Larry Bell, MD Joins Prosensa as Head of Global Regulatory Affairs
February 7, 2013
For immediate release
Leiden, the Netherlands, February 7, 2013 – Prosensa Therapeutics, the Dutch biopharmaceutical company focusing on RNA-modulating therapeutics for rare diseases with high unmet need, announced the appointment of Larry Bell, M.D. as its Vice President of Regulatory Affairs. Dr. Bell will be based in the USA.
Dr. Bell has more than 18 years experience in running regulatory affairs for world-leading pharmaceutical companies including Merck, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Aventis and Amgen. Before setting up his own consultancy, in his most recent role he was Vice President and Global Head of Regulatory Affairs at GE Healthcare. He completed his MD at the University of Texas Medical Branch.
At Prosensa, Dr. Bell will be overseeing the company’s global regulatory activities. Importantly, given the ground-breaking nature of Prosensa’s exon-skipping therapies and the need to ensure an efficient route to patients, he will also be instrumental in developing appropriate regulatory strategies and effective relationships with the relevant authorities in USA, Europe and Japan.
Commenting on his appointment, Dr. Bell said: “This is a key time to be joining the Prosensa team. As the orphan drugs space grows in size and scope, there are many regulatory considerations that need to be addressed in order for new drugs to reach the patients that need them. I look forward to helping progress Prosensa’s cutting-edge therapies through the regulatory process.”
Prosensa’s Chief Medical Officer, Giles Campion, commented: “Prosensa has created an extensive clinical development program that aims to target different subpopulations of Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients. Pioneering the regulatory pathway for this new class of drugs is an important factor in our focus to bring treatments to patients as fast as possible. Larry’s extensive scientific experience, both in research and regulatory affairs, combined with his medical experience, brings valuable new skills into the company.”
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Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severely debilitating childhood neuromuscular disease that affects 1 in 3,500 live male births. This rare disease is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, resulting in the absence or defect of the dystrophin protein. As a result, patients suffer from progressive loss of muscle strength, often rendering them wheelchair-bound before the age of 12. Respiratory and cardiac muscle can also be affected by the disease and most patients die in early adulthood due to respiratory and cardiac failure.
Prosensa is an innovative Dutch biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of RNA-modulating therapeutics correcting gene expression in diseases with significant unmet need, in particular neuromuscular disorders. Prosensa’s current focus is on developing treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), myotonic dystrophy and Huntington’s disease. In 2009, Prosensa entered into a strategic alliance for part of its DMD exon skipping program with GlaxoSmithKline. Prosensa’s lead compound, drisapersen (GSK2402968/ PRO051), being developed by GSK, is in Phase III clinical trials. Prosensa is a privately held biopharmaceutical company, backed by a consortium of Abingworth, Gimv, Idinvest Partners, Life Sciences Partners, MedSciences Capital and New Enterprise Associates. For more information, please visit www.prosensa.com.
Prosensa won the 2012 Emerging Star Award at the European Mediscience Awards and was listed as a Fierce 15 Biotech Company.