A business professional with more than two decades of executive experience in senior leadership roles, Ms. O’Neill was formerly Executive Vice President, Global Operations at Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. where, for five years, she led the Global Operations business including product development, manufacturing, quality, supply chain and global real estate functions. Prior to joining Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., she was Vice President of Operations at Gilead Sciences where she helped establish the Company’s Irish subsidiary and manufacturing operations and held a variety of other cross-functional global leadership roles.
Throughout her career in pharmaceutical operations, Ms. O’Neill has held a number of senior roles at the Board and Committee level. She is currently an Independent Director for DBV Technologies SA, and is both a Board member and Audit & Risk Committee Chair for the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research & Training (NIBRT). She also serves as the Chairperson for the Strategic Advisory Board at the School of Pharmacy, Trinity College Dublin.
Ms. O’Neill is a Chartered Director and holds a BSc in Pharmacy from Trinity College Dublin and an MBA from University College Dublin.
Commenting on her appointment, Julie O’Neill said: “Immuno-oncology is very much at the forefront of modern medicine and HOOKIPA's Vaxwave® and TheraT® platforms have the potential to target a broad range of infectious diseases and tumors. At this point in its development HOOKIPA is shifting its emphasis from research to clinical development and therefore operations, manufacturing, and quality control are growing in importance. I am looking forward to joining the HOOKIPA team and supporting them in their ambition to take increasing control of the manufacturing process. I am excited at the chance to be able to contribute to the Company’s growth and operations at such an important stage in its development.”
Dr. Jan van de Winkel, Chairman of the Board of Directors at HOOKIPA, added: “In the next several years HOOKIPA plans to build its own GMP manufacturing capabilities, one of the most critical functions for viral vector medicine research and development. I am delighted to welcome Julie to HOOKIPA and believe that her operations and manufacturing management expertise complement nicely the capabilities of our current Board. My colleagues and I look forward to expanding the Board and we will enjoy working with Julie.”
HOOKIPA Pharma Inc. is a clinical stage company developing medicines designed to prevent and potentially cure infectious diseases and cancer. With this goal in mind, we created proprietary technologies to reprogram and stimulate the immune system.
Our proprietary Arenavirus technologies, Vaxwave®, a replication-deficient viral vector, and TheraT®, a replication-attenuated vector, are designed to induce potent antigen specific CD8+ T cells and pathogen-neutralizing antibodies. Both, Vaxwave® and TheraT®, are designed to be administered repeatedly while maintaining an immune response. TheraT® has the potential to induce CD8+ T cell responses to tumor antigens and reach frequencies and potencies matching or exceeding those observed after adoptive T cell therapy. Our “off-the-shelf” viral vectors target dendritic cells in vivo to activate the immune system. In immuno-oncology, this mechanism enables the immune system to fight solid tumors systemically.
We have successfully completed a Phase 1 trial of a Vaxwave®-based prophylactic vaccine to protect against CMV infections. A Phase II trial in solid organ transplant patients is about to start. Alongside, we have forged a partnership with Gilead Sciences Inc. to jointly research and develop functional cures for HIV and Hepatitis B infections. We are building a proprietary immuno-oncology pipeline by targeting TheraT® towards HPV+ head and neck squamous cell carcinoma and prostate cancer.
Find out more about HOOKIPA online at www.hookipapharma.com.