Emeryville, California-based Gritstone Oncology, a personalized cancer immunotherapy company, has named Dr. Jayant Aphale as executive vice president of technical operations. Previously, he was vice president of technical operations at Sarepta Therapeutics. Gritstone Oncology’s backers include Versant Ventures, The Column Group, Clarus Funds, Frazier Healthcare Partners, RedMile, Casdin Capital, Lilly Asia Ventures, Trinitas Capital, GV, Alexandria Venture Investments and Bay City Capital.
EMERYVILLE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Gritstone Oncology, a next-generation personalized cancer immunotherapy company, today announced that Jayant Aphale, Ph.D. has been appointed as Executive Vice President of Technical Operations.
Dr. Aphale will be responsible for process development and optimization, clinical material manufacturing under cGMP, and ensuring close collaboration with FDA and other regulatory agencies as Gritstone develops novel processes and products for personalized immunotherapy treatments. He will report to Andrew Allen, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, and will be based in the company’s Pleasanton, CA manufacturing facility.
Dr. Aphale brings more than 25 years of global manufacturing and technical operations experience within the vaccines, biologics and oligonucleotide domains. Most recently, he was Vice President of Technical Operations at Sarepta Therapeutics, where he led the technical operations team for internal process development, global supply chain and drug manufacturing across its drug candidate portfolio. He participated directly in launching Sarepta’s first commercial product, an antisense oligonucleotide, by developing and scaling manufacturing processes from Phase 1 through launch and commercialization.
His previous experience includes senior manufacturing and technical operations roles at GSK Vaccines, Enobia Pharma, Acambis Vaccines, Wyeth Vaccines, Diosynth and Roche Diagnostics. Dr. Aphale received his Ph.D. in microbiology from Ohio State University and an MBA in finance and strategy from The University of North Carolina.
“Jayant’s career to date positions him very well to lead all aspects of our manufacturing program, both strategically and operationally. He has led technical operations at all stages of the product life cycle at global life sciences companies, he has worked on viral vectors and oligonucleotides, and he has succeeded in both large and small companies. He is a significant addition to our team at Gritstone,” said Dr. Allen. “His experience at Sarepta and leading vaccine companies will provide us with important leadership and insights as our first personalized immunotherapy program enters clinical development in mid-2018.”
About Gritstone Oncology
Gritstone Oncology is a privately-held, next-generation personalized cancer immunotherapy company. Gritstone brings together distinguished scientific founders, an experienced and diverse management team, a seasoned and successful board of directors and deep financial backing to tackle fundamental challenges at the intersection of cancer genomics, immunology, and immunotherapy design. The Company’s initial goal is to leverage artificial intelligence to identify and deploy therapeutic neoantigens from individual patients’ tumors to develop novel treatments for lung, gastric, colorectal, and bladder cancer. In addition to neoantigen therapy development, Gritstone is leveraging its unique antigen discovery platform, EDGE™ (Epitope Discovery of cancer GEnomes), to define targets for shared antigen immunotherapies, which would provide an opportunity to treat even more patients. Gritstone Oncology is headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area with key functions located in Cambridge, MA and Pleasanton, CA. The company launched in October 2015 and has received funding from leading blue-chip biotechnology investors, including Versant Ventures, The Column Group, Clarus Funds, Frazier Healthcare Partners, RedMile, Casdin Capital, Lilly Asia Ventures, Trinitas Capital, GV, Alexandria Venture Investments, and Bay City Capital. More information can be found at www.gritstoneoncology.com or @gritstoneonc.