February 10, 2023
Asha Therapeutics is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Craig Blackstone as a member of its Board of Directors and as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board. Asha Therapeutics (Asha) is a neuro-centric biotechnology company which focuses solely on de novo drug discovery and chemical design, leveraging the ability of its disruptive PRISM™ technology platform to develop novel therapeutics for neurological diseases with high unmet medical need.
Each compound in Asha Therapeutics’ pipeline is designed to restore cellular health at a pivotal juncture of neuronal downturn. This has resulted in a robust, holistic asset portfolio that treats neurological disease by considering neuronal deterioration and loss from multiple vantage points. Within Asha’s pipeline, lead asset ASHA-091 is a near clinic-ready, custom-designed, brain penetrant compound that restores the mitochondrial network, promoting cell survival over cell death in a number of neurological conditions.
Sam Shrivastava, Asha’s Founder and CEO, noted, “Dr. Blackstone is a global thought leader and highly accomplished physician and clinician committed to cutting-edge scientific innovation with the potential to transform patient outcomes. Dr. Blackstone’s leadership driving pioneering scientific inquiry in the area of neurodegenerative diseases, for which existing therapeutics largely address the mitigation of symptoms rather than arrest the source of the disease itself, will be invaluable as Asha develops its pipeline with lead assets demonstrating robust preclinical efficacy and safety in lead indications and additional models of neurological dysfunction including Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, Ischemic Stroke, and ALS.”
Reflecting on his new position at Asha Therapeutics, Dr. Blackstone commented, “I am privileged to join the Board of Directors of Asha Therapeutics and look forward to working with their cohesive and highly innovative team. I have been very impressed with Asha’s ability to rapidly develop multiple, highly significant compounds using their proprietary physics-based and AI-driven PRISM™ platform. These assets are poised to enter clinical studies soon, providing desperately needed new first-in-class therapies and hope for many people with devastating neurodegenerative and oncologic disorders.”
Dr. Craig Blackstone is Chief of the Movement Disorders Division at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School. He received B.S./M.S. degrees from the University of Chicago and M.D./Ph.D. degrees from Johns Hopkins. After neurology residency in the Harvard-Longwood Neurology Program, Dr. Blackstone pursued clinical fellowship training in movement disorders at Massachusetts General Hospital and postdoctoral research training in neurobiology with Dr. Morgan Sheng at Harvard Medical School and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. In 2001, Dr. Blackstone joined the NINDS, where he remained for two decades, rising to Senior Investigator and Cell Biology Section Chief. His group investigated the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying hereditary movement disorders. He is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation, Association of American Physicians, and National Academy of Medicine as well as an elected Fellow and former Vice President of the American Neurological Association (ANA). He has held numerous other leadership positions in the ANA, including on its Executive Council, Education Innovation Committee, Nominations Committee, and Professional Development Committee, as well as Director of its Translational and Clinical Research Course and Chair of its Web Governance Committee. Dr. Blackstone currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Investigation. He received the NIH Director’s Ruth L. Kirschstein Mentoring Award in 2012 and the NINDS Director’s Diversity Achievement Award in 2018.