Dr. Rizvi brings a Proven Track Record and Commitment to Innovation, Collaboration & Team Building
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — KSQ, a biotechnology company using its proprietary CRISPRomics® discovery platform to systematically screen the whole genome to identify optimal gene targets for oncology and autoimmune disease, today announced it has appointed Qasim Rizvi as chief executive officer. Dr. Rizvi joins KSQ today as CEO and will also become a member of the company’s board of directors. Dr. Rizvi is a highly accomplished healthcare executive with broad experience in the biopharmaceuticals industry and was most recently senior vice president of operations and chief commercial officer at Kiniksa Pharmaceuticals.
“Qasim is an accomplished leader with a distinguished track record of innovation and operational excellence, coupled with a strong commitment to collaboration and teambuilding. He joins KSQ at an important inflection point in the company’s strategic evolution, as we advance our expanding pipeline and prepare to transition to development stage,” said Theo Melas-Kyriazi, chair of the KSQ board of directors. “The board is confident that Qasim, along with the entire KSQ leadership team, will provide the expertise, vision and leadership required to advance KSQ’s ambitions to deliver breakthrough products for patients.”
Dr. Rizvi commented, “This is an exciting time for the company. KSQ has created the most comprehensive capability to identify and validate novel targets in cancer cells and T cells. Its approach has broad implications across a range of oncology, immuno-oncology, and immune indications. The recently completed Takeda collaboration provides a world-class strategic partner for our immuno-oncology programs and validation for our truly groundbreaking CRISPR-based discovery platform. In addition, the company recently presented data on KSQ-4279 at the 32nd EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium in October 2020, demonstrating the power of its approach. There is much work to be done. I am humbled and excited to serve as KSQ’s CEO, and I’m very much looking forward to diving in with the full team to deliver on the platform’s potential and positively impact the lives of patients.”
Prior to joining KSQ, Dr. Rizvi was senior vice president of operations & chief commercial officer at Kiniksa Pharmaceuticals. He held previous positions at Genentech, where he most recently served as vice president and franchise head of Tecentriq®, with commercial responsibilities for Genentech’s cancer immunotherapy portfolio. Earlier, he led Roche’s hematology franchise, as VP of global product strategy and lifecycle leader for Hemlibra® for hemophilia A. Dr. Rizvi has a record of success in building exceptional teams that deliver results. He has extensive launch experience in the oncology space; having launched Herceptin®, Perjeta® and Kadcyla® for HER2-positive breast cancer as well as Venclexta® for chronic lymphocytic leukemia and Gazyva® for follicular lymphoma. Under his leadership, Rituxan Hycela® received FDA approval as the first sub-cutaneous treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Prior to joining Genentech, Dr. Rizvi was at Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly, where he served in numerous roles in sales, marketing, business development and new product planning. Dr. Rizvi earned an MB.ChB. from the University of Dundee Medical School in Scotland. He completed his residency in general surgery, including rotations in neurosurgery, orthopedics, ENT and accident and emergency care. He also holds an M.B.A. from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
About KSQ Therapeutics
KSQ Therapeutics is advancing a pipeline of tumor- and immune-focused drug candidates for the treatment of cancer across multiple drug modalities including targeted therapies, adoptive cell therapies and immuno-therapies. KSQ’s proprietary CRISPRomics® discovery engine enables genome-scale, in vivo validated, unbiased drug discovery across broad therapeutic areas. KSQ was founded by thought leaders in the field of functional genomics and pioneers of CRISPR screening technologies.