Autolus Therapeutics plc (Nasdaq: AUTL), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing next-generation programmed T cell therapies, today announced changes to the company’s executive leadership team. Dr. Jim Faulkner, Senior Vice President, Head of Product Delivery; and Neil Bell, Senior Vice President, Head of Clinical Operations, will be departing Autolus. In conjunction with these changes, David Brochu has been named Senior Vice President, Head of Product Delivery, and Vishal Mehta has been named Vice President, Head of Clinical Operations.
“I am delighted to welcome David and Vishal to their new roles. David is a highly experienced manufacturing executive, and Vishal has successfully led the conduct of late-stage CAR T clinical trials. Their respective backgrounds are ideally suited to both progress our pipeline of clinical-stage CAR T programs, as well as take our manufacturing operations to commercial scale, with our top priorities of moving AUTO1 in adult ALL into a Phase 2 registration trial and advancing the clinical development of AUTO3 in DLBCL,” said Dr. Christian Itin, chairman and chief executive officer of Autolus.
Dr. Itin added: “Jim and Neil have been valued members of Autolus’ leadership team. I want to thank them both for the significant contributions they’ve made to building our clinical pipeline and establishing our manufacturing base, which is now fully operational. The entire Autolus team wishes them well as they embark on their next endeavors.”
Mr. Brochu has 30 years of technology, operations and engineering management expertise in the biopharmaceutical industry, primarily for plasma-based products. He joined Autolus in March 2019 as Vice President of Technical Operations to lead the establishment of a manufacturing organization to supply CAR T cell therapies for late stage clinical studies and commercialization. Prior to joining Autolus, Mr. Brochu held a variety of technical operations leadership roles at Kedrion, Talecris BioTherapeutics (formerly Bayer HealthCare LLC), and Bayer Corporation.
Mr. Mehta joined Autolus in January 2019 from Celgene, where he led the planning and execution of multiple clinical studies for CAR T products in B cell malignancies and multiple myeloma. Prior to Celgene, Vishal held clinical development, project management and operations positions at Novartis and ICON.
Dr. Faulkner joined Autolus in 2015 and most recently led the company’s product delivery functions. During his tenure at Autolus, he led the development of cell and vector manufacturing processes and transitioned Autolus’ manufacturing from the academic to the clinical setting.
Mr. Bell joined Autolus in 2016 and has led the company’s clinical operations. During his time with Autolus, Mr. Bell oversaw the move of several of the company’s product candidates into the clinical phase of development.