EMERYVILLE, Calif., August 23, 2022 – Kyverna Therapeutics (“Kyverna”), a cell therapy company engineering a new class of therapies for serious autoimmune diseases, today announced the appointment of Tom Van Blarcom, Ph.D., as Senior Vice President and Head of Research. Dr. Van Blarcom has 15 years of biopharmaceutical industry experience leading research teams which have contributed to multiple chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells and bispecific antibodies currently under clinical evaluation. He replaces Kyverna’s scientific co-founder Jeffrey Greve, Ph.D., who served as Chief Scientific Officer since the Company’s inception in 2018.
“We are excited to welcome Tom to the Kyverna team. His broad experience in cell therapy research across a wide range of diseases will be invaluable in supporting our work developing engineered T-cell therapies for the treatment of autoimmune diseases,” said Dominic Borie, M.D., Ph.D., President and CEO of Kyverna. “Tom’s leadership and extensive industry experience will be a critical pillar of our company as we advance our Regulatory T cell (Treg) platform and CAR T programs to achieve our mission of bringing curative living medicines to life to free patients from the siege of autoimmune disease.
“On behalf of the entire Kyverna team, I want to thank Jeff for his expertise and leadership in helping build Kyverna’s transformative Treg platform and establishing an outstanding scientific team,” added Dr. Borie.
“Joining Kyverna is an opportunity to partner with a talented management team and help build an innovative company focused on revolutionizing how we treat serious autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. I am thrilled to apply my experience in cell therapy research toward making new modalities that can potentially cure severe immune-related diseases and change the lives of patients living with autoimmune diseases,” said Dr. Van Blarcom.
Dr. Van Blarcom joins Kyverna from Allogene Therapeutics where he most recently served as Executive Director, Head of Protein Engineering and Research Operation; he joined Allogene shortly after the company acquired the allogeneic cell therapy assets from Pfizer. In this role, he contributed to developing the scientific strategy, led cross-functional teams responsible for execution, and oversaw scientific operations. Dr. Van Blarcom also built the Protein Engineering Department that is responsible for protein sciences and technology development and led to co-inventorship on more than fifteen of Allogene’s pending or issued patents. Prior to Allogene, Dr. Van Blarcom held several roles of increasing responsibility at Pfizer and was involved in their initial work on allogeneic CAR T cells that is now part of Allogene. He also spent time at Amgen where he began his industry career. His work has resulted in more than twenty peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Van Blarcom received his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and a B.S. in chemical engineering from North Carolina State University.