Expert in Infectious Disease Joins World-Renowned Scientists Advising Houston Company on Development of Fibroblast Cell-Based Therapeutics for a Wide Range of Chronic Diseases
HOUSTON, March 10, 2022 – FibroBiologics, a clinical-stage company focused on the development of fibroblast cell-based therapeutics for chronic diseases, today announced the addition of Kathleen “Kate” Rubins, Ph.D., to its Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). A microbiologist and NASA astronaut, Dr. Rubins has conducted pioneering medical research on viruses at high-profile academic institutions as well as on board the International Space Station (ISS). She holds a B.S. in Molecular Biology from the University of California and Ph.D. in Cancer Biology from Stanford University.
As an undergraduate student, Dr. Rubins conducted research at the Salk Institute, where she analyzed the mechanism of HIV integration, including several studies of HIV-1 Integrase inhibitors and genome-wide analyses of HIV integration patterns into host genomic DNA. After this and her Ph.D. work, she and colleagues developed the first model of smallpox infection in conjunction with the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She also developed a complete map of the poxvirus transcriptome and studied virus-host interactions using both in vitro and animal model systems.
Dr. Rubins was selected in 2009 as one of 14 members of NASA Astronaut Group 20. In 2016, she completed her first spaceflight on Expedition 48/49, where she became the first person to sequence DNA in space. Rubins most recently served on the ISS as a flight engineer for Expedition 63/64. Across her two flights, she has spent a total of 300 days in space, the fourth most days in space by a U.S. female astronaut.
“We are honored to welcome Dr. Rubins to our SAB,” said Pete O’Heeron, CEO and Chairman of FibroBiologics. “She has distinguished herself in both terrestrial research at the Salk and Whitehead Institutes and through her ethereal work on the International Space Station. It’s rare to have such a unique perspective on microbiology. Dr. Rubins joins a board of world-renowned scientists who will help to guide us as we advance fibroblast cell-based therapeutics through preclinical and clinical development. We are the only company focused on this unique opportunity in leveraging fibroblasts as treatments for chronic diseases and Dr. Rubins will be a key advisor in our pursuit to bring relief to the patients.”
Dr. Rubins becomes the fifth member of FibroBiologics’ SAB. The other members are:
Claudia Lucchinetti, M.D., Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Neurology; Dean, Clinical and Translational Science; Director of the Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences, and Eugene and Marcia Applebaum Professor of Neuroscience, Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine
Elizabeth Shpall, M.D., The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Director of the Cell Therapy Laboratory, Director of the Cord Blood Bank, and Howard and Lee Smith Chair in Cancer Research Professor, Department of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapy, Division of Cancer Medicine
S. Thomas Carmichael, M.D., Ph.D., UCLA, Professor and Chair, Department of Neurology, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and the Broad Stem Cell Research Center
Neil Bhowmick, Ph.D., Cedars-Sinai, Director, Cancer Biology Program, Cedars-Sinai Cancer Institute and Professor of Medicine Cedars-Sinai Medical Center/UCLA.
Based in Houston, FibroBiologics is a regenerative medicine company developing a pipeline of treatments for chronic diseases using fibroblast cells. Currently, FibroBiologics holds 150+ U.S. and international issued patents/patents pending across a variety of clinical pathways, including disc degeneration, orthopedics, multiple sclerosis and cancer. FibroBiologics represents the next generation of medical advancement in cell therapy.