Anaveon announces appointment of Dr Allison Jeynes-Ellis to its Board of Directors

Basel, 10 April 2019 – Anaveon, an immuno-oncology company, today announced that it has appointed Dr Allison Jeynes-Ellis to its board of directors.

Allison Jeynes-Ellis, MD, FFPM (UK), is a trained clinician with more than 25 years of senior leadership experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Currently, she serves as Chief Executive Officer at Avillion LLP, a London-based drug development company focused on co-development and financing of late-stage pharmaceuticals where she is responsible for identifying high-potential opportunities to fund programs to approval.  Previously, she led development at Wyeth, BMS, and Novartis and has secured numerous U.S. and EU drug approvals.  Dr Jeynes-Ellis also serves as a non-executive director of Agenus Inc.

Andreas Katopodis, Co-Founder and Chief Executive of Anaveon, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Allison to our board of directors. Allison is a highly accomplished leader in our industry with significant global drug development and commercialisation experience.  We look forward to drawing on her extensive experience as we progress our differentiated IL-2 compounds towards the clinic.”

Allison Jeynes-Ellis, added:

“I am pleased to join the board of directors of Anaveon at an exciting time in the company’s development. I look forward to leveraging my previous experience to help Anaveon meet its goals of bringing transformative therapies to the clinic and making a difference in the lives of patients.”

Anaveon was founded in December 2017 by leading experts in the field of immunotherapy, Onur Boyman, Professor and Chair in the Department of Immunology at the University of Zurich and a recognised IL-2 biology expert, and Andreas Katopodis, previously Director at the Autoimmunity, Transplantation & Inflammation Group at the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research. 

The company is developing a selective IL-2 Receptor Agonist, a type of protein that could therapeutically enhance a patient’s immune system to respond to tumours. In the body, human IL-2 stimulates a type of immune cell, called a T-cell, to multiply and become activated.  Under certain situations, T-cells are able to attack tumours and, consistent with this, human IL-2 is already approved as a medicine for the treatment of metastatic melanoma and renal cancer.

Anaveon’s product is designed to overcome known challenges with human IL-2. These include severe, dose-limiting side effects and a short half-life that requires frequent infusions. This type of drug, if approved, could potentially have a wide utility in oncology, including in combination with cell therapies, vaccines, checkpoint inhibitors and radiotherapy.

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