Slide Meet Our Team Our team is committed to the invention of new medicines to treat people suffering from cancer and to the creation of substantial value for our investors and partners. We have comprehensive experience in the science and business of drug discovery and development.

Charles McDermott

Chairman, President & CEO

Charles (Charlie) McDermott has more than 24 years of experience in the life sciences industry and has held roles of increasing responsibility in drug discovery, regulatory affairs, corporate development, commercial planning, and executive management. Most recently Mr. McDermott was President, Chief Business Officer, and a member of the board of directors of Impact Biomedicines, Inc. While at Impact, Mr. McDermott raised more than $110 million in private equity and royalty financing to fully fund the development and commercialization of fedratinib for the treatment of serious hematological malignancies. Impact was acquired by Celgene in 2018 for $1.1 billion upfront and up to $7 billion overall, if all contingent payments are realized. Prior to joining Impact, Mr. McDermott was President and Chief Business Officer of Kala Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Mr. McDermott helped lead the transformation of Kala from a private pre-clinical stage company to a pre-commercial stage public company. To this end, Mr. McDermott helped raise ~$190 million via private equity, debt, and an initial public offering. In August of 2018, Kala received NDA approval for Inveltys™, an internally developed drug for ocular indications. Before Joining Kala, Mr. McDermott worked at Allergan as Vice President, Global Business Development for the Eye Care and Drug Delivery business units. At Allergan, Mr. McDermott led efforts to license and acquire a variety of technologies and therapeutics including Lastacaft™, Acuvail™, Restasis® MultiDose™, Latisse™, and Abicipar. Before Joining Allergan, Mr. McDermott was Associate Director of Business Development at deCODE genetics (and before that he worked at Pfizer/Agouron in drug discovery and regulatory affairs. Mr. McDermott has a B.A. in biochemistry and molecular biology from UC Santa Cruz, a M.A. in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology from UC Santa Barbara, and a MBA from the University of San Diego.

James Appleman, Ph.D.

SVP, R&D and CSO
Co-founder, Director

James (Jim) Appleman, Ph.D. is SVP, R&D and CSO, Co-founder, Director of Primmune. Dr. Appleman brings to Primmune nearly thirty years of experience in building successful drug discovery organizations. He has been an advisor to biotech, hi-tech and diagnostic firms. Dr. Appleman is a co-founder of eFFECTOR Therapeutics ($45M original Series A funding) where he established both the technology base and bioinformatics infrastructure to support eFFECTOR’s unique programs targeting dysregulated mRNA translation. He previously served as Senior Vice President, Research and Chief Scientific Officer at Anadys Pharmaceuticals, Inc. where he played a pivotal role in the business process culminating in the acquisition of Anadys for $230M (256% premium to market cap) by Roche Pharma and in the invention, characterization and clinical development of the company's internally discovered drug candidates setrobuvir and ANA773. ANA773 is a novel TLR7 (toll-like receptor 7) agonist originally intended for the treatment of cancer and hepatic viral diseases. Prior to joining Anadys, Dr. Appleman held positions at Gensia, Inc. and it’s subsidiary Metabasis Therapeutics and was a faculty member at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. He received a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Oklahoma State University and completed his postdoctoral training at Dartmouth Medical School. At Anadys, Dr. Appleman personally led the ANA773 team from conception through realization (characterization of target-mediated biology, selection of medicinal chemistry starting points, lead optimization, candidate selection, preclinical development, clinical proof of concept). The combination of practical experience with this TLR7 agonist and other activators of innate immunity coincidental with the emergence of immunotherapy as paramount in the successful treatment of cancer places Primmune at the very heart of the most compelling area of drug discovery and development today.

Curtis Scribner, M.D.

Chief Medical Officer

Curtis Scribner, M.D., is a board-certified internal medicine specialist with extensive experience in drug development as a clinical investigator, regulatory reviewer, and strategic product life cycle consultant. Dr. Scribner spent 10 years at the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER), reviewing all phases of clinical development in a wide breadth of areas (blood, plasma, recombinant proteins, cells, tissues, vaccines, etc.). He worked for six years in a small venture-based drug, biologic, and combination development company (BioMedicines/Intarcia) as the Chief Regulatory Officer. He has more than 25 years of experience as a consultant to drugs and biologics companies working on everything from discovery and preclinical models through clinical trials, especially early-stage clinical trials, Data and Safety Monitoring Committees, and strategic and operational regulatory interactions in the U.S. (FDA) and E.U. (EMA and Member States). He has extensive experience in oncology, hepatology, infectious disease, rheumatology, immunology, very rare and orphan diseases, and gene therapy.

Rich Daniels

Chief Operating Officer

Richard Daniels brings more than 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry covering all stages of product development and commercialization in multiple therapeutic areas. Prior to joining Primmune Therapeutics, Mr. Daniels was Senior Vice President of Clinical Operations and R&D Planning at Intercept Pharmaceuticals where he was responsible for managing a ~$180M annual R&D budget across multiple development and in-market programs supporting the company’s liver-disease focus. Prior to Intercept Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Daniels spent 15 years at Amgen in increasing roles of responsibility, including the last 5 years as Executive Director and Oncology Therapeutic Area Lead where he was responsible for managing development and life-cycle activities for a portfolio of 20+ pipeline and marketed assets. Earlier in Mr. Daniels’ career, he held various scientific positions at Genicon Sciences (acquired by Life Technologies) and Agouron Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer). Mr. Daniels earned a B.S. in microbiology from the University of California, San Diego.

Paulo Rangel

Chief Business Officer and Co-founder

Paulo Rangel brings 25 years experience in the pharmaceutical and related industries in both small and large companies. Before Primmune, Mr. Rangel was President & CEO and Co-founder of Evince Biosciences, a precursor to Primmune Therapeutics. Before Evince, Mr. Rangel was a Partner at ProPharma Partners International, an international consulting group. He concentrated on working with biopharmaceutical and medical device companies on worldwide in- and out- licensing, valuations, business plans and market research. Before ProPharma, Mr. Rangel was Head of Global Business Development at Besins Healthcare, a global pharmaceutical company with products targeted at women’s and men’s health. Mr. Rangel was a founder of, and key executive in, two medical device start-ups, Lasercure Sciences and 5i Sciences (now Sommetrics). In those positions, he completed the financing, clinical studies and collaborations, and was responsible for all intellectual property. Mr. Rangel has filled key roles in a number of other biotechnology companies and worked at Amgen and Hybritech/Lilly early in his career. Mr. Rangel received a B.A. in chemistry and biochemistry from the UC San Diego and an MBA from The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.

Randy Adams

Chief Commercial Officer

Randy Adams brings more than 25 years of commercial experience in the specialty pharmaceutical, biological and medical device industry. Prior to joining Primmune Therapeutics, Mr. Adams was Vice President of Commercial at Equillium where he was responsible for strategic planning related to the company’s lead candidate itolizumab. Prior to joining Equillium, Mr. Adams served as Senior Vice President of Commercial at Impact Biomedicines (acquired by Celgene) where he was responsible for commercial readiness activities to support the launch of fedratinib, a selective JAK2 inhibitor for the treatment of myelofibrosis. Prior to joining Impact Biomedicines, Mr. Adams was Executive Vice President and a founding partner at Carling Communications (acquired by Fishawack Health), where he was instrumental in building a global strategic consulting and medical communications agency and was a strategic advisor on multiple specialty product launches. Prior to Carling Communications, Mr. Adams held roles of increasing responsibility at Allergan, including Director of Marketing, where he was responsible for leading a $1 billion dry eye portfolio and was instrumental in the launch and successful commercialization of RESTASIS®.  Mr. Adams earned a B.A. in business administration from Georgia College & State University.

Scott Zook

Senior Vice President Global Manufacturing

Scott Zook brings more than 27 years of drug development experience in the pharmaceutical industry consisting of establishing and directing CMC strategy and activities, developing global supply chains and managing a wide range of drug candidates across all regulatory phases. Prior to joining Primmune Therapeutics, Mr. Zook was Vice President of CMC at Neurocrine Biosciences where he was responsible for managing the development and manufacturing efforts across a wide range of therapeutic areas, including neurology, gene therapy, endocrinology, pediatric and adult epilepsy and neuro-psychiatric conditions and two NDA approvals. Prior to joining Neurocrine Biosciences, Mr. Zook was a scientist at Agouron Pharmaceuticals (acquired by Pfizer) where he led the API efforts on VEGF oncology and VEGF ophthalmology products. Mr. Zook earned his M.Sc. in synthetic organic chemistry and B.Sc. in organic chemistry from the University of Saskatchewan.

Stephen Webber, Ph.D.

Vice President, Medicinal Chemistry, and Co-founder

Stephen E. Webber Ph.D. is a Primmune Therapeutics co-founder and advisor and expert in the discovery of TLR7 agonists. He is currently Executive Director of Medicinal Chemistry at Polaris Pharmaceuticals, where he is responsible for the discovery and synthesis of small molecule cancer therapeutics utilizing structure-based drug design techniques. Prior to joining Polaris, Dr. Webber was a co-founder and Director of Medicinal Chemistry at eFFECTOR Therapeutics, a company devoted to the discovery and development of translation regulators for cancer. At eFFECTOR, Dr. Webber’s responsibilities included building and managing a Medicinal Chemistry group, laboratories, and chemistry outsourcing, and performing structure-based drug design. Before this position, Dr. Webber was in charge of leading the discovery chemistry efforts at Anadys Pharmaceuticals, where he served in various senior level positions until the company was acquired by Roche. At Anadys, Dr. Webber discovered and co-invented several therapeutically important antiviral and anticancer small molecules, including clinical candidate setrobuvir, and TLR7 agonists ANA-975 and ANA-773. Dr. Webber also discovered rucaparib, which was licensed to Clovis Oncology by Pfizer and was approved by the FDA to treat ovarian cancer (marketed as Rubraca®). It is currently the subject of several Phase 2 and 3 clinical studies in other cancers in patients with the BRCA, or BRCA-like mutations. Dr. Webber’s industrial career extends back to Agouron Pharmaceuticals Inc., joining the company in 1987 at its inception. Dr. Webber received his B.S. from Philadelphia University (now part of Thomas Jefferson University) and his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.