Dynacure, a biotechnology company developing new treatments for patients affected by serious orphan disorders, announced today that Belinda Cowling (PhD) has joined the management team as Head of Research.
Dynacure’s first drug discovery program focuses on centronuclear myopathies (CNM), a rare debilitating disease affecting children and young adults, through the use of an antisense oligonucleotide developed in collaboration with Ionis Pharmaceuticals.
Belinda will be responsible for the company’s R&D strategy, lead Dynacure’s research programs in centronuclear myopathy and other disease domains. She will focus on translational research, drug-candidate development and expand Dynacure’s research network with academic and industrial organizations.
Belinda completed her PhD in Australia at Monash University in 2008. She then moved to the IGBMC, France, to complete a postdoc as a member of the team of Dr. Jocelyn Laporte. There she studied the normal biological function of dynamin 2, which is mutated in centronuclear myopathy, as well as the pathological mechanisms leading to disease. She identified down regulation of this gene as a novel therapeutic target for centronuclear myopathies1. In 2014 she was recruited by INSERM as a tenured researcher. She has published more than 25 publications in peer-reviewed journals.
Belinda’s research at the IGBMC led to the creation of Dynacure in 2016, of which she is cofounder and was previously scientific advisor until joining as Head of Research. Her expertise will strengthen the company’s ambition to build a pipeline in rare diseases.
Belinda Cowling, Head of Research, commented: “I’m excited to join the company to continue to develop transformational technologies that can lead to potential treatments for patients suffering from rare diseases.”
Stephane van Rooijen, CEO of Dynacure, concluded: “Belinda has supported Dynacure since its inception and I’m delighted to welcome Belinda to the team. Her input and expertise is critical for building a solid research pipeline and for supporting Dynacure’s lead program in CNM and other indications”.
About Dynacure: www.dynacure.com
Dynacure develops new treatments for patients suffering from serious orphan disorders. The first drug discovery program of Dynacure focuses on Centronuclear Myopathies (CNM), a rare debilitating disease affecting children and young adults. The Dyn101 development program is based on the modulation of the Dynamin 2 protein expression through the use of an antisense oligonucleotide developed in collaboration with Ionis Pharmaceuticals, the leading biopharmaceutical company in RNA-targeted drug discovery.
Dynacure was founded in 2016 as a spin-off from the IGBMC (Institute of Genetic and Molecular and Cellular Biology – Unistra/INSERM/CNRS) of Strasbourg.
1 Tasfaout H, Buono S, Guo S, Kretz C, Messaddeq N, Booten S, Greenlee S, Monia BP, Cowling BS*, Laporte J*. Antisense oligonucleotide-mediated Dnm 2 knockdown prevents and reverts myotubular myopathy in mice. Nat Commun. 2017 Jun 7;8:15661.
*equal last and corresponding authors
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Stephane van Rooijen, CEO