Market Overview

Navitor Pharmaceuticals Appoints Thomas E. Hughes, Ph.D. as Chief Executive Officer


Former CEO and President of Zafgen brings pharmaceutical development
and public biotechnology company leadership experience as Navitor builds
product pipeline

George P. Vlasuk, Ph.D. to remain as President and appointed Chief
Scientific Officer

Navitor Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company targeting the
mTORC1 pathway to develop novel therapeutics that help patients live
longer and healthier lives, today announced the appointment of Thomas E.
Hughes, Ph.D., as Chief Executive Officer. Dr. Hughes is the former
Chief Executive Officer of Zafgen (NASDAQ:ZFGN) , a publicly-traded
biotechnology company developing medicines for metabolic diseases and
has been a scientific advisor to Navitor since its seed stage. George P.
Vlasuk, Ph.D., current President and CEO of Navitor, will remain
President and will assume the newly-created role of Chief Scientific
Officer. Both Dr. Hughes and Dr. Vlasuk will serve on Navitor's Board of

These moves come at an exciting time for Navitor, which recently
initiated a Phase 1 clinical study of its lead candidate, NV-5138, for
treatment-resistant depression (TRD) and is advancing its mTORC1
platform to address multiple therapeutic applications, including CNS,
immuno-metabolism, fibrosis and multiple rare diseases.

"We are delighted to bolster the leadership team at Navitor to further
strengthen our ability to advance a multi-product pipeline based on our
proprietary mTORC1 platform. Tom brings extensive pharmaceutical
development and public biotechnology company experience to lead this
next stage of Navitor's growth," said Alan Crane, Co-founder and
Chairman of the Board of Navitor and Entrepreneur Partner at Polaris

"George has been instrumental in building Navitor to establish the
industry-leading capabilities of our mTORC1 platform. George had the
foresight to propose bringing a CEO on board with public company and
translational experience, while he looks to focus his efforts on
continuing to advance the science of Navitor. We are thrilled to have
both George and Tom as members of the Navitor leadership team and are
confident that with their combined experience, we will be able to
advance the company to its next stage of evolution," continued Mr. Crane.

"I am excited to join Navitor and am eager to work with George and the
team he has built to move Navitor through its next stages of growth,"
said Dr. Hughes. "mTORC1 is a powerful biological node with proven and
tractable approaches to drug development. With a strong platform of
proprietary approaches to drugging the mTORC1 system both for selective
inhibitors and activators, Navitor is well positioned to lead this field
of biology with valuable new insights and therapeutic programs
addressing diseases with high and unmet medical need. The recent
clinical trial initiation of NV-5138 is the first application of
Navitor's mTORC1 technology in its platform of programs that aim to
bring new therapies to patients with limited treatment options."

Navitor's small molecule therapeutics are designed to selectively
modulate the cellular signals that are aberrant in disease processes
caused by the dysregulation of mTORC1 activation. Navitor was founded
based on the groundbreaking discoveries related to the mTORC1 pathway
and nutrient signaling mechanisms by Dr. David Sabatini at The Whitehead
Institute for Biomedical Research.

Dr. Vlasuk commented, "I am excited to focus my efforts on further
building the capabilities of Navitor's mTORC1 platform, expanding our
pipeline and shaping the long-term direction of our drug discovery and
development efforts. I look forward to working with Tom, whom I have
known professionally for many years, to realize our Company's vision."

Dr. Tom Hughes, who has more than 30 years of industry experience in the
development and commercialization of pharmaceutical products, most
recently served as President and Chief Scientific Officer of Zafgen and
previously led Zafgen as CEO from 2008 to 2017. During this time, Dr.
Hughes established Zafgen as a leading biotechnology company working in
the area of rare and prevalent metabolic disorders and led the company
through its Initial Public Offering in 2014. Prior to Zafgen, Dr. Hughes
held several positions at Novartis including Global Head of the
Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases Therapeutic Area at the Novartis
Institutes for BioMedical Research in Cambridge, MA. In these roles, he
oversaw many drug discovery and development projects targeting major
global aging-related health issues including obesity, diabetes, and
heart disease. Dr. Hughes currently serves as a member of the Board of
Directors of miRagen Therapeutics, Inc., is an advisor to Atlas Venture,
and is a member of several scientific and strategic advisory boards,
including Broadview Ventures, HotSpot Therapeutics, and Nimbus
Therapeutics. He holds a Ph.D. in nutritional biochemistry from Tufts
University, an M.S. in zoology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute &
State University and a B.A. in biology from Franklin and Marshall

About NV-5138
NV-5138 is an orally bioavailable, small
molecule that is designed to directly and transiently activate mTORC1
activity by binding to and modulating a newly discovered cellular sensor
protein for the amino acid leucine, which is a potent natural activator
of mTORC1. Unlike leucine, oral administration of NV-5138 results in
significant mTORC1 pathway activation in the brain since it is not
broken down or incorporated into new proteins. These properties make
NV-5138 a unique agent with which to evaluate the role of mTORC1 in
brain disorders, such as depression, where mTORC1 activity is often
suppressed. Results from preclinical models demonstrate that NV-5138
produces rapid upregulation of key synaptic proteins, synaptogenesis and
sustained antidepressant behavioral responses via the transient and
direct activation of the mTORC1 signaling pathway. Since NV-5138 does
not directly modulate the NMDA receptor pathway, it may not have the
side effects and abuse potential observed with several NMDA receptor
therapeutics currently in development. NV-5138 is currently being
clinically studied for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD)
with an initial focus on treatment-resistant depression (TRD).

About Navitor
Navitor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is realizing the
potential of modulating mTORC1, the master regulator of cellular
function, to develop a pipeline of therapeutics that help patients live
longer and healthier lives. Our industry leading team is unlocking the
promise of recent discoveries in mTORC1 biology to address a broad range
of chronic diseases. Our initial clinical application is a
first-in-class drug to address unmet needs in depression. For more
information, please visit

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