Press Release

Tizona Appoints Christine O’Brien as Chief Executive Officer

– Transaction with Gilead Sciences Closed –

– Tizona Advances TTX-080, a Novel Anti-HLA-G Antibody, with First Patients Treated in Phase I Study –


SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Sept. 15, 2020 — Tizona Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical stage, privately held company developing first-in-class cancer immunotherapies, today announced the appointment of Christine O’Brien as Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. O’Brien previously held the position of Chief Operating Officer.

“Christine has played a significant role in building Tizona, including establishing an inclusive culture, during her tenure with the company,” said Dan Spiegelman, member of Tizona’s Board of Directors. “As CEO, the company will continue to benefit from her significant leadership and operational experience as well as a strong track record of managing partnerships and advancing novel programs like TTX-080, the first anti-HLA-G antibody, into the clinic.”

O’Brien joined Tizona in 2015 and led the cross-functional execution of the company’s portfolio and operating plan during a time when the organization advanced two, first-in-class immunotherapies into the clinic. Additionally, O’Brien provided leadership for clinical stage project teams, working successfully with external partners to shape strategy and development plans.

“Our approach to developing innovative therapeutics by focusing on human biology, as well as our exceptional execution, continues to increase the excitement and recognition for what Tizona is poised to do,” said Christine O’Brien, CEO, Tizona. “I am thrilled to continue the important work being done by Tizona’s talented and dedicated team. Together, we will advance our mission to deliver novel cancer immunotherapies to improve outcomes for patients.”

In July 2020, Tizona signed an agreement to enter a transformative alliance with Gilead Sciences whereby Gilead would purchase a 49.9 percent equity interest in Tizona and have the exclusive option to acquire the remainder of the company. The transaction closed on August 25, 2020.

About TTX-080

TTX-080 is a potential first-in-class medicine that targets HLA-G, a novel and emerging immune checkpoint expressed across multiple tumor types. By blocking the interaction of HLA-G with its receptors, TTX-080 prevents the suppression of both innate and adaptive immune activity and has the potential to enhance anti-tumor responses. Tizona is enrolling patients in a Phase 1 clinical trial (NCT04485013) evaluating TTX-080 both as a monotherapy and in combination with other agents in patients with advanced cancers.

About Tizona Therapeutics, Inc.

Tizona is a privately held, clinical-stage immunotherapy company that develops first-in-class medicines to deliver transformational benefits for people with cancer. Tizona translates scientific breakthroughs into therapeutics that stimulate the immune system and counter immune suppression. Tizona’s pipeline includes TTX-080, which targets HLA-G and is being evaluated in a Phase 1 clinical study in advanced cancers, TZ-040, a pre-clinical stage program anticipated to enter IND-enabling studies in the first half of 2021, and additional first-in-class discovery stage programs targeting novel immuno-modulatory molecules.



Janet Graesser