Leadership

Leadership

Abbie Celniker, PhD, Chief Executive Officer 
Abbie Celniker, PhD
Chief Executive Officer

Abbie is CEO of Rheos Medicines and a partner at Third Rock Ventures, which she joined in 2016 bringing 30 years of experience in R&D and senior leadership roles. She is currently a board member of Goldfinch Bio and former President and CEO of Eleven Biotherapeutics.  Previously, Abbie was the president and CEO of Taligen Therapeutics, when Taligen Therapeutics was acquired by Alexion Pharmaceuticals; following the acquisition, she served as Alexion’s Executive Vice President, Translational Medicine. She has served as the Global Head of Biologics of Novartis AG, the Senior Vice President of R&D Strategy and Operations of Millennium Pharmaceuticals (now Takeda) and the Vice President of Protein Technologies of the Wyeth Research facilities. Abbie is a member of the MassBio Board of Directors, a member of the Board of Panoptica and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board for Adimab. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the nonprofits Unitio and T1D.

Abbie received a B.A. in biology from the University of California, San Diego, and a Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Arizona.

Cary Pfeffer, MD, MBA, Chief Business Officer 
Cary Pfeffer, MD, MBA
Chief Business Officer

Cary is CBO at Rheos Medicines and a partner at Third Rock Ventures and has more than 20 years of business development and transaction experience, along with a broad array of biotech product development experience. Cary has played an instrumental role in the development of a number of innovative alliances and collaborative company building efforts across Third Rock’s portfolio, including an industry-leading global strategic collaboration between Agios and Celgene in the field of cancer metabolism. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of Jounce Therapeutics, Neon Therapeutics (as Chairman), and Tango Therapeutics.

Before joining Third Rock, Cary founded The Pfeffer Group, a boutique consulting firm that provided business development and strategy advisory services, completing multiple transactions for leading biotechnology and life sciences companies. Prior to that, Cary spent more than a decade at Biogen where he held a variety of senior and executive level management roles focused on U.S. and global business and market development, product development and commercial operations. Earlier in his career, Cary spent several years in corporate finance in the Health Care Investment Banking Group of Lehman Brothers. He earned his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, his MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and holds a B.A. in biochemistry from Columbia University.

Laurence Turka, MD, Chief Scientific Officer 
Laurence Turka, MD
Chief Scientific Officer

Company co-founder, Laurence Turka, MD, joins Rheos as Chief Scientific Officer, following a 30-year academic career as a transplant immunologist, most recently as the Harold and Ellen Danser Professor of Surgery and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.  Among the notable discoveries of Larry’s laboratory were novel approaches to transplantation tolerance, the role of Toll-like receptors in T-cells, and pathways required for the maintenance of regulatory T-cell function.  Larry was also an early contributor to the field of T-cell costimulation and helped contribute to the development of abatacept and belatacept for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and renal transplantation.

Larry received his MD degree from the Yale University School of Medicine, trained in Internal Medicine at Yale-New Haven Hospital and in Nephrology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School.  He is a former Chief of the Renal Division at the University of Pennsylvania, President of the American Society of Transplantation, Chair of the NIAID Board of Scientific Counselors, and Editor in Chief of The Journal of Clinical Investigation.  He currently serves as Deputy Director of the Immune Tolerance Network and is a Professor of Surgery and Medicine (part-time) at Harvard Medical School.  He was elected to membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation in 1995, and the Association of American Physicians in 2003.

Edward Driggers, PhD, Chief Technology Officer 
Edward Driggers, PhD
Chief Technology Officer

Ed is CTO at Rheos Medicines and has over 15 years of scientific and technology experience in emerging biotechnology companies.  Prior to joining Rheos, Ed created and led the Cell Metabolism Department at Agios Pharmaceuticals where he built an industry-leading platform for metabolism discovery and was a co-author of publications in Immunity, Nature, and Science which documented the discovery of 2HG production by IDH-mutant tumors that has led to the development of Idhifa and other treatments for acute myelogenous leukemia.  Prior to Agios, he held R&D roles at Ensemble Discovery and Microbia, Inc. and is a Founder and Managing Partner of General Metabolics, LLC, a boutique contract research group supporting academic and industrial researchers in metabolomics.

Ed completed a NSF-Sloan Post-Doctoral Fellow at Stanford University, studying molecular evolution.  He received his PhD in Bio-organic chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley and an SB in Biological Chemistry at the University of Chicago.

Ryan Cohlhepp, PharmD, Senior Vice President, R&D Strategy & Operations 
Ryan Cohlhepp, PharmD
Senior Vice President, R&D Strategy & Operations

Ryan is currently the Senior Vice President of R&D Strategy and Operations for Rheos.  Ryan recently transitioned from Takeda Oncology where he was Vice President of Marketing, Operations & Analytics which included responsibility for leading Takeda’s commercial oncology portfolio in the US which contained four compounds across various tumor types. Ryan also worked in the Global Development Division for Takeda as a Global Team Leader overseeing the development of Takeda’s prostate cancer portfolio in addition to several early stage molecules.  Prior to Takeda Ryan started his career with Roche Pharmaceuticals (currently Genentech) in their commercial organization. He held positions of increasing responsibility for Roche in both the sales and marketing organizations (U.S. and Global).

Ryan received his Doctorate of Pharmacy from Purdue University. He continues his involvement with the University as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council for the College of Pharmacy.  He also serves as a board member for the MassBio Education Foundation.

Brian Albrecht, PhD, Vice President, Drug Discovery 
Brian Albrecht, PhD
Vice President, Drug Discovery

Brian is the head of drug discovery for Rheos Medicines.  Prior to Rheos, Brian was a Principal at Third Rock Ventures where he focused on new company formation and drug discovery due diligence.  During his time at Third Rock Ventures he contributed to the launch of Fulcrum Therapeutics, Goldfinch Bio, Relay Therapeutics, Tango Therapeutics and now Rheos Medicines.  Prior to joining Third Rock, Brian built and led the medicinal chemistry department at Constellation that delivered two clinical candidates. Prior to Constellation, Brian was a member of the medicinal chemistry department at Amgen.

Brian is a co-inventor on over 30 issued patents and a co-author on more than 40 publications. Brian earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Colorado State University and his B.S. in chemistry from Lafayette College.

Hozefa Bandukwala, PhD, Senior Director, Head of Discovery Biology 
Hozefa Bandukwala, PhD
Senior Director, Head of Discovery Biology

Hozefa leads the biology effort at Rheos.  Prior to joining Rheos, he was Associate Research Fellow in Pfizer’s Inflammation & Immunology Research Unit, leading discovery efforts to identify novel targets for autoimmunity. Before joining Pfizer Hozefa held a faculty position at the La Jolla Institute of Allergy and Immunology, and consulted for a biotech company CalciMedica.

Hozefa earned his PhD from the University of Chicago, where his research thesis focused on evaluating the contribution of Fc receptors in the function of dendritic cells. He completed postdoctoral training at Harvard Medical School, where he focused on the role of epigenetic regulation of genes involved in the inflammatory responses of T-cells. His research uncovered a novel link between epigenetic modification in immune cells and their ability to reprogram their metabolic pathways to meet the increased energy and biosynthetic demands required for inducing inflammatory functions.

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