Management

Image of Thomas E. Hughes Ph.D.
Thomas E. Hughes Ph.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer


Dr. Hughes has over 25 years of experience in pharmaceutical research and development. Dr. Hughes joined Zafgen in 2008 as president, chief executive officer and a member of the company's board of directors. From 1987 to 2008, Dr. Hughes held several positions at Novartis AG (and formerly Sandoz Pharmaceuticals) including vice president and 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 obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. As a scientist, Dr. Hughes led Novartis' efforts to discover and develop its dipeptidylpeptidase IV inhibitor vildagliptin (Galvus®/Eucreas®), a drug used for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, currently approved in 70 countries. Dr. Hughes is the author of over 40 peer-reviewed publications and is an inventor on numerous issued and pending patents related to the treatment of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

Dr. Hughes also serves as a director on the board of Miragen Therapeutics, Inc., and is a member of several scientific and strategic advisory boards, including Broadview Ventures and Nimbus Discovery, LLC.

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Image of Dennis D. Kim M.D., M.B.A.
Dennis D. Kim M.D., M.B.A.
Chief Medical Officer


Dr. Kim joined Zafgen in September 2011 as the company's chief medical officer. Dr. Kim has taken a leadership role in Zafgen's clinical development, including clinical and regulatory strategy, trial design and oversight of the company's virtual clinical team. He also brings business development experience in the fields of obesity, endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism.

Dr. Kim is a board-certified endocrinologist and comes to Zafgen with more than 10 years of experience in the biotech and medical technology industries. Prior to joining Zafgen, Dr. Kim held multiple senior-level clinical and corporate affairs positions at Orexigen Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of obesity, including senior vice president, head of obesity/metabolic diseases; senior vice president, corporate development; and senior vice president, medical affairs and communications. Prior to Orexigen, he was chief medical officer and vice president of medical affairs at EnteroMedics, Inc., where he oversaw all aspects of clinical affairs and successfully implemented an initial public offering as part of the executive team in 2007.

Previously, he spent seven years in positions of increasing responsibility at Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc., most recently as executive director, corporate strategy, where he managed corporate and business strategic planning spanning all commercial products, developmental drug candidates, corporate alliance partnership and manufacturing support. While at Amylin, Dr. Kim was also the lead physician for exenatide (BYETTA®), an FDA-approved therapy for type 2 diabetes, where he directed Phase 2 through 4 development and commercialization. Currently, Dr. Kim is an assistant professor of medicine, division of endocrinology/metabolism, at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine. He holds an M.D. from the University of Health Sciences, The Chicago Medical School, an M.B.A from UCSD Rady School of Management and a B.S. in biology from the University of California at Los Angeles.

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Image of James E. Vath Ph.D.
James E. Vath Ph.D.
Head of Discovery and Development


Dr. Vath joined Zafgen in 2006 and brings over 20 years of experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries to his role as head of discovery and development. Prior to joining the company, Dr. Vath worked with established companies and new ventures to assess, develop and execute product development plans. As senior vice president of product development at Phylogix Inc., Dr. Vath created and implemented the corporate operational and R&D plan for the lead product in oncology-supportive care. Prior to Phylogix, he served as senior vice president of research at Praecis Pharmaceuticals where he led the R&D organization through multiple IND filings and a product approval. Dr. Vath also held roles as director of protein technologies at Millennium Pharmaceuticals and a lab head in development at Genetics Institute. Dr. Vath is a contributing author on numerous peer-reviewed journal publications and book chapters. Dr. Vath earned his Ph.D. in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a B.S. in chemistry from Northeastern University.

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Image of Patricia Allen
Patricia Allen
Chief Financial Officer


Ms. Allen, joined Zafgen as chief financial officer in January 2013. She offers 20 years of financial leadership experience in the biotechnology industry at both publicly traded and private companies. For the past two years, she has provided independent consulting services to biotechnology companies in a variety of areas, including interim CFO services, fundraising, deal structures, financial planning, organizational structure, investor relations and business development.

Previously, Ms. Allen served as the Vice President of Finance, Treasurer and Principal Financial Officer of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, where she had significant interactions with the investment community and was influential in raising over $900 million between 2004 and 2011 via the Company's initial public offering, follow-on common stock offerings and multiple business development transactions with top-tier pharmaceutical companies, including Novartis, Roche and Takeda Pharmaceuticals. While at Alnylam, she was also responsible for all external financial reporting. Ms. Allen's public company and financial reporting duties also include serving as the Corporate Controller and eventually the Director of Finance at Alkermes, Inc. In her 12 years at Alkermes, she was intimately involved in business development transactions and interactions with the investment community, and helped to raise over $700 million through follow-on common stock offerings, private offerings with institutional investors, convertible preferred stock, convertible debt, and R&D partnerships.

Ms. Allen began her career as an auditor at Deloitte & Touche, LLP. Ms. Allen graduated Summa Cum Laude from Bryant College with a B.S. in Business Administration.

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