Research Triangle Park, N.C., February 4, 2022 – StrideBio, Inc., a leading developer of novel adeno-associated viral (AAV) based gene therapies, today announced the appointment of industry veteran Mark Velleca, M.D., Ph.D. as Chief Executive Officer and a member of its Board of Directors. Mark succeeds Sapan Shah, Ph.D., who is leaving StrideBio to pursue other opportunities after having served as Chief Executive Officer for the past three years.
“StrideBio has undergone a period of spectacular growth under Sapan’s leadership, and we thank him wholeheartedly for his invaluable contributions to the company,” said Dr. Aravind Asokan, co-founder and member of the Board of Directors. “As we continue on our journey to bring gene therapies to patients, we welcome Mark Velleca to lead us through the next exciting chapter. Mark is an accomplished leader with an impressive track record of clinical experience and building innovative biotech companies developing transformative medicines.”
Dr. Mark Velleca joins StrideBio from Hatteras Venture Partners where he is a Venture Partner. Until 2021, Mark served as CEO of G1 Therapeutics (GTHX), where he took the company public and led the development of its first therapy (COSELA) from IND filing to FDA approval. He continues as a Senior Advisor to and board member of GTHX. Mark has served as an advisor to the StrideBio Board of Directors since November 2021. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Black Diamond Therapeutics (BDTX). Previously, Mark was Executive Vice President at the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). Prior to LLS, Mark was a co-founder and Senior Vice President of CGI Pharmaceuticals, where he managed the company from its inception through clinical trials of multiple drug candidates. After Gilead Sciences acquired CGI, he served as a Senior Advisor to Gilead in R&D Strategy and Corporate Development.
Earlier in his career, Mark was an attending physician at Yale New Haven Hospital and on the faculty of the Yale University School of Medicine. Mark earned an M.D. and Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis, and a B.S. from Yale University.
“I am thrilled to join StrideBio at this critical stage in its development, and want to thank Sapan for his contributions,” said Dr. Velleca. “Stride’s pipeline holds enormous promise for patients in need of better treatment options. I look forward to working with the entire Stride team as we leverage our novel capsid technology and state-of-the-art manufacturing capabilities to advance our therapeutic candidates into the clinic.”
“Leading StrideBio for the past 3 years has been a privilege and I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to work with our talented group of Striders and supportive investors to build such a strong foundation for future success,” said Dr. Shah. “I look forward to supporting Mark through this transition as the company continues on its important mission to advance novel gene therapies enabled by StrideBio’s capsid engineering and manufacturing platform into the clinic where they can benefit patients.”
About StrideBio, Inc.
Founded in 2015 based on the groundbreaking research of Mavis Agbandje-McKenna, Ph.D., and Aravind Asokan, Ph.D., StrideBio, Inc., is a fully integrated gene therapy company focused on creating best-in-class genetic medicines with life-changing or curative potential for children and adults. Our proprietary structure-inspired adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector engineering platform (STRIVE™) creates unique and differentiated capsids that overcome current limitations of first-generation gene therapies. Key targeted improvements include reduced seroprevalence, improved tropism for specific cell types, liver de-targeting and increased gene transfer efficiency, with the potential for improved safety and reduced doses in the clinic. StrideBio is advancing a robust pipeline of gene therapy candidates enabled by these novel engineered capsids, initially focused on genetically defined CNS and cardiovascular disorders. For more information, please visit www.stridebio.com or follow us on LinkedIn.
Carolyn Noyes or Susan Sharpe