In July 2022, LuMind IDSC welcomed Richard A. Fisher, Ph.D. as Chief Scientific Officer. Dr. Fisher’s appointment follows a five-month, international search to fill this leadership role.
“Along with his deep scientific and drug development experience, Rich brings more than 40 years of industry and management knowledge to our organization. I am confident his unique background and skills will elevate and accelerate LuMind IDSC’s research strategy. He will move our mission forward, and we’re lucky to have him on board,” CEO Hampus Hillerstrom said.
Dr. Fisher earned his Ph.D. at the University of Iowa College of Medicine and trained as an American Cancer Society post doctoral fellow at the University of Chicago. Early in his career he worked primarily in the infectious and inflammatory disease fields, and for the past 14 years his research and discovery focus was neurodegenerative disease including Alzheimer’s disease.
Born and raised in Iowa, Dr. Fisher moved to Massachusetts in 1981 following his post doctoral training to join the start-up biotechnology company, Biogen, as its 15th employee. After 13 years at Biogen as head of molecular biology, he led discovery and early development teams at start-up biotechnology companies CytoMed, UCB Research, and GlycoFi,. and Intranasal Therapeutics, Inc. (Ikano), which carried out early development for NayzilamR , an approved drug for epilepsy.
At ProClara, Dr. Fisher built and led the team that created a novel approach, called GAIM, to lower amyloid loads in Alzheimer’s disease, culminating in the clinical trials of two novel drug candidates.
After ProClara in 2019, Dr. Fisher held senior scientific leadership role at at Flagship Pioneering’s FL60 (now Vesalius Therapeutics), and then, in 2020, joined the neuroscience start-up, Vigil Neuroscience (VIGL), as Chief Scientific Officer, where he built a microglia-focused biology team as a member of the executive leadership during the path from start-up to public offering.
His role at LuMind IDSC is Dr. Fisher’s first foray into the non-profit, mission-driven world, and one he says he is excited to embrace.
“I look forward to applying my knowledge and experience to LuMind IDSC’s mission,” he said. “This role will allow me to the learn more about the pathophysiology and medical needs of people with Down syndrome and work with the Lumind IDSC Team for effective solutions by building on and expanding the organization’s existing network and programs. For me this represents a great opportunity to work toward positive impacts for patients and caregivers.”
To learn more about LuMind IDSC’s research initiatives and research opportunities, click here.