Synthekine Strengthens Leadership with Board of Directors Expansion and Scientific Advisory Board Formation

MENLO PARK, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Synthekine Inc., an engineered cytokine therapeutics company, today announced that it has appointed Pablo Cagnoni, M.D., to its board of directors. Dr. Cagnoni brings to Synthekine extensive leadership experience in the biotech industry and a successful track record of oncology drug development. The company also announced the formation of its scientific advisory board to help guide the company’s extensive cytokine engineering efforts.

“Synthekine has made significant advances in 2020, with our first programs on track for IND filings in 2021, and I am delighted to have Pablo join our board of directors and bring his considerable insights in developing breakthrough oncology products to support our continued progress”

Dr. Cagnoni has led the development, approval, and/or commercialization of more than twenty approved medicines. He is currently the CEO of Rubius Therapeutics, a clinical stage biotech company developing genetically engineered red blood cells to treat various cancers and autoimmune diseases. Prior to Rubius, Dr. Cagnoni served as the President and CEO of Tizona Therapeutics. Previously, he was President of Onyx Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Amgen), where he led efforts from early product development to commercialization of the full portfolio. Dr. Cagnoni has had several clinical development leadership roles in his past, including Global Head of Clinical Development at Novartis Oncology, CMO at Allos Therapeutics and CMO at OSI Pharmaceuticals.

“Synthekine is built on remarkable cytokine research and I have been truly impressed with how effectively the team is advancing its diverse pipeline and platforms,” said Dr. Cagnoni. “I feel a shared affinity for their mission to bring these new treatments to patients in need, and I look forward to supporting the company’s advancement into the clinic and broadening of cytokine therapeutic concepts.”

Synthekine has also formalized its scientific advisory board (SAB) to support the company as it advances its cytokine therapeutic programs and synthekine platform. The SAB is chaired by Synthekine’s Scientific Founder, K. Christopher Garcia, Ph.D., Professor of Molecular and Cellular Physiology and Structural Biology at Stanford University School of Medicine, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator and a member of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine. Additional members include:

  • Christopher A. Hunter, Ph.D., Professor of Pathobiology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine
  • Nils Lonberg, Ph.D., biopharma veteran and member of Synthekine’s board of directors
  • Casey Weaver, M.D., Professor of Pathology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • E. John Wherry, Ph.D., Department Chair of Systems Pharmacology and Translational Therapeutics and Director of the University of Pennsylvania Institute for Immunology

About Synthekine

Synthekine is an engineered cytokine therapeutics company developing disease-optimized treatments. The company uses immunological insights to guide targeted protein engineering to generate transformative medicines for cancer and autoimmune disorders. Using the principles of cytokine partial agonism and immunological specificity, Synthekine designs differentiated therapeutics to be both safe and efficacious. Its lead programs have shown promising efficacy and tolerability in preclinical studies, and it is developing additional cytokine partial agonists that selectively modulate key pathways of the immune system. For more information, visit


Ian Stone
Canale Communications