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Oruka Therapeutics Expands Leadership Team with Appointment of Industry Veterans Drs. Joseph Senn and Rajiv Panwar

Joe Senn, PhD, joins as SVP of Nonclinical Research & Development

Rajiv Panwar, PhD, joins as VP and Head of Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Controls

Appointments strengthen Oruka’s executive leadership team and support the advancement of the company’s portfolio of potentially best-in-class antibodies, including ORKA-001 (an IL-23p19 inhibitor) and ORKA-002 (an IL-17A/F inhibitor)

WALTHAM, Mass., May 22, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Oruka Therapeutics, Inc. (“Oruka”), a biotechnology company developing novel biologics designed to set a new standard for the treatment of chronic skin diseases, including plaque psoriasis, today announced the appointment of Joe Senn, PhD, as Senior Vice President of Nonclinical Research & Development. Dr. Senn is a research and development leader with experience in nearly all therapeutic modalities, including biologics, mRNA therapeutics, gene editing, and small molecules. He has built broad expertise in pharmacology and toxicology through leading the advancement of over 50 programs from preclinical stage into clinical development, including multiple monoclonal antibody programs.

In addition, Oruka announced the appointment of Rajiv Panwar, PhD, as Vice President and Head of Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Controls (CMC). Dr. Panwar brings deep experience in biologics manufacturing, having previously served in CMC leadership roles at Disc Medicine and Magenta Therapeutics.

“We are excited to strengthen our growing executive team with the addition of these two industry leaders. Joe and Rajiv each bring a wealth of experience in their respective fields and have been responsible for advancing dozens of truly breakthrough programs into the clinic and beyond,” said Lawrence Klein, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Oruka Therapeutics. “We welcome them to Oruka and believe they each will play a pivotal role in allowing us to efficiently advance ORKA-001 and ORKA-002 into clinical development.”

Dr. Senn has a long-standing track record of success in advancing breakthrough therapeutics into the clinic, having most recently served as SVP, Head of R&D at SalioGen Therapeutics, where he oversaw the development of SalioGen’s first clinical candidate and non-viral gene therapy platform for the retina. Prior to his time at SalioGen, Dr. Senn served as VP, Nonclinical Development at Moderna Therapeutics, where he and his team were responsible for progressing over 40 candidates into the clinic, including conducting the IND- and BLA-enabling nonclinical work for Spikevax®, Moderna’s COVID vaccine. Prior to Moderna, Dr. Senn was Site Head for Drug Safety at Takeda Pharmaceuticals, overseeing the development of all immunology products across the portfolio. He earned his PhD in Pharmacology and Physiology from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and his Bachelor of Science (BS) from Niagara University.

Dr. Panwar brings over a decade of experience in CMC leadership across all areas, including process, analytical, formulation, and manufacturing, for biologics and other therapeutic modalities. He most recently served as VP, CMC and Clinical Supply Chain at Disc Medicine, where he advanced multiple small molecule and monoclonal antibody programs into development, including initiating late-stage CMC activities in support of NDA filing readiness. Prior to Disc, Rajiv held roles of increasing responsibility at Magenta Therapeutics where he served as Head of Technical Operations, supporting GMP manufacturing campaigns for a variety of therapeutic modalities, including antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates. Before Magenta, Rajiv was Head of Analytical CMC at Eleven Biotherapeutics (later Sesen Bio), where he led CMC activities in support of Phase 2/3 clinical trials for multiple biologics. He holds an MS/PhD in Interdisciplinary Pharmaceutical Sciences from Northeastern University and a BS in Pharmaceutical Sciences from MD University in India.

About Oruka Therapeutics

Oruka Therapeutics is developing novel biologics designed to set a new standard for the treatment of chronic skin diseases. Oruka’s mission is to offer patients suffering from chronic skin diseases like plaque psoriasis the greatest possible freedom from their condition by achieving high rates of complete disease clearance with dosing as infrequently as one or twice a year. Oruka is advancing a proprietary portfolio of potentially best-in-class antibodies that were engineered by Paragon Therapeutics and target the core mechanisms underlying plaque psoriasis and other dermatologic and inflammatory diseases. For more information, visit and follow Oruka on LinkedIn.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release, other than purely historical information, may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, concerning Oruka and other matters. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, express or implied statements relating to Oruka’s management team’s expectations, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future including, without limitation, Oruka’s business strategy, Oruka’s potential growth opportunities, Oruka’s preclinical and future clinical development activities, the potential therapeutic benefits and economic value of Oruka’s programs, the timing and results of preclinical studies and clinical trials, Oruka’s business plans and the anticipated benefits of the management changes. In addition, any statements that refer to projections, forecasts or other characterizations of future events or circumstances, including any underlying assumptions, are forward-looking statements. The words “opportunity,” “potential,” “can,” “goal,” “aim,” “strategy,” “target,” “seek,” “anticipate,” “achieve,” “believe,” “contemplate,” “continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intends,” “may,” “might,” “plan,” “possible,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “will,” “would” and similar expressions (including the negatives of these terms or variations of them) may identify forward-looking statements, but the absence of these words does not mean that a statement is not forward-looking. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and beliefs concerning future developments and their potential effects. There can be no assurance that future developments affecting Oruka will be those that have been anticipated. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks, uncertainties (some of which are beyond Oruka’s control) or other assumptions that may cause actual results and performance to be materially different from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, discussions of potential risks, uncertainties, and other important factors included in filings by Oruka from time to time. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should any of Oruka’s assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary in material respects from those projected in these forward-looking statements. Nothing in this press release should be regarded as a representation by any person that the forward-looking statements set forth therein will be achieved or that any of the contemplated results of such forward-looking statements will be achieved. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements in this press release, which speak only as of the date they are made and are qualified in their entirety by reference to the cautionary statements herein. Oruka does not undertake or accept any duty to make any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements. This press release does not purport to summarize all of the conditions, risks and other attributes of an investment in Oruka.

Oruka Therapeutics Corporate Communications Contact:
Sheryl Seapy

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