Leuven (Belgium), Strasbourg (France), Philadelphia (USA)- April 4, 2023 /PRNewswire -- Flamingo Therapeutics (“Flamingo”) today announced the appointment of Andrew E. Denker, MD, PhD., as Chief Medical Officer.
Dr. Denker is a physician-scientist with over two decades of biotech and pharmaceutical industry experience in clinical development across multiple modalities and therapeutic areas, including oncology and rare disease. In his new role, Dr. Denker will be responsible for leading and expanding Flamingo’s clinical portfolio and will serve as a key member of its executive leadership team. Dr. Denker will be based in Flamingo’s US headquarters in Philadelphia, PA.
“We are pleased that Andrew is joining Flamingo at such an exciting time in our company’s growth, as we prepare for our Phase 2 clinical study PEMDA-HN of danvatirsen in combination with pembrolizumab in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma,” said Stephane van Rooijen, Chief Executive Officer of Flamingo. “Andrew’s extensive oncology expertise and proven track record in building and leading clinical teams will strengthen our capabilities as we continue to build a global RNA therapeutics company focused on clinical execution.”
Prior to joining Flamingo, Dr. Denker served as Vice President Early Development at ElevateBio Technologies, where he was responsible for building the clinical development organization, developing clinical strategies for multiple therapeutics and managing clinical trial partnerships. Prior to ElevateBio, Dr. Denker held several positions of increasing responsibility at Alexion Pharmaceuticals, including Vice President, Clinical Development Services, where he led global teams for multiple ULTOMIRIS® development programs. Previously, he held several positions at Merck Sharp & Dohme, Corp., ultimately serving as Executive Director, Clinical Oncology, where he was the team leader for multiple KEYTRUDA® indications, KEYTRUDA® combination partnerships and next generation early development immune-oncology compounds. He received an A.B from Princeton University, his M.D, Ph.D. from Thomas Jefferson University and completed a General Surgery Internship and post-doctoral research at Washington University School of Medicine. Dr. Denker is an author on over 25 peer-reviewed publications and has contributed to numerous patent applications in the oncology field.
Dr. Denker added, “I am excited about the Flamingo pipeline and believe that the company’s STAT3 inhibitor danvatirsen holds significant promise to benefit patients in many oncology indications, including head and neck cancer. The company’s deep expertise in RNA therapeutics and oncology development, coupled with its outstanding team and partners, make this a compelling opportunity for me. I look forward to working with the team and board to advance Flamingo’s clinical portfolio and improve the lives of patients with cancer.”
About PEMDA-HN Phase II Trial in Head & Neck Cancer
Flamingo Therapeutics is planning to initiate a Phase II trial evaluating the STAT3 targeting agent danvatirsen, in combination with pembrolizumab, in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).
The trial is planned to be a multicenter, open-label, randomized study comparing the combination of danvatirsen and pembrolizumab to pembrolizumab alone as first line therapy in patients with recurrent/metastatic HNSCC whose tumor has a PD-L1 expression. Eligible patients will be randomized in a 2:1 ratio to receive either danvatirsen + pembrolizumab or pembrolizumab monotherapy, respectively. After the screening period, eligible patients are planned to receive study treatment until disease progression or discontinuation. The planned primary endpoint of the study is to determine the overall response rate by RECIST 1.1 as assessed by the investigator. The secondary endpoints will include safety, duration of response, disease control rate, progression free survival and overall survival. The study is planned to be operated at US study centers.
About Flamingo Therapeutics
Flamingo is pioneering RNA-targeted therapies for oncology with state-of-the art chemistries and a clinical-stage pipeline targeting undruggable transcription factors and splice variants. Flamingo has an alliance with Ionis Pharmaceuticals and is supported by well-known biotechnology investors including Andera Partners, Bpifrance Large Venture, Bpifrance through its FABS and Fonds Biothérapies Innovantes et Maladies Rares funds, Eurazeo - Kurma Partners, Perceptive Advisors, PMV, Pontifax, Sphera, funds managed by Tekla Capital Management LLC and VIB.