Arrakis Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company pioneering the discovery of a new class of small molecule medicines that directly target RNA, today announced that James Mutamba, PhD, has joined the company as Chief Business Officer. Dr. Mutamba has broad experience in business development, corporate strategy and company formation and growth, including his most recent role as Vice President of Business and Corporate Development at Pyxis Oncology (Nasdaq: PYXS) and previous roles at Longwood Fund and PureTech Health, where he co-founded and helped to build multiple biotech and life sciences companies. In his role at Arrakis, he will be responsible for leading corporate strategy, business development, investor relations and finance as Arrakis enters its next stage of growth, advancing its pipeline of wholly owned and partnered programs toward the clinic.
“We are delighted to welcome James to the Arrakis leadership team. He brings exceptional expertise and judgment in business development, strategy and capital formation that will help Arrakis realize the tremendous opportunities enabled by our proprietary platform,” said Michael Gilman, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Arrakis. “His experience, tenacity and team spirit are an ideal fit with our team as we continue to build a world-class company that brings innovative RNA-targeted medicines to patients.”
“I couldn’t be more excited to join the outstanding team at Arrakis at a time of great momentum and progress in translating the company’s innovative platform into a pipeline of RNA-targeted medicines that can deliver powerful new therapies to patients,” said James Mutamba. “I am eager to apply my venture and biotech business experience, as well as my scientific background, to help Arrakis achieve its aspirations as a drug innovator with the potential to create numerous medicines across many therapeutic areas.”
Prior to joining Arrakis, Dr. Mutamba led business and corporate development at Pyxis Oncology where he was responsible for leading strategy and business development for the company culminating in a worldwide licensing agreement with Pfizer and financing transactions, including the company’s Series B financing and subsequent initial public offering. Prior to Pyxis Oncology, Dr. Mutamba was a Principal at Longwood Fund, where he built and supported portfolio companies. Previously, he was a Senior Associate at PureTech Health where he co-founded Commense, Inc., a microbiome-based maternal and childhood health company. Dr. Mutamba was also a co-founder and inventor in Glyph Biosciences, an immune-focused company targeting novel lymphatic system biology, and Calix Biopharma (now Orasome), a company developing engineered exosomes for novel drug delivery applications. Earlier in his career, Dr. Mutamba was a strategy consultant and played multiple roles in research and product development at Pathogenica, Inc., a biotech startup out of Harvard University. He received his BS in Biochemistry from University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and earned his PhD from MIT in the Department of Biological Engineering and completed coursework at the MIT Sloan School of Management.