LA JOLLA, CA, March 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- CalciMedica, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing CM4620, a novel small molecule compound for acute pancreatitis, announced that A. Rachel Leheny, Ph.D., has joined its Board of Directors. Dr. Leheny is a Founding Managing Director for Valence Advantage Life Sciences, a life science venture firm based in New York. She has extensive experience in the life science field, as a scientist, as a research analyst at several investment banks, and as a venture capital investor.
Dr. Leheny said, “I am pleased to be joining CalciMedica’s Board at this time. The company’s recent results from their first efficacy study of CM4620 in acute pancreatitis patients are really exciting. With this proof of concept, there are several interesting opportunities for the company, and I look forward to working with management and the Board to ensure that CM4620 moves into the next stages of development.”
Dr. Leheny has over 25 years experience in the life sciences industry. Prior to Valence, she co-founded Caxton Advantage Venture Partners, from which Valence Life Sciences emerged. Before that, she was a Senior Vice President and Head of the biotechnology research team at Lehman Brothers. She also led the biotechnology research team at UBS Warburg, and started her biotechnology research career at Hambrecht and Quist. Dr. Leheny obtained an A.B in Chemistry with honors from Harvard College, and a Ph.D. in chemistry from Columbia University. She did post-doctoral work at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was an NIH fellow and a lecturer.
Michael Dunn, CalciMedica’s president and chief operating officer, said, “Dr. Leheny is a great addition to CalciMedica’s Board of Directors. She brings an incredibly rich background in healthcare financing and company development to our discussions, and we look forward to her input. We believe her expertise is especially relevant as CalciMedica’s acute pancreatitis compound, CM4620, continues to advance in the clinic.”
CM4620 is a potent and selective small molecule inhibitor of calcium release-activated calcium (CRAC) channels. CRAC channels are found on many cell types, including immune cells and pancreatic acinar cells, where aberrant activation of these channels is thought to play a key role in the pathobiology of acute pancreatitis. CM4620 arose from CalciMedica’s internal R&D, is patent protected, and is being developed for moderately severe and severe acute pancreatitis.
About CalciMedica, Inc.
CalciMedica is a privately-held, clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on CRAC channel drug discovery and development for the treatment of acute and chronic inflammatory diseases. CRAC channels control the entry of calcium into immune and other cell types, and calcium is an important intracellular signaling molecule that modulates normal cellular function but can be detrimental when levels are too high. CalciMedica is headquartered in San Diego, CA. For more information, please visit the company website at www.calcimedica.com.
Michael Dunn, President and Chief Operating Officer