RARE Daily

ProQR Appoints John Maraganore as Strategic Advisor to the Supervisory Board

March 7, 2022

ProQR Therapeutics reported that John Maraganore, former founding CEO of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, has joined ProQR as a strategic advisor.

Photo: John Maraganore, founder and former CEO of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals

ProQR focuses on the development of RNA therapies for the treatment of severe genetic rare diseases such as Leber congenital amaurosis 10, Usher syndrome, and retinitis pigmentosa. The announcement comes a month after ProQR reported that its lead candidate sepofarsen for the treatment of CEP290-mediated Leber congenital amaurosis 10 (LCA10) failed to show efficacy compared to placebo in a late-stage trial.

“As the founding CEO of Alnylam, he built and led one of the most successful biopharma companies, while pioneering RNA oligonucleotides as an important class of medicines that transformed the field and now help patients every day,” said Daniel de Boer, founder and CEO of ProQR. “He has been a mentor, friend, and supporter of ProQR from its earliest days and his perspective and experience will be extremely valuable as we evaluate the strategic direction of our pipeline of RNA therapies for genetic eye diseases and our proprietary RNA-editing platform technology.”

Maraganore announced he was stepping down from leading Alnylam at the end of October 2021. Since then, he has been tapped for several advisory appointments.

“I first met Daniel more than a decade ago through Henri Termeer and was always impressed with the company’s RNA science and its focus on patients,” said Maraganore. “Although the company has experienced a recent setback, I see its fundamentals as solid—ProQR has deep RNA expertise, a pipeline beyond sepofarsen, an exciting RNA-editing platform, and a strong cash position to fund its strategy. I look forward to working with the Supervisory Board and team to create value for all stakeholders, as they work to bring RNA medicines to patients and advance next-generation RNA editing approaches.”

Maraganore served as the founding CEO and a director of Alnylam from 2002 to 2021, where he built and led the company from early platform research on RNA interference through global approval and commercialization of the first four RNAi therapeutic medicines, Onpattro, Givlaari, Oxlumo, and Leqvio, building a company with $25B in market capitalization and forming more than 20 major pharmaceutical alliances. He continues to serve on the Alnylam scientific advisory board.

Author: Rare Daily Staff

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