINE fused to an immunoglobulin Fc-domain. MDK-703 emulates the beneficial properties of IL-7, a cytokine critical for maintenance of T cell responses.
For more information, please visit www.medikine.com.
The Grace Communication Group