Arkuda Therapeutics Bolsters Leadership Team to Drive Clinical Development and Advance Discovery

Arkuda Therapeutics, a biotechnology company on the cutting edge of lysosomal biology and neuronal health, is pleased to announce the appointment of Arkuda co-founder Duane Burnett, PhD, as Chief Technology Officer and the promotion of Raymond Hurst, PhD, to Senior Vice President, Head of Discovery.

Additionally, the company has welcomed Irena Webster, MPH, MA, as Vice President, Program Strategy and Development Operations to guide clinical development as the company readies its lead compound for clinical trials early next year. With these strategic moves, Arkuda is poised to revolutionize the trajectory of neurodegenerative disease.

It’s an exciting time at Arkuda Therapeutics as we continue to progress in understanding and treating neurodegenerative diseases. We are thrilled to welcome Irena Webster, who brings more than two decades of experience in drug development, as well as Serena Hung as Chief Medical Officer, to ensure Arkuda is clinic-ready in the first half of 2021.

We are also fortunate to have co-founder Duane Burnett transition to the role of Chief Technology Officer, working closely with the research and development team, headed by Raymond Hurst, to advance ARKD-104 into clinical trials.

Dr. Burnett is an acclaimed scientist and inventor, having earned over 110 granted or published patents and applications and published 60 papers. He is best known for inventing ezetimibe, the cholesterol absorption inhibitor used in two highly successful, multi-billion dollar products for treating hypercholesterolemia.

Before founding Arkuda in 2018, Dr. Burnett worked at top pharmaceutical companies, developing drugs for cardiometabolic and CNS disorders. With his impressive background and expertise, he is a valuable asset to the medical industry.

Dr. Hurst is a highly experienced CNS drug discovery specialist, having worked in the industry for over two decades. He is currently the Vice President of Pharmacology at Arkuda, having joined the company in 2020. His breadth of knowledge and expertise has been proven invaluable in small, mid and large-sized biopharmaceutical companies.

Arkuda Therapeutics is thrilled to welcome Irena to its management team as the company prepares to embark on its first clinical trials. Her extensive background in neurology and rare diseases combined with her knowledge of clinical development will be invaluable in advancing Arkuda’s lead program for the treatment of the many underlying lysosomal dysfunctions causing neurodegenerative diseases.

Arkuda is pleased to welcome Amy Webster to its team as Vice President of Clinical Operations. Ms. Webster brings a wealth of experience in clinical development and project management, having worked in a variety of therapeutic areas – from neurology and psychiatry to oncology, cardiovascular, and rare disease – for more than two decades at Forma Therapeutics, Sage Therapeutics, and Alkermes.

With Ms. Webster’s expertise, Arkuda is now fully prepared to launch its lead candidate ARKD-104 – a first-in-class small molecule progranlin enhancer – into clinical trials for the treatment of GRN-related frontotemporal dementia (FTD-GRN).

MarkD-104 is an innovative therapy that has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as FTD-GRN, Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease. By increasing progranulin production, this therapy could help to restore lysosomal function, ultimately leading to improved cognitive functioning in those living with these conditions. MarkD-104 promises to be a game-changer in the fight against neurodegenerative diseases.

About Arkuda Therapeutics

Arkuda Therapeutics is a biotechnology company on a mission to revolutionize the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. By unlocking the secrets of lysosomal biology, Arkuda is developing medicines to change the course of devastating diseases like frontotemporal dementia (FTD-GRN), Alzheimer’s Disease, and Parkinson’s Disease.

Arkuda’s lead program ARKD-104 is designed to correct progranulin deficiency and lysosomal dysfunction in patients with GRN-related FTD-GRN. With the backing of leading investors including Atlas Venture, Cormorant Asset Management, Pfizer Ventures, funds managed by Tekla Capital Management LLC, Mission BioCapital, and Eli Lilly and Company, Arkuda is making strides towards a brighter future for those affected by these diseases.

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