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Convergence-sibling Calchan appoints former Pfizer man as CSO

This article was originally published in Scrip

Executive Summary

Calchan, a small UK-based biotech company focused on the R&D of novel molecules targeting pain and inflammation, has appointed Zahid Ali as chief scientific officer. He joins from Pfizer where he was a senior director of clinical research. Calchan was formed at the same time as Convergence Pharmaceuticals (sold to Biogen recently in a deal worth up to $675m), also using ex-GSK assets. Calchan is being run by much of Convergence's old management team using funds that were carved out from money raised by Convergence prior to its sale. Its most advanced project is a Phase I/II asset, CNV2197944, which is a novel state-dependent calcium channel blocker (Cav2.2) with efficacy across a range of preclinical pain models. The company's second program is at a preclinical stage and targets the apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1 (ASK1) which is implicated in pain, inflammation, ischemia, fibrosis, cancer and neurodegeneration. The program is partnered with Galapagos.

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