Penrose TherapeuTx, which is based in Chicago and has a research and development facility in Plymouth Township, has appointed Dr. Bhardwaj Desai as its new chief development officer.
Penrose is a pharmaceutical company focused on developing small-molecule therapies for the treatment of advanced cancers. Desai has been a hematologist and oncologist for 30 years and, for the last 16 years, has been a leader in oncology clinical drug development for top pharmaceutical companies including Astellas, Pfizer, Hospira, and Abbott/AbbVie. Desai will help guide clinical development efforts, specifically the development of the company’s novel MMA platform and lead candidate, RP-0320. Desai will also serve on the company’s advisory board along side Dr. James Stankiewicz.
“Joining Penrose’s team meant the opportunity to be a part of approaching cancer in a way that nobody else has,” says Desai. “We are exploring a completely novel approach to eradicating cancer cells, and with our promising preclinical data, we have a blueprint to create a sound clinical development program, potentially transforming the future of oncology treatment.”
Throughout his career, Desai has led all phases of oncology drug development. In the last 14 years, he has worked as a leader in global oncology drug development and was instrumental in bringing five successful New Drug Applications in oncology. He also has expertise in numerous investigational hematology and oncology agents. In Desai’s current position as chief strategic medical and clinical development consultant at oncology innovation, he is responsible for early go or no-go criteria-based proof of concept and proof of mechanism study design, and Phase 3, pivotal registration study for data quality.
“As we rapidly move into our clinical research program, Dr. Desai’s extensive experience in the oncology drug development field is going to be a driving force to ensure our rigorous and ambitious research goals are met,” says Mark de Souza, CEO. “Bhardwaj will play a key role in our growing leadership team, and I’m looking forward to seeing where he will take us.”
Desai received his Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, and Doctor of Medicine from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda in Vadodara, India where he participated in the internal medicine residency program. He then went on to complete his training at the American Society of Medical Oncology and the American Society of Hematology in 1992.