UTRECHT, The Netherlands, Oct. 26, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Merus N.V. (NASDAQ:MRUS), a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company developing innovative bispecific antibody therapeutics, today announced the appointment of L. Andres Sirulnik, MD, PhD, to the position of Chief Medical Officer, where he will be responsible for leading the Company's global clinical development strategy and clinical operations. Dr. Sirulnik will report to Ton Logtenberg, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Merus, and will be based in the Company’s US Cambridge office.
“Andres possesses an in-depth knowledge of immuno-oncology with more than 20 years of clinical and industry experience, and we look forward to his expertise as we advance the development of our novel portfolio of Biclonics®,” said Ton Logtenberg, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Merus. “Andres has an extensive background in oncology drug development, medical affairs, and regulatory strategy, and will be a critical asset to the team as we execute on our clinical vision and strive to bring innovative cancer treatments to patients.”
“I am excited to join the passionate team at Merus and lead the Company’s clinical development efforts at this important juncture,” commented Dr. Sirulnik. “Bispecific antibodies attack tumor cells by inhibiting survival pathways while simultaneously activating the immune system, and this multifaceted approach holds great promise across a broad range of cancer types, both as monotherapy as well as in combination with other treatments. Together with the leadership team, I look forward to making a contribution to its clinical development efforts.”
Prior to joining Merus, Dr. Sirulnik held numerous positions of increasing responsibility at Novartis, most recently serving as Vice President and Senior Global Clinical Program Head where he oversaw the clinical strategy for the immune-oncology portfolio. Prior, Dr. Sirulnik served as attending physician at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and was a fellow in Hematology/Oncology at Mount Sinai Health System in New York City. Dr. Sirulnik completed his medical residency at North Shore-Long Island Jewish (LIJ) Health System and conducted post doctorate work at Columbia University in New York City. He received his PhD in Medicine and Molecular Biology from King’s College, University of Cambridge in England and his MD from Universidad de Buenos Aires in Argentina.
About Merus N.V.
Merus is a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company developing innovative full length human bispecific antibody therapeutics, referred to as Biclonics®. Biclonics® are based on the full-length IgG format, are manufactured using industry standard processes and have been observed in preclinical studies to have several of the same features of conventional monoclonal antibodies, such as long half-life and low immunogenicity. Merus' lead bispecific antibody candidate, MCLA-128, is being evaluated in a Phase 1/2 clinical trial in Europe as a potential treatment for HER2-expressing solid tumors. Merus' second bispecific antibody candidate, MCLA-117, is being developed in a Phase 1/ 2 clinical trial in patients with acute myeloid leukemia. The Company also has a pipeline of proprietary bispecific antibody candidates in preclinical development, including MCLA-158, which is designed to bind to cancer stem cells and is being developed as a potential treatment for colorectal cancer and other solid tumors, and Biclonics® designed to bind to various combinations of immunomodulatory molecules, including PD-1 and PD-L1.