Rare Daily Staff

The rare disease accelerator Cydan said it named Imran Babar, who had been a vice president on the private equity team at the healthcare investment firm OrbiMed Advisors, as its chief business officer.

In his new role, Babar will be charged with helping the company advance new and innovative therapies for patients living with rare, monogenetic diseases. He will be responsible for strategy, business development, negotiation, and equity investments.

“Cydan’s focus on accelerating therapies for patients facing rare diseases requires broad expertise, and we have assembled a diverse, collaborative team of scientists, physicians and entrepreneurs who are instrumental in the complex endeavor of launching new companies in the orphan disease space,” said Chris Adams, Cydan founder and CEO. “Imran is a critical thinker with deep scientific knowledge in a range of therapeutic areas and technologies; has a proven track record of identifying, evaluating and investing in healthcare companies; and has a passion for helping patients with rare genetic diseases.”

At OrbiMed, Babar spent about five years evaluating investment opportunities, sourcing new deals, and creating value for portfolio companies. He is also co-founder and chief scientific officer for Rare Genomics Institute, a nonprofit dedicated to helping rare disease patients get access to cutting-edge research.

Prior to that, Babar worked as an associate at Cowen & Company on the biotechnology equity research team and as a molecular biology researcher at Yale University, where he worked in the laboratory of Frank Slack, a pioneer in the microRNA field.

Babar earned a B.A. in biology from Carleton College and a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Yale University. His work has appeared in top publications, including PNASNatureCancer Research and Cell.

April 9, 2018
Photo: Imran Babar,
chief business officer of Cydan