Laronde, the company pioneering Endless RNA™ (eRNA) – a novel, engineered form of RNA that can be programmed to express proteins inside the body for breakthrough treatments –announced that John Mendlein, Ph. D., the company's Chairman, will become its interim Chief Executive Officer, effective this month.
Mendlein succeeds Diego Miralles, M.D., who joined Laronde as CEO in December 2020 from Vividion Therapeutics, Inc. and Johnson & Johnson in San Diego. Mendlein, a Flagship Pioneering Executive Partner, has been involved with numerous Flagship bioplatform companies in board or senior leadership roles, including Adnexus, Axcella, Editas, FL55, Laronde, Moderna, Omega and Senda, and is a seasoned biotech entrepreneur with more than two decades of experience in building bioplatform companies from small molecules to programmable medicines. As he assumes the role of interim CEO, the company will initiate a CEO search. Diego Miralles will continue to work with Flagship ecosystem companies as an Advisor.
"On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Diego for his efforts to advance Laronde through its emergence from stealth and its next company building steps, and for his deep commitment to our mission," said Mendlein, Laronde Chairman and incoming CEO. "Our multi-product eRNA platform holds the promise to change medicine and I look forward to partnering with the entire Laronde team to write the next exciting chapter of Laronde as we bring forward breakthrough eRNA treatments into the clinic in 2023."
"Flagship founded Laronde in 2017 to industrialize our invention of endless RNA and scale the development of our new class of medicines based on eRNA," said Avak Kahvejian, Ph.D., Laronde Founding CEO, Co-founder, Board member, and Flagship General Partner. "Since that time, we have remained actively involved in developing the eRNA platform and company strategy. John's entrepreneurial experience with first-in-category programmable bioplatforms positions him well to lead the company during this important next phase of growth."
"Laronde has an exceptional team leading the development of its eRNA platform, with the potential to create a new class of programmable medicines," said Diego Miralles. "I look forward to my continuing role engaging with Flagship as an Advisor and am grateful for my time at Laronde and wish John all the best in his new role."