Connect Biopharma Establishes Scientific Advisory Board Comprised of Clinical Development and Program Indication Experts

Company's product development strategies to be enhanced by deep experience in dermatology, allergy and inflammatory diseases and successful drug approvals

SAN DIEGO and TAICANG, SUZHOU, China, Jan. 5, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Connect Biopharma, a global clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of next-generation immune modulators for the treatment of inflammatory diseases, today announced the establishment of a Scientific Advisory Board comprised of leaders with track records of success in the clinical development and approval of novel therapies for a variety of inflammatory conditions. The newly formed Board will provide external scientific review and strategic recommendations to Connect leadership to support its current and future clinical development programs in atopic dermatitis and ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease and to develop clinical protocols in additional indications as the company advances its innovative product pipeline.

"Connect is innovating novel therapies for inflammatory diseases that have significant unmet medical and clinical need and that improve patient care and outcomes," said Dr. Zheng Wei, Co-founder, CEO of Connect Biopharma. "Our newly formed Scientific Advisory Board are world-class experts steeped in research and drug discovery expertise who will provide us with critical insights on best practices to optimally build a highly efficient discovery and development organization."

Inaugural members of the Scientific Advisory Board include the following global experts in clinical research related to autoimmune and inflammatory conditions:

John V. Fahy, MD

Dr. John Fahy is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) where he directs the Severe Asthma Faculty Practice. He also directs the UCSF Airway Clinical Research Center which focuses on human-based studies of disease mechanisms in asthma, COPD, and cystic fibrosis. Dr. Fahy's laboratory is funded by the National Institutes of Health to study mechanisms of type 2 inflammation and of mucus pathology in airway disease, and he is the lead investigator for the UCSF clinical center in "Precise", a clinical trials network for biomarker directed treatments of asthma.  

Brian G. Feagan, MD, FRCPC

Dr. Brian Feagan is a Professor of Medicine in the Departments of Medicine (Division of Gastroenterology), Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Western University and Senior Scientific Director, at Alimentiv Inc, London, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Feagan holds membership in the Canadian and American Association of Gastroenterology, the American College of Gastroenterology, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, Crohn's and Colitis Canada (CCC) and the European Crohn's & Colitis Organization (ECCO). His research efforts focus on the design and implementation of randomized controlled trials of therapy for inflammatory bowel disease.  He has been the principal investigator on numerous multi-center trials in IBD and is actively involved in the development of new outcome measures for evaluating these chronic diseases.

Emma Guttman-Yassky, MD, PhD

Dr. Emma Guttman-Yassky, Sol and Clara Kest Professor, is the vice chair for research and the incoming system chair of the Kimberly and Eric J. Waldman Department of Dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. She is a world-renowned dermatologist and physician scientist whose major clinical and research area of expertise is inflammatory skin diseases with major focus on atopic dermatitis/eczema and alopecia areata, as well as other inflammatory skin diseases. She also serves as Director of the Center for Excellence in Eczema, Director of the Laboratory of Inflammatory Skin Diseases at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and co-founder and president of the International Eczema Council.

Edward M. Kerwin, MD

Dr. Kerwin is a clinical research expert with more than 25 years of experience in asthma, COPD, atopic dermatitis and allergy-immunology clinical development and research consulting. He is a board certified Respiratory, Allergy and Clinical Immunology specialist and founder and senior medical director of the Clinical Research Institute, the Allergy and Asthma Center and Altitude Clinical Consulting based in Medford, Oregon. Dr. Kerwin has been Principal Investigator on over 700 protocols and has helped numerous pharmaceutical companies as a consultant, author and reviewer.

David T. Rubin, MD

Dr. David T. Rubin is the Joseph B. Kirsner Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Section of Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition and the Co-Director of the Digestive Diseases Center at The University of Chicago Medicine. Prior to his current appointments, Dr. Rubin served for 11 years as Director of the Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition fellowship program. He also currently serves as an associate faculty member at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics and an associate investigator at the University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Bruce E. Strober, MD, PhD

Dr. Bruce E. Strober is a clinical professor at the Yale University department of dermatology in New Haven, CT. Currently, he serves as Co-Scientific Director of the Corrona Psoriasis Registry, Secretary-Treasurer of the International Psoriasis Council, and Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis. He has presented data to the FDA on behalf of multiple pharmaceutical companies, including at the advisory committee for secukinumab, a novel IL-17 inhibitor.

Stuart J. Swiedler, MD, PhD

Dr. Stuart J. Swiedler is a biotechnology consultant with more than 25 years of experience in the biotechnology field, primarily as a scientist and executive at Glycomed, Inc., and as a clinical scientist and senior executive at BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc. During his 10-year period at BioMarin, he contributed to the non-clinical and clinical aspects of drug development for the regulatory approvals of the orphan drugs Aldurazyme, Naglazyme and Kuvan. He continues to focus on orphan drug products and providing his clinical expertise to biotech companies and investment firms. Dr. Swiedler has served as a Scientific Advisor to the Connect Board of Directors since 2018 and also will serve on the Scientific Advisory Board.

About Connect Biopharma
Connect Biopharma is a global clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing therapies for the treatment of T cell-driven inflammatory diseases. Our core expertise is in the use of functional cellular assays with T cells to screen and discover potent drug candidates against immune targets. Our two most advanced clinical-stage programs include highly differentiated product candidates against validated targets.

Our lead product candidate, CBP-201, is an antibody designed to target interleukin-4 receptor alpha (IL-4Rα), which is a validated target for the treatment of several inflammatory diseases such as atopic dermatitis (AD), asthma and chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP). Based on data from phase 1 studies in healthy volunteers and patients with AD, CBP-201 has been shown to be well tolerated, has a safety profile consistent with the current standard of care antibody that also targets IL-4Rα and has also suggested the potential to bring improved therapeutic benefit to AD patients with less frequent dosing. We have initiated a Phase 2b global trial of CBP-201 in patients with moderate-to-severe AD and anticipate initiating additional trials in asthma and CRSwNP in 2021.

Our second lead product candidate is CBP-307, a modulator of a T cell receptor known as sphingosine 1-phosphate receptor 1 (S1P1). Specifically, we are developing CBP-307 for two types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD).  

With current headquarters in China, additional operations in the United States and Australia, and clinical development activities in those geographies as well as Europe, Connect Biopharma is building a rich global pipeline of wholly owned small molecules and antibodies targeting several aspects of T cell biology. For additional information about Connect Biopharma, please visit our website at

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