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Cambridge, Mass, March 7, 2024 – Vesalius Therapeutics, a company pioneering a radical approach to common disease drug development, today announced that John Mendlein, Ph.D., will become the company’s Executive Chairman, and interim Chief Executive Officer later this month. Mendlein succeeds Chris Austin, M.D., who joined the company in 2021 and will be taking on a new role as Senior Vice President, Research Technologies at GSK.

Mendlein is a Flagship Pioneering Executive Partner and seasoned operational leader with more than two decades of experience in the sector. He has been deeply involved with Vesalius and the development of its ContinuumDiscovery™ platform. Vesalius will initiate a CEO search in the coming weeks.

“Chris has played a critical role in stewarding the company from stealth through its early development,” said Doug Cole, M.D., Co-founder and Managing Partner, Flagship Pioneering. “On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Chris for his leadership and deep commitment to Vesalius’ mission and wish him well in his next endeavor.”

Cole continued, “I look forward to working closely with John and the Vesalius leadership team to advance its platform as we work to fundamentally reconceptualize the way we view, diagnose, and treat common diseases.”

About John Mendlein, Ph.D.

John Mendlein is an Executive Partner at Flagship Pioneering, contributing to Flagship’s strategic and operational objectives, including the growth and origination of new Flagship Labs companies. A longtime member of Flagship's broader ecosystem of companies, John is an experienced biotech entrepreneur.

Prior to joining Flagship, John served as president of corporate and product strategy at Moderna and was a member of Moderna's board of directors from 2012 to 2018. He has also held leadership roles at multiple additional biotech enterprises including Aurora Biosciences (acquired by Vertex Pharmaceuticals), aTyr Pharmaceuticals, Adnexus Therapeutics (acquired by BMS), Fate Therapeutics, and Affinium Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Debiopharm Group).

John currently serves on the boards of Flagship companies Empress Therapeutics, Ampersand Biomedicines, Omega Therapeutics and Sail Biomedicines. He has a Ph.D. Physiology and Biophysics from UCLA and a J.D. from the University of California, Law, San Francisco. John is also a co-author or co-inventor of over 210 publications and published patents. For more about John Mendlein, see here.

About Vesalius Therapeutics

Vesalius Therapeutics is a company pioneering a radical approach to common disease drug development. Its precision platform, Continuum Discovery™, integrates AI/ML analysis of human phenotypic data with human genetics and proprietary human-based experimental models to develop transformational therapies for patients suffering from common illnesses. The platform defines causal disease phenotypes linked to multigene circuits and unique points of intervention that drive rapid development of differentiated therapies. Combined with gene circuit-derived biomarkers and human-based translational models, Vesalius’ Continuum Discovery™ platform delivers efficient translation into smaller, shorter clinical trials with a higher probability of success. Vesalius was founded in 2019 by Flagship Pioneering. For more information visit, or follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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