4D Molecular Therapeutics (4DMT), a clinical-stage leader in the development of precision-guided AAV gene therapy based on directed evolution, announced the appointment of John F. Milligan, Ph.D. as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors.
“John’s experience in the life sciences is deeper and broader than anyone I’ve known. Given his background, he could have joined any company in our industry. We are all deeply gratified that John agreed to join our team.”
“I believe John is the best possible partner I could hope for in our mission to take 4DMT to the highest levels of success in business and in bringing transformative treatments to patients,” said David Kirn, MD, co-founder and chief executive officer of 4DMT. “John’s experience in the life sciences is deeper and broader than anyone I’ve known. Given his background, he could have joined any company in our industry. We are all deeply gratified that John agreed to join our team.”
“I’m thrilled to join the board of 4DMT in the executive chairman role and to be part of this outstanding team,” said John F. Milligan, Ph.D., executive chairman of the Board of Directors of 4DMT. “4DMT’s next-generation Therapeutic Vector Evolution platform enables the development of gene therapies with improved therapeutic profiles, enabling the company to pursue previously untreatable patient populations and to potentially address a broad range of both rare and large market diseases. I look forward to working closely with David and the 4DMT team on key strategic initiatives that will build significant value for shareholders and for patients.”
Prior to joining 4DMT, Dr. Milligan had a 29-year career with Gilead, retiring as President and Chief Executive Officer in December 2018. During his tenure at Gilead, he led teams that developed, manufactured and commercialized more than 25 new therapies for significant unmet needs, including the first single tablet regimen for HIV treatment and the first 12 week, all oral cure for HCV. John led multiple transformative acquisitions including Triangle Therapeutics in 2003, Myogen in 2006, CV Therapeutics in 2009, Pharmassett in 2012 and Kite in 2017. Before taking the CEO role, as CFO, John built a robust international organization that allowed the company to grow from $190 million in revenue to over $4.2 billion in just six years. He helped the company become a global organization with direct operations in 44 countries that was able to deliver its medicines to more than 10 million patients every day. He joined Gilead when it was a private company with 32 employees, and upon retirement, 29 years later, Gilead had over 11,000 employees, sales of over $21 billion and a market cap of $85 billion. In addition to his role as executive chairman of 4DMT, John is currently a board member of Pacific Biosciences of California (Nasdaq: PACB), serving on the audit and compensation committees. John also serves as the Chair of the Board of Trustees of Ohio Wesleyan University.
4DMT is a clinical-stage precision gene medicine company harnessing the power of directed evolution to unlock the full potential of gene therapy for rare and large market diseases in lysosomal storage diseases, ophthalmology, neuromuscular diseases, and cystic fibrosis. 4DMT’s proprietary Therapeutic Vector Evolution platform enables a “disease first” approach to product discovery and development, thereby empowering customization of AAV vectors to target specific tissue types associated with the underlying disease. These proprietary and optimized AAV vectors are designed to provide targeted delivery by routine clinical routes of administration, efficient transduction, reduced immunogenicity, and resistance to pre-existing antibodies — attributes that could enable the development of gene therapies that overcome known limitations of conventional AAV vectors. 4DMT vectors are designed to exhibit improved therapeutic profiles that enable the company to pursue previously untreatable patient populations and to address a broad range of rare and large market diseases.