Rare Daily Staff

aTyr Pharma, a San Diego-based biotech focused on the discovery and development of therapies to treat severe, rare immune-mediated diseases and cancers, named its chief medical officer Sanjay Shukla as the company’s new CEO.

Shukla joined aTyr in March 2016 as its chief medical officer. The company said he will continue aTyr’s mission to develop innovative new protein therapeutics based on its knowledge of Physiocrine biology. He has more than 20 years of leadership experience in both large pharma and biotech companies.

Shukla replaces John Mendlein, who became CEO in September 2011 and will continue to serve on the aTyr board of directors. No reason was provided for Mendlein’s decision to step down.

John Clarke, chairman of aTyr’s board, credited Mendlein with bringing the company’s first product into the clinic, solidifying the company’s intellectual property estate for a new class of protein therapeutics, and building a well-capitalized company.

aTyr is developing what it has dubbed “physicorine” therapies that act on a newly discovered set of immunological and physiological pathways. Two of the programs are agonists of the resokine pathway designed to temper immune system engagement in diseases characterized by excessive immune cell involvement. Its third program represents a novel, proprietary pathway in immuno-oncology that utilizes antibody approaches to block the resokine pathway and ‘release multiple brakes’ on the immune system in the tumor cell environment.

November 2, 2017

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