CHICAGO, Feb. 15, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- AveXis, Inc. (NASDAQ:AVXS), a clinical-stage gene therapy company developing treatments for patients suffering from rare and life-threatening neurological genetic diseases, today announced the appointment of Rick Modi to the executive management team as Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer.
Mr. Modi brings more than 15 years of commercial, business, and corporate experience to the position, and is responsible for all aspects of the company’s commercial functions. Modi reports to Sean Nolan, President and Chief Executive Officer of AveXis.
“As AveXis continues to build and looks to the future, we are excited to expand the management team with someone with extensive commercial experience,” Mr. Nolan said. “With Rick’s experience in pre-launch preparation and global product launches in rare disease settings, we are pleased to welcome him to our management team.”
Rick Modi, Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer
Prior to AveXis, Mr. Modi held roles of increasing responsibilities in sales, marketing, access and corporate strategy at Centocor (Johnson & Johnson), Medimmune (AstraZeneca) and InterMune (Roche), where he played leadership roles in product launches in multiple different specialty and rare disease indications. Most recently, Mr. Modi served as Chief Business Officer at Catabasis Pharmaceuticals.
Mr. Modi earned a BS degree in Pharmacy from the University of Iowa and an MBA from the Wharton School.
SMA is a severe neuromuscular disease characterized by the loss of motor neurons leading to progressive muscle weakness and paralysis. SMA is caused by a genetic defect in the SMN1 gene that codes SMN, a protein necessary for survival of motor neurons. The incidence of SMA is approximately one in 10,000 live births. SMA is the leading genetic cause of infant mortality.
The most severe form of SMA is Type 1, a lethal genetic disorder characterized by motor neuron loss and associated muscle deterioration, which results in mortality or the need for permanent ventilation support before the age of two for greater than 90 percent of patients.
AVXS-101 is a proprietary gene therapy candidate of a one-time treatment for SMA Type 1 and is designed to address the monogenic root cause of SMA and prevent further muscle degeneration by addressing the defective and/or loss of the primary SMN1 gene. AVXS-101 also targets motor neurons providing rapid onset of effect, and crosses the blood brain barrier allowing an IV dosing route and effective targeting of both central and systemic features.
About AveXis, Inc.
AveXis is a clinical-stage gene therapy company developing treatments for patients suffering from rare and life-threatening neurological genetic diseases. The company’s initial proprietary gene therapy candidate, AVXS-101, is in an ongoing Phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of SMA Type 1. For additional information, please visit www.avexis.com.