Asceneuron SA, a company that develops small molecule therapeutics for Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative diseases today announced the appointment of Dr. J. Donald deBethizy to its board of directors.
Dr. deBethizy will serve as an independent director and will further strengthen the Board’s capabilities by providing operational experience for leveraging an innovative platform for the discovery and development of novel compounds to treat neurodegenerative diseases. Dr. deBethizy also brings 12 years of strategic experience for corporate development following the spinout of valuable assets from a larger company.
Prior to joining Asceneuron, Dr. deBethizy served as Co-founder, CEO and Director of Targacept, Inc., a public biotech company discovering and developing novel small molecules targeting the neuronal nicotinic receptors for CNS, pain, inflammatory, GI/GU indications which has been successful in generating approximately 250 million Euro in non-dilutive capital over a 12 year period primarily through pharma licensing deals. In addition, Dr. deBethizy served on the LigoCyte board of directors for six years until its sale to Takeda last year.
“We are very pleased to welcome Don deBethizy to the board of Asceneuron”, said Dirk Beher, Chief Scientific Officer of Asceneuron SA. “Given his long standing experience as a senior executive and director of a CNS focused biotech he is a perfect match for our ambition to become a leading small molecule biotech with a strong focus on neurodegeneration. In particular we appreciate his broad insight into moving preclinical pipeline assets into clinical testing whilst building a strong biotech company”.
“I am excited to join the board of Asceneuron at the time where the company is rapidly progressing its promising pipeline thanks to the initial investment of 5 million Euro provided as part of its spinout from Merck Serono”, says Don deBethizy. “The company’s molecules and the underlying science are strong and I look forward to working with this well respected and experienced team and to helping shape the success of Asceneuron.”
Asceneuron is a spin-off of Merck Serono, the pharmaceutical division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. The company was co-founded in October 2012 by Dirk Beher, Christoph Wiessner and Frank Armstrong, three former Merck Serono’s executives, and currently employs 8 people. About Asceneuron SA Asceneuron SA researches and develops therapeutics for Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative diseases such as tauopathies. Asceneuron SA aspires to become a leading biotech company specialized in small molecule drug discovery for neurodegenerative diseases, a therapeutic area with high unmet medical need. Due to increasing life expectancy, Alzheimer’s disease is viewed as one of the largest healthcare issues of this century, imposing a major economic burden on societies worldwide. Asceneuron is based at the Science Park of the EPFL Lausanne, Switzerland. The company was formed in October 2012 through the spin-out of the Alzheimer’s disease drug discovery portfolio and research group of Merck Serono, the pharmaceutical division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.