April 18, 2019
Obsidian Therapeutics Announces Leadership Transition and Appoints Paul K. Wotton, Ph.D., as Chief Executive Officer
Experienced CEO brings expertise in product development, cell and gene therapies, and public biotechnology companies as Obsidian positions itself for future growth
Michael Gilman, Ph.D, to continue to serve on Obsidian’s Board of Directors
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Obsidian Therapeutics, a biotechnology company developing cell-based therapeutics with controllable operating systems, today announced the appointment of Paul K. Wotton, Ph.D., as Chief Executive Officer. He succeeds Michael Gilman, Ph.D., who will focus on Arrakis Therapeutics and continue to serve on Obsidian’s Board of Directors.
“I am thrilled that we are able to bring an outstanding leader like Paul to Obsidian,” said Dr. Gilman. “Paul’s substantial experience, his strategic business savvy, together with his in-depth of knowledge of cell and gene therapies make him a natural choice to lead the Obsidian team and advance its next generation cell and gene therapies into the clinic.”
Dr. Wotton brings significant global biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry leadership experience spanning scientific research, product development and corporate growth gained over a thirty-year career. Dr. Wotton most recently served as the Founding President and CEO of Sigilon Therapeutics, Inc. Prior to Sigilon, Dr. Wotton served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Ocata Therapeutics until its acquisition by Astellas Pharma where he was also Co-Chairman of the Office of Integration. In previous roles, he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Antares Pharma as well as Chief Executive Officer of Topigen Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Wotton is a named inventor on numerous patents and was the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Regional (NJ) Winner Life Sciences in 2014. He serves on the Boards of Directors of Vericel Corporation (NASDAQ: VCEL), Veloxis Pharmaceuticals A/S (Copenhagen: VELO) and Cynata Therapeutics (ASX: CYP).
“We welcome Paul to lead Obsidian through its next phase of growth,” said Peter Barrett, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board of Obsidian and Partner at Atlas Venture. “His deep experience in managing platform growth opportunities will be invaluable in building Obsidian to its full potential. The Board would also like to thank Mike Gilman for leading Obsidian’s significant progress to date and building a strong company foundation.”
“I am excited to be joining Obsidian Therapeutics at a pivotal time for the company,” said Dr. Wotton. “Mike and the team have built a world-class organization, executed on a strategic transformative partnership, and established Obsidian’s technology as the premier synthetic biology platform for regulating gene and cell-based therapeutics. It is clear that Obsidian is well positioned for future growth, and I look forward to working with the Board and the team to execute on our shared vision and advance this breakthrough technology rapidly to improve therapeutic outcomes substantially for many patients with life-threatening diseases, including cancer.”
About Obsidian Therapeutics
Obsidian Therapeutics is a biotechnology company developing next-generation cell and gene therapies with pharmacologic operating systems based on proprietary Destabilizing Domains (DD) technology. Obsidian’s lead programs incorporate controllable functions into CAR-T and other cellular medicines so they can be precisely tuned by a companion small-molecule medicine to control and optimize therapeutic effect in a dose dependent manner. Obsidian is using DD technology to create a suite of regulated factors that can be incorporated into cell and gene therapies to provide pharmacological control of enhanced therapeutics for cancer and other diseases. Based upon the work of Professor Thomas Wandless, a leading researcher in chemical and systems biology, Obsidian was founded in 2015 and is funded by a strong syndicate of venture investors. The company is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Please visit www.obsidiantx.com.
Kathryn Morris, The Yates Network