Research & Development
Blum Named Chairman of Gamida Cell's Board of Directors
20 September 2018 - - US-based cellular and immune therapeutics company Gamida Cell has appointed Robert Blum, president and chief executive officer of Cytokinetics, Inc., as chairman of Gamida Cell's board of directors, the company said.

Julian Adams, Ph.D., Gamida Cell's chief executive officer and previous chairman, will remain on the company's board of directors.

Blum helped launch Cytokinetics in 1998, serving in increasing roles of responsibility before being appointed president and chief executive officer in 2007.

He has more than 35 years of experience in the biopharmaceutical industry, having previously held senior positions in business development and marketing at COR Therapeutics and roles in sales, marketing, and other pharmaceutical business functions at Marion Laboratories and Syntex Corp. beginning in 1981.

Additionally, Blum has served on the National board of the American Committee of the Weizmann Institute of Science and established the Blum Family Venture Philanthropy Fund to help advance basic science discoveries at the Institute with potential to benefit the Israeli life sciences economy.

NiCord, the company's lead clinical program, is under development as a universal bone marrow transplant solution for patients with high-risk hematologic malignancies. NiCord has demonstrated improved efficacy over standard cord blood, including fewer bacterial and fungal infections and a reduction in duration of hospital stays.

The company has been granted breakthrough status by the US Food and Drug Administration, making it the first bone marrow transplant alternative to receive this designation.

It has also received US and EU orphan drug designation.

A Phase 3 study evaluating NiCord in patients with leukemia and lymphoma is ongoing in the United States, Europe and Asia (NCT02730299).

Gamida Cell applied the capabilities of its NAM-based cell expansion technology to highly functional NK cells to develop NAM-NK, an innate immunotherapy for the treatment of hematologic and solid tumors in combination with SoC antibody therapies.

NAM-NK addresses key limitations of NK cells by increasing the cytotoxicity and in vivo retention and proliferation in the bone marrow and lymphoid organs of NK cells expanded in culture. NAM-NK is in Phase 1 development (NCT03019666) through an investigator-sponsored trial in patients with refractory non-Hodgkin lymphoma and multiple myeloma.

Gamida Cell is in cellular and immune therapeutics dedicated to treating patients with cancer and rare genetic diseases.

The company is building a diverse pipeline based on its proprietary NAM technology platform to deliver transformative medicines to patients in need of new treatment options.
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