GERMANTOWN, Md., June 29, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Intrexon Corporation (NYSE: XON), a leader in the engineering and industrialization of biology to improve the quality of life and health of the planet, today announced the appointment of Helen Sabzevari, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Intrexon Health Therapeutics as well as Head of Research and Development of Precigen Inc. She will report directly to Randal J. Kirk, Chief Executive Officer of Intrexon.
"I am delighted to welcome Dr. Helen Sabzevari to our team. Her deep scientific expertise and insight are matched by her creativity, drug development acumen, and organizational skills," commented Randal J. Kirk Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Intrexon. "We very much look forward to her utilizing and advancing Precigen's cutting-edge gene and cell therapy platform to create and deliver efficacious therapeutics across a broad range of diseases helping better the lives of patients."
Dr. Sabzevari brings extensive expertise in research and development of immunotherapy-based therapeutics as well as experience translating novel treatments from pre-clinical stage into the clinic. She served as Senior Vice President of Immuno-Oncology as well as Global Head of Immunotherapy, Oncology, Global Research and Early Development at EMD Serono (a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany). During her tenure, she led the immuno-oncology discovery and early development translational innovation platform and brought forward numerous pre-clinical and clinical assets including Avelumab, an approved programmed death ligand-1 (PD-L1) checkpoint inhibitor for two indications to date. Dr. Sabzevari was also head of the Molecular Immunology Group at the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Biology at the US National Cancer Institute (LTIB-NCI), where she led a research program focused on design, development and delivery of novel vaccines and immunotherapies for a range of human cancers. Most recently she co-founded and served as Chief Scientific Officer of Compass Therapeutics LLC, a fully-integrated drug discovery and development company focused on manipulating the immune system to treat human disease, where she led scientific discovery efforts in the areas of immuno-oncology and autoimmunity.
Dr. Sabzevari is internationally recognized for her work in the field of immuno-oncology and her patient-first approach to drug discovery. Her contributions in the field of tumor immunology earned her the National Institutes of Health (NIH) merit award for major contribution to the field of cancer immunotherapy. She has been the recipient of Mass High Tech's Women to Watch Award and the PharmaVOICE 100 Award.
"Intrexon's impressive technology platform and focused approach to engineering targeted, controlled gene therapies addressing unmet needs has resulted in an exciting pipeline of preclinical and clinical programs across oncology, rare diseases, cardiac disease and other areas," stated Dr. Sabzevari. "I am pleased to join the Intrexon team and look forward to leading these promising translational health programs from bench to bedside and expanding the Company's collaborative efforts into new areas."
Dr. Sabzevari received her doctorate degree in cell and molecular immunology and completed her postdoctoral work at the department of immunology at the Scripps Research Institute working on various immunotherapeutic modalities in the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases.
About Intrexon Corporation
Intrexon Corporation (NYSE: XON) is Powering the Bioindustrial Revolution with Better DNA™ to create biologically-based products that improve the quality of life and the health of the planet. The Company's integrated technology suite provides its partners across diverse markets with industrial-scale design and development of complex biological systems delivering unprecedented control, quality, function, and performance of living cells. We call our synthetic biology approach Better DNA®, and we invite you to discover more at www.dna.com or follow us on Twitter at @Intrexon, on Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Intrexon, Powering the Bioindustrial Revolution with Better DNA, and Better DNA are trademarks of Intrexon and/or its affiliates. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.
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SOURCE Intrexon Corporation