Immune Pharmaceuticals has appointed Tony Fiorino, M.D., Ph.D., to the joint position of Chief Medical Officer and Chief Operating Officer. Dr. Fiorino will be responsible for all research and development and clinical and manufacturing activities for the company’s core pipeline assets, bertilimumab and nano-cyclosporin.
Dr. Fiorino brings to the company a unique background and specialized expertise, which includes extensive experience in medical affairs, drug development and biotechnology finance and operations. He joins the company from Triumvira Immunologics, an immuno-oncology company developing a novel engineered T cell platform, where he served as President and Chief Executive Officer. Prior to joining Triumvira, Dr. Fiorino was the Chief Executive Officer of BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics, a developer of adult stem cell technologies for neurodegenerative diseases. During his tenure, BrainStorm conducted a phase II trial of neurotrophic factor-secreting mesenchymal stem cells in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, raised $25 million in equity capital, and uplisted to the NASDAQ. Prior to joining BrainStorm, he was the Founder, President and CEO of EnzymeRx, where he led the acquisition of a late-stage pre-clinical biologic and the development of the compound through phase II clinical trials and its subsequent sale to 3SBio.
Before founding EnzymeRx, Dr. Fiorino worked as a biotechnology and pharmaceuticals analyst and portfolio manager at firms including JP Morgan, Citigroup, and Pequot Capital. Dr. Fiorino earned an M.D. and a Ph.D. from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he studied the differentiation of liver progenitor cells, and a BS from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Commenting on his new position, Dr. Fiorino stated, “I have been following the development of bertilimumab for several years and I am excited by the opportunity to accelerate its clinical development. The available data from the open label Bullous Pemphigoid study, the drug’s overall safety profile and the potential to expand its use to additional indications, such as atopic dermatitis, NASH and other eotaxin and eosinophil -driven diseases, all point to great potential for this program.”
Elliot Maza, the company’s interim CEO stated, “I am delighted that Tony has agreed to join the company and share our challenges and future successes. Tony possesses exceptional scientific, medical, organizational and communication skills and a unique background that includes clinical training in dermatology, operational and drug development experience as a biotech CEO and a deep understanding of finance and capital markets from his years as a research analyst and portfolio manager. I am excited to have Tony as a strategic partner as we refocus the company’s efforts and resources on its core programs of bertilumumab and nano-cyclosporin.”