Former chairman of CareDx, Inc. and seasoned global industry executive with track record of transforming organizations will lead Kyverna and drive its growth as it aims to bring a new class of targeted gene therapies to treat severe immune-related diseases
Company plans to submit Investigational New Drug application for its lead program KYV-101, a novel CD19 CAR T-cell therapy, for the treatment of lupus nephritis
Dominic Borie, M.D., Ph.D., named president, research and development to continue advancing company’s core program KYV-101 and strategic partnerships with Gilead and Intellia
Kyverna’s therapeutic platform combines advanced T-cell engineering and synthetic biology technologies to suppress and eliminate autoreactive immune cells at the root cause of inflammatory disease
EMERYVILLE, Calif., October 13, 2022 – Kyverna Therapeutics (“Kyverna”), a cell therapy company with the mission of engineering a new class of therapies for serious autoimmune diseases, today announced the appointment of Peter K. Maag, Ph.D., as the company’s chief executive officer (CEO). Dr. Maag succeeds Dominic Borie, M.D., Ph.D., who has been named Kyverna’s president of research and development (R&D). Dr. Maag also joins Kyverna’s board of directors.
“We are thrilled to welcome Peter as Kyverna’s new CEO,” said Ian Clark, chair of Kyverna’s board of directors. “Peter is an accomplished executive with extensive industry experience at private and public companies spanning three continents. His consistent record of driving transformational growth in healthcare through product innovation, creative business development, sequential financings, and sound investment strategies will be invaluable to progress Kyverna and deliver on its mission to help bring new and much-needed treatment options to patients with serious autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.”
Dr. Maag has more than 20 years of executive management experience in the pharmaceutical and diagnostic industry. Most recently, he was executive chairman, president and CEO of CareDx where he had built the company from a small start-up into a public company and industry-leading powerhouse in transplantation through a series of BD&L and financing transactions. CareDx serves the transplant community with breakthrough technologies in more than 60 countries and has created a strong presence in this specialty market. Prior to joining CareDx in 2012, Peter held multiple positions in Novartis with increasing responsibilities. As President of Novartis Diagnostics, he drove growth and innovation in its blood-screening business. Previously, he led one of Novartis’ key affiliates as country president, Germany, and lived in a dynamically growing market as country president, Korea. At headquarters in Switzerland, he served as the head of strategy for Novartis Pharmaceuticals and helped launch the Infectious Diseases franchise.
“I am passionate about patient care and am honored to be appointed to lead Kyverna and this extraordinarily talented team. This is such an exciting time to join the company with key milestones like our submission of an IND for our lead candidate, KYV-101 in lupus nephritis tomorrow. This important regulatory milestone will provide a runway to move KYV-101 into the clinical phase and brings us a step closer to developing a new treatment option for lupus nephritis,” said Dr. Maag. “I believe that Kyverna is at the forefront of revolutionizing how we treat severe immune-related and inflammatory diseases with its new class of cell therapies. With multiple shots on goal, I believe that Kyverna is well positioned to transform how autoimmune diseases are treated.”
Prior to joining Novartis, Peter worked at McKinsey & Company in New Jersey and Germany, focusing on pharmaceuticals and globalization strategies. Besides supporting various healthcare and tech companies in their growth efforts, he holds board and advisory positions at Phoenix Pharma SE, CareDx, MiroMatrix, and the Personalized Medicine Coalition. Peter studied pharmaceutical sciences in Heidelberg, London, and Berlin.
In addition to Dr. Maag’s appointment, Kyverna announced that Dr. Borie will step away from his CEO role and has been named president of R&D.
“We are grateful for the significant contributions Dominic has made in bringing Kyverna out of stealth in 2020 and growing the company and building out Kyverna’s core programs,” added Mr. Clark. “Dominic has performed admirably, and we could not be more pleased that he will serve as president of Kyverna’s R&D operations. We look forward to working closely with him and his team to continue moving forward our autologous and allogeneic programs, as well as our collaborations with Gilead and Intellia so that we can continue to strive to bring new treatments to patients rapidly.”
KYV-101 is an autologous version of a novel clinical-stage anti-CD19 chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR T) construct with properties well suited for use in B cell-driven autoimmune diseases such as lupus nephritis, systemic sclerosis, and inflammatory myopathies. Kyverna has obtained exclusive, worldwide licenses from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to use this CD19 construct in both autologous and allogeneic CAR T-cell therapies.
About Kyverna Therapeutics
Kyverna Therapeutics is a cell therapy company with the mission of engineering a new class of therapies for autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. The Kyverna therapeutic platform combines advanced T-cell engineering and synthetic biology technologies to suppress and eliminate the autoreactive immune cells at the origin of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. In addition to aiming to develop next-generation chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR T) therapies in both autologous and allogeneic settings, Kyverna is creating synReg T cells, a synthetic version of Regulatory T cells (Tregs), powerful natural immune cells that control immune homeostasis through multiple immunosuppressive mechanisms. By offering more than one mechanism for taming autoimmunity, Kyverna is positioned to act on its mission of transforming how autoimmune diseases are treated. For more information, please visit https://kyvernatx.com.