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BOSTON, May 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Akouos, Inc. (NASDAQ: AKUS), a precision genetic medicine company dedicated to developing potential gene therapies for individuals living with disabling hearing loss worldwide, today announced the appointment of Dr. Kathy Reape as chief development officer. Dr. Reape brings over 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, including significant gene therapy translational and development expertise, to Akouos.
“We welcome Dr. Reape to the Akouos team at this exciting time in the company’s growth, as we continue to advance the AK-OTOF and AK-antiVEGF programs towards our planned IND submissions in 2022,” said Manny Simons, Ph.D., M.B.A., co-founder, president, and chief executive officer. “As we continue to forge a path for development of genetic medicines for individuals living with disabling hearing loss, Dr. Reape’s broad clinical development expertise and notable recent experience in preparing the marketing application and securing approval for the first FDA-approved in vivo gene therapy for the treatment of a rare inherited retinal disorder will prove invaluable.”
Dr. Reape was most recently Chief Medical Officer at Spark Therapeutics where she oversaw clinical development, pharmacovigilance, and medical affairs activities and was a key member of the team responsible for the development and commercialization of the first FDA-approved in vivo gene therapy, LUXTURNA®, for an inherited retinal disease caused by mutations in both copies of the RPE65 gene. She also oversaw the development of Spark’s pipeline of gene therapies addressing CNS disease, hemophilia, metabolic disorders, and inherited retinal dystrophies. Prior to Spark, Dr. Reape was senior vice president of clinical development focusing on global brands research and development at Allergan and Actavis. She holds both her undergraduate and M.D. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and completed her internship and residency at the University of Florida and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.
“I am excited to work alongside a team of experts in neurotology, genetics, inner ear drug delivery, and AAV gene therapy who have the unique combination of expertise to progress our shared mission, healthy hearing available to all,” said Dr. Reape. “Akouos is positioned to be a leader in genetic medicines for inner ear conditions, an area for which there are no pharmacologic treatment options and is generally underserved. I look forward to working with the Akouos team and the deaf and hard-of-hearing community to evaluate whether gene therapies, such as AK-OTOF and AK-OTOF, could address the needs of individuals and families affected by disabling hearing loss.”
Akouos is a precision genetic medicine company dedicated to developing gene therapies with the potential to restore, improve, and preserve high-acuity physiologic hearing for individuals living with disabling hearing loss worldwide. Leveraging its precision genetic medicine platform that incorporates a proprietary adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector library and a novel delivery approach, Akouos is focused on developing precision therapies for forms of sensorineural hearing loss. Headquartered in Boston, Akouos was founded in 2016 by leaders in the fields of neurotology, genetics, inner ear drug delivery, and AAV gene therapy.
Katie Engleman, 1AB
Courtney Turiano, Stern Investor Relations