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Dr. Brett King Joins BiologicsMD as Senior Scientific Advisor and Member of the Scientific Advisory Board
Leading expert in alopecia, Dr. Brett King brings deep academic insight and drug development experience to help BiologicsMD advance its innovative hair and bone therapies
New Haven, Connecticut, October 18, 2022 -- BiologicsMD, a preclinical therapeutic development company focused on highly-targeted treatments for hair loss and bone disorders, announced today the appointment of Brett King, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Dermatology at Yale Medical School, as a Senior Scientific Advisor to the company’s management team and Board of Directors.
As the Senior Scientific Advisor, Dr. King will also serve as a member of BiologicsMD’s Scientific Advisory Board. Dr. King will provide scientific, preclinical, clinical, and strategic guidance for the company’s drug development programs in alopecia areata, androgenetic alopecia (male pattern baldness and female pattern hair loss) and drug-induced alopecia.
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder characterized by patchy and often disfiguring hair loss involving the scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes and body hair. It can be psychologically devastating. For a subset of the approximately 6.8 million Americans affected by alopecia areata, the only approved therapeutic is the JAK inhibitor OlumiantTM (baricitinib, approved June 2022).
Dr. Brett King has more than 10 years of clinical research and medical practice experience in the field of alopecia areata. He is currently Associate Professor of Dermatology at Yale University, specializing in inflammatory skin diseases. He has pioneered the use of Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors in dermatology, in particular for alopecia areata, vitiligo, atopic dermatitis and other disorders.
Dr. King received his B.A. at the University of California at Santa Cruz, his Ph.D. from Stanford University and his M.D. from Yale University School of Medicine. He completed medical internship at Massachusetts General Hospital and dermatology residency at Yale University School of Medicine. Dr. King is well recognized as an investigator in alopecia areata clinical trials.
"I'm impressed by BiologicsMD’s vision as well as its innovative therapy, powered by in-depth research that has produced provocative results," Dr. King stated. "I look forward to providing strategic guidance for the management team to advance this cutting-edge science to serve patients worldwide."
BiologicsMD is developing a series of recombinant fusion proteins that provide powerful stimulatory effects directly to the target receptors at the point of disease. The company is working on formulation and delivery vehicles for parenteral, local, and topical administration.
Its core, patented technology targets physiologically active agents to Type I collagen, found in skin and bone, via fusion to a proprietary collagen-binding domain. The company has multiple assets in three therapeutic areas including alopecia, bone repair and spinal fusion, and prevention and treatment of bone metastases in cancer.
"Having Dr. King join BiologicsMD as our Senior Scientific Advisor is a testament to our progress to date," stated J. David Owens, CEO of BiologicsMD. "With Dr. King’s insights and profound expertise in hair loss disorders and drug development in alopecia areata, we are confident that BiologicsMD will be able to advance our product development programs, new product areas, and commercialization strategies."
The scientific understanding of hair loss disorders has evolved significantly over the past decade. The newly approved or investigational treatments for alopecia areata involve suppression of the patient’s immune system. While advantageous for hair regrowth, these treatments carry risks of serious infections, mortality, malignancy, major adverse cardiovascular events, and thrombosis. Furthermore, up to half or more of patients may not be adequately treated with these therapies.
Androgenetic alopecia, also known as male pattern baldness in males and female pattern hair loss in women, affects half of all men by the age of 50 and, while not as common in women, is not uncommon in this group. While it is largely socially acceptable for men, it is much less so for women affected by androgenetic alopecia. There are two approved therapies for androgenetic alopecia, but they are not particularly effective. Despite this relatively poor efficacy, consumers spend $4B each year in the US alone on hair loss treatments.
Having alternative treatments with a different mechanism of action, such as those being developed by BiologicsMD for hair loss disorders, are essential to expanding the limited treatment landscape of hair loss disorders in order that patients have effective treatment options.