Cary, N.C. and Basel, Switzerland – March 2, 2020 – Altavant Sciences, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on patient-centric drug development in rare respiratory diseases, today announced that it has appointed Howard M. Lazarus, M.D., to the newly created position of Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Lazarus brings to Altavant more than 20 years of experience in drug development for pulmonary vascular and interstitial diseases and as a practicing pulmonologist.
“We are thrilled to welcome Howard to the Altavant team as we advance our lead candidate, rodatristat ethyl, in its ongoing Phase 2 trial in pulmonary arterial hypertension, and expand our pipeline with the addition of ALTA-2530, which we plan to develop for bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome,” said William T. Symonds, Pharm.D., Chief Executive Officer of Altavant. “Howard’s passion for developing medicines for patients with rare and advanced lung diseases, his experience in both drug development and as a pulmonologist-intensivist caring for patients with complicated disorders such as pulmonary arterial hypertension, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, and bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome provide him with valuable insights that will benefit our current and future clinical trial programs.”
Dr. Lazarus was most recently Medical Expert/Executive Director in Clinical Development and Medical Affairs at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals where he was a member of the leadership team focusing on interstitial lung diseases such as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). He has also served in medical affairs leadership roles at Gilead and was involved in the company’s approved and pipeline programs for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and IPF. Prior to his work at Gilead, he practiced as a pulmonary and critical care physician at several health facilities, most recently at Oregon Pulmonary Associates in Portland. In that role, he and a team of experts diagnosed and treated patients with complex pulmonary vascular and interstitial diseases such as PAH and IPF, many of whom were referred to their sub-specialty center from area hospitals. Dr. Lazarus earned both a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry and his M.D. from McGill University in Montreal. His residency in internal medicine was at Boston University Medical Center and he completed a fellowship in pulmonary & critical care medicine at the University of California, San Diego. He is a Fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians and a member of the American Thoracic and European Respiratory Societies.
“Altavant’s clear commitment to rare respiratory drug development and their patient-centric clinical approach represent a compelling opportunity to make a meaningful impact on the lives of patients with unrelenting lung diseases,” added Dr. Lazarus. “I’m looking forward to working with the team to advance our two primary candidates and to evaluate new potential product opportunities as they arise.”
About Altavant Sciences
Altavant Sciences is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on elevating patient-centric drug development in rare respiratory diseases. Altavant is currently advancing two pipeline candidates: rodatristat ethyl and ALTA-2530. Rodatristat ethyl is being evaluated in the ELEVATE 1 Phase 2 study for patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension. A tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH) inhibitor, rodatristat ethyl may play a role in halting or reversing the vascular remodeling associated with PAH, offering a novel treatment option for patients living with this disease. ALTA-2530 is an interleukin-1 receptor antagonist under development for bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS), a life-threatening complication of lung transplantation. ALTA-2530’s unique mechanism of action may offer a novel treatment option for patients who suffer from BOS, a disease where there are currently no approved therapies.
Altavant is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sumitovant Biopharma Ltd., which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. For more information, please visit https://altavant.com.
About Sumitovant Biopharma Ltd.
Sumitovant is a global biopharmaceutical company with offices in New York City and London. Sumitovant is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. Sumitovant is the majority shareholder of Myovant and Urovant, and wholly owns Enzyvant, Spirovant and Altavant. Sumitovant’s pipeline is comprised of early- through late-stage investigational medicines across a range of disease areas targeting high unmet need. For further information about Sumitovant please visit https://www.sumitovant.com/.
About Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd.
Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma is among the top-ten listed pharmaceutical companies in Japan, operating globally in major pharmaceutical markets, including Japan, the U.S., China and the European Union. Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma is based on the merger in 2005 between Dainippon Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., and Sumitomo Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. Today, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma has more than 6,000 employees worldwide. Additional information about Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma is available through its corporate website at https://www.ds-pharma.com/.
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” concerning the development and commercialization of Altavant’s products, the company’s business development efforts and its expectations regarding its prospects. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, assumptions and uncertainties that could cause actual future events or results to differ materially from such statements. These statements are made as of the date of this press release. Actual results may vary. Altavant undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements for any reason.